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The Boston Terrier has been around since the late 1800s, coming out of the USA. Although they descend from fighting dog breeds, this pup is undoubtedly more of a lover than a fighter. So much so that they have the nickname “American Gentleman” for their kind nature and tuxedo-like markings.
The Boston Terrier is a small and compact breed with distinctive erect ears and large eyes giving them an affectionate expression. Their popularity in the USA and beyond remains strong, thanks to their playful antics and adaptable personality, making them fabulous companions.
Meet the Boston Terrier
The Boston Terrier is a small breed weighing between 15 and 25 pounds and standing 15 to 17 inches tall. They have a compact but well-proportioned build with broad chests. They sport short tails no more than 2-inches long, which can be either corkscrew, curled, or straight.
Their black and white “tuxedo-style” coat is one of their most adored attributes: smooth and shiny with short, straight hair. Their muzzles and chests are always white, but the rest of the body doesn’t necessarily have to be black. Seal or brindle is also possible, although much less common.
Their round heads feature a square jawline, naturally upright ears and big round eyes, set far apart. They are a brachycephalic breed with broad, flat, wrinkle-free noses that give a pushed in look. Their nose anatomy consists of tiny nostrils, long palates and a narrow trachea, which increases their tendency to snore and reverse sneeze (a rapid and recurrent nasal inhalation).
Moreover, like other brachycephalic dogs, they have a higher risk of several respiratory conditions. While they come with more health risks than some other breeds, they will live for 12 to 14 years if healthy. If you choose this breed, you should diligently observe them in case of any arising problems.
The temperament of a Boston Terrier
Boston Terriers are most known for their extreme friendliness to everyone they meet. They can immediately become friends with strangers, and their fun-loving, playful personality puts smiles on everyone’s faces. They can be a bit goofy, which makes them popular around children, and their cheerful disposition makes them excellent therapy dogs, too.
Despite their loving nature, training is still essential for this breed. They can become quite excitable when they meet people, and without established leadership, they may become mischievous.
Boston Terriers need a modest amount of exercise. They love nothing more than going for walks with their owner or playing with familiar children. They do best with one or two walks a day, or you can engage them in canine sports like agility. They are ingenious and quick learners so training them is not too challenging, though they can sometimes be stubborn. Even so, new dog parents will find they can teach them basic commands, tricks and ball-games that will keep their bodies and minds active.
Boston Terriers are generally quiet canines and are not yappy like other small dog breeds. They are not aggressive either, but males might scrap with other dogs if they feel they are invading their territory.
10 reasons to add a Boston Terrier to your family
- They are family favourites - Boston Terriers are a dog adored by people of all ages, from young children to the elderly. Heck, even other dogs and some cats can’t help but love their friendly personalities.
- They look and act like gentlemen - For sure, their cool tuxedo coat markings and kind temperament are two of the Boston Terrier’s top qualities.
- They are super adorable - Their large eyes and endearing facial expressions will always melt your heart. Honestly, it’s hard to stay mad at these cute pups.
- You don’t need to groom them - Their short coats require very little care and tend to remain smooth and shiny with just an occasional brushing session.
- They rarely yap or bark - If you love small dogs but could do without the irritating yapping, the quiet Boston Terrier is ideal.
- They are easy to train - Their clever minds and their ability to learn quickly mean that even those who are training a dog for the first time will succeed.
- They love people - Boston Terriers enjoy the company of people so much, which is not just limited to their owners. They quickly bond with people, so much so that it will make you laugh how happy they are to see your friends and family coming around.
- Their energy needs are manageable - While Boston Terriers have playful bursts, this energy usually fizzles out after a short walk in the park or a game of tug of war in the garden.
- They are fab with strangers - Boston Terriers are always up for meeting new people and will happily accept some petting from unfamiliar humans in the park.
- They make ideal therapy dogs - Boston Terriers are naturally funny and eager to please. So, if they see their goofy antics cheering you up, you’ll gain a personal comedian and therapy animal.
Best homes for a Boston Terrier
Because they are generally good around children and other pets, Boston Terriers can be a good choice for first-time dog owners. Moreover, although they are super playful, they tire pretty quickly, so they do not require a tonne of exercise. Nonetheless, early socialisation is always crucial in moulding them into great family pets. Plus, as they are so friendly, they do best in a home where there is usually someone around.
Because of their small size, Boston Terriers do not take up or need much space. They also adapt well to different environments and live happily in apartments or small houses. Plus, they don’t bark or yap much, which is a welcoming benefit for those living close to their neighbours.