Care and practical tips


Help for drooping ears - Click Here This article from Buying and Rearing a Bull Terrier - A Guide to the First Year will help if your pup's ears are having some trouble standing.

Information on Poison Control and other Hazard Information for dogs

Our Practical Tips

During Cold Weather

The salt you sprinkle on your icy steps and walkways is very caustic to your dog's feet and not good for their tongues and insides either, should they lick their paws after a salt experience. Sprinkle Kitty Litter on those spots instead. It will give you plenty of traction and is much less harmful to your plants and lawn as well. Your dog will appreciate the consideration.

Don't forget the blanket trick for the old fellows coming in out of the cold yard. Throw the crate or bed blanket into the dryer for a few minutes to make a cozy bed for his cold bones to warm up on.

A good tip for those dry coats caused by central heating is to add a tablespoon of Canola Oil to the kibble you feed every day. In about a month you will see a marked improvement as the skin and coat take on a nice glistening sheen.

For icy conditions stay away from salt. We are grateful to have discovered Safe Paw, a pet, child and environmentally safe product. It will not sting or harm paws, eyes or skin. If you are unable to find it at your local supermarket go to Keep your bully warm and dressed to impress with a coat from Visit the website and see Stanley, the white Bull Terrier, the impetus for these functional and snazzy coats. You can also find quality coats at Toss your bully’s favorite bedding in the dryer for warm and snuggly, relaxing and snoozing in the cold days of winter.


Please remember that antifreeze is deadly poison and also seems to have exceptional taste appeal to dogs of all breeds. Put all antifreeze containers where your dog can't POSSIBLY reach, chew, lick, swallow or in any way ingest even a tiny amount of these containers. Clean up all spills on the garage floor or in the driveway.

Indoor Bully Sports--When It's Too Cold To Go Outside

Try playing hide and seek! The "hider" can be a treat, or a person holding a treat or toy. Start in one room, holding your Bully by the collar and TTBF (Treat To Be Found) placed on the floor an arms length away. Say "FIND" and let the dog get the TTBF. Build "in sight" distance with lots of cheerleading. When the game has been mastered "in sight," it's time to move the TTBF around the corner, behind a dog bed, in a corner, under a chair, and finally to another room. Within no time, your entire first floor can be fair game. Remember to vary the degree of difficulty so you keep your Bully's success ratio and enthusiasm high. If your Bully is hard to motivate to a toy, try a KONG with cheese tortellini in it! If using a toy, never leave the toy down when the game is over. Always end the game when your Bully is still eager to play. The easiest way to play the game is with two humans so one can hold the dog and the other can hide the TTBF. If there is only one human, this game is a great way to train "stays" but if that is too frustrating, work on the "in sights" longer (holding and throwing), building on the work "FIND". When going on to the "out of sights," put the dog in the kitchen behind a gate and do lots of easy, around the corner repetitions. HAVE FUN!!!

We must be vigilant in the summer time and remember that puppies who have not experienced the "3 H's"-- hazy, hot and humid-- can easily become overheated in their exuberant play. Coloreds, particularly those with black saddles, are heat magnets. Use caution when taking your dogs in the car. Temperatures rise very quickly inside vehicles even with the windows open.

