Put these breeds next to each, and you might not see that many differences, but there’s a reason why the American Bully is considered a separate dog breed from other Pit bulls.
Both the American Bully and American Pit Bull Terrier are two popular dog breeds having a lot in common, but some significant differences may go under the radar. Below we have an in-depth guide detailing the most notable differences and what sets Bullies apart from other dog breeds under the Pitbull category.
What is an American Bully?
The American Bully is a sturdy, muscular dog with a distinct appearance. They are uneven in build but maintain a strong posture and gait with a wide, square head. Because of these features, they are commonly mistaken for several other Pitbull breeds, but there is more to this loveable canine than meets the eye.
American Bullies come in numerous sizes, including pocket, standard, and XL. Despite the significant size difference, all of these Bullies will look similar in appearance.
The American Bully originates from the US and is a fairly new dog breed. It is said that they are the result of breeding the American Bulldog, the Old English Bulldog, and other Pitbull/Bulldog breeds, which were also used throughout history to create the Pitbulls we are most familiar with.
As of yet, the American Bully is yet to be officially recognized by the American Kennel Club but has a nice cozy spot with the UKC. In addition to this, several dedicated websites unite Bully lovers and campaign to destroy the stigma that haunts the breed and their Pitbull cousins.
Are American Bullies Pitbulls?
If you’ve been doing some research on the American Bully, you may have come across some conflicting pieces of information. Some sources state that the American Bully is its breed, which is true, but others declare that they are 100% a Pitbull.
The fact is that ‘Pit Bull’ is an umbrella term used to refer to several types of dog breeds, including:
- American Pitbull Terriers
- American Staffordshire Terriers
- Staffordshire Bull Terriers
- American Bullies
Therefore the answer is simply: yes. The American Bully is considered a Pit Bull breed as they share the same genetic qualities and lineage as the other three breeds you see above.
Knowing each type of Pit Bull can save you a lot of time when looking for your new canine companion, as they all have qualities that separate one from the other. Below, we have listed a brief overview of each breed.
American Bully Overview:
- Height: 13-21 inches (depending on gender)
- Weight: 70-120 pounds
- Life Expectancy: 9-13 years
American Pit Bull Terrier Overview:
- Height: up to 19 inches (depending on gender)
- Weight: 30 – 80 pounds
- Life Expectancy: 11-15 years
American Staffordshire Terrier Overview:
- Height: 17-19 inches
- Weight: 40-70 pounds
- Life Expectancy: 12-16 years
Staffordshire Bull Terrier:
- Height: 14-16 inches
- Weight: 24-38 pounds
- Life Expectancy: 12-14 years
Going forward, we will compare the American Bully to the most common and popular Pitbull breed: the American Pit Bull Terrier.
Exploring the Differences: Pitbull vs. American Bully
Since these dogs came derive from similar breeds, you can expect them to have a lot in common. For example, thanks to their tough exterior, they both make great guard dogs, but their soft and adorable interior means they are more than good family companions. However, we have gone into detail below regarding the blatant differences so you can differentiate easily between the two.
As mentioned, the American Bully is a relatively new breed going back only three to four decades in total, whereas the Pitbull has been around since the early 19th century.
The motivations for breeding each Pitbull breed are also completely different. The Pitbull was originally bred from bulldog and terrier breeds in order to create a durable and powerful dog that could withstand harsh and violent blood sports. These sports were, thankfully, banned, but the Pitbull’s rocky reputation has sadly stuck around to this day.
The reason for breeding the American Bully was the complete opposite. American Bullies were bred in an attempt to form a Pitbull with no aggressive tendencies to make the perfect family dogs.
Pitbulls and American Bullies may look similar from afar, but up close, there are some notable differences. The most prominent difference is their size. The Pitbull generally weighs between 30-80 pounds and will only grow up to 19 inches, with females sometimes being smaller. On the other hand, Bullies will stand between 13-21 inches and can weigh between 70-120 pounds. This will depend on whether they are a pocket, classic, or XL Bully.
Furthermore, the American Bully resembles the Bulldog by having a short, squat build. Generally, they are wider and considered not to be proportionately built, unlike the Pitbull. Both the Pitbull and Bully are muscular dogs, but the Pitbull Terrier is not as wide or heavy as the American Bully breed.
It’s worth noting that both breeds have a similar coat. Both have a short single coat that’s smooth in texture and may not need as much grooming as other dogs’. This may sound great to aspiring owners looking for dogs that don’t shed excessively but bare in mind this type of coat means that they may struggle in colder climates. Furthermore, the lack of undercoat/thickness means they can be prone to skin conditions/allergies.
Temperament & Personality
All dogs come with their unique personalities, but there are a particular set of generalizations that are paired with a specific breed. In general, Pitbulls are loving, affectionate, and playful dogs, and the same can be said about the American Bully. These traits earned Pitbulls the title of ‘nanny dogs’ as they are also known to be gentle and watchful around children.
It is a misconception that Pitbulls of any sort are aggressive and will only resort to bad behavior in unorthodox circumstances. Any dog that isn’t raised appropriately or given the love and attention they deserve/require will not be easy to deal with, so it’s important to bare this in mind before getting yourself a puppy.
When owning any breed of dog, it’s crucial that you provide them with the training they need to develop into well-behaved pets. This includes obedience training and early socialization, so they are less likely to form bad habits, aggression, or anxiety.
