American Staffordshire Terrier

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Breed summary


The American Staffordshire Terrier, also known as the AmStaff, is a medium-sized, short-coated terrier. This dog is a bundle of muscles in an agile package. The American Staffordshire Terrier should give the impression of impressive strength for his size, a well put-together dog, muscular, but agile and graceful, keenly alive to his surroundings. He should be stocky, not long-legged, or racy in outline. The head is medium with a deep, broad skull, and very pronounced cheek muscles. The eyes are dark and round, low down in the skull, and set far apart. Their tail is short compared to size, low set, tapering to a fine point.



The AmStaff depends on high-quality dog food, whether manufactured commercially or home-made under the supervision and approval of a veterinarian. Any diet should be appropriate to the different stages of a dog’s age (puppy, adult, or senior). Some senior dogs are prone to getting overweight, so look after your dog’s energy consumption and weight level. Over treats during training can cause obesity. Don’t give human foods that are not safe for dogs. Always provide clean and fresh water all the time. In case of any emergency condition, consult with your veterinarian first.



Length: Short

Characteristics: Flat

Colors: Any color, solid, parti or patched

Overall Grooming Needs: Low

Health care


The AmStaff is a robust, healthy breed. They are prone to certain health conditions such as canine hip dysplasia, cardiac disease, and skin and coat allergies. They may also suffer from cruciate ligament rupture and allergies. A regular check-up is necessary by the veterinarian to identify the problems in the hip, thyroid, cardiac, elbow, knee, and eye. A genetic test has recently been developed for cerebellar ataxia, which causes a progressive decline in muscle coordination, which appears in between ages 3 and 5 years. Similar to other breeds, the ears should be checked regularly, and the dog’s teeth should be brushed often to avoid dental and periodontal disease.




Early socialization and puppy training classes necessary for AmStaff’s to perform their rapid action. The breed’s intelligence and desire to please make training a fun, easy process to make them well-trained. They enjoy the companion of human and ready to go out for a jog, playing in the yard, or cuddling up on the couch. It must be noted that dog aggression can develop even in well-socialized AmStaffs. Obedience training is a good mental exercise for AmStaffs.



American Staffordshire Terrier needs a vigorous daily workout, along with some mind games, to be at its best. Leaving the dog out in the yard all day is not the right approach. Although he can run around, this breed is a people-oriented dog who thrives when he is made part of the family. Lengthy play sessions with his owner develop his physical and psychological health. Many AmStaffs enjoy taking part in canine sports such as obedience, agility, and dock diving. AmStaffs are even trained in search-and-rescue and excel at it.


Country of Origin: USA

AKC Breed Popularity: Ranks 85 of 196

AKC Classification: Terrier Group

Exercise Requirements: ˃40 minutes/day

Height: Male: 19 in. Female: 18 in.

Weight: Male: 50-70 lbs. Female: 45-60 lbs.

Physical traits: Stocky, Muscular, Short-coated, Powerful

Personality traits/Temperament: Confident, Smart, Good-Natured

Energy Level: Average

Tendency to Drool: Low

Tendency to Snore: High

Tendency to Bark: Low

Tendency to Dig: High

Social/Attention Needs: High

Life Expectancy: 12-16 years


Fun fact

They’re often mistaken for pit bulls and fiercely loyal.