Recognition of the signs of heat exhaustion/stroke:
  • A normally active dog flops down on trail or refuses to get up during a change in activity.
  • Excessive panting with what I call "bologna tongue"--the tongue comes so far out of the mouth that it flattens and widens and curls up at the end.
  • Intense "brick" red color inside the ears and mouth (lavender to blue is a very bad sign.)
  • Weakness in the legs (hence the "flopping down"), a staggering or drunk-like gait.
  • "Glassy" eyes--a sense that mental function is fading in and out.
  • Collapse followed by runny diarrhea (shock imminent).
Some tips on cooling down a hot dog:
  • Cold water (not ice) concentrating on the back of the head (where the brain stem is), on the jugular veins in the neck and between the hind legs--these areas have large superficial veins that will continue to pump hot blood past your cooling water and return cooler blood to the main part of the body.
  • Alcohol (rubbing) repeatedly applied to the foot pads will quickly evaporate for a cooling action.
  • Immerse the entire dog in a cold (not freezing) bath. Avoid leaving in too long--it is possible to drive the temp down too low...I usually continue cooling until the body temp is less than 104 but not below 103. If you are out hiking and you have access to water, then stand the dog in a running stream (submerge up to chest level if deep enough). Cold wet towels laid across the dog can also help if there is not enough water available to thoroughly wet the dog, or if you have wet it but now are looking to transport it for further treatment.
  • Some people shave the bellies of working dogs with long coats much like a "trace" clip on a horse in winter. The removal of belly hair allows for a greater degree of cooling but the bulk of the coat is still present (which is a natural insulator against both heat and cold). This is best done preventatively, of course.
  • Check back issues of WDJ (Whole Dog Jorunal). They ran an article on cooling mats and icy bandanas for your dog a few years back. These products are best used to help cool down between activities rather than to treat a dog once over-heated. Remember: Your dog can continue to increase in internal body temperature long after the activity has ceased and you are now back in a cooler environment, so if he is not responding to a cooler environment, recheck that temperature. Temperatures near or greater than 106 are a true emergency and can result in brain damage as well as vascular collapse and shock.

From "Heat Stroke Prevention" by Sally M. Suttenfield, DVM - Copyright, all rights reserved 2003 - Reprinted with permission

A filled 5 ft. diameter baby pool is a refreshing way for BT's to keep cool in the summer heat. Tossing a favorite toy, such as a ball or floatable kong, in the pool and having your BT retrieve it is a cooooool way to provide some exercise. If you want to introduce your puppy to a baby pool or you have a BT that doesn't relish the idea of "wet", start by getting them used to the pool with no water in it. Make the pool a FUN place to be by getting in it yourself and start playing with his favorite toys and tossing the "best treats in the house" around in the empty pool. Next, teach them how to jump in and out of the pool by retrieve games both going into and then going out of the pool. If there is no drive for retrieve, toss great treats in. Again, it is good to do this both ways--from outside the pool and into it and then from inside the pool out of it. When tossing the toy or the treat teach them a word such as "Get It". Once they are going in and out of the empty pool enthusiastically and looking forward to the game, cover the bottom of the pool with water. No more than a covering! Go back to your starting point with the games building up to a retrieve or a game of "Get It" with toys or treats being thrown both in and out of the pool. Gradually add more water and soon you'll have a Water Dog. Finding treats that float can be challenging--Charlie Bear treats and some kibble are floaters.

Heat Stroke - from The Volhard Holistic Group
When cooling do not forget the feet. The feet have a large blood flow and little muscle over the vessels, so you can cool them well by also cooling the feet. You DO want to cool the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord), for it suffers the worst damage being hot. I hold an ice pack right on the head, until the temp starts down. A hose will not cool as quick as ice and alcohol. Alcohol is the most effective as it evaporates quicker, evaporation requires energy to happen, so it uses heat energy, and cools the dog. Be sure to keep it out of the eyes, but you can put it on the ears. Also important is air flow, like a battery operated fan. Moving air over the dog will cool faster, by convection and evaporation.

Most important is to STOP cooling the very second the temp starts to drop. You should monitor rectal temps as fast as you can take them. If your dog is at 106.9 degrees, and the next reading is 106.3, just an example, STOP cooling, dry the dog, continue to monitor temps frequently. If the temp gets below 100 degrees, cover him, if it continues to drop get him in the sun. As a vet who has done a fair amount of emergency work, I can tell you first hand. I have had dogs that cooled to 98 degrees who were at 107, and we stopped cooling when it dropped to 106.5.

