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Micro Bully or Pocket Bully – Is There a Difference?

Humans began breeding dogs thousands of years ago. It’s a practice we continue until today. We do it to a point where even a single breed could have many offshoots. 

Bully dogs are like this. There are so many types of bullies that they could put Sirius Black’s family tree to shame. 

Today we’ll focus on two kinds of bullies. Micro bully or pocket bully, is there a difference between them?

Micro and Pocket Bullies History

Pocket bullies are a type of American bully. Meanwhile, the micro bully is a cross between a pocket bully and a Patterdale terrier. In short, the micro bully is an offspring of the pocket bully. Sounds confusing? Don’t worry, we’ll break it down for you.

The American Bully History

Pocket bullies are a type of American bully. Take note that American bullies are different from purebred American bulldogs! An American bully is a cross between the American pit bull terrier and the American Staffordshire terrier with other types of bulldog breeds

The American bully is a new breed of dog that’s been around since the 1990s. Because they’re mixed, they’re not recognized by the American Kennel Club. Yet, they’ve been a part of the less official American Bully Kennel Club since 2004.

There are four types of American bullies. These are the classic, standard, XL, and pocket bullies.

The Patterdale Terrier History

The Patterdale terrier has a role in the bloodline of micro and pocket bullies. It descends from Fell terriers that grew up in the harsh weather of Northern England. It specializes in catching vermin that affected the sheep in the area.

On January 1, 1995, the Patterdale terrier was officially recognized by the United Kennel Club. Since then, breeders have mixed it with the American Bully to create the pocket bully.

Pocket Bully History

The pocket bully is the tiniest type of American bully. It’s a mix of the American pit bull terrier and the Patterdale terrier.

When they made the pocket bully, breeders aimed to create a dog that looked like the American pitbull terrier. The difference is they wanted it to get rid of the aggressiveness.

The pocket bully joined its cousins in the American Bully Kennel Club in 2004. In 2013, pocket bullies got added to the Companion Dog Group by the United Kennel Club.

Micro Bully History

The micro bully as a breed is one of the newest in the scene. It’s new enough that it doesn’t have a proper history yet. Sources say that it’s bred from a pocket bully and a Patterdale terrier. 

Some breeders might also select the runts from two different litters of pocket bullies. Being the two most compact puppies in their litter means that their offspring have a higher chance of coming out tiny.

Regardless, the micro bully has at least one pocket bully parent.

Micro Bully and Pocket Bully Appearance

Both the micro bully and the pocket bully are smaller versions of the standard American bully.


Pocket bullies are larger than micro bullies. They weigh 30 to 50 lbs. 

Male pocket bullies are 14 to 17 inches tall. Females would be 13 to 16 inches tall. Meanwhile, micro bullies weigh 20 to 40 lbs. They usually don’t grow above 13.5 inches tall.

Body Build

Pocket bullies have muscular bodies and thick necks that are slightly arched. Their chests are broad, making it look like these dogs are bodybuilders. 

Pocket bullies have short legs that are set wide apart. The purpose of this is so they can develop muscular chests.

Micro bullies, on the other hand, have the same body build except that they are smaller.


Pocket bully skin is tight and their fur shouldn’t be longer than half an inch. Micro bullies can have slightly longer fur.

Both pocket and micro bullies have skin with no visible wrinkles. Their whole body is tight and smooth. 

Their coats should be glossy and all patterns are acceptable except for merle and blotched patterns.


The pocket bully has a large, broad skull that’s medium in length. Its head width is 60% of its shoulder height. 

For the micro bully, the width of its head is 50% of its shoulder height. 


Both pocket and micro bully muzzles are broad and short or medium length. The nose must not be pointy or facing up. It should be wide with large nostrils. 

Pocket bullies can have all nose colors except for the light pink of albino dogs. There’s no such restriction for micro bullies as of now.


Pocket bullies can have almond or round-shaped eyes that are set far apart. Breeders think that round-shaped eyes are undesirable. That’s why they correct this in micro bullies.  The latter have eyes that are more often almond-shaped than round.

Both can have all eye colors except for pink or red. Blue eyes are undesirable for most breeders. In addition, their eyes shouldn’t be bulging. 


Pocket bully ears are set high over their head. It can be naturally floppy or artificially pointy. Unfortunately, the American Bully Kennel Club accepts pocket bullies with surgically altered ears. There’s no added benefit to this other than cosmetics.

Pocket bullies usually have their ears cut to make them pointed upwards. Meanwhile, micro bullies often get to keep their natural ears.


Both pocket bullies and micro bullies have tails that are free from any kinks or curves. 

Pocket bully tails should be medium or long. Breeders might sometimes dock or surgically remove their tails with scissors. This practice isn’t allowed by the American Bully Kennel Club.

Micro bullies have naturally shorter tails so they can avoid having their tails docked.

Behavior and Temperament of the Micro and Pocket Bully

Micro and pocket bullies have the same temperament. For many people, these dogs are the perfect companion breed. It’s a common misconception to think that these dogs are dangerous. They only look intimidating, but their personality is calm and gentle.

