Boston Terrier

Non-Sporting Group

The Boston terrier, also sometimes referred to as the Boston Bull, is a stocky and powerful breed that flourishes under a robust exercise regime. They have extremely high energy and can become troublesome if their exercise needs aren’t met. They are also highly intelligent and unwaveringly loyal. Terriers typically get along well with other non-canine pets and the Boston is no exception to this.

Affection Level
Barking Tendency
Child Friendly
Exercise Needed
Good With Other Dogs
Health Issues
Shedding Level
Watchdog Ability

Stories From Real Life Boston Terrier Owners

A Boston Terrier Pup Named Clyde

I don’t remember much about my college days, but I sure remember Clyde. I knew nothing about Boston Terrier pups, but suddenly, I was thrust into motherhood with a little dog that needed a home. He was about six-months-old when my roommate brought him to me. He was for sale in the newspaper because he was unable to potty train.

She adored these types of dogs, and I just loved his little face and black and white coat. I knew nothing about these dogs except he was so darn cute. He was hyper, had bad breath, and had gas worse than any man I’ve ever known. However, there was something about Clyde that melted my heart.

More Mischievous Than a School Boy

Growing up, I always had the cute little lapdogs. While the Boston Terrier breed is smaller, they are very muscular in stature. They are not at all what I would consider a “lap-dog,” yet they are perfectly content to sit on your lap. They are relatives of the English bulldog and French bulldog, so they have the smaller statue with plenty of weight. Clyde was just about the sweetest dog I had ever met, but he was very mischievous. I don’t think I have ever seen a dog naughtier than him.

For starters, this little guy loved to hide things. Because his first six months of life we expected had been rough and there was possible abuse, he often acted out. Food was his passion, and he would often rummage through the trash to find a mere morsel. You could never leave anything lying on the coffee tables or the kitchen table for that matter. He would hop up on the chairs and help himself to your dinner, especially if you turned your back for five minutes.

One night, we had pizza for a late-night snack. There were a few pieces left in the box sitting on the couch. I fell asleep. I had no clue that this little pup would be watching and waiting for that opportunity to seize a few pieces for himself. I woke up to one piece left. My roommate had long gone to work, and I knew I didn’t eat anything more. It had to be the dog. I didn’t think anything of it, until the next day when I was at the local department store. I reached into my purse to pay for my purchases and felt something cold and wet. I stuck my hand on a square of pizza. It appears that my little Clyde entrusted me so much that he placed a slice of pizza inside my purse. He was apparently saving it for later.

I wish I could say that this was the only time things like this had happened. However, Clyde was often doing things that surprised me. I found food hid in the craziest places around the house. The new rule with this pup around was never have anything in your hand walking and eating or leave anything out. You would lose your lunch for sure.

The Potty Training Nightmare

I have raised a lot of dogs in my life. As an avid animal lover, there is no breed or color pattern I don’t like. Big and small, it seems like training them to use the bathroom outside is an insurmountable task. I don’t think Clyde quite got the concept of you go out and potty, and then you come back in and get a treat. In fact, he would alert us that he had to go outside to use the restroom. He would go out, play around the yard a bit, and then he would come back in and pee on the floor.

He knew that he needed to go outside to use the restroom, yet he felt more comfortable using my new carpet as a grass pad. It became quite frustrating because it just seemed that he didn’t get it. My roommate and I decided that we would get a cage. Since we were gone to school in the day and sometimes worked at night, he needed boundaries. He hated the cage. He made every kind of noise possible when inside, but he soon adjusted.

We were excited to try anything at this point. Clyde was always busting to use the restroom when we got him out, but he would go outside, run around the yard, and come into pee on the floor. We tried leaving him out for at least 10 minutes, yet still, he peed inside rather than the grass. It was quite frustrating.

One day, I called a pet trainer out of pure desperation about the matter. Clyde was almost a year old and still peeing all over my apartment. The trainer told me that it was obvious he knew that going outside was for the potty, but he thought that perhaps my methods needed to be changed. I would put the dog on a tie out that I kept by the door. I didn’t want to stand out in the cold or heat and would come back inside. The trainer said that was my problem. He said that these dogs have a great deal of social anxiety. He felt more comfortable using the bathroom with me close.

