GENERAL APPEARANCE: Powerful build, symmetrical, showing great strength, but not cumbersome; sound and active.

CHARACTERISTICS: Powerful, enduring, active and reliable.

TEMPERAMENT: High spirited, alert and faithful.

Head and Skull: Skull large and square, viewed from every angle, fair wrinkle when interested, but not when in repose. Circumference of skull may equal height of dog measured at top of shoulder; broad and deep with well filled cheeks. Pronounced stop. Muzzle short; distance from tip of nose to stop approximately one third of length from tip of nose to centre of occiput, broad under eyes and sustaining nearly same width to end of nose; blunt and cut off square, forming right angle with upper line of face, and at same time proportionate with skull. Underjaw broad to end. Nose broad with widely spreading nostrils; flat, neither pointed nor turned up in profile. Flews not pendulous, never hanging below level of lower jaw.

Eyes: Dark or hazel, of medium size, set apart the width of muzzle with furrow between. Light or yellow eyes highly undesirable.

Ears: V-shaped, folded back, set on wide and high, level of occiput giving square appearance to skull which is most important. Small and deeper in colour than body. Point of ear level with eye when alert. Rose ears highly undesirable.

Mouth: Level desired but slightly undershot allowed but not preferred. Canine teeth large and set wide apart, other teeth strong, even and well placed.

Neck: Well-arched, moderate length, very muscular and almost equal to the skull in circumference.

Forequarters: Chest, wide and deep, well let down between forelegs, with deep brisket. Shoulders muscular, sloping and powerful, not overloaded. Forelegs powerful and straight, well boned, set wide apart, presenting a straight front. Pasterns straight and strong.

Body: Back short and straight, giving compact carriage, but not so short as to interfere with activity. Roach and sway backs highly undesirable.

Hindquarters: Loins wide and muscular with fair depth of flank. Hind legs strong and muscular, with well developed second thighs, denoting power and activity, not cumbersome. Hocks moderately bent. Cow hocks highly undesirable.

Feet: Well arched, cat like, with rounded toes, pads hard. Dark toe nails desirable. Splayed feet highly undesirable.

Tail: Set high, strong at root and tapering, reaching to hocks, carried straight or curved, but not hound fashion. Crank tails highly undesirable.

Gait/Movement: Movement indicates power and sense of purpose. When moving straight neither front nor hind legs should cross or plait, right front and left rear leg rising and falling at same time. A firm backline unimpaired by powerful thrust from hind legs denoting a balanced and harmonious movement.

Coat: Short and hard, weather resistant, lying flat to body. Long, silky or woolly coats highly undesirable.

Colour: Any shade of brindle, fawn or red; colour to be pure and clear. A slight white marking on chest permissible. Other white markings undesirable. Black muzzle essential, toning off towards eyes, with dark markings around eyes contributing to expression.

Size: Height: Dogs 63.5-68.5 cms (25-27 ins) at shoulder; Bitches 61-66 cms (24-26 ins) at shoulder.
Weight: Dogs 50-59 kg (110-130 lbs); Bitches 41-50 kg (90-110 lbs).

Faults: 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.

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

Utility Group A.N.K.C. January 1998

Please click here for more Bullmastiff breed information.


GENERAL APPEARANCE: In forming a judgment on any specimen of the breed, the general appearance, which is the first impression the dog makes as a whole on the eye of the judge, should be first considered. Secondly should be noticed its size, shape and make, or rather its proportions in the relation they bear to each other. No point should be so much in excess of the others as to the general symmetry, or make the dog appear deformed, or interfere with its powers of motion, etc. Thirdly its style, carriage, gait, temper and its several points should be considered separately in detail, due allowance being made for the bitch, which is not so grand nor as well developed as the dog. The general appearance of the Bulldog is that of a smooth-coated, thick set dog, rather low in stature, but broad , powerful and compact. The head strikingly massive and large in proportion to the dog's size. The face extremely short. The muzzle very broad, blunt and inclined upwards. The body short and well knit; the limbs stout and muscular. The hindquarters high and strong but rather lightly made in comparison with its heavily made foreparts. The dog must convey an impression of determination, strength and activity, similar to that suggested by the appearance of a thick-set Ayrshire bull.

CHARACTERISTICS: (See under General Appearance and Gait/Movement)

TEMPERAMENT: Should convey an impression of determination.

Head and Skull: The skull should be very large - the larger the better - and in circumference should measure (round in front of the ears) at least the height of the dog at the shoulders. Viewed from the front it should appear very high from the corner of the lower jaw to the apex of the skull, also very broad and square. The cheeks should be well rounded and extended sideways beyond the eyes. Viewed at the side, the head should appear very high, very short from its back to the point of the nose. The forehead should be flat, neither prominent nor overhanging the face; the skin upon it and about the head very loose and well wrinkled. The projections of the frontal bones should be very prominent, broad, square and high, causing a deep and wide indentation between the eyes termed the " stop " . From the " stop " a furrow broad and deep should extend up to the middle of the skull, being traceable to the apex. The face, measured from the front of the cheek-bone to the nose, should be as short as possible and its skin should be deeply and closely wrinkled. The muzzle should be short, broad, turned upwards and very deep from the corner of the eyes to the corner of the mouth. The nose should be large, broad and black and under no circumstances should it be liver coloured or brown; its top should be deeply set back almost between the eyes. The distance from the inner corner of the eye ( or from the centre of the stop between the eyes ) to the extreme tip of the nose should not exceed the length from the tip of the nose to edge of the underlip. The nostrils should be large, wide and black, with a well - defined vertical straight line between them. The flews, called the " chop " should be thick, broad, pendant and very deep, hanging completely over the lower jaw at the sides (not in front) . They should join the underlip in front and quite cover the teeth. The jaw should be broad, massive and square, the lower jaw should project considerably in front of the upper and turn up. Viewed from the front, the various properties of the face must be equally balanced on either side of an imaginary line down the centre of the face.

