Are Pit Bulls and Bulldogs Related? 6 Key Differences

Many people often confuse American Bulldogs and American Pit Bull Terriers because they have many similar physical and behavioral traits.

Although they are entirely separate breeds, many people think they’re somewhat related.

So, are Pit Bulls and Bulldogs Related? Bulldogs and Pitbulls are related. However, they are completely different breeds. Pitbulls and Bulldogs share a common ancestor and a few physical characteristics, including having strong physical builds as well as short, glossy coats. 

Keep reading to learn more about the key distinctions between Pit Bulls and Bulldogs, so you can tell them apart and choose the one that best suits your preferences.

Are Pit Bulls and Bulldogs Related?

a photo of a Pit Bull and a Bulldog looking similar to show that Pit Bulls and Bulldogs are related

Pit bulls really aren’t related to Bulldogs. There are various dog breeds that are referred to as Pit Bulls, but Bulldogs aren’t among them.

Pit Bull breeds include the American Pit Bull Terrier, the American Bully, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and American Staffordshire Terrier.

The reason why Pit Bulls and Bulldogs appear similar at first glance is that they have similar ancestors as they both descend from old English Bulldog bloodlines.

In terms of physical appearance, both the American Bulldog and the American Pit Bull Terrier have impressive muscular builds and short shiny coats. You can learn about Pitbull coats here.

The shape of the heads is different, but the location of their ears is extremely similar. 

Even though there are many similarities between Pit Bulls and Bulldogs, there are also many differences that will help set them apart.

The 6 Key Differences Between Pit Bulls and Bulldogs

As mentioned before, there are many differences between Pit Bulls and Bulldogs, including origin, temperament, physical appearance, training, health, and cost.

So, let’s breakdown each of these differences in more detail:

History & Origin

Looking at the Pit Bull’s and Bulldog’s history and origins is one approach to identifying the difference between the two breeds.

American Bulldog

The American Bulldog is descended from the English Bulldog. 

In the 19th century, working-class immigrants brought their ancient English Bulldogs to America to aid with a variety of chores, such as farming, herding, and hunting.

The breed was named a Bulldog because they engaged in the English sport of bull-baiting, which included handling a bull to a post on the ground and urging dogs to attempt to bite the bull’s snout.

American Pitbull

The American Pit Bull Terrier was developed by mixing Old English Bulldogs with terriers to generate a dog that blended the power of the Bulldog with the prey drive and speed of the Terrier. 

The Pit Bull Terrier became famous in the United Kingdom for the bull-baiting sport as well. However, these violent sports became illegal, and Pit Bulls were used as house pets instead.

Behavior & Temperament

American Bulldog

The qualities of the American Bulldog include confidence, courage, boldness, and being socially engaged. 

These canines are also recognized for their commitment to their owners. 

Bulldogs are resistant to strangers while they are puppies, but as they get older, they become more intelligent and fearless. 

This dog likewise adores kids. This dog has a great reputation and is regarded as a family dog.

American Pitbull

Pitbull enjoys pleasing others. 

When compared to other breeds, this breed is more compassionate and empathetic toward people. 

These dogs are also recognized for their bravery and power, making them popular among dog owners for protecting purposes. 

These dogs are athletic and active, and they require exercise regularly or a stroll to stay healthy.

Pitbulls as well do not attack humans, but they are aggressive toward other canines and animals.

Physical Appearance

The physical appearances of an American Bulldog and an American Pitbull Terrier are close. However, they differ in several characteristics.

American Bulldog

This athletic dog usually stands at 20-27 inches for males and 20-24 inches for females, and it weighs between 66-127 pounds.

They have broad chests, big square heads, strong jaws, and ears that stick up.

When it comes to their colors are mostly white with red, black, brown, or brindle. They usually have brown eyes, but they can have any eye color. 

American Pit Bull

Pit Bulls tend to be shorter than Bulldogs, and their weight is around 35-59 kg in males and 30-50 lbs in females. 

They have a slimmer build compared to Bulldogs, and their head is more rounded. Their ears are typically folded over, unlike Bulldogs.

When it comes to their color, they come in a variety of colors, including red, blue, grey, and black. Some of their colors are rarer than others, with the Merle being the rarest color. You can learn about Merle Pitbulls and why they’re so rare (and expensive) here.

