What Breed of Dog Is the Target Dog? Famous Dogs!

Target stores have one of the most adorable mascots around. He is a bull terrier named Bullseye. This pup has represented the U.S. retailer for over 20 years. If you’re lucky, you might catch a glimpse of Bullseye at a store opening or even walk the red carpet. Like most celebrities, Bullseye has a secret or two. Read on to learn all about Target’s furry “spokesdog.”

divider-dog paw

The History of Bullseye the Target Dog

Bullseye first appeared in Target’s 1999 “Sign of the Times” ads. Interest in the lovable dog took off 4 years later when the retailer promoted their “See. Spot. Save.” campaign.

Bullseye’s most distinctive characteristic is the Target logo carefully placed over one eye. He’s a well-behaved dog that sits still in the make-up chair before every appearance. Target representatives have assured fans that Bullseye’s make-up is vegetable-based, approved by the Humane Society, and washes off easily.

Is Bullseye the Target Dog a Boy or Girl?

While Bullseye is a male character, so far, he’s been played by female dogs. However, the girls weren’t the first female bull terriers to fill the role of a male dog.

In the 1980s, Spuds MacKenzie was the widely popular mascot for Bud Light beer: a true “party animal.” Spuds received backlash from politicians and anti-drinking groups who claimed the dog appealed to underage drinkers, but that wasn’t the only controversy surrounding Spuds.

The dog that played Spuds was a girl, and Budweiser went to great lengths to keep her sex a  secret. Her handlers shielded the dog with their coats whenever Spuds would go to the bathroom in public. They didn’t want fans to see Spuds didn’t lift “his” leg when nature called.

Is Bullseye the Target Dog Still Alive in 2022?

bull terrier on green field
Image Credit: tratong, Shutterstock

Bullseye, the mascot, is alive and well and still represents Target in 2022.

As for some of the earlier dogs that have played Bullseye, the average life expectancy for a bull terrier is 12 to 13 years. Considering that Bullseye debuted in 1999, it’s likely that Arielle, the first dog to step into the role, has crossed the rainbow bridge.

Bullseye’s character lives on in other bull terriers that have taken up the important work as Target’s mascot. The latest report from the retailer states that six dogs play Bullseye, with two more in training. Why so many dogs? Bullseye is in high demand and can’t be everywhere at once! One Bullseye might be at a movie premiere in Hollywood, while another is promoting a new store opening on the East Coast.

All About Bull Terriers

If Bullseye’s good looks have you considering a bull terrier for your next pet, there are a few things you should know.

The breed has been around since the mid-1800s when dog fighting breeders mixed bulldogs with terriers. This cruel sport was soon outlawed, and bull terriers became a favorite pet of affluent men. The American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized the breed in 1885.

Due to their dog-fighting heritage, bull terriers generally aren’t good with other dogs. However, they are loyal, humorous, affectionate, and playful companions. They make good pets for families, as long as the children know how to behave around a dog. The breed needs daily exercise and mental stimulation, and they’re not good candidates to stay home alone all day.



Bullseye, the Target mascot, is a bull terrier. While Bullseye is a male character, only female dogs have taken on the role so far. Bullseye has a hectic schedule, and multiple dogs play the part at any given time.

Featured Image Credit: otsphoto, Shutterstock

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