Lastly, just because the temp gets back to normal does not mean he does not need to see a vet ASAP. Get him cooled first, but get him to the vet. Issues such as dehydration, cardio-vascular shock, CNS toxicity, etc. need to be evaluated. Frequently the dogs will get a bloody diarrhea right afterward, looks like parvo but isn't, can dehydrate them severely and cause a toxicity, as the GI toxins are absorbed into the bloodstream.

Marcia Lucas Los Alamos, NM

(NOTE: 100-101 is normal temperature for a dog.)
Beware of Corn Cobs!
It is remarkable how many calls we get from bull terrier owners whose pets have eaten something which needs to be removed surgically. it is even more remarkable that a significant percentage of these blockages are caused by corn cobs. Yes, CORN COBS! Now that we are in the corn-on-the-cob season, we are issuing this alert - do NOT dispose of corn cobs where your pet could have access to them. They are apparently irresistible to the bull terrier palate. Large chunks of them are swallowed whole and they are totally indigestable. Very seldom do the larger pieces make their way through the entire digestive tract, but instead lodge in the intestine. This creates a painful and potentially lethal blockage, often accompanied by necrosis (rotting) of the intestinal wall. Corn cob pieces cannot be seen on x-rays, and create a problem for the veterinarian, who is usually conservative and unenthusiastic about operating. If the dog starts vomiting after meals, stops defecating, and seems "off color", chances are, he has a blockage. The worst that can happen if the vet operates is that he won't find a blockage, but might see something else that would explain the distress. Please stay alert and do not allow your bull terrier to rummage around in the remnants of that picnic!!!
Mosquito Tips

Pass this on to anyone who likes sitting out in the evening or when they're having a cook out.

So you don't like those pesky mosquitoes, especially now that they have the potential to carry the West Nile Virus? Here's a tip that was given at a recent gardening forum.

Put some water in a white dinner plate and add a couple drops of Lemon Fresh Joy dish detergent. Set the dish on your porch, patio, or other outdoor area. Not sure what attracts them, the lemon smell, the white plate color, or what, but mosquitoes flock to it, and drop dead shortly after drinking the Lemon Fresh Joy/water mixture, and usually within about 10 feet of the plate. Check this out---it works just super! May seem trivial, but it may help control mosquitoes around your home, especially in the South and elsewhere where the West Nile virus is reaching epidemic proportions in mosquitoes, birds, and humans.


Lawncare products using chemicals such as 2,4-D and Deet are hazardous to both humans and canines. National studies confirm that 90% of children and 83% of adults measure pesticides in their urine. The chemicals are known carcinogenics as well as being responsible for causing hormonal disruption, infertility, and hyperactivity. Common weed killers such as 2,4-D were linked to lymphoma in 76 of 100 studies on people and dogs. There are alternatives available that are non-toxic and earth friendly, such as organic fertilizers.

***Now here are two tips worth repeating over and over because Mary and I see and hear first-hand about too many tragedies caused by ignorance:

Some chemicals used in routine lawn care are directly linked to lymphoma in dogs (and people). This is not an environmental scare tactic. It is true. Bull Terriers seem to be more susceptible than some other breeds to contracting lymphoma, which is a lethal form of cancer. If you live in a suburban area and have to walk your dog, beware of treated lawns, playgrounds and golf courses. The effect seems to hang on, even from puppyhood, so it is not enough just to take precautions when the dog is elderly. By all means, never treat your own yard with chemicals, and do not let your dog exercise on any treated grass, no matter how long ago it was treated and how much rain has fallen in the interim.

Tick Tips

The following came from over the internet from a vetran dog handler: "I personally use Listerene mouthwash watered down half and half...I spray it on my dog's feet and legs to prevent the ticks climbing up and then onto their backs...I also spray my feet and legs when at seems to work pretty well. I also spray it around my can get a generic brand from the Dollar Store that has exactly the same ingredients as Listerene. About four years ago, a guy at a local garage found a pup in the fields on Mt. was covered in ticks and he was going to take it to the vets that evening. I bought the Listerene, watered it down 1 part to 4 parts water (puppy dose), poured it over the pup and the ticks just began dropping off...and were dead. The man called about 4 days later to say the pup was doing great and the vet was fine with the treatment. TRY IT AND LET US KNOW!