Intelligence & Training-ability 

American Bulldog

American Bulldogs are very clever canines. Because of their high intellect and strong working ethic, American Bulldogs are exceptionally easy to train.

When it comes to the American Bulldog’s training and exercise requirements, the first factor to bear in mind is that if an American Bulldog is left to its own devices, it is prone to get into trouble.

Your dog will require a lot of proper training and exercise to stay out of trouble. American Bulldogs require around 40 minutes of intense exercise every day to stay healthy and strong.

Also, if you want to be able to control your American Bulldog, you must train him young. 

They must also be socialized with other dogs, toddlers, and children at a young age to avoid becoming violent.

American Pit Bull

Pitbulls require a huge amount of exercise as well. You must provide your Pitbull with 30 minutes to an hour of intense exercise every day at least. 

This will help keep them happier and healthier, as well as limit the dog’s chances of getting into trouble.

You need to train and socialize your Pitbull from a young age. As a result, it will be less prone to attack strangers. It is critical that your dog receives proper training. 


Costs are subject to change! However, here’s what you might anticipate spending for a Bulldog or Pit Bull puppy.

American Bulldog

American Bulldogs range in price between $1,500 and $5,000 or more for a top breed American Bulldog. 

American Pit Bull

American Pit Bulls are somewhat more expensive as their cost ranges from $3,700 to $10,000. Learn more about Pit Bull costs and expenses here.

Health Problems

Let us move on to the different health problems American Bulldogs and American Pitbulls usually face.

American Bulldog

They are susceptible to hip problems, a joint disorder that causes mobility problems as your dog matures. The breed is also prone to bone cancer and thyroid disease.

Thyroid problems are easily addressed by your veterinarian. However, bone cancer is always deadly. 

Skin problems and bladder problems, particularly bladder stones, can also affect the dogs.

Generally, they do not have allergies or other conditions that make it difficult to manage, so they should be capable of living close to the normal average lifespan without difficulty. 

It is recommended to take your American Bulldog to the veterinarian on a frequent basis to prevent or treat these diseases before they worsen.

American Pit Bull

Because the breed is shorter than an American Bulldog, it is less susceptible to hip problems than bigger dog breeds.

They do indeed have allergies, which the American Bulldog normally does not. 

They can potentially get heart problems and blindness. 

Because of the potential for cardiac difficulties, it is advisable to walk your Pitbull frequently and take him to the veterinarian on a constant schedule.

Cataracts are readily treated, but allergies normally need a particular diet to keep your dog as healthy as possible.

Bulldog VS Pitbull Conclusion: Which One Is Best for You? 

As you can tell, the American Bulldog and the Pit Bull Terrier are both excellent dog breeds. They are both extroverted and like nothing more than pleasing their owners. 

The American Bulldog differs from the American Pit Bull Terrier in that the latter is somewhat smaller but more athletic and lively.

The American Bulldog has a calmer demeanor yet is just as entertaining! 

Your choice will mainly depend on your preference. Both of these animals are wonderful additions to any family. You will undoubtedly return home with a puppy that everyone enjoys!

Related Questions 

Are Bulldogs Considered Pit Bulls?

Bulldogs are not considered Pit Bulls. The dog breeds that are considered Pit Bulls are the American Pit Bull Terrier, the American Bully, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and American Staffordshire Terrier. However, Bulldogs and Pit Bulls come from the same ancestors.

Are Pit Bulls More Dangerous than Bulldogs?

Pit Bulls are not more dangerous than bulldogs. Even though both breeds have a reputation for being violent, their behavior will mainly depend on how you train them. Also, keep in mind that Bulldogs are often more protective than Pitbulls, yet Pitbulls are reluctant to give up on a fight.

Are Pit Bulls Better than Bulldogs

Pitbulls are not better than Bulldogs, nor are Bulldogs better than Pit Bulls. Both breeds have certain physical and behavioral characteristics that set them apart. Although some people prefer Pitbulls and others prefer Bulldogs, it all comes down to personal preference.

What Is the Bulldog and Pit Bull Mix?

The Bulldog and Pit Bull Mix is a cross between both breeds, and it’s commonly referred to as The Bullypit. The mix shares many of the physical characteristics of its parent breeds as well as their temperament and behavior. However, it might be prone to more health problems.

Helpful Resources

History of Pitbulls

History of Bulldogs

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