American Staffordshire Terrier (Pit Bull) Photo

American Staffordshire Terrier (Pit Bull) Dog Breed Info & Pictures

Note: the breed recognized by the AKC as the American Staffordshire Terrier is very similar in appearance to the breed recognized by the UKC as the American Pit Bull Terrier, though the Am Staff is generally slightly larger. Stocky and muscular, the American Staffordshire Terrier, one of the breeds commonly referred to as a Pit Bull, is a dog of unequaled courage and power for its size. The head is of medium length and broad, with distinct stop and highly developed check muscles. Small ears are set high on the head and are either cropped or uncropped. Dark, round eyes are set deep in the skull and far apart. The dogs expression is alert and knowing. The body is thoroughly muscled with the back short and sloping slightly toward the rear, and front legs straight and set wide apart. The tail is short, straight and low, never docked. The Am Staffs coat is short, glossy and stiff. Coloring can be any solid or partial color, but a dog that is more than eighty percent white, black and tan or liver is considered undesirable in the ring.

American Staffordshire Terrier (Pit Bull) Fast Facts

12 - 14 years
United States
19th century
57 - 67 lb
57 - 67 lb
18 - 19"
17 - 18"
Pitbull, American Stafordshire Terrier, American Stafordshir Tarrier, or American Stafferdshire Terriar.
American Pit Bull Terrier


Perhaps no other breed in the world has a reputation as undeserved as does the American Staffordshire Terrier, or Pit Bull as it is often called colloquially....

Almost everyone has heard stories of vicious Pit Bulls injuring or killing dogs, children and the occasional adult, and many states and counties have even placed restrictions on ownership of the breed. However, these acts are more often than not the product of intentionally brutal training by malicious owners. The American Staffordshire Terriers intelligence, bravery and great desire to please its master make it very easy for unscrupulous owners to instill aggression in the breed. However, the Am Staffs natural disposition is actually very docile and friendly, even toward strangers. Many American Staffordshire Terriers are aggressive toward dogs and other pets, though this can be mitigated through obedience training and socialization. Above all else, however, the most defining characteristic of this breed is its undying devotion to its family and its utter need to be appreciated by its master.

Caring For a American Staffordshire Terrier (Pit Bull)

The American Staffordshire Terrier needs a good deal of exercise, which can be accomplished with a daily walk or game in the park....

Pit Bulls are easy to train, but take special care to discourage any aggressive tendencies in your dog during puppyhood. Since many people have negative opinions toward Pit Bulls, it might be a good idea to introduce your dog to the neighbors and show them how what they hear in the news does not tell the whole story. The American Staffordshire Terrier can live outside in temperate climates, but its proper mental development virtually demands that it be allowed to live with its family. Coat care is an afterthought, and involves a very occasional brushing to remove dead hair. Known health issues in the breed include canine hip and elbow dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy, cerebellar ataxia, hypothyroidism and heart disease.

American Staffordshire Terrier (Pit Bull) History

Breed History

Born in the 19th century, The American Staffordshire Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier are the result of crosses between Bulldogs and terriers, though there is some debate as to exactly which terrier that was....

Some believe that the White English Terrier or Black and Tan Terrier was used, but most experts say it was the English Smooth Terrier. The Staffordshire Bull Terrier was developed in England for the purpose of dog fighting, and was introduced to America during the late 19th century to compete in the same sport. The Americans bred a larger Pit Bull than the English, and the American Staffordshire Terrier quickly took shape as a distinct breed. Though the breed was often employed as an all purpose farm dog during the early 20th century, its legacy has always been that of a gladiator. The breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1936 as the Staffordshire Terrier; in 1972 the name was changed to American Staffordshire Terrier to more clearly distinguish the dog from its English cousin. So-called Pit Bulls, and especially American Staffordshire Terriers, have been the most popular target of breed specific legislation both in the United States and abroad. Many people feel that the naturally docile and affectionate Pit Bulls bad rap is undeserved, and largely the result of improper or unscrupulous training. However, in spite of its less than sterling reputation with some, the American Staffordshire Terrier is one of the more popular breeds in the United States.