The American Bulldog is a powerful, athletic, heavyweight of a medium large sized dog. Light on his feet, he moves with power and determination, giving the impression of speed, power, and agility. He is alert and inquisitive. He is bold and fearless without being hostile or overly aggressive. The first impression one should get is that of a very large, athletic Bulldog, not one of a powerful terrier.
The overall head is box-shaped. The skull should be large and square. The top of the skull is flat but covered with powerful muscles; there should be a distinct furrow between the eyes. There should be an abrupt, deep stop. The muzzle is also square and box-shaped. It should be deep, wide and show power. The muzzle should be approximately 35 to 40 percent of the overall head length. Bite should be slightly (about oneeighth inch) undershot. Teeth large and powerful. The eyes should be round and set wide. Eyes should be brown. Ears may be either rose or flap, no preference. Ears may be carried semi-erect. Nose should have large, open nostrils and be black.
A wiak appearing or narrow head. Any noticeable tapering of the head to give a wedge-shaped appearance. Narrow or tapering muzzle. Excessively undershot to the point that the teeth are visible when the mouth is closed. Two blue eyes. Cropped ears. A pink or dudley nose not to be encouraged.
The body shall be robust and powerful. The American Bulldog is a broad, wide dog, but this width should not be exaggerated for the show ring. The chest should be deep with a good spring of ribs. The back is fairly short and very powerful. There should be a slight roach just over the loins, giving spring and power to the hindquarters. A level back is acceptable, but not preferred. Belly should be slightly tucked. The neck should match the body fairly short, but not to the point of exaggeration, and thick and powerful. The neck is where the power of the dog is put to use aggainst his opponenet and it must be long enough to apply levarage, short enough to exert power, and muscular enough to do the job. Shoulders shall be broad and heavily muscled.
Any weakness or exaggeration. A weak, swayed back, or a back with a slope from the shoulders to the rump. The American Bulldog is a working Bulldog, and lack of power or agility are serious falts. Exaggeration of any part of the American Bulldog will reduce his effectiveness and ability to work and shall not be encouraged in the show ring.
Front and rear legs shall be considered together because they must be balanced. The rear of the American Bulldog shall be heavily muscled, but it is not as broad as the shoulders. The rear legs shall be moderately angulated, and must be parallel. The front legs shall be straight and well muscled.
Any semblance of weakness. Cow-hocks. A front whose feet turn either in or out. Some American Bulldog can be so wide in the chest that the elbows appear to be pointing out when the dog is in motion, but if the front is correct the elbow will not point out when the dog is standing. Straight stifles or excessive angulation such as that seen in the German Shepherd Dog.
The tail should be long enough to reach the hocks, or slightly past. It should be moderately thick and, as an extension of the spine, it should be powerful. The tail will often be carried above the back when the dog is moving or excited. It should end in a semicircle, which is often evident when the dog carries it above his back.
A short tail, or a straight tail, showing no evidence of a curl at the end. The tail must not be docked.
The American Bulldog has been bred to work, not for the show ring; therefore, there is a wide size latittude in the breed. Males can be anywhere from 22 inches up to 28 inches at the shoulder. Betches will be smaller, from abou 17 inches up to 26 inches. Dogs should weigh from 90 pounds up to 135; bitches from 65 to 110 pounds. Weight shall be in proportion to the height: a 22-inch dog should weigh aabout 90 pounds, a 27- or 28-inch dog closer to 135. An ideal dog would probably be 25 inches at the shoulder and weigh 120 pounds. These weights are for well muscled, conditioned dogs. The American Bulldog is a working dog and size alone is no criterion of quality. A well put together dog in hard condition at 110 pounds is preferable to an out-of-shape sloppy dog at 130 pounds, but a narrow, terrier like dog is not typical of the breed and is to be discouraged. If all things are equal, the larger dog is preferred.
Any deviation from the desired sizes, degree of fault according to the degree of deviation. Terrier like dogs are to be avoided at all costs.
The preferred color is at least fifty percent white with patches of color. An all-white dog is equally acceptable but care must be taken to ascertain that there is no hearing problem with the all-white dog. The color patches may be any shade of brindle or any shade of brown (tan, red, yellow, fawn, etc.). A predominately colored dog with areas of white is next in order of preference (the same colors allowable), and then solid colored dogs of these same colors.
Solid black, black and tan, black and liver, merle, and fawn with black mask are not allowable. Fawn is acceptable ef no mask is present.
Short, hard, and shiny. The coat mirrors the dog overall health and should be clean and bright.
he American Bulldog should move with speed, agility, and power. There should be a ddefinite spring in the step and the rear legs should propel the dog forward, not merely follow along behind. There should be definite sifle action in the rear legs. All legs should move parallel to the direction of travel. Front legs will not cross nor wing out to either side when the dog is in motion. Rear legs will not travel in an arc; but will move in a straight line in the direction of the dog travel. Reach will be moderate, neither short and mincing nor approaching the reach of a Doberman Pinscher.
Any deviation from the above.
Dogs under 75 pounds, betches under 60 pounds. Black, black-and-tan, black-and-liver, merle, and fawn with a black mask. Dogs with less than two normal testicles. Cropped ears. Docked tails.