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You are here: myPetSmart.com > Breeds > American Staffordshire Terrier

American Staffordshire Terrier

Origin: USA

AKC Group: Terrier

Height: 17 inches (Male)

Weight: Proportionate to height but approximately 57 pounds (Male)

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Male height: 
17 inches
Male weight: 
Proportionate to height but approximately 57 pounds
Short, stiff and glossy.
Any color, either solid, parti, or patched, is permissible, but the dog should not be more than 80 percent white.

The American Staffordshire Terrier ("AmStaff') was developed from the bull and terrier types popular for fighting bears, bulls and other dogs. These dogs succeeded at their jobs by being tenacious, athletic, strong, intelligent and courageous. They also succeeded because they responded to people. When it was time for a dog to be called away from the fight, he was expected to be handled by his owner without turning on him. Fortunately, pit fighting has been outlawed in most countries, but the AmStaff's reputation for being a "go-for-the-jugular" dog has stayed with him. Today's AmStaff, who differs from his American Pit Bull Terrier cousin by having a slightly stockier build and less closely cropped ears, can be an intimidating dog for those not familiar with his many fine qualities. Those who own and admire him for who he really is - and do so responsibly - hold the future of the breed in their hands.

When raised and trained with respect and knowledge, there is no finer companion than the American Staffordshire Terrier, who is a confident, stable, good-natured and loving dog toward people - as long as he is socialized from an early age. Intelligent, humorous and easily trained, his keen personality soon wins people over. He is absolutely loyal to his family and would lay down his life to protect them.
At home: 
The adaptable American Staffordshire Terrier can do well in cities, towns and the country. He is energetic and has a high activity level, often running in a spirited fashion from room to room. He requires a securely fenced yard and should not be walked off-lead. He does best with an active owner who is willing to put in the time to exercise and socialize him.
A growing AmStaff needs several walks a day to keep him physically fit and mentally challenged. The walks should also be occasions to properly introduce your AmStaff to different people so that he becomes socialized.
The AmStaff should be fed a high-quality diet with a good protein source.
Responsive and smart, the AmStaff is a relatively easy breed to train and has excelled in many areas that demand a high level of aptitude. A training issue with him can be others' perceptions of him, making being out with your AmStaff - who needs the exposure to all sorts of people and places to help him be a confident, trusting adult - sometimes difficult.
AmStaffs are naturally protective of the children in their family and make good playmates, especially when socialized from an early age; supervision with strange children is mandatory. AmStaffs may be aggressive with other dogs, and their prey drive makes them unsuitable for a home with small pets.
The average life span of the AmStaff is 9 to 15 years. Health concerns may include allergies; cancer; cataracts; congenital heart disease; hip dysplasia; hives; hypothyroidism; progressive retinal atrophy (PRA); and spinocerebellar ataxia.
Fun fact: 

Pete the Pup from the original "Our Gang" comedy series of the 1930s is a famous early specimen of the American Staffordshire Terrier.

Grooming blurb: 
The breed's short, smooth coat is easily managed with regular brushing with a firm-bristled brush, an occasional bath and a vigorous rubdown with a soft towel. He is an average shedder.
Copyright by T.F.H. Publications, Inc. This document has been published with the intent to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter within. While every reasonable precaution has been taken in preparation of this document, the author and publisher expressly disclaim responsibility for any errors, omissions, or adverse effects arising from the use or application of the information contained herein. The techniques and suggestions are used at the reader's discretion.