Information about the Bull Arab

The Bull Arab is an Australian Cur-Dog breed that is bred primarily as a finder and lugger for wild boar hunting. They are also used for catching wild scrub bulls in outback Australia. They are generally a loyal dog, with a great temperament. They were bred with the need to create a dog with enough size to stop large boars but with enough speed and stamina to outlast many of the other heavier mastiffs. The Bull Arab is not yet a registry-recognized breed of dog in Australia, though there are those that are working towards getting it recognized as such.

There is some debate about the origins of the breed, but one of the more plausible and well received accounts is that the Bull Arab was developed in the 1970s by Mike Hodgens, and is a cross between a Bull Terrier, Greyhound, and English Pointer or Shorthaired Pointer (dog breeds). Originally they were 50% Bull Terrier with the other two parts being German Shorthaired Pointer and Greyhound however over the years Bloodhound and English Pointer was added. Some bloodlines have moloser influence in their pedigrees as well.

Bull Arabs are bred for hunting purposes with traits selected for being sound temperament and hunting ability. Because Bull Arabs are expected to hunt in mixed packs and respond well to human handlers, generally the dogs have been bred selectively for non human or animal aggression and are very laid back in the yard.
One of several rams and wethers that were killed during an attack by Bull Arab dogs.

However, a handful of attacks on people in at least several states of Australia have been attributed to the breed. And reports supplied by 80 councils and passed on to the Department of Local Government, between 1 July 2005 and 30 October 2006 detail several attacks attributed to Bull Arabs.

Several attacks on live stock including the killing of large numbers of sheep and other animals have been attributed to Bull Arabs that allegedly escaped their owners and/or confinement.

Breed aficionados contend however that these are rare and isolated incidents. They are quick to point out that several other less-stigmatized breeds have had statistically higher documented attack incident rates in Australia, and that they believe that the Bull Arab has become a scape-goat. They argue that the irrational stigma is based on a logical fallacy – that a lugger has to be an inherently aggressive animal. That aggressiveness assumption is, of course, demonstrably false. It is completely counter intuitive to develop a breed of working dog for hunting the outback that would be a danger to hunters (people) or livestock, when there are plenty of both in the outback. They contend that the reality of the breed is quite the opposite of the picture painted in these rare but highly sensationalized reports. That the average Bull Arab has, in fact, a great family temperament.