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Johnson/Bully Standard Scott Standard APBT Standard Catch Dog Standard Olde Bulldogge Standard


General Appearance:  The American Bulldog is a dog of a great power dog showing strength, endurance and alertness. Powerfully built, but active. well-balanced, short-coated, muscular and athletic dog. American Bulldogs display great strength, endurance, and agility. Males are characteristically larger, heavier boned and more masculine than the females.

Temperament: American Bulldogs should be alert, outgoing and confident. Aloofness with strangers is acceptable. Some assertiveness toward other dogs is not considered a fault, however; dogs may be dismissed at the judge’s discretion for disrupting their class.

Faults: Overly aggressive or excessively shy.  All dogs must be physically examined by the judge, any dog refusing to allow physical inspection by either shying away or becoming vicious may be disqualified depending on the severity.

Disqualifications Extreme viciousness or shyness:  Shyness - A dog shall be judged fundamentally shy if, refusing to stand for examination, it shrinks away from the judge; if it fears an approach from the rear; if it shies at sudden and unusual noises to a marked degree. Note: Puppies should not be faulted severely here. With maturity and socialization confidence should increase.  Viciousness - A dog that attacks, or attempts to attack either the judge or its handler unprovoked, is definitely vicious. An aggressive or belligerent attitude towards other dogs shall not be deemed vicious. 

Size:    Ideal bully males should measure between 23 to 28 inches at the withers and weigh 80 to 150 pounds. Females; 20-26 inches 70 to 130 pounds.

Note:  The overall proportion of the dog is of utmost importance when evaluating weight.

 Head:  The head should be broad, flat on top squared or rounded appearance with a well defined stop. The stop should be deep and abrupt.  The head should also be medium in length with pronounced muscular cheeks.  A larger rounder shape is ideal. 

Muzzle:   The muzzle should be broad with wide-open nostrils.  The lips should be full with black pigmentation; some pink allowed. The chin is well defined and must not overlap the upper lip nor covered it.  The muzzle should be in proportion to head size & type.

Muzzle should be broad 2 to 3 inches in length and should be 25% to 35% of the overall length of head.  The muzzle should allow for clean breathing and should allow for working ability.  The preferred length should be 2-2 1/2" 

Faults: Pendulous Lips, Narrow muzzle, and Full continuous black mask.  

Nose:  Preferred nose color is Black although red is acceptable.  

Cosmetic Faults: Dudley, or grizzle colors will occur but are considered cosmetic faults.

Bite: Teeth should be medium to large and should not be visible when mouth is closed. Lips are moderately thick; black pigment lining the lips is preferred; with some pink allowed.  ¼ - 1  inch “Undershot” depending on size of dog and shape of skull.  Plus or minus 1/8 inch is acceptable with no visible teeth.

Faults: Small teeth or uneven incisors. 

Disqualification (both types): Parrot mouth or closed mouth with visible teeth.

Serious Fault: Even, level, scissor bite, overshot, or wry mouth.

Note: American Bulldogs are a working breed and should not be penalized for broken or missing teeth.

Eyes:  Almond-shaped to round, medium-sized.  Normal preferred color is Brown.  Any color acceptable.   The haw should not be visible.  Black pigment is preferred; all other colors of pigmentation are considered cosmetic faults.

Serious faults: Crossed or non-symmetrical eyes.  Ie: Symmetrical is the shape the eye not the color.

Disqualifications:  Entropia or ectropia 

Ears:  The ears should be set high on the head, small to medium in size may be drop, semi-prick, or rose.  The ears should be carried close to the head.

Faults: Cropped ears. Hound Ears.

Neck:  Slightly arched, very muscular and of moderate length, tapering from shoulders to head. Neck is almost equal to the head in size.

Faults: neck too short and thick; thin or weak neck.

Body:  Wide,  fairly compact, deep chest; straight and well balanced.  The chest should not be narrow or excessively wide, nor should the elbows be angled out or pulled in.  The back should be broad and moderately short, showing great strength.  The loin is wide, muscular and slightly arched. 

Faults: The back should not be narrow, excessively long or swayed.
Note: The degree of fault will depend on how it affects the dogs “working” ability and movement. 

Forequarters:  The combined front assembly from its uppermost components, the shoulder blades, down to the feet should be muscular and slightly sloping. The "Forelegs" and front should be straight and well balanced.  The chest should not be narrow or excessively wide.  Bone structure: medium to heavy - to be able to carry a large dog.

Serious Faults: Upright or loaded shoulders; elbows turned outward or tied-in; down at the pasterns; front legs bowed; wrists knuckled over; toeing in or out.

Hindquarters:  Broad, well muscled with muscles tapering well to the leg to show speed and strength, but not quite as large as at the shoulders.  There should not be an excess or lack of angulation in the rear legs.

Serious Faults: Narrow or weak hindquarters, weak pasterns, cow hocks, open hocks, or bowed legs.

Legs:  The legs should be strong and straight with moderate to heavy bone. Front legs should not set too close together or too far apart. Pasterns should be strong, straight and upright. The rear legs should be moderately angulated and parallel.

Serious Faults: Excessively Bow-Legged in the front, weak pasterns, cow hocks, open hocks, bowed legs in the rear.

Feet:  The feet are round, medium in size; toes are well arched, and tight.

Faults: Splayed feet or crooked toes. 

Tail:  Strong at the root tapering to the hocks, in a relaxed position, however the tail can be carried back when excited or walking.  A "pump handle" tail is preferred but any tail carried from upright, when the dog is excited, to relaxed between the hocks is acceptable. The tail should not end in a complete circle.

Faults: Tail curled over the back; corkscrew tail, kinked, crooked tail or docked tail.

Gait:  The gait should be “balanced and smooth”, showing great speed, agility and power.  The dog should not travel excessively wide, and as speed increases the feet move toward the centerline of the body to maintain balance. The top line remains firm and level, parallel to the line of motion.

Faults: Legs not moving on the same plane; legs over reaching; legs crossing over in front or rear; front or rear legs moving too close or touching; pacing; paddling; side winding.

Note:  The Bully type gait will have a slight degree of less reach, flexibility, and spring than that of a Standard Type. 

Coat:  Short, smooth and tight to the body.

Serious Fault: Long and fuzzy coats.

Color:  Solid white, all shades of brindle or any color pattern including black, red, brown, fawn, blue, mahogany, cream and gray and all shades of brindle. 

Faults: Solid Black or any degree of merle.

Disqualifications:  Any dog that has been spayed or neutered.  Male dogs that do not have 2 visible testicles. Blindness or deafness.  Full black mask, cow-hocked, splayfooted and scissor bite.

*Females in heat are not to be shown in the conformation classes and are not allowed on the show grounds. 

Dogs excessively under the standard height are not to be considered and overly aggressive dogs may be asked to leave the ring or the show grounds.