- Dog suitable for non-experienced owners
- Basic training required
- Enjoys gentle walks
- Enjoys walking an hour a day
- Small dog
- Minimum drool
- Requires grooming once a week
- Non Hypoallergenic breed
- Chatty and vocal dog
- Guard dog. Barks and alerts
- May require training to live with other pets
- May require training to live with kids
Boston Terrier Key Facts:
Lifespan: 13 – 15 years
Weight: 4.5 – 11.5kg
Height: 38 – 43cms
Colours: Short-coated, the Boston Terrier comes in various colours, including brindle and white, and black with white markings.
Kennel Club Group: Utility
Exercise needs: 4/5
Easy to train: 4/5
Tolerates being alone: 3/5
Likes other pets: 5/5
Energy level: 4/5
Grooming needs: 3/5
History and Origins
Country of Origin: United States
Despite their name, the very first Boston Terrier was bred in Liverpool in the 1870s as a cross between an English Bulldog and an English White Terrier. This dog, named Judge, was then shipped to the US where he became the founding father of the breed. Once in Boston, several different breeds were added, including it is thought some French Bulldog to reduce the size of the breed to the small dog we know today. The Boston Terrier won so many fans that in only 20 years, the Boston Terrier Club was formed and the breed was officially recognised in the United States. While they were originally bred as a small dog fighting breed, their personalities and friendly natures meant they have easily made the transition to much-loved family companions.
The Boston Terrier is a lively, happy dog that can be quite determined and strong willed. They are usually good with children and love to play, but they can be boisterous and care must be taken that games are not too rough, as they can be prone to injury, especially their eyes. They love human company and make affectionate pets and are outgoing and social to all. While they are called a ‘terrier’ they are not in the terrier group and neither do they behave like one, being far happier at home with their owner than getting into the usual mischief!
The Boston Terrier would suit an owner who enjoys their unconventional appearance and who wants a fun, affectionate companion that doesn’t need much exercise but does want to join in with everything that is going on.
Health and Common Issues
The flat face of the Boston Terrier, if extreme, can result in obstruction of their airways and a difficulty in breathing. Like many other breeds, there are a variety of hereditary eye problems that can occur and they can suffer from kneecaps that may temporarily slip out of place, this condition is known as patella luxation.
The exercise requirements of this dog are quite undemanding; about an hour's daily exercise will be needed. They do not yearn for long walks, but they do like to go everywhere with their owners.
The Boston Terrier makes a great urban companion and can live in a small space as long as they have access to the outdoors for exercise and toileting.
Nutrition and Feeding
Small dogs have a fast metabolism, meaning they burn energy at a high rate, although their small stomachs mean that they must eat little and often. Small-breed foods are specifically designed with appropriate levels of key nutrients and smaller kibble sizes to suit smaller mouths. This also encourages chewing and improves digestion.
Grooming Boston Terriers
The Boston Terrier breed is easily groomed. A grooming mitt used on the coat once a week should be adequate enough to remove any dead hairs from the coat. This is a clean breed with no doggie odours.
Training Boston Terriers
The Boston Terrier will enjoy basic training and should be taught to walk on a harness and lead and also to come back when called
Best Family Dog Breeds
Boston Terriers make good family dogs as they will join in with family games and are friendly and social. They do better with sensible, older children though as they can be prone to eye injuries.
While many dogs are traditionally thought of as being good with children, all dogs and children need to be taught to get on with and respect each other, and be safe together. Even so, dogs and young children should never be left alone together and adults should supervise all interactions between them.
Did you know?
- The Boston Terrier is also known by the nickname ‘the American Gentleman’ due to their tuxedo like markings
- The most successful and unexplained dog clairvoyant was a Boston Terrier called Missie from Denver in the United States. Missie stunned her owner and experts alike by predicting the results of sports events, the next US president, the sex and weight of babies, and even the date and time of her own death. She could also tell people’s phone numbers. She did this either by barking or by touching cards
- Helen Keller had a Boston Terrier called ‘Phiz’
- This breed is great at tricks and a Border Terrier called Dexter has even mastered the skateboard
- These dogs are big snorers because of the size and shape of their muzzles!