The American Bully, a recent strain of molasses whose morphological characteristics aren’t yet fully fixed, is occasionally confused with the American Staffordshire Terrier or the hole Bull. This canine of a type in its own right nonetheless deserves sanctioned recognition in France for its birth.
The American Bully in brief
- Another name: Bully
- Life expectancy: 10-12 years
- Weight: 30 to 50 kg
- Height: from 33 to 57 cm
- Silhouette: muscular
- Hair: short
- Dresses: all colors are possible
- Character: affectionate and protective
- Origin: United States
- Type: molossoid
- Group: the breed is not recognized by the Société Centrale Canine
American Bully History
The first American Bullies were born in the 1980s, resulting from crosses between American Pit Bulls, American Staffordshire Terriers, English Bulldogs, and American Bulldogs. According to the breedings, we find several variations of these dogs, even if they present constants because their genetic heritage is not yet stabilized.
This very recent breed is not recognized by either the Fédération Cynologique Internationale or the Société Centrale Canine, but it obtained official recognition from the United Kennel Club in 2013, in its country of origin, the U.S . The current pedigree classifies the Bullys there according to their format, i.e. in 4 varieties: Pocket, Standard, Classic and XL.
The ABKC (American Bully Kennel Club) has the only official registry in the world: all requests for dog imports must first go through them. Then, the EBKC (European Bully Kennel Club) manages the entries on the different territories.
In France, the American Bully is considered a type and not a breed, so there is no standard. This is also the case for the Pit Bull, but, unlike its cousin, the Bully is not affected by the law on “so-called dangerous” dogs, therefore it is not automatically categorized by the law of 1999.
However, if his physique is too similar to that of a category dog, he may find himself subject to the same rules and constraints (wearing a muzzle compulsory, prohibited access to public places, obligation to obtain detention permitted by its owner, subscription to specific insurance, behavioral evaluation of the dog, etc.).
If the master of the dog does not have proof of his pedigree issued by the ABKC or the EBKC, he will have to give him a diagnosis. This morphological examination, carried out by an approved veterinarian or a judge from the Société Centrale Canine, will define whether or not it falls into a category. So beware of illegal reproductions, prefer declared breeders with subjects meeting the criteria established by the ABKC.
A fraudulent practice is going on in France: it is a question of registering your American Bully under the name American Staffordshire Terrier. Thus the dog can be imported into France and be registered with the LOF to escape a possible first category. This scam is based on 2 factors: the still poorly defined phenotype of the Bully, and the current tendency to favor the most massive individuals among the Staff.
Physical characteristics of the American Bully
The morphology of the American Bully
The breed, too recent and unrecognized except in the United States, does not yet have very precise physical standards. However, all individuals are massive, and muscular, with very pronounced molossoid features. Voluminous, they give an impression of strength. Their hair is short, smooth, and shiny in all colors, plain, two-colored, tri-colored, or variegated. They have a large head, powerful jaws, a rather short and slightly raised muzzle, a stocky and compact body, a broad chest, and a heavy boning.
The American Bully Kennel Club differentiates 4 types of American Bully.
The Bully Standard
All Bullies are considered “Standard” until they are one year old, at which time they are assessed and then divided between the different varieties. Only females keeping this designation after a year measure 41 to 48 cm at the withers, and males 43 to 51 cm.
The Bully Classic
A little lighter and slimmer than the Standard, the Classic has the same size, 43 to 51 cm at the withers for males, and 41 to 48 cm for females. It is the variety that comes closest to the phenotype of the American Staffordshire Terrier and the American Pit Bull Terrier.
The Bully Pocket
The smallest variety of Bully concerns females with a height at the withers between 33 and 40 cm, and males between 36 and 43 cm.
The Bully XL
The largest recognized variety of American Bullies includes females measuring between 48 and 54 cm and males between 51 and 57 cm.
The Unofficial Bully Varieties
In addition to the 4 declared varieties of the breed, there are dogs with a reduced volume called “Micro Bully”, as well as larger ones, “Bully XXL”, and even an “Extreme” type. No canine organization recognizes them, considering that there have been enough genetic mutations and exaggerations of morphological traits in this breed.
American Bully character
The American Bully is a pleasant companion dog, both lively and relaxed. Kind, faithful, and very affectionate, he is not wary of strangers, but is protective of his master and will not hesitate to defend him in case of danger.
