Boston Terrier

Boston Terrier
Boston Terrier pictures
Boston Terrier suitability

In my own words


It’s your birthday soon, isn’t it? I’m so excited! I can’t wait for your birthday party, everyone is coming over, aren’t they? I love to see the whole family, it’s so much fun. I love being a part of these special family occasions, it’s much better than having to sit outside on your own with nothing to do. Oh and you say you’ve only got a small apartment? That’s okay. As long as I can go out for a walk everyday, I’m happy to be anywhere as long as I’ve got my family with me.

Don’t be put off by my heritage of an English Bulldog and English White Terrier, I’m a gentleman a heart! All I want is to just be part of the family and have a walk. Say... How about we go for a walk now? Sounds like a good idea to me!

My ideal owner(s)




Active, outdoorsy types

Families with older children

What they say about me






Please read on, to find out more about me, and whether I will be someone you can be happy with for the next 15 years, or even longer!

Is this Boston Terrier for you?

Test your knowledge about the Boston Terrier

Information essential about the Boston Terrier


Kennel Club Group:



Small: Weight 10 – 25 lb (4.5 – 11.3 kg)

Height 15 – 17” (38.1 – 43 cm)


Breed History:


The Boston Terrier originated in the city of Boston, Massachusetts and is one of the few breeds that was developed in the USA. Bred in the 1870s, the Boston Terrier was originally a cross between the English Bulldog and now extinct English White Terrier. The Boston Terrier was continually bred down in size as originally they weighed up to 44 pounds (20 kg). By 1889 the breed was becoming popular in Boston and owners formed the American Bull Terrier Club but this name angered lovers of the Bull Terrier breed. Shortly after, the breed was renamed as the Boston Terrier after its birthplace and the breed was recognised by AKC in 1893.


In the early years the colour and markings were not very important but by the 1900s the breeds distinctive markings and colour were written into the standard. Terrier only in name, the Boston Terrier has mellowed from the pit fighting dogs of the past. This breed has the distinction of being the first non-sporting dog to be bred in America.



The Boston Terrier is gentle, intelligent, well-mannered and enthusiastic. They require a good amount of mental and physical activity, otherwise they can become highly strung. However, they require an owner to display firm but gentle leadership to keep them under control as they can develop “Small Dog Syndrome”, human induced behaviours where the dog believes he is the pack leader. They have been reported as good watchdogs, barking when necessary but it has also been reported that female Boston Terriers do not bark at the door at all. They are mostly reliable with children, especially good with the elderly and very friendly with strangers. The Boston Terrier can be playful, affectionate and easygoing. They like to be part of the family and generally get along well with other household pets.


This breed thrives on human interaction and is affectionate and loyal to its family. The Boston Terrier is easygoing, yet can be animated and high-spirited. They are better suited to homes with children over the age of eight and are particularly well-suited to the elderly. They generally get along well with other household pets but males may fight with other dogs


Boston Terriers are compact and well-muscled dogs with a short, square body. They have a deep, wide, short muzzle and black nose. The bite is either even or slightly undershot which gives the muzzle a square look. It has large, round dark eyes that are wide-set with small ears. The legs are set slightly wide apart with a broad chest and slightly arched neck. The short tail is low-set and tapering, either straight or screw shaped but never docked. The coat is short and fine textured and comes in seal, brindle and white, black and white or brown and white.


The coat comes in seal, brindle and white, black and white or brown and white



Boston’s are quick to learn and easy to train. They can be difficult to housetrain and crate training is recommended. They can be sensitive so require a firm but gentle hand when being trained.



The Boston Terrier is short haired and easy to groom. Comb and brush with a firm bristle brush and bath only when necessary. This breed has a tendency to drool so frequent wiping of the face is recommended. It is important to check and clean both the eyes and ears regularly. This breed is an average shedder. The Boston Terrier is prone to heatstroke and should be monitored when playing outside on hot days.



