It is said that the breed is the original or nearest to the original working Bulldog that left the British shores in the 17th when the pilgrims headed for the Americas on the ship called Anne in 1733, settling in the south-eastern states. There the Bulldog took on a new task, it was utilised as a farm stock dog also to guard the farm and its master from wild animals and anything else out there to cause harm including humans.
The American Bulldog as been known by various names over the years, Old Fashioned Whites, Southern Whites, Georgia Giants and plain old Bulldog to name a few. To date there are quite a few breeders of this wonderful breed of dog here in the UK of the different strains.
To people out there who do not know what an American Bulldog is, just rent to the movie Homeward Bound 1 & 2, the dog called Chance in the film is an American Bulldog, you will see him as a fun loving, family oriented dog always wanting to please. In the first movie Chance is played by a well known dog called Rattler, he is in some pedigree's here in the UK.
A man named John D Johnson, of Summerville, Georgia, USA, saved the breed from extinction. Mr. Johnson is known as the granddaddy of the breed, when John came back from World War 2, he began the search for more quality Bulldogs to go with the ones he already had, he began his breeding program. At this point I think we should all say a big thank you to Mr & Mrs Johnson for all their life long dedication to the breed, if was not for them we would have lost this breed for ever. True people bred these dogs out in the hills, but it was Mr & Mrs Johnson who brought this breed to the attention of the general adm/public. THANK YOU.
There are a few American Bulldog lines around the most well known ones are, Johnson, the big Bully, thick boned boned Bulldogs, then there's Scott, Painter and Hines, these lines are lighter framed and slightly longer muzzled Bulldogs. Most of the other lines can trace back to Johnson dogs in their pedigrees. The Johnson lines are now called Johnson American Bulldogs or Johnson Bulldogs.
The American Bulldog is not recognised by our Kennel Club but as of the first of 1999, the UKC (United Kennel Club) in the USA accepted the breed. The UKC are the fastest growing body for the breed with shows growing all the time, they are the second biggest Kennel Club in the USA.
The Breed has been registered by a number of registry's, these been, NKC (National Kennel Club) ABA (American Bulldog Association) JDJBRA (John D Johnson Bulldog Registry & Archives) to name a few BUT the main registry in my eyes and many in the USA, of Johnson dogs today is the ARF (Animal Research Foundation) this organisation have been registering the breed (all strains) since 1972, many registries have tried to copy the ARF but a failed miserable.
Has I see it, if the ARF was and is good enough for Mr. Johnson and his dogs, it sure is good enough for me.
Back in 1999 the British Kennel club set up the Working party (I was apart of) for the American Bulldog to try and set up a registry for this breed and any other breed that entered the country that was recognised by its own Kennel Club. In the case for the USA it would be the AKC (American Kennel Club) but failed in its aims, this was down to a few things, two Hines American Bulldogs were placed on the Dangerous Dogs Act of 1991, and to many people against the breed in general (British Bulldog Council for one). Since the Working Party failed I have tried on a few occasions to get the Johnson Bulldog or Johnson American Bulldog recognised by our Kennel Club, but to no joy, until they change their old fashioned stuck in the 50's ideas, this breed will not be accepted.
An Article wrote by a Mr. Walker of the ARF.
How long have Machine Brutis Kennels (MBK), D/B/A, J. D. Johnson Bulldog Registry & Archives (JDJBRA), been in business and registering Bulldogs?
The JDJBRA was established in August 1997, the JDJBRA has been registering Bulldogs since 1997 (Approx. 3. ½ years).
How long have the ARF (Animal Research Foundation) been registering Johnson/American Bulldogs?
The ARF has been in the business since 1947- over 50 years ago. ARF has been registering Johnson American Bulldogs since 1972 (Approx. 30 years).
Where did Mrs. Joan Farley, Diamond, Ohio, D/B/A, MBK, have her dogs registered prior to starting the JDJBRA?
The ARF (Animal Research Foundation).
Does Joan Farley (MBK/JDJBRA) continue to breed pure Johnson ARF-Registered American Bulldogs, to sell to the adm/public?
Who was the first to register the Johnson/American Bulldogs?
The ARF (Animal Research Foundation)
Who was the first ARF Certified Breeder of Johnson/American Bulldogs?
Mr. John D. Johnson, of Summerville, Georgia, USA.
Is Mr. John D. Johnson, still an ARF Certified Breeder?
WARNING to all Johnson/American Bulldog buyers: BEWARE DO NOT purchase an imitation Johnson/American Bulldog, from Machine Brutis Kennels (MBK), Diamond, Ohio, USA, or any Kennel, Foreign or Domestic, Unless the breeder can provide you with an Official ARF Certified Pedigree, issued from the Animal Research Foundation, Quinlan, Texas. If the breeder cannot provide you with an Official ARF Certified Pedigree, you DO NOT have a 100% John D Johnson American Bulldog.