In many federal states, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier may not be kept at all or only under strict conditions. The close relationship between the Bull Terrier and the American Staffordshire Terrier can clearly be seen in the former animal fighting champions. Since the dogs pass almost all character tests and gentleness is a mandatory characteristic for breeding dogs, only the protective instinct has remained of their fighting dog mentality.
The Appearance of the Staffbull – Modern Bull and Terrier with a Powerful Jaw
Staffies are rather small with a height at the withers of between 35.5 and 40.5 cm, but they weigh a lot in muscle mass. An ideal weight is given for males between 12.7 and 17 kg, for females between 11 and 15.4 kg. Considered a modern version of the 18th century English bull and terrier dogs, they have not changed much in appearance compared to other bull and terrier descendants (Bull Terrier, Pit Bull, and American Staffordshire Terrier).
Recognizing and distinguishing Staffordshire Terriers: an overview of breed characteristics
- The Staffbull’s head is massive and significantly lower than that of the American Staffordshire. The skull is short, with a definite stop, and about as wide as deep.
- The cheeks are very pronounced and the jaw is extremely strong. Large teeth form a straight scissor bite covered with tight lips. The nose should always be black.
- The eyes are dark-framed, medium-sized, and round. The corners of the eyes are clearly visible at the edges.
- Slight rose or flap ears (half-prick ears) are preferred. They should not be too thick and should never sag or stand completely stiff.
- The body and neck are very stocky and muscular above average for the size. The topline is straight and the chest is very broad with well-sprung ribs.
- The bones on the fore and hind legs are very strong and the shoulders are well laid back. The legs are well angled behind and the hocks are low. The legs stand on well-padded and strong paws with black claws.
- According to the breed standard, the tail is carried like a “pump handle” and is set very low.
Coat and colors of the Staffbull
The smooth coat is short, dense, and slightly bristly. The direction of hair growth is visible everywhere and sometimes forms a slight crest on the chest. Solid coats or small white markings are preferred by some breeders, but white piebald dogs of any size and shape are acceptable.
These colors occur
- All shades of fawn
- All shades of brindle
- White markings are possible as ablaze and on the neck
- Solid white
The History of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier – Once a Fighting Dog, Always a Fighting Dog?
Like the Bull Terrier, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier descends directly from the Bull and Terrier dogs of the English working class. In the early days of industrialization in the Birmingham and Staffordshire regions, dogfighting (“blood sports”) was a popular pastime. The terrier-like workers’ Rattlers were crossed with Molossers in the early 18th century to create a small, powerful fighting dog used for bloody fights against animals:
The sad jobs of the first bull and terriers in Staffordshire
- Use in arena fights dog against dog
- Use in arena fights dog against wild animal or bull (“bull and bear-baiting”)
- Use when rat biting (rats in an arena are killed for a time)
The Staffordshire Bull Terrier today
Abroad, the Staffy is still a very popular companion and guard dog, in England it is even one of the top 10 most popular pedigree dogs. In this country, English fighting dogs were status symbols in the red light district and in criminal circles in the 20th century – the breed selection was neglected, as was the socialization of the dogs, some of which were deliberately made hot on people to deter or be used as a weapon. For this reason, many biting incidents in Germany are related to Staffbulls, which led to very strict regulations in some states in the early 2000s.
The True Nature of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier – The Babysitter Dog of the English
A dog can only become a balanced companion if it is lovingly socialized. Well-behaved Staffordshire Bull Terriers are very different from what one would expect given their bad reputation as a lost dogs: the breed is known to be extremely people-friendly and adapts very well to apartment city life. However, the powerhouse with the great self-confidence is not suitable for beginners in dog training:
These behaviors are to be expected with the Staffy
- He behaves kindly and gently in the family circle but is extremely skeptical of strangers. As a guard and protection dog, he is, therefore, a natural talent.
- Once he has gained confidence, he is sweet and in need of cuddles.
- If he is provoked or attacked by other dogs, he does not shy away from a fight! So you should be able to physically cope with your dog and be able to hold him back if necessary.
- Staffbulls need to know their place in the pack, then they strictly adhere to it. If the hierarchy is unclear or there is a dispute, the Staffbull tries to dominate.
- The four-legged friend, known in England as the nanny dog (babysitter dog), is very affectionate with his wards. However, it should not be concealed here that Staffbulls are more often than average responsible for biting incidents (also with children) worldwide.
- The staff doesn’t get annoyed. The stimulus threshold is low: anyone who annoys him will be rebuked.