The lifespan of a healthy individual up to 15 years. However, some live for as long as 16 years. If you buy from a reputable, responsible breeder, health problems should not occur. They are prone to eye problems such as juvenile cataracts, late-onset cataracts, entropion, distichiasis, glaucoma, corneal dystrophy, corneal ulcers, cherry eye and dry eyes (Keratitis Sicca). The eyes are prominent and can be prone to injury. This breed also suffers from deafness, patellar luxation, heart and skin tumours. Their short face means that they can have difficulty breathing when stressed by exertion in hot or cold weather and are prone to heatstroke. They may also snore or drool. Whelping is often difficult as the pelvis is narrow and the large headed pups are often delivered by caesarean section.



Boston Terriers can adapt to both apartment life and country living. They are relatively inactive indoors and can do okay without a yard but benefit from a long daily walk to keep them in shape. They are fairly lightweight and can be easily carried. This breed is particularly sensitive to weather extremes.

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Advice on choosing your breed »

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The following grid gives a fast track review which covers all breeds. You can apply it to help you decide if a Boston Terrier is suitable for you, the environment where you live, your personality and your lifestyle. On the grid, 1= strongly disagree, and 5= strongly agree. For example, if you are looking for a dog that that’s easy to train, look down the list under Training and Obedience, and you will see that Boston’s are easy to train and have good recall, scoring 5. If you want a friendly companion, look at Sociability, and you will see that Boston’s get on well with both other dogs and pets, and score 5. You might like to save or print off this section and keep it for reference while you check some other breeds before making your final choice.

Be the first to rate this breed »

Noahs Breed Rating | Community Breed Rating

Good jogging companion5/5
Good walking companion5/5
Likes water/swimming3/5
Likes learning new tricks5/5
Likes to hunt2/5
Likes to fetch4/5
Good gundog/retriever1/5
Barks a lot2/5
Gets easily jealous1/5
Friendly with strangers5/5
Expensive to insure1/5
Expensive to feed1/5
Happy to sleep outside1/5
Prefers countryside5/5
Suits urban environment5/5
Prefers temperate climate5/5
Prefers hot climate1/5
Prefers cold climate1/5
Moults a lot3/5
Requires lots of grooming2/5
Role and Suitability
Ideal for elderly5/5
Ideal for singles5/5
Ideal for couples with no children5/5
Ideal for family with children4/5
Good watch dog3/5
Good guard dog1/5
Good with other pets5/5
Good with other dogs5/5
Time and Energy
Happy being left alone for 4hrs2/5
Happy being left alone for 2hrs3/5
Requires lots of exercise3/5
Training and Obedience
Good for first time owners5/5
Good for experienced owners5/5
Good recall5/5
Easy to train5/5
Good jogging companion0/5
Good walking companion0/5
Likes water/swimming0/5
Likes learning new tricks0/5
Likes to hunt0/5
Likes to fetch0/5
Good gundog/retriever0/5
Barks a lot0/5
Gets easily jealous0/5
Friendly with strangers0/5
Expensive to insure0/5
Expensive to feed0/5
Happy to sleep outside0/5
Prefers countryside0/5
Suits urban environment0/5
Prefers temperate climate0/5
Prefers hot climate0/5
Prefers cold climate0/5
Moults a lot0/5
Requires lots of grooming0/5
Role and Suitability
Ideal for elderly0/5
Ideal for singles0/5
Ideal for couples with no children0/5
Ideal for family with children0/5
Good watch dog0/5
Good guard dog0/5
Good with other pets0/5
Good with other dogs0/5
Time and Energy
Happy being left alone for 4hrs0/5
Happy being left alone for 2hrs0/5
Requires lots of exercise0/5
Training and Obedience
Good for first time owners0/5
Good for experienced owners0/5
Good recall0/5
Easy to train0/5

*PLEASE NOTE: All our breed profiles are general, and all dogs are individuals. Always talk to the breeders and meet the owners you are buying from. Try to meet the dog and its parents if it is a puppy in their home environment.

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