Is An American Bully A Pitbull or Bulldog? 10 Bully Facts


american bully funny face

The American Bully is a fairly recent breed of dog that has become wildly popular in recent years. These imposing looking dogs present the strength and appearance of both the American Pitbull Terrier and a Bulldog in many ways. Leading to many assumptions and often confusion about the American Bully.

Is an American Bully a Pitbull or Bulldog? As a whole the American Bully is neither a Pitbull or a Bulldog, they are their own distinct breed. American Bullies originated from the cross breeding of American Pitbull Terriers and American Staffordshire Terriers, with some other bully breeds in the mix.

Though the American Bully does share some genetics with the American Pit Bull Terrier and the Bulldog, the breed stands on its own. When discussing Pitbulls people are generally referring to the American Pitbull Terrier, in other cases they are speaking of the Pitbull type dogs. For the sake of this article I will be speaking specifically about the American Pit Bull Terrier when I state “Pit Bull”. 

Fact - American Bullies are not Pitbulls or Bulldogs, though they share genetics to the American Pit Bull Terrier and Bully breed such as Bulldogs.

The American Bully is a fascinating breed. The history of the American Bully is rather short but is rich in the variations, fandom, and overall quality companion animal that has emerged. I myself recently brought home an American Bully, and fall in love with this breed more each day. 

What Breeds Make An American Bully?

american bully puppy face

The roots of the American Bully come from the parent breeds of the American Pit Bull Terrier and the American Staffordshire Terrier. There are several other Mastiff and bully breeds that have been included in various breeding programs however. This variation in American Bully sizes is part of the ever evolving breed standard.

American Bulldogs, English Bulldogs, Olde English Bulldogges as well as other well-known bull breed lines all have influenced the current 4 standards of American Bullies. 

Fact – American Bullies come in 4 size standards. XL, Classic, Standard, and Pocket

Because the American Bully is such a new breed there is room for development to continue with bully based breeds. That doesn’t mean however that certain standards have not been put in place to protect the health, well being and general aesthetic of the dog.

Breed standards for the XL American Bully, Standard American Bully, Classic American Bully, and Pocket American Bully all follow similar guidelines. From appearance to temperament all 4 standards should exhibit close similarities.

American Bullies of any standard have large blocky heads, large bone and muscle structure giving them a very bulky look. Much more stocky than the Pitbull or AmStaff but similar in facial appearance. The variation in standards is proportionate to their height. Meaning Pocket Bullies and XL bullies share similar proportions just on different scales.

The temperament of the American Bully is what really sets them apart from the American Pit Bull Terrier and AmStaff. These dogs were intentionally bred to remove the gameness and working dog nature that the Pitbull and Amstaff possess. American Bullies as a result are far better suited as companion animals because of this reduction in working dog energy.

Fact - The American Bully is a new breed started in the 1980s and 1990s and further refined in the early 2000s. They became officially recognized as a breed by the UKC and ABKC in 2013 and 2004 respectively.

What Breeds Make A Pocket Bully?

american bully not aggressive mouth open

As a whole there have been a variety of breeds used to make a Pocket American Bully. Using some of the smaller Bully breeds such as French Bulldogs, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, and English Bulldogs mixed with other American Bullies and Pitbulls, the Pocket Bully has stemmed from a variety of combinations.

There is no clear lineage to what exactly created the Pocket American Bully as this breed is continuing to evolve as a standard in the American Bully category. Many different breeders have used different dogs to achieve the build, aesthetic and temperament that would form a breed standard American Bully.

How Popular Is The American Bully?

The American Bully is quickly becoming one of the most popular breeds on the planet. Due to their bold, stocky appearance and loving gentle temperament as a family companion dog. The American Bully is an all around good family dog for those that like a heavy set and affection breed.

Fact - American Bullies are expensive. Prestigious bloodlines can cost several thousand dollars.

Look no further than the price tag of the American Bully to see why these dogs are so popular. A quality American Bully from a good bloodline will cost anywhere between $2500-$7500 on average. Some bloodlines go for much more.

Why American Bullies Are Such Amazing Dogs

I only recently brought home my first American Bully puppy a few months ago, but have been following this breed for some time. My love for this breed grows by the day now that I own my Pocket American Bully Chester. If you are considering an American Bully yourself these are just some of the reasons why the American Bully is an amazing dog.

Fact – American Bullies Are Great Family Dogs

American Bully Chester cuddle on my lap

The American Bully was bred to be first and foremost a companion animal dog. Despite their sometimes intimidating appearance these dogs are very gentle and affectionate pets. This feature of the American Bully was intentionally made part of the breed standard.

Fact –  American Bullies Are Good With Children

American Bullies are great with children. These gentle giants have a natural affection towards people and especially young children. A properly socialized American Bully is an affectionate protector and loyal friend to their little humans.

As with any breed, supervision from parents or adults is a must when dogs and children interact. The American Bully can easily knock a toddler down by accident. Rough play and over-excited activities can lead to injuries of both kids and dogs, so always keep an eye on interactions.

Fact – American Bullies Can Be Easy To Train

The American Bully is a very people oriented dog with an eagerness to please. Their high level of intelligence paired with this desire to make their owner happy can make them very easy to train. This also makes the American Bully a great dog for first time owners.

I have had my Pocket American Bully Chester now for 2 months. I am amazed at how easy he is to train. He picks up things quickly and is constantly looking to me for the next instruction. This is typical of American Bullies, but they can have a stubborn streak at times. Positive reinforcement is one of the best ways to get around that stubbornness.

Fact – American Bullies Have Low Maintenance Exercise Needs

The American Bully is a fairly medium energy dog and does not require tons of exercise. A couple daily walks and some mental stimulation will keep your Bully happy and healthy. Roughly 60 minutes of daily exercise should be the target.

For some 60 minutes of exercise might not sound low maintenance, but in comparison to other breeds such as the American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire, or Staffordshire Bull Terrier, the American Bully requires much less activity. 

Fact – American Bullies Require Little Grooming And Bathing

american bully smiling

The American Bully is very easy to maintain from a grooming and bathing perspective. Weekly brushings and a bath every 2-3 months are all that is required. American Bullies don’t need to visit expensive groomers to keep their skin, coat, and general hygiene in great shape.

Resources & ReviewsThe 15 Best Dog Grooming & Bathing Products

Fact – American Bullies Are Generally Healthy Dogs

American Bullies are typically a healthy and robust dog. Giving your American Bully a nutritious diet full of real protein, essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals will keep them in great overall shape. 

Supplementing with Omega 3 Salmon Oils is a great way to strengthen and protect joints as well as promote skin and coat health. American Bullies are prone to issues with dysplasia and skin problems. Essential fatty acids can help a great deal in keeping a Bully healthy.

Final Thoughts

american bully chester chews and bits rope

Getting back the original question, the American Bully is not a Pitbull or a Bulldog. The American Bully is an American Bully. A unique breed of their own that has developed their own look and temperament that sets them apart.

The roots of the American Bully may have come from the Pitbull and Bulldog, but in the evolution of this breed they have developed their own individuality. I have spent time around all 3 of these breeds and can without a doubt say they are very different breeds within the Bully breed type of dog.

I have seen this first hand with my Pocket American Bully Chester. After spending years working with and spending time around Pitbulls I do notice a big difference not just in appearance, but in character.

The American Bully is far more chill than the Pitbull. The intention of the American Bully was to remove some of the working dog genetics. I love Pitbulls, but they are far higher maintenance when it comes to things like exercise.

Spend some time around Pitbulls and Bulldogs. Then spend some time around an American Bully or two. You can see for yourself that the American Bully is a breed that stands on its own.

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