Breed Information

History and Standard

On this page we give a brief information about the standard and history of the Miniature Bull Terrier. On the bottom of the page you will find a link to the fci standard and the extended description of the ANKC standard.

Already at the “creation” of the Bull Terrier in the year 1986 by James Hings of Birmingham, there were clear differences laid down between the regular and the Miniature Bull Terrier. Up till today it’s considered a bad habit to degrade this sovereign race as a Bull Terrier offshoot. In its native country of England, there were far more smallish specimens and often even more of the smaller rather than the lager Bull Terriers were present at the shows.

It was said that distinctly various races contributed to the emergence of the Miniature Bull Terrier. Surely involved were Bull Dogs with an approximate weight of 30 kgs, as well as the Old White English Terriers which weighed only about 10 kgs. The following races are believed to have contributed to the arisal of the Miniature Bull Terrier: Dalmations, Greyhounds, Manchester Terriers.

The small and agile terriers were particularly suited as rodent hunter and rat catchers. A black and tan coloured dog of the sort Bull Terrier, named Jack, was described in 1862. He reportedly weighed in at 6 kgs. To amuse the people Jack was sent into the arena where he killed 1,000 rats in less than 100 minutes.

Lightweight specimens were very popular at around 1900. During this time the English Kennel reduced the weight limit to 3.6 kgs. This decision nearly led to the Race’s downfall, as it was practically impossible to breed a small Bull Terrier of such slight weight. The exact events which led to this decision are not completely known. The most likely scenario appears to be an attempt to turn the Miniature Bull Terrier into a so-called society dog with particular appeal to high-society ladies.

In 1918, after years of lacking reports on new whelps, the Kennel Club decided to close its stud books on the Miniature Bull Terrier. After considerable decimation, this race could only be found in the “Black Country”, a mining district in the south of Staffordshire, as well as well as East London, where various specimens were still employed as rat catchers.

Only after the establishment of the Miniature Bull Terrier Club by Colonel Glynn in 1938, did the Kennel Club re-establish an index in its stud book. From this point on the race continued to flourish and a new race standard was designed. A new size was defined which allowed the incorporation of the regular Bull Terriers at the end of the 30’s and during the 70’s. Both the race and its typical optical traits improved markedly, while the number of connoisseurs which embraced the breeding of this race increased.



General Appearance:
Strongly built, muscular, well balanced and active with a keen, determined and intelligent expression.

Courageous, full of spirit, with a fun loving attitude. A unique feature is a downfaced, eggshaped head. Irrespective of size dogs should look masculine and bitches feminine.

Of even temperament and amenable to discipline. Although obstinate is particularly good with people.

Head And Skull:
Head long, strong and deep right to end of muzzle, but not coarse. Viewed from front eggshaped and completely filled, its surface free from hollows or indentations. Top of skull almost flat from ear to ear. Profile curves gently downwards from top of skull to tip of nose which should be black and bent downwards at tip. Nostrils well developed and underjaw deep and strong.

Appearing narrow and triangular, obliquely placed, black or as dark brown as possible so as to appear almost black, and with a piercing glint. Distance from tip of nose to eyes perceptibly greater than from eyes to top of skull. Blue or partly blue undesirable.

Small, thin and placed closed together. Dog should be able to hold them stiffly erect, when they point straight upwards.

Teeth sound, clean, strong, of good size, regular with a perfect regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to the jaws. Lips clean and tight.

Very muscular, long, arched, tapering from shoulders to head and free from loose skin.

Shoulders strong and muscular without loading. Shoulder blades wide, flat and held closely to chest wall and have a very pronounced backward slope of front edge from bottom to top, forming almost a right angle with upper arm. Elbows held straight and strong, pasterns upright. Forelegs have strongest type of round, quality bone, dog should stand solidly upon them and they should be perfectly parallel. In mature dogs length of foreleg should be approximately equal to depth of chest.

Body well rounded with marked spring of rib and great depth from withers to brisket, so that latter nearer ground than belly. Back short, strong with backline behind withers level, arching or roaching slightly over broad, well muscled loins. Underline from brisket to belly forms a graceful upward curve. Chest broad when viewed from front.

Hindlegs in parallel when viewed from behind. Thighs muscular and second thighs well developed. Stifle joint well bent and hock well angulated with bone to foot short and strong.

Round and compact with well arched toes.

Short, set on low and carried horizontally. Thick at root, it tapers to a fine point.

When moving appears well knit, smoothly covering ground with free, easy strides and with a typical jaunty air. When trotting, movement parallel, front and back, only converging towards centre line at faster speeds, forelegs reaching out well and hindlegs moving smoothly at hip, flexing well at stifle and hock, with great thrust.

Coat: Short, flat, even and harsh to touch with a fine gloss. Skin fitting dog tightly. A soft textured undercoat may be present in winter.

For White, pure white coat. Skin pigmentation and markings on head not be penalised. For Coloured, colour predominates; all other things being equal, brindle preferred. Black, brindle, red, fawn and tri-colour acceptable. Tick markings in white coat undesirable. Blue and liver highly undesirable.

Sizes: Height:
should not exceed 35.5 cms (14 ins). There should be an impression of substance to size of dog. There is no weight limit. Dog should at all times be balanced.

Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.