American Staffordshire Terrier Training

American Staffordshire Terrier Training: Techniques & Tips

Need help training your American Staffordshire Terrier? We’ve got you covered! Learn the best techniques to get your pup on the right track with our practical and approachable tips.

Are you a proud American Staffordshire Terrier owner looking for the best way to train your pup? From potty training basics and commands like “sit” and “stay” to more advanced tricks, understanding how dogs learn is your first step in developing an effective strategy for training.

Learning key principles of dog behavior can help set your pup toward becoming a well-behaved, obedient companion.

This blog post provides essential information to help you establish good habits with your American Staffordshire Terrier. We’ll cover everything from creating positive reinforcement techniques that effectively motivate your puppy to dog training and breaking down basic obedience exercises into manageable instruction — boosting your confidence along the way!

American Staffordshire Terrier is a celebrated family dog. It is a much-loved dog because of this breed’s character and personality traits. Loyalty to the owner, friendliness with all the family members, trust, playfulness, agility, and the traits to stand guard are some of its outstanding characteristics.

But these traits do not come independently, for it takes a skillful trainer to tame and civilize this dog. This article will delve deeply into what American Staffordshire Terrier dog training takes.

We will talk about how difficult or easy it is to tame it, what should we expect from a trainer, and we will also see what to do if a Staffordshire Terrier misbehaves while in a family.

So, brace yourself, and let’s start American Staffordshire Terrier training!

American Staffordshire Terrier Training
American Staffordshire Terrier Training

Origin of American Staffordshire Terrier

American Staffordshire Terrier isn’t naturally American. Like the people of the Thirteen Colonies, the Staffordshire Terrier was brought to the United States. Staffordshire Terrier or AmStaff, generally known by this name, took its birth across the pond in the British Isles many years ago. The Englishmen of that time had a penchant for blood sports.

They loved dogs fighting dogs or dogs fighting bulls. Sometimes a dog was used as an aid in a wild boar hunting expedition. Blood sports used to be the famous spectator sports of those times.

Interested people were so consumed by these blood sports that they used to think of ingenious ways and wild breeds to win such sports. This led people to experiment with the dog species. And one such experiment yielded the much-loved American Staffordshire Terrier of today.

As it was known in Britain, Staffordshire Terrier was a cross between Bulldog and Terrier breeds. The Bulldog of 200 years ago used to be a fierce breed. And the Staffordshire Terrier was also a ferocious creature back then. Another dog of the same breed is American Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

Blood sports are history now, and so is the use of Staffordshire Terriers for such sports. The Terrier was brought to the United States somewhere in the mid-eighteenth century. The American breed of Staffordshire Terrier is different from its not much distant English cousin.

Americans developed two sister breeds. One is the American Staffordshire Terrier, while the other is the American Pit Bull Terrier. American Kennel Club (AKC) recognizes the American Staffordshire Terrier but not the American Pit Bull Terrier.

American Staffordshire Terrier Training
American Staffordshire Terrier Training

Dog Training American Staffordshire Terrier Dogs

Training a dog is a difficult thing. It needs special care and attention. It is not just about teaching your dog how to behave. It is much more than that. It also includes how you want your dog to live with you.

Dogs are animals, after all. Each act or each omission is a signal to them. They carefully watch you and read your signals. What you allow your dog to do and disallow are all signals. These are messages to your dog.

Like all the other messages we send daily, the reply will be positive if we send the right signals and deliver the right messages. If the messages and signals are wrong, the dog would behave badly and might act rogue.

How to Train American Staffordshire Terrier Dogs

The first thing is to know your dog better. First, we must talk about the American Staffordshire Terrier itself. It is a muscular and agile dog with average height. Staffordshire Terrier is a pack dog, so it comes with a pack mentality. It is full of energy.

Other than that, it can be a trustable and good family pet if it is trained well. In this section, we will talk about the dos and don’ts of American Staffordshire Terrier training.

● Early Socialization is Necessary

In the case of the American Staffordshire Terrier, dog owners need to know that early socialization is essential. This comes with logic. As explained earlier in great detail about the past and inclinations of the Staffordshire Terrier breed, early socialization would take it out of their natural inclinations.

