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A Review of the American Johnson Bulldog used in Australia for catching Wild Boar by Steve.

Everyone is always searching for a definitive breed of dog that will excel in catching wild pigs in Australia and for most Australians the bigger the better.  In the past ten years a rare breed has re-emerged from foreign shores to reclaim that recognition, used as the base of many great hunting breeds it is the bulldog.  It has had many names, The Old English Bulldog, The English White, The Southern White, HillyBilly HogDogs, etc.  Basically the American Bulldog origins date back to the original Butcherís Bulldogs bred for catching livestock, protecting their masterís and families and unfortunately for the blood-sports  (bull-baiting, etc) which when banned saw the a large decline of the breeds numbers.  Many were bred with smaller dogs to create many of the smaller bull breed whilst a small population travelled with settlers to American.  It was in America that breeding was continued along the same original lines, for catching livestock and protection.  Two men emerged as credible breeders of this breed of working dogs Mr Allen Scott and Mr John D. Johnson, hence the two lines, which most breeders discuss today the Scott line and the Johnson line.  I have not written this review merely to talk history but to explain my observations and make my recommendations for the use of this breed catching wild pigs in Australia.

I purchased my Johnson Bulldog here in Australia bred from imported (USA) parents Andrewís Krunch and Sodeauís Suzie. I began hunting with him at 5 months old, at this stage he showed no fear, raced straight for the ear and held regardless of what took place. He has not stopped since; he has hunted the swamps and hills of Northern NSW, Central NSW, Qld Darling Downs, Qld Sugar Cane districts and in the Gulf of Carpentaria.

THE INFORMATION I HAVE PRESENTED BELOW IS OF OBSERVATIONS OF MY DOGíS ABILITY AS A JOHNSON BULLDOG, I AM NOT A BREEDER, I AM SIMPLY GIVING MY OPINION AS A PIG HUNTER.

 

Andrews Krunch

SODEAUíS SUZIE

The owner of this bitch is currently looking for another suitable sire.  She is situated in SE Qld.

BODY TYPE/SIZE: Many people will ask is he a Mastiff/Boxer cross and many bulldogs will have the similar head and muzzle of a boxer.  They are definitely not the same body type or breeding as a BANDOG or AMERICAN BANDOG although many people are advertising and selling Bandogs as Bulldogs, there is no comparison.  There is a large difference in body size and type in American Bulldogs, even within the same litter.  All bulldogs have well defined muscling over their entire body; some are more defined athletic in stature, whilst others are heavy boned extremely solid dogs.   Height of the dog or bitch can also vary considerably.

MALES CAN RANGE FROM: 40 kg to 60 kg HEIGHT: 60cm to75cm

FEMALES CAN RANGE FROM: 35kg to 55 kg  HEIGHT:  50cm to 65 cm

Western Australian dog ďRockĒ and Stonka 1 yr old.

TEMPERAMENT:  The Johnson line of Bulldog is renowned for breeding a stable temperament, socialised correctly with other dogs they have no problems.  My bulldog shares his compound with a male cattle dog, and on hunting trips has shared cages with everything from Pit-bull males to Great Dane crosses.  They are a very loyal family pet and devoted to their owners and family.  They make an excellent guard dog, just their stature alone scares most people. They are very intelligent and easily trained many are used for protection or guard dog work.  As seen above ĎRockí Protection training. Really they are big sooks when it comes to women and kids.

STAMINA AND ABILITY TO HUNT: Iíve found that when using my dog for hunting I must keep his weight to a lean 40 kg maybe even a little less, he looks quite tucked but handles the heat and has far more stamina.  Most people would realise taking a fat, unfit dog hunting usually results in overheating no matter what breed.  He has demonstrated his ability is just as good as any hound in finding pigs in a variety of areas as mentioned previously.  Finding a protective breastplate that does not restrict and run them too hot is the difficulty.  Being so large in the chest they donít suit too many ĎOne Size Fits Allí breastplates.  They are quite fast chasing pigs, with a running start he has pulled them up in at least 150 m in open country, a little more in dense scrub.   Overall if you keep them fit and hunt them sensibly they have the finding and catching ability compared to most Mastiff/Dane crosses.  Iíve never seen a dog get so into hunting and absolutely love it.

COLOURS/MARKINGS: Colours of the breed can range from all white to solid brindle or tan dogs.  Most breeders aim for white with patches of colour and are not real impressed with solid coloured dogs.  Too much pink on the nose or around the eyes can be a sun safety problem; really depends on how dedicated you are to applying zinc.  Iíve had people ask me about their feet being a white dog; Stonka copes extremely well running on all surfaces, from burrs to harsh slate country his feet are just as good as any.

COST: There are pups available from between $600-1100 dollars, depending on their breeding.  The bulk of the breed is in N.S.W, there are quite a few studs in Western Australia and a few select breeders in Queensland.  Beware of buying from people that canít produce evidence that their dogs are of pure breeding, as I was mentioning before many people are starting to cash in on cross bred dogs that look similar and selling them as Bulldogs.  There are two registry groups that I know of the Australian Bulldog Association and the American Bulldog Association that purebreds are registered with. 

CROSSBRED BULLDOGS: George Andrews sells Bulldog/Bull Arab pups quite regularly and Iíve had many people comment on how pleased they are with this breeding.  Iíve come across others crossing Bulldogs with Whippets or Greyhounds, Wolfhounds and of course Great Danes.  I would definitely recommend adding the Bulldog as a crossbreed to give more hunting drive to your dogs and holding ability. 

WHERE TO FIND OUT MORE: There are some great web-sites both here in Australia, America and Europe to see the variety in the breed, find out their history, see pups, etc. Just go to a search engine and type in American Bull Dogs.

 

 

Pups by Stonka out of a Crossbred bitch, she had 14 pups. Pups at 6 wks.

 

 

Left: Stonka sharing a rope with hunting partner

If you're interested in an American Bulldog pup click on the image below.

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