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American Staffordshire Terrier

American Staffordshire Terrier
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Origin / History The American Staffordshire Terrier's origins can be traced back to the 19th century, when the Staffordshire Bullterrier was bred by crossing the Bulldog with various terrier breeds. When the Staffordshire Bullterrier was brought to the United States, breeders chose to improve the breed, bringing about the existence of the American Staffordshire Terrier. Today, the Staffordshire Bullterrier and American Staffordshire Terrier are recognized as two separate breeds. The American Staffordshire Terrier is heavier and larger than the Staffordshire Bullterrier. When dog fighting was prohibited in the United States starting the 1900s, two strains of American Staffordshire Terrier were developed, one being a fighting dog strain, and the other being the show strain. The fighting dog strain was called the American Pit Bull Terrier while the show strain gained recognition as the American Staffordshire Terrier. The American Staffordshire Terrier is known for its talents such as guarding, watchdogging, weight pulling, and doing police work.

Appearance Dogs of this breed are very muscular, stocky, and strong. They possess a powerful, broad head, strong jaws, and a short muzzle. The eyes of these dogs are black and round. Their ears are usually cropped, although this isn't required. Their tail tapers to a point, and their ears are erect and are often docked slightly. Their coat is thick, shiny, and composed of short hairs.

Colours Any coat colour is acceptable, although these dogs should not be more than 75% white

Temperament American Staffordshire Terriers are outgoing, confident, and happy. They are loving and gentle towards people, both adults and children alike, making them good family pets. This dog is good-natured and amusing. As a guard dog, this dog is eager to please, obedient, and knows when its courage to protect and defend is needed. This dog is highly protective of its owners and their property. When their loved ones are threatened, these dogs can fight viciously, and they are capable of tolerating a large amount of pain. Friendly and trustworthy, the American Staffordshire Terrier makes not just a great guard dog, but also an excellent companion.  

Height and Weight The height of these dogs ranges from 16 to 20 inches, while their weight falls between 57 to 67 pounds.

Common Health Problems These dogs are typically healthy. They are, however, susceptible to being afflicted with hip dysplasia, congenital heart disease, and hereditary cataracts. It's advisable for new owners to have their dog checked by a veterinarian to determine whether any health issues are currently present.

Living Conditions Being very active even when indoors, dogs of this breed will do well in an apartment just as long as they are provided with adequate exercise. These dogs prefer living in places with a warm climate.

Exercise Requirements Like most other breeds, American Staffordshire Terriers need to be taken out for long walks daily. It's also advisable for these dogs to be given the chance to run around and play.

Training Requirements Dogs of this breed should be socialized well at an early age to curb their aggressive tendencies. These dogs can also be difficult to housebreak. Owners should keep in mind that these dogs have natural pack instincts and they regard their human family as their pack. It is important for owners to make the dogs see humans as being higher in the pack order than they are. Obedience training is also necessary for American Staffordshire Terriers.

Life Expectancy The life span of American Staffordshire Terriers is approximately 9 to 15 years.

Grooming These dogs have a smooth, short-haired coat that is easy to groom. Owners just need to brush the coat regularly using a firm bristle brush. A piece of cloth can also be used to rub the coat to make it shiny. Bathing should be done only when necessary.

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