FEEDING: No need to "BARF"!

Feeding your Bull Terrier can be as practical or complicated as the owner’s time, patience and pocketbook allows. Having been through various complicated regimens in the name of better nutrition, I have found that a good commercial kibble at 20 to 24 percent protein and 12 percent fat is a reliable base, and reduces the chance of allergic reactions to the diet. We feed 1 to 2 cups of kibble per day for our size dogs (45 to 65 pounds) and keep a pan next to the sink for meat and vegetable scraps and left-overs. We mix these in the kibble with a little warm water and “voila” –a gourmet dinner for Fido! On days when there are no scraps or gravies in the pan we mix in about 2 tablespoons of canned beef or chicken. Avoid soft “hamburger” type prepackaged dog meals which have a lot of salt in them, and high-protein kibble that makes the kidneys work overtime to get rid of the extra protein that can’t be utilized. A little canola or flax oil added to the meal gives some extra luster to the coat. Just remember that “more” is not necessarily “better”!

Collars, A Potential Hazard or a Lifesaver?

We have talked before about the usefulness of collars. They make an excellent "handle" for holding on to your dog in situations where he might dash into danger or for persuading him to go in a direction he may not be so keen to go. In case of a scuffle with another dog, a collar is essential for control, as twisting the collar of a dog that won't "let go" essentially cuts off his airway and he faints and releases his hold. These things are good to know, and good reasons to have a snug-fitting collar on your dog when he is likely to be in situations that require control. However, a collar left on an unsupervised dog, especially a choke collar or a loose fitting collar, can be a deadly hazard. Bull Terriers often entertain themselves by putting their heads in places that weren't meant for them to be, and a collar can get caught in a fence, on a door handle, in another dog's tooth or get the picture. For this reason, the Bull Terriers here at Banbury wear collars when they are with us around the house and yard, but when they are left unsupervised in our kennel runs and yards, in their crates, or unattended for a long period of time in the house, the collars are removed for safety's sake. A little forethought can prevent the problems that arise when you need a collar and don't have one, or when your dog will be unnecessarily exposed to the danger of choking himself when he is unattended.

Cleaning Up Puppy "Mistakes" without leaving a stain:
  • Blot spot with a paper towel
  • Apply a liberal coating of cornstarch
  • Let sit for 24 hours. (Cover with a turned over wastebasket or straddle with a chair to keep from tracking it around the house.)
  • When dry, vacuum up the cornstarch which will have absorbed the urine from the carpet and dried out.
Leash Chewing:

If you have a puppy that likes to chew on his leash while walking, try giving him a favorite toy to carry while walking. If necessary, spray the leash with some Bitter Apple or Bitter Lime (available at most pet stores) before going on the walk. If these products aren't available, Listerine can be used as a deterrent.

This article is the property of What A Good Dog, Inc., and may not be reproduced with out permission from its authors.
Mosquito Tips

Pass this on to anyone who likes sitting out in the evening or when they're having a cook out.

So you don't like those pesky mosquitoes, especially now that they have the potential to carry the West Nile Virus? Here's a tip that was given at a recent gardening forum.

Put some water in a white dinner plate and add a couple drops of Lemon Fresh Joy dish detergent. Set the dish on your porch, patio, or other outdoor area. Not sure what attracts them, the lemon smell, the white plate color, or what, but mosquitoes flock to it, and drop dead shortly after drinking the Lemon Fresh Joy/water mixture, and usually within about 10 feet of the plate. Check this out---it works just super! May seem trivial, but it may help control mosquitoes around your home, especially in the South and elsewhere where the West Nile virus is reaching epidemic proportions in mosquitoes, birds, and humans.

Mary and Winkie both firmly believe that Bull Terriers require freedom and companionship to be happy and healthy. A Bull Terrier who lives a life of personal isolation and physical confinement is under constant stress and, therefore, potentially more prone to systemic health problems.
Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca:

Prognosis Good When Dry Eye Syndrome Diagnosed Early (click here) from Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine Newsletter, April 2002.