His fairly dynamic nature makes him appreciate walks and moderate physical activities, during which he can let off steam and spend his beautiful energy. This goes hand in hand with a determined character, but not aggressive for a penny. If he is not a great athlete, he loves to play with his humans, or with occupational toys, essential accessories when he cannot accompany them outside.
Indeed, very attached to the members of his household, the Bully does not like to be alone and will have to learn loneliness via positive education methods from an early age. In addition, if he can cohabit with congeners and animals of other species because his predation instinct is not very developed, socialization work is necessary in all cases.
Ideal living conditions for the American Bully
American Bullies adapt to all living conditions if their needs are met. However, we do not recommend living in an apartment without a lift, which is not very suitable for their joints. We also warn future owners: if during a diagnosis your dog is categorized, he will be subject to the constraints imposed by the law of 1999. In this case, a house with a garden where he can frolic freely constitutes a ideal habitat because it will have to be attached and muzzled permanently outside.
Seasoned masters, informed and connoisseurs of the breed, active but not necessarily sporty, very available, will make the happiness of this very special molosser.
American Bully Education
Like all other dogs, the American Bully is educated with the right amount of gentleness, firmness and patience. Be strict, but never use force, at the risk of ruining the bond that unites you to your Bully: the latter must be able to trust you and refer to you in all circumstances.
Congratulate your dog when he naturally adopts good behavior and reward him each time he obeys you: he will quickly understand what is expected of him and how to please you. With two or three sessions of a few minutes a day, in the form of playful exercises, learning will be more fluid and the complicity of your duo will be strengthened.
American Bully Grooming and Maintenance
Bullies have few requirements when it comes to grooming. Take the time to brush him every week, you can take advantage of this time to check that he has no parasites or lesions on the skin, and that his eyes and ears are clean. If necessary, wash them with a suitable lotion.
To take good care of your dog, also think about:
- deworm it at each change of season;
- trim his claws if they do not wear out naturally;
- take him to a veterinarian for a reminder of his vaccines.
- Main health problems of the American Bully
The breed being very recent, it is difficult to establish generalities about the diseases to which it could be exposed. However, some ocular defects were observed:
ectropion, when the eyelid rolls outwards;
prolapse of the nictitating gland, when the lacrimal organ located on the inner part of the eye appears in the open air.
Individuals with a shorter, squashed muzzle may suffer from brachycephalic syndrome, which causes breathing difficulties and intolerance to exercise and high temperatures.
In addition, Bullies could be affected by hereditary joint problems such as hip and elbow dysplasia, or even cruciate ligament problems. It will therefore be necessary to avoid overstressing it during its growth and to offer it quality food as well as an adequate living environment to protect its joints.
There is also the possibility of cardiac pathologies and degeneration of the nervous system (cerebellar ataxia).
Feeding the American Bully
American Bullies require quality food that is rich and balanced to stay healthy. Today, it is easy to find a wide choice of croquettes that meet all their needs at the different stages of their life; junior in full growth, senior with a more moderate activity, animal sterilized or not, etc.
If you don’t want to opt for an industrial diet, you can feed your Bully Barf, a diet based on raw meat and herbivore bellies, designed to approximate that of its wolf ancestors.
Another option: cook for your dog yourself, calculating the necessary nutritional intake, this is called “household rations”!
In order to reduce the risk of torsion of the stomach which affects more frequently large dogs, we recommend splitting meals and limiting physical exercise before and after food intake. Your dog must also have constant access to a bowl of fresh water.
American Bully Price
The price of an American Bully puppy is around 1,500 euros. This breed is not recognized in France, there can be no registration with the LOF; to adopt or import a Bully you will have to go through a declared breeding or through one of the two official French associations.
The American Bullies of celebrities
You will be able to meet the beautiful Inès Loucif, former adventurer of Koh-Lanta, in the streets of Paris in the company of Maïko, her adorable American Bully.
Anecdotes around the American Bully
Wahid, a young molossoid lover dedicated his channel Titok “wahidteamjul” to his passion. Its goal ? Fight against prejudices about the race and the sulphurous reputation of the molossers. He often stages Zalco, his American Bully, and is followed by dozens of fans.