Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier running through fields with Kong chew in his mouth

Staffordshire Bull Terrier

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier was perfected by James Hinks of Birmingham England in the mid 19th century and emerged as a burly, broad skulled terrier. The name comes from Staffordshire County in England where the breed was especially popular. Arriving in the US in the 1880's, breeders eventually developed a slightly taller and heavier dog, the American Staffordshire Terrier (or AmStaff as they are often referred to).

Staffordshire Bull Terriers typically do not stand very tall at only 14-16 inches, but weight between 24-38 pounds with their stout muscular build. They belong to the Terrier group.

As the AKC writes:

Staffordshire Bull Terriers still resemble the pugnacious brawlers who once ruled England’s fighting pits. But today’s responsible breeders are producing sweet-natured, family-oriented dogs with a reputation for being patient with kids. These are true-blue loyal companions, but the old fighting instinct still lurks within—making it vital that pups be socialized with other dogs to learn good canine manners.

Life expectancy is typically between 12-16 years, and they are the 80th most popular breed out of 197 recognized by the AKC.

With Staffordshire Bull Terriers wearing Fi Collars, we see them get less activity than the average dog, and less activity than American Staffordshire Terriers too. They rank 87th on the breed rankings for most active dogs, and tend to get 12,577 steps per day on average. They are more active than other bigger dogs like Bulldogs, Newfoundlands, and Mastiffs.

American Staffordshire Terrier

Phoenix at sunset after a long day

By the mid 1800's when Staffordshire Terriers arrived in the US, American breeders developed a Staffordshire Terrier that was larger than the English equivalent, eventually causing the AKC to recognized the two types as separate breeds (despite the fact that many today would call both dogs Pit Bulls).

American Staffordshire Terrier's typically stand 18-19 in tall for males, and 17-18 in tall for females, and weigh 55-70 lbs for males and 40-55 lbs for females. They belong to the Terrier group.

The AKC writes about their temperament:

The well-bred AmStaff of today is a more mellow fellow than his pit-fighting ancestors and has long been a great American favorite. AmStaffers describe their dogs as keenly aware of their surroundings, game for anything, and lovable “personality dogs” around the house. AmStaffs like mental and physical challenges. They are highly trainable, as their many forays into showbiz suggest.

Life expectancy is typically between 12-16 years, and they are the 85th most popular breed out of 197 recognized by the AKC.

With American Staffordshire Terrier wearing Fi Collars, we see them get less activity than the average dog, but more activity than Staffordshire Bull Terriers. They rank 77th on the breed rankings for most active dogs, and tend to get 13,207 steps per day on average. They are more active than other bigger dogs like Bulldogs, Newfoundlands, and Mastiffs.

Health Issues to watch out for

Heart Conditions

Staffordshire Terriers are prone to some congenital disability that impact their Heart and can cause issues and abnormalities in their heart rhythm. Typically these heart murmurs while sounding terrifying don't impact their daily life. If you notice that your dog is getting tired too quickly, panting excessively, or is more lethargic than you think they should be, its worth checking in with your vet to make sure everything is ok first.

Hip Dysplasia

This is when your dog's hip socket (belonging to the femur) and ball do not connect perfectly, which can cause inflammation and discomfort over time. While in extreme cases surgery might be required, ask your vet if you suspect it. Owners typically notice a 'bunny hop' gait, hind leg lameness, or having trouble going up and down stairs as the early symptoms of hip dysplasia.

Torn ACL/CCL

Staffordshire Terriers love to run at top speed (especially chasing after a ball) and can lead to a torn cranial cruciate ligament (CCL), which is functionally equivalent to the ACL that we have. It's always load bearing, so it can be more susceptible to injury especially if your Staffordshire Terrier is bigger and more muscular. Injury isn't the only way to have problems here though, over time regular wear and tear on the knees and loss of muscle strength in the hind legs can all lead towards developing a higher risk for CCL tears. If you suspect these, talk to your vet to identify the right treatments for your dog to reduce pain and protect their knees.

Common Allergies

Food is typically the number one culprit for allergies, check in with your vet to see if its worth switching to a different brand of food or one with different protein sources (sometimes switching from a more common chicken or beef based to a more novel protein like fish or buffalo can help).