The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is a strong, devoted, courageous, intense, playful and deeply adoring dog. He does everything with power and gusto, whether playing, loving, or working for you. With the right training he makes the perfect family companion. He is tough, determined and athletic, yet at the same time he's an intense snuggle-lover who needs his comforts and wants nothing more than to be by your side. He is not an outdoor dog; he craves attention and companionship, and needs a great deal of one-on-one time with you. He is stable and easygoing with his family, fun-loving and comical, gentle and sweet. He is a very friendly dog and usually happy to meet new people. Yet he also makes a very good watchdog because he is fiercely protective of his family, and will bark ferociously to alert you to an intruder's approach. However he's generally too people-oriented to be truly aggressive toward humans. He doesn't bark too much, but he does tend to "speak" to you in a range of yodels, moans, and grunts! He can be challenging to train because he is confident, strong-willed and stubborn; he needs to know who is the boss, and so every member of the family must help in training him, and be patient, persistent and confident when commanding him. He can be difficult to housebreak. He is an extremely high energy dog with loads of strength and stamina, and he loves long sessions of rough-and-tumble play. He needs a daily walk or jog, safe places in which to roam and run freely, and chances to play boisterous games. When out walking he must be on a leash: he can be aggressive toward other dogs and will not back down from a confrontation; he may also chase after small animals. In some cases he can get along with dogs and with other pets, especially if he is raised with them from puppyhood. He's wonderfully affectionate and exceptionally patient with children--a top-notch "nanny dog." However he may be too rough, jumpy and boisterous for very young children. He is an excessive chewer, so must give him very strong chew toys if you don't want your house destroyed! You must also protect him from hot weather as he can easily overheat. He is a medium-shedder, and so might not be a good pet if you dislike dog hair.
The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is 14 to 16 inches tall (to shoulders) and weighs 24 to 36 pounds. He has a short, smooth coat. His coat color can be red, fawn, white, black, blue or brindle.
He only needs an occasional brushing. Some owners brush him a few times a week to remove dead hairs (what you brush out doesn't end up on your carpet).
The "Staffie" can be traced back to Staffordshire, England, to the Bulldogs and Mastiffs used during the Elizabethan Era for bear-baiting and other dog fights. By the 18th century he was primarily a watchdog for the working classes, and by the 1900's had been bred to a smaller size. He was admitted to the Kennel Club (England) in 1935, but though he arrived in America in the 1900's was not registered with the AKC until 1974. He is now bred only as a loving companion dog. His AKC popularity was 85th out of 157 breeds in 2007.