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Mama_Cakes's avatar

What can you tell me about English Bull Terriers?

Asked by Mama_Cakes (9289 points ) December 26th, 2012

The good, bad and ugly…

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10 Answers

RandomGirl's avatar

Terriers in general are stubborn and hard-willed. You have to be very careful to train them well from day one, or they’ll get nasty. Always maintain the “alpha dog” status. If you let them get the top dog position, they won’t let you take things away from them or be in charge at all. This is the problem we’re having with our dog (half terrier) right now.

nofurbelowsbatgirl's avatar

They are stubborn, but cute little buggers.

Leanne1986's avatar

I work with a few and think they have lovely personalities, they enjoy human company but, like with any dog but especially the bull breeds, they need early and plenty of socialisation with other dogs to make sure they grow into polite, well mannered dogs. They can be stubborn and they are not for the inexperienced dog owner. A friend of mine has one and he is her first ever dog, she doesn’t mind admitting that in hindsight she should’ve started with an easier breed!

They are intelligent and strong willed so training needs to be consistent and from an early age.

Health wise, all the ones I know suffer from skin problems and, if not socialised from a young age with dogs, people and general life stuff, they can suffer from anxiety which can turn into fear aggression but that should go without saying for any dog.

I’m a fan, I love working with them and find them to be fun and loveable (although the saying “bull in a china shop” springs to mind). I probably wouldn’t choose to have one myself though.

Seek's avatar

I had an Oldie for a couple of years. Unfortunately, we were not ideal Bully breed owners. Lived in an apartment with no yard, had a toddler that needed all the attention, no other dogs to play with…

Hoss was a good boy. He loved the little one dearly and always treated him well. He did not, however, get along with my husband. Which is weird, because as a rule, dogs love Mitch. I think it was more fear aggression due to moving from a house in the boonies with a big yard to that little apartment with no yard.

We ended up re-homing him after the second time he bit Mitch on his fret hand. I still miss that little guy (ha!) quite a bit.

downtide's avatar

A friend of mine had one and it was the dumbest dog I have ever met. After three years of training it still didn’t understand a single command.

rooeytoo's avatar

A lot of them are deaf, at least in the USA, so be sure health checks were done on the parents if you are looking at a pup. And as was mentioned, skin problems are not unusual. I have come to the conclusion though, that most skin problems are due to food allergies. If you fee them real food, not the canned or bagged crap (and I think it is crap no matter how much it costs – if it doesn’t rot, it ain’t real food’!) that should help with that situation. Terriers in general are not my kind of dog.Probably because I have a terrier personality and we always clash. I did show and board quite a few and they needed to be watched, they always seemed iffy temperament wise. I thought you were getting a bassett or was that someone else???

Leanne1986's avatar

@rooeytoo Thank you for mentioning the crap commonly known as commercial dog foods. Most of the behaviour problems I see are often down to the shit that it is in so called “complete” dog foods.

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Mama_Cakes's avatar

@rooeytoo I’m not sold on any particular breed. Just trying to educate myself prior to getting a pup.

Question? If one is to get an English B Terrier puppy, other than basic training (puppy classes) what sort of training would he or she need?

rooeytoo's avatar

@Mama_Cakes – I think all dogs should go through obedience training. Puppy classes are fine but I don’t think training ever ends. My dog is 5 and she still goes to school at least once a month. It is good as a refresher and it is good from a socialization stand point as well. She also does agility and rally-o. I am not fanatical about it, we do it for fun. I also think they need obedience school with other dogs and people. Most dogs will behave in a one on one situation with no distractions, the real test is how they work in crowds and around other dogs. I like to teach her new tricks, that is on going too, keeps her mind busy and she enjoys applause. I do sometimes have disagreements with the trainers (hard to imagine, isn’t it!) because my dog is so good and obedient, they want me to work her off lead. I know that if she sees a cat and her prey drive kicks in, she will be gone. So I will not take her off lead, even though she could get a cdx with no problems, I just don’t trust her because I know her. So don’t let a trainer talk you into trying something you are not comfortable with. There are a lot of 90 day wonder, one size fits all trainers out there, makes me nervous.

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