Allergy Advice:

(click here) What to do for those annoying skin allergies.


(click here) What you feed your Bully can make a big difference...


If your Bull Terrier has begun to vomit, stops eating and isn't defecating, he is very likely to have an obstruction in his bowel. DO NOT FUTZ AROUND for days and days doing X-Rays, Barium Studies, etc., etc. Bull Terriers are unlike other dogs with this problem. They are very stoic and do not admit to having pain, especially on palpation. They can even manage to look normal and cheerful when they have this problem. It is your dog, and you can insist that your vet "unzip" him and have a look. My latest horror story is from Arnie Leggett in Tucson, who called me in tears. Her Bull Terrier, Tad, had been very ill for a week. He ate, but vomited it all back up the next day and subsequently refused to eat and eventually drink. After several days at home, and getting no better, she took him to the vet. When she called me, he had been at the vet for several days. X-Rays were "negative". Barium study was "negative". I advised her to ask for an exploratory surgery. She called me the next day. Apparently, the vet had finally agreed to do this, and was getting him ready to put on the table when Tad had a violent paroxysm, foul diarrhea, and passed the remnant of a large corn cob. She and Tad were very lucky. Timely surgery three days previously would have saved them all a lot of suffering, and dogs don't often manage to get rid of obstructions, but perforate the bowel or get gangrene of the bowel instead.

"Beamer" Murdoch became very ill and underwent surgery 4 or 5 days after symptoms began. A piece of CORN COB was removed from his intestine. "Tilly" Lalonde was saved after her Mom, looking for advice on the internet, visited this site, read about blockages and requested that her vet perform surgery. He removed a piece of CORN COB and "Tilly" is fine.

In Caring For Your OLDER Bully, CONSIDER THIS:

Is your old Bully having trouble getting up after napping, not wanting to run and play as much, not able to jump into the car as readily, not up to the cavorts and leaps of youth? One of the reasons this may be happening is loss of cartilage in the joints which manifests as symptoms of arthritis such as stiffness and pain. I have used Cosequin (Glucosamine and Sodium Chondroitin Sulfate) on many senior dogs with beneficial results. Recently my almost 15 year old stopped responding as positively and, with the onset of winter, really began to struggle on our walks throughout the day. After consultation with my vet, we decided to try Adequan, an injectable drug with an effect similar to Cosequin. Adequan is purported to diminish or reverse the processes that result in loss of cartilage. It is able to increase joint lubrication and function. It was given in a series of eight biweekly intramuscular injections followed with boosters every three to four weeks. My vet recommended continuing with the daily oral dose of Cosequin as well. After the third injection, my old girl was back in her daily routine-going at least a mile a day and ready for adventures in the car in the afternoon. It has been about five months since she started the treatment and the change is incredible. The first snowfall found her enjoying it as much as the puppies. The results were so good I tried it with my 13 year old, who was also slowing from soreness and stiffness. She has experienced the same improvements. My vet says they feel so good because they have "slippery joints" again. Adequan is made by Luitpold Pharmaceuticals, Inc. The doseage is calculated according to weight. As doctors are recommending for people to begin supplementing with Glucosamine and Chondroitin before arthritic changes occur, so are some vets, suggesting it may be prudent to do the same with dogs predisposed to arthritis. Consider exploring the possibility of extending your dog's active lifestyle with these products. Check with your vet for more detailed information.

When using blankets for dog bedding, be sure to remove the sateen binding along the top and bottom of the blanket. If you don't take it off, your Bully will, possibly resulting in an expensive surgical removal of the binding which cannot pass through the dog's intestinal tract, should he swallow portions of it.

Watch What They Eat!

