|Group classification: Non-Sporting||Country of origin: United States||Date of origin: 19th century|
|Weight (M): 15 - 25 lb||Height (M): 16 - 17"||Life expectancy: 11 - 14 years|
|Weight (F): 10 - 20 lb||Height (F): 15 - 16"|
General Description of the Boston Terrier
Small and stately, the Boston Terrier has a number of features that add to its rather unique appearance. The skull is square with a pronounced stop, and is topped by erect, bat-like ears. The eyes are large, dark and round, and give the dog a kind expression that exudes intelligence. The body is strong and compact, with a straight back, muscular hindquarters, and a very short tail. The feet are small and round. The coat is short and smooth, and is either black or brindle with white markings on the face, chest, neck and forequarters. The Boston Terrier’s gait is rhythmic, confident and graceful.
Boston Terrier Temperament
Despite its Bulldog lineage and Terrier name, the Boston Terrier is neither fighter nor scrapper. More than anything else, this breed is suited to companionship. The Boston is sensitive, gentle and polite, quite suited to apartment living. In certain respects, however, there appears to be a sharp divide within the breed: some bark incessantly while others are nearly mute, and some enjoy prolonged cuddle sessions while others are clearly uncomfortable being held. But regardless of personality type, all Boston Terriers are intelligent and sociable. Brought up properly, this dog can easily befriend children, other pets, and even strangers. In fact, many owners report that their Boston Terriers are happiest when they have another dog to hang out with.
Caring for a Boston Terrier
The Boston Terrier needs exercise every day, though a backyard play session or short walk should usually suffice; the dog can even meet its daily needs in the house if need be. The low maintenance short coat needs an occasional brushing and little more. Take care, however, to keep your Boston warm during the winter months, as this easy to care for coat does not provide much in the way of warmth. Also note that like most short-muzzled dogs, the Boston Terrier does not do well in heat. A fairly health breed, the Boston Terrier nonetheless occasionally suffers from patellar luxation, allergies, constricted nostrils, deafness and seizures.
his small breed dog is built with small, erect ears, short tails, and a stout, short muzzle. The Boston Terrier originated in the late 19th century. Originally, the breed was actually called a Hooper’s Judge, which was a breed of English White Terrier and English Bulldog. The original breed was around 30 pounds but as new breeding took place, the Boston Terrier ended up being larger, weighing in around 45 pounds.
The Boston Terrier was a favorite breed in Boston and by 1889, the American Bull Terrier Club was organized. It was just a few years after this that the name was officially changed to “Boston Terrier”, which is what we know the breed as today. Then in 1893, the Boston Terrier was admitted into the American Kennel Club, being the first non-sporting dog in the United States.
During early breeding years, this breed had various colors and markings, which were considered of little to no importance. However, in the early 20th century, very specific colors and markings were deemed the standard, actually becoming a vital part of the breed’s acceptance. Although the Boston Terrier was mischievous and somewhat unruly in its early years, today we see a well-behaved dog that is fun, loving, and comical in nature.
Keep in mind that the Boston Terrier was actually bred for fighting originally but over the years, this breed was bred down to a gentle, companion dog that remains highly popular today. In fact, most Boston Terrier’s are very gentle and well behaved. You would likely notice a little bit of mischievous behavior but nothing out of line. Although the Boston Terrier is a great, single dog, they also enjoy the company of another Boston Terrier.
The nice thing about this particular breed is that while the breed is alert, making a great watchdog, it is not an obnoxious barker. Typically, this breed will only bark when someone comes to the door or it sees passersby in front of the home. Since this dog has been bred down specifically to be a companion, it is a great choice for homes with children, and other pets to include birds, dogs, cats, etc. The key is to socialize the puppy while young, teaching it to be independent but also loving and calm.
Size and Color
The Boston Terrier is a small, compact breed that again, has erect ears, a short muzzle, and short tail. You will find Boston Terriers as small as 10 pounds although they can weigh as much as 25 pounds. As far as height, this breed typically stands between 15 and 17 inches at the withers.
For coloring, remember that originally, color and markings were considered unimportant. However, today you would expect to see the Boston Terrier with white markings on a brindle, black, or seal-colored body. Keep in mind that the Boston Terrier can have all three body colors with white markings as well. Although all three, body colors are beautiful, the standard is the seal, which is black with soft red highlights.
If you were interested in showing a Boston Terrier, you want to choose a puppy that has white markings that covers the chest and muzzle, as well as a band that goes around the neck. Additionally, the white should go up 50% of the forelegs, on the back legs but only to the hocks, and then a beautiful white blaze on the face between the eyes but this should never be touching the eyes.
Keep in mind that specifically with the Boston Terrier for show, you want symmetrical markings. While this is not mandatory, it is preferred. The key is looking for a dog that looks as if it were wearing a clean, crisp tuxedo. The white markings on the body make the dog look refined and very gentlemanly, which is the crux of the Boston Terrier. Depending on the dog’s ancestry, you would expect to see some variation in color and markings.
Feeding and Grooming Requirements
The key to feeding Boston Terriers, as well as other dog breeds is that even some of the top dog foods have formulas changed. When this happens, dogs may not do well with the new food. Therefore, you should feed your Boston Terrier food that you trust and pay attention to the formula. If you notice something has changed, you might expect some problems with diarrhea and/or vomiting. A better solution for your Boston Terrier is homemade food.
Keep in mind that this breed in particular needs extremely high levels of protein and fat in order to maintain a healthy body, specifically for show. If you decide to use store bought food, look for formulas with 30% protein and 20% fat or create your own formula using this balance. Another important tip associated with feeding a Boston Terrier is that many will have allergic reaction to anything containing brewer’s yeast, which would include some lamb and chicken-based foods. Just stick with high quality, dry food.
For grooming, you can expect some shedding although not much. This dog has a smooth, short coat that typically needs just an occasional brushing. In other words, working with a firm bristle brush, you would need to brush the Boston Terrier about three times per week. In addition, make sure this dog’s face is washed with a damp cloth daily and that the nails are clipped when needed.
This breed of dog loves playtime. However, when it comes to actual exercise, only moderate activity is required. While you could take the Boston Terrier for a long walk, it is not necessary. Typically, a short walk a few times a week would suffice. For the Boston Terrier, the main goal is making sure it has a good companion since this breed needs lots of love and affection. Remember, this dog was down bred to be a companion dog so it needs human contact. You would not want to keep the Boston Terrier outside although time spent playing, exercising, and training is a good idea.