American Staffordshire Terrier in the recent several years gained tremendous popularity. Recently it is popular in media too – in a negative way. Unfavorable attacks on this breed earned him opinion of an aggressive dog-murderer. It is all far from truth. Maybe it is its look that causes people feel uncomfortable in the dogs presence, maybe other reasons. However the truth is it is very friendly and congenial dog. I hope the bad opinion this breed will change some time in the future, but I realize this requires time and patience on both sides – the breeders and the owners.
Amstaff isn’t really aggressive.
For many generations selection is made by the criteria of such character properties as psychic stability and self-control. Amstaff is a powerful and very quick dog which possesses very vital temperament. For that reason, the training must be consistent and start from the puppy age. It is vital to ensure that puppy has contact with other dogs of different ages and several different breeds. From adults it learns things, human trainer can’t substitute: proper social skills that can be seen in packs. Amstaff’s contact with people should start at very young age too. Properly raised dog that learned social skills from other dogs and from people will not suddenly turn into the blood-thirsty beast. As far as play skills are concerned, you must remember one thing – only human master is predominant and never ever let that dog predominate.
Male or female?
Dogs (not only Amstaffs, but in general) tend to predominate and for that reason they can cause trouble raising them for unexperienced people. My humble opinion basing on experience is that female dogs are easier to bring up. They have definitely softer character. It is always good to have experienced trainer helping with education of such dog. It will help avoid common mistakes as we all know the dry book’s theory is not enough in real life. Amstaff is very intelligent and observant animal. It will figure out weak spots in human trainer and will try to explore them and become the pack leader himself. It is not recommended for all well known reasons. Amstaff, like all the dogs, is the animal that lives in the group and it hates loneliness. It is not recommended to close it at home for entire days. Amstaff loves children, it will play with them and will be delicate and responsible, I know it from my own experience. It is also very energetic dog. Two 5-minute walks a day are just not enough. It must have an occasion to release all this energy once in a while, it will love it! E.g: our dogs like to play hunting with their friend Greyhounds. Watching that I realized that even in dogs that always lived among people, the hunter’s instinct is still active. Even more – they are very good at it. They love to jump, win over the branches or strings with the balls at each end. Recently Amstaff is a dog of choice for hunting or rescue victims from debris or snow.
The American Staffordshire Terrier is stockily built with a muscular body. It should give the impression of great strength. The coat should be short, glossy and stiff, requiring little grooming. It may be any color, but preferably not black and tan or liver or more than 80 percent white. Male American Staffordshire terriers will grow to 17 to 19 inches and weigh between 57 and 67 lbs. Females will grow to 16 to 19 inches and also weigh between 40 and 60 lbs.
Amstaff is rather not a tall dog. According to specs, male Amstaff should measure 46-48 cm tall and female 43-46 cm. It should have appearance of a very powerful dog for its size. Powerful, well muscled dog and smart and quick at the same time. In general it should look rather short and dumpy, not long-legged like Greyhound, the race-breed dog or Dog. The head should be wide and massive, to create the impressive look. The jawbone muscles are better developed in Amstaffs that in other dogs. The ears can be trimmed short and pointy so the dog looks like a fearless beast. Ears that weren’t trimmed, should have a shape of rose flake however they should not be hanging down. In the nearest future, following EU regulations, Poland is going to ban ears trimming in dogs. So we must learn to accept the new look of Amstaff breed. In my humble opinion Amstaff will not look as good as it used to with trimmed ears
Amstaff has short hair that does not require so much attention like e.g: York or West. Regular brushing to get rid of falled hair and soiling is good enough. After brushing it is good practice to use chamois glove to get rid of dust and skin flakes. Bathing should be performed on as needed basis. Before show Amstaff should have its sensing hair on its face trimmed, as well as on the ears ends and on the back sides of its legs. White marks are then rubbed with especially designed for this purpose talcum.
About Health care
Amstaff is a very healthy dog. It is practically free of genetic disorders so often being a curse of other breeds. There are no eye problems nor dysplasia. However if the increasing popularity of this breed continues, all that may change. The stomach twist, so often seen in the big size dogs breeds, happens very rarely in Amstaffs. The best way to avoid it is a good diet. Similarly to Bull-terriers, Amstaffs have tendency to skin allergies. Amstaff is a real athlete among dogs able to perform very extreme deeds and for that reason they are more susceptible to contusions. Their weak spots are fragile joint links. Amstaff bears pain very well so one will not hear complains from this dog for no real good reason. Do not ignore and signs of limping, consult doctor right away.
Young Amstaff requires muscle and bone building rich diet. A lot of protein is very recommended (meat, dairy).
Description – The American Staffordshire Terrier should never be confused with the American Pit Bull Terrier. Although both were originated from the same bloodline they are NOT one and the same dog. The AmStaff has been breed alone a different line than its predecessor. Breed more as a ‘show’ dog, American Staffordshire Terriers are intelligent, excellent guardians, great family dogs and will protect their masters’ property with an air of authority.
Amstaff is first of all the defensive dog. Because it is born athlete, it can practise agility. The pulling tests turn very good with Amstaff. Also as a dog to keep company is a new speciality of it. For children it is just perfect. Also great for several forms of human-animal therapy.
Home and Family Relations
The Amstaff makes a wonderful guard dog and companion dog. They are extremely loyal and highly protective of children, adults and property belonging to their owners. The Amstaff is good with children if raised around them, but can be aggressive to strangers.
Perfect defensive dog and guardian. Amstaff isn’t very loud. It is courageous and valiant. Often very intelligent and serene. Quick learner, with its dangerous look it efficaciously scares off potential attackers. Despite of its look it is very friendly to people.
Ideal Owners: The American Staffordshire Terrier is a good family dog and hence requires interaction with the owners. They are powerful dogs and if left unattended the American Staffordshire Terrier can become bored, unhappy or destructive. Give all the attention this dog deserves and they will repay you with love and loyalty
Amstaff is an active dog, always finding ways to keep itself busy. It is loyal, intelligent, sensitive, laborious, people loving dog. It has a wonderful temperament. There is probably no other dog in the world so powerful and so tolerant. Its general features can be used in positive and in negative ways. How we shape it, is up to us. Amstaff loves to play, especially with children. It is friendly to its protectors and friends and to anyone with friendly intentions. It is a very intelligent dog, that can immediately recognize intentions of approaching human or animal. In a matter of seconds the playful joyful puppy can turn into real beast. Excellent guardian and faithful friend for a lifetime.