The Amstaff, a cross between the old English Bulldog and one or more terriers, was truly “made in America.” Originally known as the Staffordshire Terrier, American was added to the names to avoid confusion with their British counterpart, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier. Bred as an all-around helper for hunting, farming, and guarding, the AmStaff is a strong and dependable breed that openly displays courage and loyalty. While these qualities, makes them wonderful companions, they have also made the AmStaff desirable breeds for dog fighting. While this is a small piece of the breed’s history,some municipalities today now have regulations limiting the ownership of bully-breeds including the American Staffordshire Terrier. It is important to check the regulations of your city or even your building before welcoming home an AmStaff.
Today’s AmStaff is typically too people-friendly for a guard dog job, although he may alert owners of new arrivals. AmStaffs may, however, take the “job” of chasing away new dogs or animals a bit more seriously. Its medium size makes it suitable for life in a large apartment or small house, as long as it gets lots of daily exercise.
Fairly easy to train, the AmStaff thrives in a family committed to obedience work. Since they may have a tendency to be unfriendly toward other dogs, early socialization is critical. Their personality is typically gentle with family children, but given their strength and on-the-move personality, experienced supervision is always a good idea.
AmStaffs can excel in obedience, agility, and tracking. Families with AmStaffs have a special opportunity to bring the dog out in public to demonstrate the breed’s abilities and friendliness…to counter the sometimes bad press the bully-breeds receive.
The American Staffordshire Terrier
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