The American Staffordshire Terrier is a medium-sized breed of dog. It is very muscular and has a short coat. This breed started getting recognition in the late 20th century and since the dog descends from England, this one was named as the American Staffordshire Terrier to differentiate from the Staffordshire Terrier found in England.
It belongs to the pit bull group and has a similar characteristic to them. Although it looks menacing, it is actually a very intelligent and loveable dog to have. Besides the official name, a lot of people refer to this breed as Amstaff.
American Staffordshire Terrier History & Origins
The breed has its earliest most roots in Birmingham. This early ancestor of this breed was then bred as a bulldog and then brought to Staffordshire. There they crossbred the dog with different types of terriers, like the White English Terrier, Fox Terrier, or the Black and Tan Terrier. The result was of those crosses was the Staffordshire bull terrier.
In the early 1850s, these dogs were brought to America from England. The breed went through some changes there and was eventually recognized as an independent breed in 1898 by the United Kennel Club. In 1936 these dogs were officially recognized by American Pit Bull Terrier which also established their name. The difference between the Staffordshire bull terrier and the American Staffordshire Terrier is that the latter is heavier and a bit bigger in size.
Characteristics & Temperament
The American Staffordshire Terrier may have an intimidating look due to its muscle tone but is actually very loveable and affectionate. They like being around people and like spending their time with their family and their owner. These dogs are the happiest when they get to play around with them. They serve as guard dogs, but they have a tendency to befriend strangers. But due to their look, they can fend off unwanted visitors. A lot of people said that they are also a really good judge of character. This helps them to distinguish friend from foe.
They are athletic and muscular dogs and are very strong. So it can be difficult to walk them as they might pull and struggle. They need a confident and assertive trainer. You have to teach them discipline early on and give them a lot of experiences so they learn. If they are not given the attention they derive they may start chewing and biting furniture and even be aggressive at times. But make sure to spend a lot of time with them and provide them room to exercise. They also work well with kids and can also form an attachment with them.
American Staffordshire Terrier Appearance, Colors, Size
The American Staffordshire Terrier has a muscular build and a stocky appearance. Their legs are not so long and they do have balanced bodies in terms of weight and size. They are usually between 18 and 19 inches high, for males, or 17 to 18 for females. Their weight spans from 40 to 60 pounds.
There are a variety of colors that the American Staffordshire Terrie can have. These include blue, fawn, white, black, and red. There are also mixed colorations like white and other colors or a mix of white and brindle. These combinations are not encouraged but they are accepted in some situations.
When it comes to health conditions, the American Staffordshire Terrier has a few issues which affect similarly all Bulldog and Terrier types of dogs. Their lifespan is estimated to be at around 12 years, but if you have a healthy dog, you may look to extend this cycle by a bit.
Some conditions that might affect this breed more than the other ones are skin allergies, urinary tract infections, and autoimmune diseases, while spondylosis and osteoarthritis may occur in the later years of a dog’s life.
American Staffordshire Terrier Grooming & Shedding
The American Staffordshire terrier has two major shedding periods. They happen during traditional periods and it is when you have to take care of your dog by brushing its hair. But luckily, during the rest of the year, they are minimal shedders. Brushing your dog should be done on a weekly basis. It will help him a stiff and glossy coat of your Amstaff remain nice and neat.
You should not have to bathe your dog too often. They can get dirty and it is then when you can do soma additional an unscheduled bathing. In any other situation you really do not need to bathe them more than a few times a year. They do not have so much of a doggy odor as well. Other grooming that you can provide them with include nail clipping and dental hygiene.
Amstaff Price and Breeders
An American Staffordshire Terrier puppy costs somewhere between 800 and 1,000 dollars. These dogs are now spread across America and it does not require too much effort to find them. You can any kind of a quality breeder and get one of yours.
Adopting an Amstaff is also easy to do. Quality breeders have spread themselves across America and rescue groups as well. This means that a variety of groups such as Save-A-Bull Rescue, have a variety of offers to prove. Check their pages out and do yourself and the dog a favor by rescuing it.
Are American Staffordshire Terrier Aggressive Dogs?
Most people regard them as an aggressive dog breed. This may be due to their appearance or reputation that preceded the dog. However, Amstaffs are not an aggressive dog at all. They are docile and affectionate dogs that are members of the family. They are very powerful and courageous and will most likely protect the members of the family but are not vicious contrary to popular beliefs.
What Is the Difference Between American Staffordshire Terrier and Staffordshire Bull Terrier?
Generally speaking the American Staffordshire terrier and the Staffordshire bull terrier are very similar breeds. But there are certain characteristics that make the two of them different. The main difference is actually their size. The American Staffordshire terrier is bred specifically to the AKC conformation and needs to adhere to these standards. On the other hand, the Staffordshire bull terrier has greater variances in its size and can go from between 28 to 40 pounds and can also possess other physical traits that can be unconventional to the standards of the breed.
Are American Staffordshire Terrier Good Family Dogs?
Believe it or not, the American Staffordshire terrier is an excellent family dog. They are gentle and affectionate and will create a bond with their family that is hard to break. Additionally, they are fond of children as well and will do their utmost to protect them. They like playing around and are very gentle dogs despite their demeanor. All of their characteristics make them excellent dogs to have around your family.
Do American Staffordshire Terriers Bark a Lot?
The American Staffordshire dog is generally a very affectionate dog. However, it is not a really good guard dog as it might great strangers. It might not even bark in those types of situations. But if the dog starts to get bored and does not have anything to do they will start to bark. It is in their nature to be active so inactivity will result in too much barking.
Do Staffordshire Terriers Like to Swim?
An American Staffordshire terrier is not a good swimmer. In fact, they do not like it or do it at all. Mind you there are some exceptions but they are very rare. The body type of an American Staffordshire terrier is very different opposed to dogs that are good swimmers. So it is not suited for those types of things and will generally avoid swimming.
Are American Staffordshire Terriers Banned?
Generally speaking, an American Staffordshire terrier is not specifically banned in any country. However, since it is a dog that belongs to the pit bull family and as they are related to fighting dog breeds, there are certain bans imposed. They can range from outright bands of possessions or to some restriction of ownership. But it mostly depends on the country which has a certain law in regards to bit bulldog breeds as it is characterized as such.
Are They Dangerous?
Any dog can be labeled as a dangerous dog because of its demeanor. However, the American Staffordshire terrier is generally seen as a dangerous type of dog. Even though it is gentle towards all the family members it can become dangerous when provoked or when facing strangers. They are actually quicker to bite as opposed to some other breeds of dog.
Do Amstaffs Turn on Their Owners?
This is a myth that most people assume about the American Staffordshire terrier. Although labeled as an aggressive type of dog the Amstaff is not likely to turn on its master. They create a specific bond with their owners and are not going to attack them no matter what.
Why Are Amstaffs so Affectionate?
Even with its reputation of being a dangerous dog, the American Staffordshire terrier is actually a really affectionate one. There have been instances where they greeted guests and strangers without attacking or barking at them. They are specifically tied with their masters and family but can be affectionate even towards strangers.