Eyes: The eyes seen from the front, should be situated low down in the skull, as far from the ears as possible. The eyes and " stop " should be in the same straight line, which should be at right angles to the furrow. They should be as wide apart as possible, provided their outer corners are within the outline of the cheeks. They should be quite round in shape, of moderate size, neither sunken nor prominent and in colour should be very dark - almost, if not quite, black - showing no white when looking directly forward.

Ears: The ears should be set high on the head - i.e. the front inner ear should (as viewed from the front) join the outline of the skull at the top corner of such outline, so as to place them as wide apart and as high and as far from the eyes as possible. In size, they should be small and thin, the shape termed " rose ear " is correct and folds inwards at its back, the upper or front edge curving over outwards and backwards, showing part of the inside of the burr.

Mouth: The jaw should be broad and square and have the six small front teeth between the canines in an even row. The canine teeth or tusks wide apart. The teeth should not be seen when the mouth is closed. The teeth should be large and strong. When viewed from the front, the underjaw should be centrally under the upperjaw to which it should also be parallel.

Neck: Should be moderate in length (rather short than long) , very thick, deep and strong. It should be well arched at the back, with much loose, thick and wrinkled skin about the throat, forming a dewlap on each side, from the lower jaw to the chest.

Forequarters: The shoulders should be broad, sloping and deep, very powerful and muscular and giving the appearance of having been " tacked on " to the body. The brisket should be capacious, round and very deep from the top of the shoulders to the lowest part where it joins the chest and be well let down between the forelegs. It should be large in diameter and round behind the forelegs (not flat-sided, the ribs being well rounded) . The forelegs should be very stout and strong, set wide apart, thick, muscular and straight, with well - developed forearms, presenting a rather bowed outline, but the bones of the legs should be large and straight, not bandy or curved. They should be rather short in proportion to the hind - legs, but not so short as to make the back appear long, or detract from the dog's activity and so cripple him. The elbows should be low and stand well away from the ribs. The pasterns should be short straight and strong.

Body: The chest should be very wide, laterally round, prominent and deep, making the dog appear very broad and short-legged in front. The body should be well ribbed up behind, with the belly tucked up and not pendulous. The back should be short and strong, very broad at the shoulders and comparatively narrow at the loins. There should be a slight fall to the back close behind the shoulders (its lowest part) , whence the spine should rise to the loins (the top of which should be higher than the top of the shoulders), thence curving again more suddenly to the tail, forming an arch - a distinctive characteristic of the breed - termed " roach back. "

Hindquarters: The legs should be large and muscular and longer in proportion than the forelegs, so as to elevate the loins. The hocks should be slightly bent and well let down, so as to be long and muscular from the loins to the point of the hock. The lower part of the leg should be short, straight and strong. The stifles should be round and turned slightly outwards away from the body. The hocks are thereby made to approach each other, and the hind feet to turn outwards.

Feet: The hind feet, like the forefeet should be round and compact, with the toes well split up and the knuckles prominent. The forefeet should be straight and turned very slightly outward, of medium size and moderately round. The toes compact and thick, being well split up, making the knuckles prominent and high.

Tail: The tail, termed the "stern" , should be set on low, jut out rather straight, then turn downwards. It should be round, smooth and devoid of fringe or coarse hair. It should be moderate in length - rather short than long - thick at the root, and tapering quickly to a fine point. It should have a downward carriage (not having a decided curve at the end), and the dog should not be able to raise it over its back.

Gait/Movement: From its formation the dog has a peculiar heavy and constrained gait, appearing to walk with short, quick steps on the tips of its toes, its hind feet not being lifted high, but appearing to skim the ground, and running with the right shoulder rather advanced, similar to the manner of horse in cantering.

Coat: Should be fine in texture, short, close and smooth (hard only from the shortness and closeness, not wiry).

Colour: The colour should be whole or smut (that is, a whole colour with a black mask or muzzle).

The only colours (which should be brilliant and pure of their sort) are whole colours - viz., brindles, reds, with their varieties, fawns, fallows etc., white and also pied (i.e. a combination of white with any other of the foregoing colours). Dudley, black and black with tan are extremely undesirable colours.

SIZE : The most desirable weight for the bulldog is:

25kg (55lbs.) for a dog and

22.7kg (50lbs.) for a bitch.

Faults: 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.

Note: Male animals should have 2 apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

Non-Sporting Group A.N.K.C. January 1998

Please click here for more Bulldog breed information.

Return To Homepage