It is a pack animal. In the pack, animals behave fiercely towards other animals. The gene pool ingrains certain character traits in dogs. If anyone needs to pet a dog, the training must begin at a very tender age when it has not socialized with its own species freely.

The other important thing to note is that the Staffordshire Terrier is bodily muscular and temperamentally aggressive. The aggression must be ended before petting it.

The Staffordshire Terrier feels threatening to children. So, it becomes extremely important that training should start early. The dog should spend time with the children as a puppy. In this way, it would feel comfortable around them.

Lastly, this breed feels insecure about other dogs and has an attacking mentality. It attacks not to defend itself but to disarm and kill the opponent. Early socialization and nearness to other pet dogs can also bring a massive behavioral change.

● Train your Dog Using Positive Reinforcements

Train your dog using positive reinforcements. Using positive reinforcements means that you are using the reward and punishment mechanism for training your dog. The dog is rewarded if it makes its trainer happy by obeying a command. It earns a punishment when it disobeys.

Positive reinforcements make it easy for your dog to understand what it is expected to do. Remember that AmStaff is an intelligent dog, and this technique works best in its case. The reward can be given as something to eat, a cuddle, or verbal praise.

If you are using verbal praise, be sure to appreciate your dog properly. Dogs get happy when they are praised. You must let your dog know that you are happy with its actions.

● Defining a Task for Your Dog

It is extremely important that you define carefully and elaborately the task for your dog. If the dog knows what is expected, it can diligently accomplish the task, earning a reward from the trainer. If the task is defined absurdly, the dog can’t understand and accomplish it.

To carefully and completely convey the message to the dog, certain techniques are used. For example, you can use a particular word to tell your dog what you expect of him. Assign only one word to each task. That way, the dog would know what you command whenever you utter that word.

Never use a different word each time for a task. That way, your dog would get confused. Hand gestures can also be used to help the dog. For example, you can indicate the dog to sit by using the gesture of your hand to command it to sit. You can call the dog by making gestures and calling it to you.

● Tell Your Dog Who is The Leader

It has repeatedly been mentioned that dogs are pack animals. And once you own it as a pet, the dog will consider your family its pack.

In a pack of dogs, only one leader is an alpha dog. In the family, that alpha person should be you. The dog must know that you are the leader of the pack. It is extremely important that you establish your leadership.

Leadership can be established in multiple ways. Firstly, you should keep the dog on a leash. Let it know that you are the one who holds its leash and that you are the leader. Alternatively, you can let other family members hold the dog’s leash so that it must know the hierarchy of its pack.

Food is important for dogs. Dogs note who is giving them food. You should personally take this responsibility. Giving it food is the most critical moment to assert your leadership. While serving, let your dog stand and wait. Don’t let it start eating until you are finished.

● Socialization With Other Pets

Staffordshire Terriers are aggressive towards other pets, especially fellow dogs. If trained early in life, it develops a peaceful attitude towards other dogs. It takes effort to civilize AmStaff towards other dogs. During the training, the Staffordshire Terrier must be taught to keep its aggression in check in the presence of other dogs.

American Staffordshire Terrier Training
American Staffordshire Terrier Dog Training

American Staffordshire Bull Terrier Training

The characteristics and traits of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier are almost the same as those of the Staffordshire Terrier. They may look different, but the training techniques to pet it are similar to those used for AmStaff.

Bull Terriers are agile, muscular, and energetic like the Am Staff. Just like AmStaff, they are intelligent, making them highly trainable. The underlying technique used to train Bull Terrier is the use of positive reinforcements.

Since it is intelligent, it responds very well to rewards and punishments. Offer a reward as a cuddle, pat, or something to eat if it obeys your command and punish if it disobeys.

If the dog is an offspring of a pet dog, the training becomes easy. Living among its human pack may be difficult if the dog comes from outside. In that case, establishing leadership becomes necessary. Teach your dog that you are the leader of its new pack. All the time, it needs your invitation or acquiescence.

Adult Bull Terriers occasionally chew stuff around them. You should teach them not to damage things around them. You can also get them a chewable dog toy.

American Staffordshire Terrier Puppy Training

Training a puppy is similar to training an adult dog. Puppies, however, have different needs and require different training. First, you need to train your puppy about using the toilet. You must not allow it to do it inside the house. If you keep the dog inside a crate, let it out regularly after intervals.