American Pitbull Terriers and American Bullies are very similar in this category. Both breeds are clever and eager to please as long as you apply the appropriate training methods. They require positive reinforcement in the form of praise, treats, and toys to respond well and pick up on lessons. Since they are also intelligent dog breeds, you’ll be pleased to know that they will likely learn quickly.
However, our particular Pit Bull breed, the American Pitbull Terrier, is notoriously stubborn, so training sessions must be firm, consistent, and regular. Since they were originally bred from fighting dogs, you may find that they might not budge or even push boundaries if you are particularly laid-back, harsh, or negative. You may also find the American Bully to be stubborn, but this isn’t common as they were bred specifically to make great family dogs and companions.
All dogs, no matter the breed, need some amount of daily exercise. Pitbulls and Bullys are no different; both need at least 30-60 minutes of daily activity to keep them in shape. To add, they will both require toys that will keep them mentally stimulated. By providing exercise and toys, you can help your canine friend fend off potential health concerns and boredom, and anxiety.
Despite the above statement, some regard American Pit Bull Terriers as slightly more energetic thanks to their breed Pitbull history. Therefore, you may find that entertaining a Pitbull may be more difficult. Furthermore, since the Bully was bred from the English Bulldog, you may find that Bully breeds enjoy loafing around after a play session or walking, unlike the American Pit Bull Terrier.
The type of American Bully you get will determine how big of a difference there will be between the two dog breeds’ diets. As you can expect, an XL Bully will need more food than Pit Bulls, which can burn a hefty hole in your pocket, whereas a pocket Bully will eat significantly less.
Compared with the standard American Bully, the American Pitbull Terrier will consume around the same amount and will require similar nutrition levels, including suitable levels of minerals and vitamins.
In addition, the American Bully and Pitbull are muscular dogs that will thrive on a protein-rich diet that will appropriately fuel their systems. However, it’s vital to remember to switch their diets when they reach a certain age. For example, ensure that your senior Pitbull or Bully is on food suitable for older dogs as they are likely to put on weight easily, which can cause stress on their hearts, immune systems, and joints.
How much food should American Bullies and Pit Bulls consume?
- Adult American Bullies: anywhere between one to five cups per day, depending on their size
- Adult Pit Bulls: around two cups per day.
Since the Pit Bull comes from a background of bull baiting and dog fighting rings, their reputation remains rocky, to say the least. To add, since American Bullies resemble their English Terrier and bulldog ancestors, they can retain the same level of stigma. So it can be said that the two sadly have the same misunderstood reputation.
Neither breed is prone to violent behavior unless they are raised in an unstable environment, and it’s safe to say that they are not dangerous dogs in nature. They are the most loving and loyal breeds in circulation.
As mentioned earlier in our breed overviews, Pit Bulls are expected to live longer than American Bullies.
The American Pit Bull Terrier can live anywhere between 11-15 years, whereas the American Bully is anywhere between 9-13 years. When owning either breed, it’s worth knowing that their life span can be positively affected by their quality of life. By feeding your canine the best diet option, exercising them regularly, and taking them to regular check-ups, there is every chance that they could be around a lot longer!
Common Health Issues
Before deciding on a breed, dog owners must understand what health issues could affect their pooch. The good news is that these two dogs are generally considered healthy overall, but some issues can still arise.
Both breeds can develop the following issues:
- Hip dysplasia
- Elbow dysplasia
- Heart Disease
- Skin conditions
American Pit Bulls can be considered healthy overall, and, as pet owners, there are so many things you can do to prevent such issues as obesity and heart disease.
However, the American Bully can develop some troubling eye diseases that are inherited from the Bulldog breed, such as cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy. It is also worth mentioning that the American Bullies’ shorter muzzle will mean that they will struggle in warm weather.
Furthermore, you can reduce the chances of your pup developing harmful conditions by seeking them from a reputable breeder, as they will have their parent dogs and pups undergo the necessary tests before breeding and purchase. If you do happen to spot some troubling symptoms, always seek veterinary advice sooner rather than later, as this can potentially save your pup from pain and problems later in life.
American Bully vs. Pitbull Puppy Price
There is a significant price difference when it comes to these two breeds. The American Bully is more expensive than the American PitBull, with prices starting at around $1200. The standard price for the latter is around $1000.
Alternatively, you can adopt a Pit Bull or Bully. Sadly, a lot of people get themselves one of these dogs to take advantage. Some sadly attempt to turn theirs into a profitable fighting dog. Fortunately, many good people go above and beyond and take them away from the situation, which means many dogs are just waiting for a new, kind home.
So, what are the key differences between the American Pit Bull Terrier and American Bully?
- Breeding History/Years Known
- Energy Levels
- Additional Health Issues Seen in the American Bully
- Puppy Prices
Q: Is an American Bully a Pitbull?
A: American Bullies fall under the category of Pitbull as they share genetic attributes with the American Pitbull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, and Staffordshire Terrier.
Q: Are the two breeds related?
A: Yes, as mentioned above, the two breeds share a plethora of genetic qualities.
Q: Are American Bullies aggressive?
A: The American Bully isn’t naturally aggressive. If they were, breeders would not continue to produce the dog. They are, in fact, the opposite and are known for being gentle, loving, and intelligent.