He told me to try getting a leash and walking him a bit. Sure enough, it was a quick fix. Clyde would use the loo outside, but he wanted someone with him. I hated walked around waiting for him to pee, but soon it became an effortless process, rather than a long and drawn out one. With me by his side, it took me about two days to have him doing his business outside. Who knew that some dogs are so fickle?

Health Issues Of A Boston Terrier - Stomach Issues For Days

It’s not uncommon for any cousin to the bulldog to have some gas on occasion. I will be honest, Clyde could clear a room. One night, we had some people visiting us from our local youth group. We put the dog in the cage, so he would not climb all over everyone. One guy was sharing his testimony and telling us about a rough time he overcame. Right in the middle of his speech, everyone heard a loud rip……… My face was 100 shades of red. I was sitting by the dog in the cage, and it appeared the sound came from me.

Most dogs just pass gas quietly, but Clyde had awful stomach problems. He could make more noise than a grown man. Another time, I remember driving with him to see my parents who lived two hours away. The entire trip I had to ride with the window down. He smelled so horrible that I was trying to keep from heaving. It was a crisp fall day, and keeping the window down wasn’t the most comfortable experience. However, I had to do what I needed to so that I could breathe.

We ended up in the vet’s office over his bloated abdomen and flatulence. The vet told me gas is a widespread issue with these dogs as is other stomach problems. It was necessary for us to switch him to a special dog food that had fewer fillers and would be gentler on his stomach. Also, he could have no table food. All those bites he was sneaking was really causing him problems. His digestive system was quite fragile.

Boston Terrier Temperament

It was apparent by a few short weeks into dog ownership that Clyde was my dog. While he loved my roommate too, he was always at my feet. When we graduated, it was like trying to decide the custody of a child. She wanted the dog also, but I was better able to give him the attention he craved. So I took Clyde back to my hometown to start my new life.

One thing that I will always remember about him was his excellent demeanor. He never growled, bit, or was nasty to anyone. He was only a couple years old when I graduated, so when I got married, he was four. By the time my first child came along, Clyde was about six. I was afraid he wouldn’t do well with sharing the attention of a child. However, I was wrong. Not only did he love my daughter, but he shifted his protective nature from me to her.

When my nieces and nephews would come over to play, Clyde was always right in the middle of them. He loved his toys, and he was always up for a good game of fetch. One year, we got a slip and slide for our now two daughters. I remember looking out the window at all the kids playing and laughing. My smile turned into a chuckle when I looked over to find the dog enjoying a dip too. The sprinkler at the end of the device was a great place to get a drink of water and cool off when you’re a pup.

His favorite thing was running through the fall leaves. My husband would rake a gigantic pile for the family. Clyde played too. Even when he was ten years of age, he still loved to get out and play. This very well natured pup that loved snow, rain, and sunshine. He traveled well and went to the beach with us several times. In fact, he loved going in the car for rides whenever possible. He would hop in and take the shotgun position. The girls at the bank loved him and always sent out little treats for their friend. The staff at the local fast food restaurant also knew him well. He was a dog that everyone loved.

The Final Countdown

As healthy as he was in life, I thought he would age gracefully. After his 11th year, Clyde had some major health issues. He developed cataracts that made seeing difficult. Though there is surgery for this thing, most of the vets didn’t do it in our area. His unique facial formation caused him to have severe allergies, but it wasn’t allergies that got him down. At the age of 13, he started developing little tumors all over his body. Much to our chagrin, they were cancerous.

We tried different treatments, but it was clear that Clyde had no quality of life left. He was almost blind, had developed diabetes, and now he was full of cancer. I still remember the day I carried him into the vet’s office to have him put to sleep. It felt like a child being ripped from my arms. I cried so hard that the nurse put her arms around me to try to calm me down.

Watching him take his last breath is nothing I ever wish on any dog owner. It’s the worst feeling in the world. A pup that was so full of life became so fragile and weak in the blink of an eye. To this day when the snow is falling, or I see that big pile of leaves in my yard, my mind goes back to those days when he would line up with the kids and jump. He loved me, but he was a family dog. He would protect, snuggle and take his turns with each one of us.

It’s been ten years since I lost my baby boy Clyde. He is buried on our property. I still put flowers on his little grave each year. He was so much more than a dog; he was family! To this day, I have never found another canine that has loved me or I him in the way that we did. Our relationship was one-of-a-kind.

I still miss him. Though he had bad breath and foul gas most of the time, there wasn't a day that I didn't enjoy seeing his little face. He certainly made my world a better place.

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