The dogs have this tendency to keep the sleeping area clean. Even if it accidentally messes inside the crate, it would develop issues, and all the training would need restarted. The bladder in puppies is weak. Adult dogs can hold their bowels for a long time, while puppies are in the process of developing this ability. Hence, you must take them out of the crate. Working a routine is even better.

Puppies have the habit of chewing things. It is their way of exploring their new world. Be a step ahead and protect those things that can be damaged. Same as humans, dogs shed the first pair of their teeth. The adult pair then replace these. During this time, it is natural for your dog to excessively chew stuff.

Puppy dogs develop separation anxiety. Just as a human child does not want his parents to leave, the same goes for the puppy. The puppy has no parents or siblings. You are his family now. So, don’t let separation anxiety develop in him.

American Staffordshire Terrier Agility

American Staffordshire Terrier is a muscular, agile, and fast dog. It is full of energy and enthusiasm. And because of these outstanding characteristics, it can be a good agility dog. Agility training for a dog requires patience. It takes time and effort. The dog can get to know the obstacles it needs to clear.

Because of the physical strength and intelligence, it is expected of a Staffordshire Terrier to perform well during agility training, but there is a big problem when it comes to its agility training. AmStaff has no respect for the agility equipment. They blast the equipment and give the trainer a very hard time.

American Staffordshire Terrier Training
American Staffordshire Terrier Dog Training

But recently, many American Staffordshire Terriers have been competing in agility. The UK’s East Anglian Staffordshire Bull Terrier Club annually holds agility competitions for Terrier breed dogs.

Summing Up

In summary, American Staffordshire Terriers are a great dog breed for anyone looking to bring a loyal and obedient four-legged companion into their home. However, training can only be easier if the correct approach is utilized.

By taking the right steps, dog owners can ensure they have the best relationship with their Am Staff pup! Establishing ground rules and providing consistent rules and guidelines are key to ensuring your fur baby behaves appropriately. Obtaining assistance from a professional dog trainer and teaching your pet basic obedience training will be very helpful for those new to dog ownership.

Additionally, keeping dog training sessions entertaining and rewarding their good behavior with dog treats will help keep them engaged and interested in further education.

Finally, don’t forget to have patience when teaching your furry friend – every dog may learn at different speeds, so it’s important to be empathetic to their needs and proactive in problem areas.

American Staffordshire Terrier dog training takes patience, skill, and time. The Am Staff is an intelligent dog making it trainable. Early socialization is necessary so that the dog has a higher tendency to be able to quickly learn the skills required of a family dog.

Define the task to your dog clearly and lucidly. Use positive reinforcements to train your dog. Always assume the leadership position and let your dog understand completely that you are the leader. Suppose your Am Staff has difficulty getting along with other dogs. Early socialization might help your dog.

The puppy training of the puppy is almost the same. It is only that the puppy needs proper training, additional care and consistent dog training. The additional attention concerns toilet needs and its habit of chewing stuff. The trainer must take additional care with these.

American Staffordshire Terrier is an agility dog, and the breed competes in agility worldwide. All in all, American Staffordshire Terriers make great pets – with these tips, you can successfully train your AmStaff pup and revel in the joy of being owned by one!

Copyright CaninePals.Com. All Rights Reserved.

References and Further Reading:

[1] American Kennel Club, American Staffordshire Terrier Information.

American Staffordshire Terrier Colors

American Staffordshire Terrier Colors

This article is going to discuss the variety of American Staffordshire Terrier colors. No other dog breeds come in as many colors as the AmStaff does.

The American Staffordshire Terrier is a muscular and agile family dog. It is an intelligent, playful and loyal pet that has a life expectancy of up to 12 years.

Big muscular head with chiseled cheekbones, wide apart eyes set in perfect circles, broad shoulders, muscular build with no loose skin, and a glossy coat are the characteristics that make American Staffordshire Terriers or the AmStaff a unique dog breed. There is an absolute variety in American Staffordshire Terrier colors.

Stay tuned for more details that are yet to come.

