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At first glance, the Nano Bully seems like a breed of contradictions. Tiny yet large, muscular yet gentle, these Dogs are relatively new to the Bully scene, but they’re already making waves.

We sat down with Dyame Quezon and his Nano Bully companion, Blackbeard, to find out what it’s like to raise and care for these majestically micro Pups.

MEETING BLACKBEARD

Dyame is no stranger to big Dogs. Specifically, he’s taken care of Pitbulls and American Bullies — the former since 2001 and the latter since 2015. However, Blackbeard is a Nano Bully, which means he isn’t exactly big. Nano Bullies are a related but different breed, with their own history and needs.

According to Dyame, Blackbeard’s parents were from China. Through Dyame’s friend, Allan Sison, Dyame gained an interest in one Nano Bully in particular: Blackbeard. He explains that taking Blackbeard home was a family decision, mainly because of the financial aspect of caring for another being. Dyame’s father understood him, however, because “nakita niya yung passion ko sa Aso (he saw my passion for Dogs).”

Anyone who sees Blackbeard — a stocky, black Nano Bully with a white patch of fur on his chest — would agree he’s handsome. Dyame tells us that, as a Nano-exotic American Bully, Blackbeard is an example of “the smallest [classification]” of the American Bully. No, he didn’t tell Blackbeard to stop growing at a certain age; Nano Bullies are bred to reach a height of only around 13 inches.

Named after a pirate in the manga series One Piece, Blackbeard actually plays well with other Dogs and is able to tolerate human crowds, proving he isn’t as intimidating as he looks.

RAISING BLACKBEARD

During our photoshoot, Dyame used a plastic bottle to attract Blackbeard’s attention. He says he accidentally discovered that mineral water bottles are Blackbeard’s personal favorite toy. “Maganda din yun kasi nae-exercise yung jaw niya (That’s a good thing because he can exercise his jaw),” Dyame says.

According to a January 2022 article by John Carter for the animal information website Bubbly Pet, Bullies are known for having a weak lower jaw, along with other issues such as sloped skulls, an unproportioned body, and an undershot or overshot bite. Sometimes, instead of a bottle, Dyame gives Blackbeard the bone of a T-bone steak to chew on.

When he isn’t playing with bottles or bones, Blackbeard eats raw, ground beef. He isn’t a picky eater at all, switching from wet to dry food with no problem, but his food is always carefully weighed by the gram. Dyame explains that because Blackbeard is only eight months old with a still- developing body, he wants to avoid any malformations that could arise from Blackbeard being overweight. He says, “[N]apapansin ko, kahit na naka-monitor na yung [pagkain, kumbaga] naka– lessen na yung pagkain niya, talagang nage– expand na lang siya, hindi na tumataas (I noticed that, even if we monitor and decrease his food intake, his body grows wider, not taller).”

In terms of grooming, Dyame also makes sure to maintain Blackbeard’s coat by giving him weekly baths and feeding him vitamins, Fish oil, squash, and carrots. One of the vitamins Dyame feeds Blackbeard is Vitamin D, “para sa bones niya, lalo na’t mabigat siya so kailangan din ng suporta (for his bones, especially because he’s heavy so he needs the support).”

THE BEST OF TWO BREEDS

As a class of the Exotic Bully — a mix between the American Bully and the English Bulldog, French Bulldog, or Shorty Bully — the Nano Bully can be as active, energetic, and gentle as the American Bully and as sweet, sociable, and devoted as a Bulldog.

According to a 2022 article by Arthur Salisbury for the Dog information site Pitbullshome, Nano Bullies can make for the best family companions considering they tend to be affectionate and friendly with children, adults, and other Dogs alike. Dyame can attest to this as Blackbeard has only ever play-bitten him when triggered by sudden noise like the sound of a car honking its horn. However, Blackbeard’s gotten used to other sounds, such as guitar music, over time.

BEARD: MORE THAN HIS BREED

While Blackbeard is no doubt a star in Dyame’s kennel, he’s also become part of his family.

Dyame says, “[O]nce na dinala ko siya kahit saan, or ‘pag may friend na bumisita sa amin, madaming nakaka– appreciate, so madami akong bisita sa bahay na siya yung talagang pinupuntahan, hindi na ako (Once I bring him anywhere, or if a friend visits us, many of them appreciate him and end up visiting our house for him, not me)!”

While Dyame’s mother and father would call him up twice a week to ask him how he was before he had Blackbeard, they now call him up everyday just to see their special Nano Bully.

[A]ndun pa din yung kamustahan (The greetings are still there),” Dyame says, “pero gusto nila makita si Beard (but they want to see Beard).”