Most Bull Terriers are real chow hounds and tend to beg for treats. They also tend to put on weight as they mature which increases the probability for heart disease, arthritis and diabetes as they age. Table scraps, beef jerkey, cheese and most biscuits have CALORIES! If you were to put all the daily extras into one pile, chances are the caloric total would be significant. Two suggestions: (1) Substitute baby carrots or pieces of rice cake for treats or (2) put a daily quota of biscuits in a pan each morning to be fed as treats throughout the day. The biscuits should be counted as part of the daily kibble diet, which should be reduced accordingly.


When taking puppies or queasy older dogs in the car, bed a crate with strips of newspaper. (A newspaper is easily torn into one inch strips, several pages at a time, from the top to bottom.) Shake up these strips to make an absorbent bed which keeps the puppies from sliding around in their indiscretions. If you take a plastic trash bag, the soiled parts can be easily removed and stowed in the bag and replaced with fresh strips. The puppy will stay clean and dry.


Giving your Bull Terrier a pill can be as easy as poking it into a small dollop of liverwurst, Velveeta or cream cheese and adding the "treat" to the regular meal or offering it as a "goodie."

Dangerous Lawns:

The chemical 2,4D, which is used in some lawn care programs is causatively linked to lymphosarcoma in dogs. Avoid walking your dog on grassy areas such as lawns and golf courses which are regularly treated for weed and pest control. Lymphosarcoma is a form of cancer and is usually fatal. There is also documentation that this chemical affects reproduction as well.


Bull Terriers are prone to chew and swallow almost anything. Often, the ingested material gets stuck on its way through the digestive pipeline. The problem with Bull Terriers is that they are very stoical and do not look particularly ill when you take them to the vet. So much valuable critical time is lost while the vet attempts to make diagnosis. Also, the owner is not usually alerted to a problem until the dog is obviously in distress which, with a Bull Terrier, is very late in the process.

If a Bull Terrier suddenly stops eating and refuses to eat for a day or more, or eats and then vomits its food for several meals and has not had a bowel movement in 48 or more hours, then it most probably has a blockage in its digestive tract which should be removed AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, either endoscopically or surgically. It is, in my opinion, better to go in and find nothing than it is to wait another few days and have a proven diagnosis and a moribund dog. Bull Terriers seldom exhibit pain until the gut perforates, at which point it is too late.

There are several other diseases which cause loss of appetite and vomiting such as pancreatitis, kidney failure and ingestion of poisons, which must be ruled out, but if all signs point to a blockage, we have had better luck with prompt surgery than waiting it out. And a SPECIAL ALERT--the new, super-absorbent diapers and sanitary pads hold an enormous amount of liquid which is very heavy and soggy and will remain in the stomach for a very long period of time. This and plastic are difficult to see on X-ray!.

Foot Problems:

We have had numerous phone calls through the years dealing with foot problems causing lameness in Bull Terriers. A problem which is on the increase is the outgrowth of horny tissue from the side of one or more toe pads which eventually irritates the skin on the side of the toe next to it and produces a painful limp. This hard, callous-like protuberance has no nerves in it--it is like a fingernail in that respect. It can and should be cut off with toe nail scissor/clippers, or some similar cutter. The growth should be trimmed back to the normal contour of the edge of the pad. (We use horse hoof nippers, but these are not a common item lying around most households!) I think the cause of these outgrowths is chiefly the sedentary lifestyles that many of our pets have today. The pads never encounter an abrasive surface so the edges do not get worn off and as the fibrous edge grows, it hardens into a horny growth. Many older dogs become afflicted with this problem due to their reduced exercise regime. Whatever the cause, it is not difficult to trim off the excess and this has the effect of taking the stone out of your dog's shoe!

Toenail Trimming:

Many Bull Terriers object to having their nails cut. If you start at puppyhood and use a SHARP guillotine-type clipper, just trimming the very ends of the nails, the puppy will not associate the manicure with the unpleasant sensations of having the nails squeezed and pinched with the scissor-type clippers or clipping the nails too short and into the tender pink part of the nail. First cut on an angle from the middle of the bottom edge of the nail to the side. Repeat in the opposite direction, and then cut the remaining ridge off the top tip of the nail. Be careful to cut off only the white horny outer layer on each cut.