American Staffordshire Terrier Colors

American Staffordshire Terriers come in a wide range of colors. According to the American Kennel Club breed specifications,  the AmStaff can come in any color. If we give a quick glance at the American Staffordshire Terrier color chart, we will notice that there is no color or combination, this dog breed is not found in.

Some color schemes are more widely seen than others. Occasionally, a rare coat color known as “grizzle” or agouti may be seen in American Staffie dogs.

The AmStaff comes in solid colors as well as in many combinations. Mostly white dots or patches are observed with a solid color such as black or blue.

In this section, we are going to delve deeply into the details of American Staffordshire Terrier colors.

American Staffordshire Terrier Color Chart

●      Black American Staffordshire Terrier

It is an AmStaff that is thoroughly black in color. The shade can be shiny in many dogs. The face, neck, body, and legs all are completely black in color. There are no spots of white or any other color on a black American Staffordshire Terrier. Even the eyes of a black AmStaff are black in color.

      Black and White American Staffordshire Terrier

A black and a white AmStaff is no different from a black one. The difference is that a black Staffordshire Terrier is thoroughly black whereas the black and white AmStaff has a black base with white spots on it. The white spots are found on the face, neck, forelegs, and on the lower portion of the hindlegs. The toes can be white as well.

●      Blue American Staffordshire Terrier

A blue AmStaff is darker in tone. It is so dark that a novice might take it as black. But in fact, it is not black but a heavier shade of blue. Just like black Staffordshire Terrier, a blue AmStaff is thoroughly blue. All the visible skin is the same color. The eyes are dark. There are no patches of white or any other color.

●      Blue and White American Staffordshire Terrier

A blue and white American Staffordshire Terrier has a blue-colored base with white patches here and there. The white portion in this type of Terrier is comparatively more in comparison to the white portion of Black and White Staffordshire Terrier.

The face is white with blue patches on it as well. You may find a blue spot over the ear or around the eye. The neck, forelimbs, and hindlimbs are generally white. The white patches may also be visible on the body of this AmStaff.

●      Blue Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier

The Blue Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier is somewhat similar to the Blue AmStaff. It has stripes that resemble gray with a tinge of fawn. The whole body is covered in dark-colored stripes. Even the face, legs, and tail exhibit the same color. The darker shade of fawn may also be found along with the stripes of the body.

●      Blue Brindle and White American Staffordshire Terrier

When a blue brindle American Staffordshire Terrier has patches of white, it is a blue brindle and white AmStaff. The position of white patches is similar to that of black and white and blue and white AmStaffs. White spots can be found on the face, neck, body, and preferably on the fore and hind legs.

●      Blue Fawn American Staffordshire Terrier

A blue fawn Terrier looks like a brown-colored dog. The skin is colored blue fawn throughout. The shade may range from a lighter version of blue fawn to a darker one. There are no patches of any other color. However, the nose may have a black patch around it.

●      Blue Fawn and White American Staffordshire Terrier

This kind of Staffordshire Terrier has white spots on a blue fawn skin. The skin is colored white rather than having any patches in specific areas. Usually, the neck, front and hind legs are white in color and the rest of the skin is blue fawn.

●      Blue Fawn Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier

Blue Fawn Brindle is a cross between blue fawn and blue brindle. This type of AmStaff has a blue fawn body with blue brindle stripes. The nose and mouth area is slightly darker or might be black. The rest of the body has dark gray stripes.

●      Blue Fawn Brindle and White American Staffordshire Terrier

It is a blue fawn brindle AmStaff with white portions of the skin. The lower body is preferably white with an occasional white patch on the face and legs. The rest of the dog has a fawn base and brindle stripes that appear dark gray in color. The stripes do not run across the white patches.

●      Fawn Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier

Fawn brindle resembles very much the blue fawn brindle. Both have a fawn skin with gray stripes running along the body. The only difference is that the fawn brindle Staffordshire Terrier has a greater number of stripes and these are darker in tone.

●      Fawn Brindle and White American Staffordshire Terrier

It is a fawn brindle dog with white patches over the skin. The blue fawn brindle and white and fawn brindle and white look exactly alike. The difference is that in fawn brindle and white, the stripes are darker in tone.