Micro and pocket bullies can be silly and goofy yet they’re the most loyal and affectionate. The ideal day for these couch potatoes would be a relaxing stay-at-home session with their favorite humans.

Are Micro and Pocket Bullies Good With Strangers?

Yes! These proud dogs are non-aggressive and can get along with just about anyone. They can get confident with meeting new people. 

They do enjoy spending the most time with their owner the best.

Are Micro and Pocket Bullies Good With Kids?

Micro and pocket bullies are gentle and loving dogs. They can be quite tolerant and are patient with even the rowdiest kids.

Do Micro and Pocket Bullies Get Along With Other Dogs?

Micro and pocket bullies are social animals. They’ll make friends with other dogs. They can even get along with other types of animals. 

However, they do prefer human company over other animals. Even if they’re naturally tolerant, it’s a good idea to expose them to other animals from a young age. Meeting other dogs along walks could be the best way to go about this.

Is it Easy to Train Micro and Pocket Bullies?

It’s easy to train micro and pocket bullies. They love challenges and will be able to absorb commands easily. Yet, it’s best to keep training sessions short. 15 minutes for 1 to 2 times a day is enough to keep them stimulated without getting bored.

Micro and Pocket Bully Price and Expenses

The pocket bully is a relatively rare dog. It can cost you between $1500 to $2000. That’s three times the price of a standard American bully. 

Micro bullies, on the other hand, are $2000 to $7000 each. They’re a more controversial breed so there’s a small number of reputable breeders.

You should keep a look out for micro bullies that are less than $2000. It’s common for many buyers to get scammed. 

Micro and Pocket Bully Scams

There are some questionable methods done by breeders to come up with micro bullies. The practice of mating two runt pocket bullies could lead to small but sickly dogs. They could end up dead within a few years.

Photoshopping the dog’s pictures to make them appear desirable is rampant. Steroids could also be illegally given to these dogs. You should visit the actual site and see the bullies before you make purchases.

In some cases, breeders might sell you pocket bully puppies and pass them off as micro bully puppies. That’s why when it comes to these dogs, it’s important to find a reputable source.

Other Expenses for Micro and Pocket Bullies 

The cost to buy a dog is only the beginning. You’ll have to provide your dog with food, medical needs, recreation, and grooming. The costs can add up. 

According to the American Kennel Club, the cost of owning a medium-sized dog like the pocket and micro bully is $1200 on average. You might spend more if you’re the type to spoil your pups.

Micro and Pocket Bully Life Expectancy

The average life expectancy of the pocket bully is five to seven years. Micro bullies live less than that. A lot of them don’t make it to the five-year mark. 

It’s an alarmingly short lifespan but it’s not surprising considering all the irresponsible breeders.

Micro and Pocket Bully Care Needs

These are typically what you need to provide for your pets to keep them healthy.


Pocket bullies should eat a total of 1 ½ to 2 cups of food each day. On the other hand, micro bullies should consume 1 ¼ to 1 ½ cups of food. It’s crucial to spread the amount over several hours.

Dry kibble or canned dog food with 30% protein and 20% fat is the best choice for these dogs.


Both micro and pocket bullies don’t need professional grooming since their coats are short. Brushing once a week is enough. 

It’s a good idea to wipe them down after taking them out on walks. Be sure to bathe them once a month during summer. In the winter, once every 2 to 3 months should suffice.


Pocket and micro bullies have moderate energy levels. They should get 30 to 60 minutes of light exercise per day. This could be in the form of walking and playing. 

Micro and Pocket Bully Common Health Issues

Micro and pocket bullies have common health issues. Because of breeding, micro bullies have a higher chance of getting any of the following diseases.

  1. Congenital Heart Disease

This is a defect that can cause heart failure and death. It can be hereditary or it may be a result of poor nutrition and environment. 

Vets detect congenital heart disease with various physical examinations and tests. It’s treated with medication or even surgery.

  1. Hip Dysplasia

Dogs with hip dysplasia experience loosening of their hip joints. It can get extremely painful. Hip dysplasia is a hereditary issue that can cause your pet to have trouble walking or standing.

Early diagnosis can prevent arthritis in the long run but treatment could be costly. Some dogs have to undergo hip replacement surgery.

  1. Hypothyroidism

Dogs with hypothyroidism can’t produce the right amount of thyroid hormones. This will then affect the dog’s metabolism, which leads to hair loss, infections, and weight gain. There’s a higher chance that it happens to middle-aged dogs.

Hypothyroidism happens when dogs take too many steroids. This is a common malpractice among bully breeders. Vets give medication to treat it.

  1. Seborrhea

Seborrhea is a skin disorder in dogs that affects the back, face, and flanks. The skin produces too much sebum, which causes itchy, dry, and flaky skin. The cause is usually hereditary.

There’s no specific treatment for seborrhea. Your vet can give supplements, antibiotics, antifungals, and other medication.


Micro and pocket bullies, is there a difference between them? The short answer is yes. They have different histories, sizes, and diet needs. Yet they’re the same in terms of temperament, appearance, and exercise needs. The biggest difference would be life expectancy and price.

We hope that we were able to give you some insight and guidance to help you choose whether the micro or pocket bully is the right dog for you.