Dry Eye:

Many older Bull Terriers suffer from a condition known as "dry eye", in which the tear glands which normally keep the eyeballs moist become impaired and no longer fulfill this function. The eye will become gooey and matted, in some cases the dog will actually have the eyelids "glued" shut with the dry exudate. There is a liquid product called "cyclosporine" which can be put into the eye as an eye drop several times a day (generally twice, AM and PM) in conjunction with a steroid ointment. The application of this can be done in less than a minute and relieves the considerable pain of a diseased eye. There is also a surgical procedure which connects a salivary gland to the eye and provides moisture to lubricate the eye, but this can be messy and tears flow at the sight of a treat! (See page on Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca KCS) for more information.)

Controlling Fleas:

Remember that the adult fleas hop on your pets, fill up with a blood dinner, hop off and lay eggs in the carpets, cracks and crevices most concentrated in the area where your pet sleeps and spends most of its time. These areas must be de-fleaed as well as your pet's body. Just dipping your pet or putting on a flea collar won't kill those fleas hatching out in the sofa cushions. They hatch out periodically, so frequent or on-going pest control is the only effective way of getting rid of fleas.

Discourage Ticks:

You can effectively discourage wood ticks and other insects from your dog by applying AVON'S "Skin-so-soft" bath oil to your dog's ear and collar area. It definitely keeps the ticks out of their ears and only needs to be applied once every two weeks or so.

Breaking up a dog fight:

Something all dog owners should know is how to break up a dog fight quickly and safely. Here is a method that is simple and effective and can be done by one person, if necessary. If a fight starts, don't panic. Simply grab each dog by the top of the collar and twist, cutting off both animals' air supply. In a minute or two the dogs will start to faint and will get go. Be sure to keep the collars tightly twisted because, if you ease up for even a few seconds, the dogs will catch their breath and you will have to start over again. If you are alone, it helps to pilot the dogs into a doorway, so that as soon as they let go, you can shut the door between them. If no doorway is available, pick up the aggressor and carry it away quickly. Obviously, it makes sense for your dog to wear a strong buckle collar at all times. Even at dog shows it doesn't hurt to leave a regular collar on your dog until the last minute. You may have your dog under control but not everyone does, and few BTs will ignore a dog who insults them first. In the crowded, high tension area ring-side it is easy for a fight to start, and show leads and narrow choke collars are difficult to twist and frequently break under stress. Remember with a Bull Terrier to "drive defensively" and avoid provoking situations, because no matter what animal or breed starts the trouble, it will always be perceived as the Bull Terrier's fault.


It is important to identify animals with less than perfect hearing. While most people have little difficulty identifying a completely, or nearly deaf dog, an animal that is hearing impaired is often another story. Surprisingly few people know the most obvious symptom these dogs demonstrate is an inability to distinguish the direction of a sound's origin. If your BT routinely raises its head and looks around to locate you when called, suspect a hearing deficit in one, or possibly both ears. While hearing impaired Bull Terriers can make perfectly acceptable pets with a little consideration for their handicap, they should NEVER be bred. If you have a breeding animal, colored or white, who seems to have trouble locating the source of sounds, you owe it to the breed to have the dog tested by a specialist before using it in a breeding program. With a little care, honesty, and responsible breeding, deafness can be made a problem of the past.

Fencing in a Bull Terrier:

When fencing your yard to confine and protect your Bull Terrier, an excellent method to make the fence escape proof is to staple 4'or 5' welded turkey wire to the inside of the posts. If one foot of the wire at the bottom is turned out at right angles at ground level, it will prevent the dog from digging a hole under the fence. The grass will grow right up through the wire that is on the ground and the mower will go right over it. Most dogs are not smart enough to back up a foot before they start to dig at the base of the fence.

This article is the property of What A Good Dog, Inc., and may not be reproduced with out permission from its authors.