●      Fawn Sable American Staffordshire Terrier

This fawn American Staffordshire Terrier looks like a light brown or golden-colored dog. The fawn sable AmStaff resembles a blue fawn. But where the blue fawn displays darker shades of color, the fawn sable is lighter in color and has lighter notes.

●      Fawn Sable and White American Staffordshire Terrier

The fawn sable and white American Staffordshire Terrier is a fawn sable AmStaff with occasional patches of white on the face, around the neck, on the back, and in the fore and hind legs.

●      Red Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier

Red Brindle is a darker shade of brown with even darker gray stripes. The red brindle is a much darker shade of brown that in all the contrasts of brown displayed by AmStaff, would stand champion in the darkness of tone. The gray stripes on its body are further dark giving this dog a wild look.

●      Red Brindle and White American Staffordshire Terrier

It is a red brindle dog with patches of white. The white contrasts with the darker red brindle and makes the appearance agreeable.

●      Red Sable American Staffordshire Terrier

Red sable is one note darker than the blue fawn and two notes darker than the fawn sable Staffordshire Terrier. In this way, it is the darkest brown in the color scheme.

●      Red Sable and White Staffordshire Terrier

A red sable with white patches of skin is red sable and white Staffordshire Terrier.

American Staffordshire Terrier Colors
American Staffordshire Terrier Colors

A Brief Introduction to American Staffordshire Terriers

Origin and History

American Staffordshire Terrier was introduced to the United States in the mid-eighteenth century. It is a close relative of English Staffordshire Terrier that adopted differant characteristics after it was brought to the United States.

The Staffordshire Terrier was a cross between Bulldog and Terrier dog breeds. It was specifically bred to become a blood sports champion. The blood sports are history now and the wildness of this breed has been tamed. It has been civilized enough that it has become a darling of the family dog owners as a beloved family pet. They are also used as guard dogs.

American Staffordshire Terrier Colors
American Staffordshire Terrier Colors

AKC Size specifications

According to American Kennel Club (AKC), male AmStaff ranges from 18 to 19 inches in height whereas the female dog has an average height of 17 to 18 inches. The male dog weighs 55 to 70 pounds whereas the female dog is 40 to 55 pounds in weight.

American Staffordshire Terrier Traits

American Staffordshire Terrier is considerably bigger than many small-sized dogs. It is a popular belief that small-sized dogs are ideal for apartment living. The truth is against it. Many small-sized dogs are so full of energy that they can’t live in an apartment. AmStaff, on the other hand, goes perfectly well for people living in apartments.

The Am Staff is an intelligent dog and understands the commands of its owner perfectly well. And this trait makes it an ideal dog for novice dog owners. You just need to establish leadership over it and you are good to go.

Am Staff has a short coat. A short coat means that it is moderately sensitive to touch and cuddling. With a short coat, Am Staff is an easygoing dog. It is very tolerant and resilient.

But a short coat also means that it cannot keep itself warm in winters. Hence, it needs to stay indoors in winters to avoid catching a cold. However, Am Staff can withstand the heat. But you should avoid taking your dog out in extreme heat, let alone make it exercise under the sun.

The most prized characteristic of the American Staffordshire Terrier is its friendliness. Some dogs want to stay aloof, laying in their beds all day – not with AmStaff. The dog loves to be around and interact. It is full of energy that keeps it going all day. It likes to stay busy and join you all day long no matter how much work you command it to do.

The AmStaff is kind to older kids as well. Children love the affectionate presence of the Staffordshire Terrier. It bonds well with the kids. But being a muscular dog, can sometimes be harsh with the kids. Hence, it is advised that the dog and children’s time should be supervised by an adult.

American Staffordshire Terriers are very aggressive to other dogs, however. It cannot tolerate the presence of any other dog. With early socialization in the form of training, this defect can also be overcome. These terriers make great family pets and also are good guard dogs.

Finally, the puppy continues into adulthood and becomes a playful, loving, sociable, and loyal dog that is loved by its family.

Summing Up

The Staffordshire Terrier exhibits a range of colors. Some of which are solid colors such as black, blue, fawn, and brindle while others are striped with darker tones. Occasional patches of white create variations in the color scheme of this dog.

