Breed of the Month: The American Staffordshire Terrier

What kind of dog is that, well you may know them better as the Pit Bull. In fact the name Pit Bull is commonly used to describe several breeds such as the American Pit Bull Terrier, American Bully, and Staffordshire Bull Terrier. A breed that has gotten a bad reputation. But as many of us “Pitty” owners will tell you, we are die hard fans because they make excellent pets! In fact most owners will tell you their Pit Bull doesn’t have a mean bone in his/her body. I have had my dog Philbert, a red nose Pit Bull, for 5 years and he is the most cuddliest gentle soul of a dog who only fights with me over who gets the most blankets as night.

History

The American Staffordshire Terrier’s origins are in the early 19th century. At that time, British enthusiasts began developing a breed that was a cross between the Bulldog and the Terrier.

Temperament

A well-bred, well-socialized American Staffordshire Terrier is friendly, devoted, tenacious and courageous. Aggressiveness, possessiveness and/or territorial behavior should not be present. Unfortunately, the continued misuse and misbreeding of these dogs for fighting activities has led some to be aggressive to other dogs and people. Not surprisingly for a dog with such powerful jaws, the American Staffordshire Terrier deserves his reputation for being a notorious chewer. Bypass flimsy, squeaky toys in favor of sturdier fare that can stand up to this dog’s oral abuse. Daily exercise will also help to curb chewing. Although some “Pitties” can be very calm and sedate dog, prefering the couch over play.

Appearance

The American Staffordshire Terrier is a medium-sized dog, ranging in height from 17 to 19 inches and in weight from 40 to 75 pounds. His short coat can be just about any color or combination – solid, brindle or mixture. The ears may be cropped or allowed to hang naturally. Unlike the short, stocky Staffordshire Bull Terrier, the American Staffordshire Terrier’s body is long and lean.

Training

Consistent, positive training is crucial to bringing out the best in this breed. Socialization from puppyhood is essential to helping the dog become accustomed to all of the sights, sounds and situations he’s likely to encounter in his life with the human community. He is athletic and strong and easily motivated by good treats.

Grooming & Care

Grooming this dog is a snap: a weekly brushing, pedicure and ear cleaning, and he’s good to go.

Health Concerns

Like all purebred dogs, the American Staffordshire Terrier suffers from some inherited diseases. Among the most common are hip dysplasia, cataracts, allergic dermatitis, and hypothyroidism.

By |July 1st, 2017|

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