The Miniature Bull Terrier is very much like his big brother – the Bull Terrier. Like most terriers, this bull-and-terrier breed was also developed in the UK, mainly to control the rat population. Although the Mini might not be as popular as its larger counterpart; it still has a fan following in many nations. Let us study the size, temperament, and other facts about the Miniature Bull Terrier.
Cool facts about the Miniature Bull Terrier
- The mini was one of the three sizes developed when a bulldog was bred with a white English terrier. So you have the toy, mini, and the standard sizes in a Miniature Bull Terrier.
- When the Bull Terrier was first created in the 19th century, it was the same size as the Miniature. This strong little breed was given the status of a separate breed by the AKC in 1891. The majority of the Mini Bull Terriers in the US today trace back to their foundation kennels in the UK.
- In Australia, New Zealand, and the UK, interbreeding between a Miniature Bull Terrier and the Bull Terrier is allowed to reduce the incidence of primary lens luxation. The condition causes the lens of the eye to shift and fall in the rear chamber. It is common in Minis although good breeders are trying their best to prevent this hereditary condition.
- Many celebrities own Bull Terriers and the Mini has also been featured in several movies and TV shows including Spunky from Rocko’s Modern Life.
Miniature Bull Terrier vs. Bull Terrier
The miniature is simply the smaller version of the Bull Terrier. Both dogs are strongly built, symmetrical, and full of energy and both have their roots in England. The larger Bull Terrier is the direct ancestor of the Miniature Bull Terrier. Both breeds were developed to go out after small and large vermin, foxes, rabbits, and badgers. Bull Terriers, mini and standard, are slightly challenging to train for the obedience ring.
Size and physical description
- Ideal standard Miniature Bull Terrier size is between 10-14 inches at withers and weight should not exceed 30 to 33 lb.
- Like the Bull Terrier, Miniature Bull Terriers also come in solid white, or white and red, white and lion, black and white, or in brindle pattern.
- This is a small, strong, well-muscled dog. Their egg-shaped head is flanked by erect ears. They have a short, low-set, tapered tail.
The mini is a bright, cheerful, active, and energetic dog breed. He is very friendly and thrives on attention. This courageous dog may not start a fight but he sure won’t back away from one. He is devoted to his owner and will take on any threat, be it a burglar or another dog, should he feel that his master is threatened by one. Miniature Bull Terriers are excellent dogs for kids and children can literally ‘maul’ them for hours without any aggression or reaction from the Mini.
Their stable disposition makes them well-suited for small apartments as well as large country homes. Your dog will be a bit wary with strangers in the beginning, but once he warms up to them, he will be exceedingly friendly. Like all terrier breeds, the Mini works with great courage and enthusiasm. Their keen sense of hearing and excellent eyesight makes them alert watchdogs and reliable family companions. Happy and quizzical are two traits used for describing this dog’s expression.
Where to find a Miniature Bull Terrier
The best way to find a quality Miniature Bull Terrier is by visiting the official club website of the Miniature Bull Terrier Club of America. This is a good place to start your search for top MBT breeders and owners of Miniature Bull Terrier kennels. You can also go for a rescue dog.
Always talk to or visit several breeders before settling in on one. Make sure you ask them several questions about their breeding programs. Good breeders will not keep more than one or two breeds and they also won’t allow too many litters per year. This ensures minimum health issues in the puppies.
Prepare to answer several questions about your household; good breeders would want to ensure that you will make a good owner for their puppy. When you meet the puppy, also ask to meet the dam (mother). This will give you an insight into your potential pet’s temperament.
Miniature Bull Terriers need consistent training and early socialization to ensure that they get along well with children and pets. During training, you might find your puppy getting easily distracted. After all; this is a terrier breed and it is instinctively going to look out for rats! As the owner, you will want to devise methods to keep your pet’s attention. It is best to use treats and rewards with plenty of praise since positive training works best for this dog breed. Also, keep training sessions very short and end each session with plenty of play. This way; your dog will look forward to the training.
Clicker training was developed to train dolphins and it has worked well on dogs. You can read about clicker training here.
Regardless of the breed, all dogs need plenty of exercise. Your Mini will exercise as much as you are willing to spend time exercising him. Walk your dog at least 2 times a day for 45 minutes each. Play sessions in the yard under careful supervision and letting him run around the yard is also sufficient exercise for your pet. Fetching games can be played indoors and out and will provide your dog with mental and physical stimulation he needs.
The mini is a short-haired breed and like most short-haired breeds, its grooming requirements are pretty basic. Bathe your Mini Bull Terrier about once a month. Brush or comb his coat 2-3 times a week to stimulate the natural oils and keep it glossy. Brushing will also remove stray dead hairs and parasites. For a full-grooming, include nail clipping, ear cleaning, and eye check-up. If possible, invest in a grooming table with a secure rubber mat.
Fortunately, the Bull Terriers are hardy, healthy dogs that live many problem-free years. Common health issues seen in the mini include primary lens luxation which involves detachment of the eye lens. Nephropathy, a kidney disease, is also seen in minis. Other possible health concerns are heart conditions like shortened mitral valves and hypocalcemia which leads to very low calcium levels in pregnant or whelping bitches. The lifespan of the Miniature Bull Terrier is about 12 years.