The color range displayed by American Staffordshire Terrier is remarkable. You would find many colors that you may have not heard of earlier. But now you know that your much loved Staffie comes in multiple shades and colors. Find the perfect one for you and your family.

Copyright CaninePals.Com. All Rights Reserved.

References and Further Reading:

[1] American Kennel Club, American Staffordshire Terrier Information.

American Staffordshire Terrier Colors
American Staffordshire Terrier Colors
American Staffordshire Terrier Traits

Get to Know the American Staffordshire Terrier Traits

Learn about the American Staffordshire Terrier’s unique traits and characteristics for a friendly, practical, authoritative guide to owning one of these lovable canines.

Are you considering adding an American Staffordshire Terrier to your family? This dog breed is becoming increasingly popular thanks to its friendly and affectionate nature. But it’s important to be aware of all aspects – good and bad – when deciding whether this breed is right for you.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the traits of the American Staffordshire Terrier, from how they interact with other dogs and people to their unique exercise requirements and trainability. With practical advice along the way, we aim to provide you with enough information about these loyal dogs so that you can make an informed decision on whether an ‘Amstaff’ is a suitable choice for you.

The defining American Staffordshire Terrier traits are an agile muscular build, strongly defined cheekbones, broad shoulders, medium height, round eyes, and attentive appearance.

These traits set American Staffordshire Terrier apart from all the other dog breeds. Popularly known as Amstaffs, American Staffordshire Terriers are the darling of keen dog owners who themselves are known as Amstaffers.

This article will be all about American Staffordshire Terrier’s outstanding traits. So, brace yourself for all that is yet to come.

The American Staffordshire Terrier is intelligent and athletic, so he’s suitable for dog sports, including agility, obedience, conformation, and tracking. You can recognize him by his powerful head and stocky body. His coat is short and can be any color. It can be patched, solid, or parti-colored. This dog used to be known as a Pit Dog, a Half and Half or a Bull-and-Terrier dog before the English decided this was a better name in the early 19th century.

This dog loves being with people and is very loyal. He’s also friendly but will protect the household from trouble when necessary. His coat is easy to maintain but needs regular training and exercise. His height is 17-19 inches tall.

History of American Staffordshire Terrier

American Staffordshire Terrier originally hails from England. This dog breed was raised for a specific purpose. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, Englishmen were fond of blood sports. These included dog fights, turning a pack of dogs loose on a stacked bear or a bull. In those days, spectators were fond of blood sports. They used to bet on the outcome to make money.

Those days of grisly blood sports are long gone. But the blood sports gave us an outstanding breed – our American Staffordshire terrier.

The now-extinct breeds, such as White English Terrier and Black-and-Tan Terrier, are thought to be alive in the American Staffordshire, and the latter is supposed to carry the former’s gene pool. Nevertheless, American Staffordshire Terriers are certainly a cross between Bulldogs and Terrier breeds.

The dog was introduced to the US in the mid-eighteenth century, where it was loved and used as farm help or to hunt down wild boars.

American Staffordshire Terrier Traits
American Staffordshire Terrier Traits

American Staffordshire Terrier Traits

People are concerned about this dog breed because of their lineage and history. But worry not, for we will present in detail all the necessary traits of Staffordshire Terrier in considerable detail.

American Staffordshire Terrier Appearance

The Staffordshire Terrier is a muscular dog that is strong for its size. They look agile and active. The face’s bone structure is well-defined, and the overall appearance is attractive. The jaws are strong, and the eyes round. Sometimes you would see their cute puppy dog face while looking at the humans. At other times, they would appear the master of the ring when at large.


American Staffordshire Terrier is a medium-sized dog ranging from 17 to 19 inches in height. The height of the male dog is an inch longer than the female dog’s. The weight ranges from as low as 40 pounds to as high as 70 pounds. Female dogs are relatively smarter than their male counterparts.

The exact height and weight range of American Staffordshire Terriers, according to the American Kennel Club (AKC), is given below in the table.

Male Female
Height 18 – 19 inches 17 – 18 inches
Weight 55 – 70 pounds 40 – 55 pounds

American Staffordshire Terrier Personality

The appearance leads to a perceived notion that American Staffordshire Terrier personalities are aggressive. But the reality is completely different.

Is American Staffordshire Terrier a Good Family Dog

The most important concern about any dog is whether it is a good family dog. In that regard, you can completely trust AmStaff. It is a well-behaved family dog.

The Terrier is fond of humans and loves nothing more than to be useful to humans. It is a happy family dog through and through. It loves to play around. In an outdoor setting, it is in full action, such as in the backyard or lawn. It is loyal to its owners and loves to be around them.

AmStaff is generally good with children but tends to be relatively overprotective. Hence, it is highly advised that the dog should be allowed to bond with the children but not without supervision. These dogs are also very gentle and friendly towards strangers and mingle well with them.

American Staffordshire Terrier Traits
American Staffordshire Terrier Traits

Is American Staffordshire Terrier Considered an Aggressive Breed

AmStaff has a past of being a dog employed in blood sports. The appearance, size, and personality display certain features that make Staffordshire Terriers a relatively aggressive breed. AmStaff has a reputation for being the guard dog. Stubby, the most notable of these guard dogs, earned the rank of Sergeant and decorations in World War I. Some dog owners have reportedly claimed that Terriers are a good judge of human intentions and can satisfactorily perform guard duties.

Considering these characteristics, AmStaff can come as an aggressive dog. But if this dog starts training early, the aggression is taken from its personality. It turns out to be a pretty well-tamed dog if it finds a trainer that can handle its physical demands.

Terrier is an intense dog and likes to stay busy. AmStaff would pull, dig, chew, and occasionally bark when bored. Sometimes AmStaff becomes a pain to handle while walking because they would pull the walker along with them. So, it is extremely necessary not to let the dog take charge.

Also, they may not be as friendly towards other dogs as they are to humans.  These dogs respond well to training but can be stubborn to forceful methods. So, it is highly advised that they be trained in an understanding manner.

Overall, American Staffordshire Terrier is not an aggressive breed if trained and handled well.

If we were, to sum up all the American Staffordshire Terrier personality traits, we would say that they are loyal and friendly, loveable and loving, kind to children but a bit overprotective, and responsive to training.

The table below summarizes the personality and traits of the American Staffordshire Terrier. The more the score out of five, the better this dog is.

Personality Traits Score out of Five
Jogging Partner Three
Lap Dog One
Good with children Two
Warm weather Three
Cold weather Three
Grooming requirements One
Shedding Three
Barking Two
Ease of training Four

AKC Breed Standards for American Staffordshire Terrier

American Kennel Club (AKC) describes official breed standards for American Staffordshire Terriers. These standards are described below in detail.

  • Head: The head is medium length with a broad skull and very pronounced cheek muscles. Ears, either cropped or uncropped, are set high. Eyes are dark and round, laying low down in the skull and set far apart from each other.
  • Neck: This dog’s neck is heavy with a slight arch, tapering from the shoulders to the back of the skull. The neck is of medium length with no loose skin.
  • Shoulders: The shoulders of this dog are agile and muscular. The shoulder blades are wide and sloping.
  • Back: The back of the dog is fairly short. It is slightly sloping from withers to rump with a gentle short slope at the rump to the base of the tail. Loins are slightly tucked.
  • Body: The dog’s chest is deep and broad, with forelegs fairly wide apart to permit full chest development. The dog has well-sprung ribs that are deep in the rear.
  • Tail: It has a relatively short tail in comparison to the size of the body. The tail is neither curled nor held back, and neither is docked.
  • Legs: The dog’s Front legs are straight with large and round bones. There is no bend in the front legs. The muscles in the hind legs are strong. Feet are of moderate size and compact, allowing them to easily carry the body’s weight and be agile simultaneously.
  • Gait: The gait of this dog must be springy but should be without a roll or pace.
  • Coat: The coat is short that largely remains close to the body. It is glossy and relatively stiff to the touch.
  • Color: The dog can be of any color. Over 80 percent of the dogs are white, black, and tan.

American Staffordshire Terrier vs. American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT)

AmStaff and APBT are so similar that it gets difficult to find any difference between them. These terriers were first bred in the British Isles and brought into America.

Apparently, APBT is smaller and leaner in size and form than AmStaff. The height of AmStaff ranges from 17 to 19 inches, with an approximate weight of 50 pounds. On the other hand, APBT reaches a height of 18 to 22 inches with a weight of 30 to 60 pounds.

Another apparent difference is that AmStaff has a short, dense, and soft coat, whereas APBT has a shiny, thick, and short coat. Whereas the two breeds may look identically similar, they also are similar regarding loyalty, devotion to the owner, and intelligence.

However, it is generally observed that AmStaff is friendlier and behaves well with the children compared to APBT, and that is why AmStaff is the darling of dog owners who want to keep a family dog as a pet.

American Staffordshire Terrier Traits
American Staffordshire Terrier Traits

American Staffordshire Terrier Growth Stages

The American Staffordshire Terrier passes through various stages of development before it finally becomes a loveable adult dog. Here we will discuss the growth stages in the life of an AmStaff.

  • The neonatal Period characterizes the time from birth to 12 days. The puppy is unable to hear and cannot see. It needs to stay close to its mother for nutrition and protection.
  • The Transitional Period starts from the 13 days after birth and lasts until the 20th day. The eyes open, the smell develops, and the puppy can finally see.
  • The Awareness Period begins on the 20th day after birth. It needs to stay close to its mother. It starts becoming aware of its surroundings and knows everything around it. It is a very crucial stage for the puppy.
  • Canine Socialization begins on the 21st day and lasts until the 49th day. This is when it gets to know that he is a dog. The specific dog characteristics start forming inside its mind, such as biting, chasing, chewing, and barking. During this time, the puppy requires plenty of play time with their mother.
  • Human Socialization starts in the 7th week and lasts until the 12th week is over. At this point, it knows that it is a dog, but as regards human interactions, its slate is clean. The puppy should be removed from the mother. It is when the most rapid learning occurs and prepares it as a family-loving dog.
  • Fear Imprint Period. This period is a part of human socialization. The timing of this period is between the 8th and 11th week. If a puppy is exposed to any fear, it will likely stay with it for the rest of its life. A good trainer would allow the puppy to stay happy during this time. The training should be fun and playful.
  • Maturity does not come immediately. It would not come until the puppy is one year old. It has passed through several stages during this time. The most significant is the shedding of puppy teeth and the growth of adult teeth.

The Life Expectancy of American Staffordshire Terrier

American Staffordshire Terrier is a healthy dog. The life expectancy of the American Staffordshire Terrier is approximately 12 years. During the life of the dog, it may contract several diseases. The incidence of the disease depends upon the genetic makeup of the ancestors. Some dogs are more vulnerable than others.

Here we will discuss some of the diseases that may affect and cut short the lifespan of your beloved dog. American Staffordshire Terriers are more likely to develop dental problems. Starting from the buildup of plaque and tartar, it ultimately ends up bleeding, aching gums, and decayed teeth.

The dog can catch bacterial and viral infections. These are the same infections that any dog can get. The most notable of these include parvo, rabies, and distemper. Other than that, it can be attacked by parasites. Parasites can cause pain, discomfort, restlessness, and, in severe cases, may even lead to death.

Obesity is another serious health risk. It occurs when the dog cannot get enough physical exertion. Obesity is the mother of many other diseases. With obesity comes joint problems, heart problems, and digestive disorders.

Knee cap dislocation and ligament tearing are two badly damaging knee diseases common to AmStaffs. Whereas AmStaffs are expected to live for 12 years, the same is not the case for their near cousins.

The life expectancy of American Staffordshire Bull Terriers is between 12 to 16 years which makes them living longer years than AmStaff.

American Staffordshire Terrier Traits
American Staffordshire Terrier Traits

Summing up American Staffordshire Terrier Traits 

American Staffordshire Terrier is an amazing dog to keep as a pet. It originated in the British Isles, brought to America in the mid-eighteenth century. The Staffordshire Terrier is a celebrated family dog that is lovable and friendly.

The AmStaff is full of energy, and if proper care is taken of its physical and emotional needs, the dog becomes your best friend. It is a medium-sized agile, muscular dog best known for its guard duties. Other members of its near family are the English Bull Terrier and American Pitbull Terrier. With a life expectancy of 12 years, American Staffordshire Terrier is the darling of family dogs.

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References and Further Reading:

[1] American Kennel Club, American Staffordshire Terrier Information.