Average Height: 15 -20 in
Average Weight: 30 – 85 lbs
Average Life Span: 12 -16 yrs
Coloring: Varying color and pattern combinations; merle is not accepted by most kennel clubs
Area of Origin: United Kingdom
Similar Breeds: Boxer, English Bulldog, American Bulldog, American Bull Terrier, English Mastiff, American Staffordshire Terrier
History and Origin:
The American Pit Bull Terrier originated in the United Kindgom, a descendent of Old English Terrier and Old English Bulldog crosses. Along with other breeds of Mastiff ancestry, the Pit Bull Terrier was used in a variety of blood sports, including bull-baiting and bear-baiting. Fortunately, these cruel practices were banned as inhumane in 1835. The Pit Bull has also been used as a farm dog and as a catch dog its strength and sheer body mass enabled it to be effective at chasing and rounding up semi-feral cattle and pigs. Today, the Pit Bull enjoys great success as a police, companion, and therapy dog.
Personality and Temperament:
With an intense desire to please, a loyal nature, and courageous heart, the Pit Bull is an excellent companion and guard dog for people who can maintain a pack-leader position throughout the dogs life. Intelligent and energetic, the Pit Bull can be a handful for the inexperienced or nervous owner, but thrives in a structured environment. It is a generally friendly dog, and if socialized early, is a wonderful companion that can easily befriend other dogs or the family cat. Possessing a high pain tolerance, the Pit Bull may also be suitable for children who enjoy rough play, however the dog should always be supervised when interacting with children.
Exercise & Training:
As an extremely strong-willed dog, the Pit Bull should undergo extensive obedience training and socialization. It thrives under a consistent training regime focusing on discipline to curb bossy behavior. It is highly intelligent and learns commands and tricks easily and with eagerness. A Pit Bull needs a combination of physical and mental exercise to be a well-adjusted partner. It has enjoyed much success in a variety of dog sports, including weight-pulling, obedience trials, agility, and flyball. This type of dog is not recommended for meek or new owners, as extensive knowledge of canine instincts and behavior are recommended.
The Pit Bull Terrier has a short, shiny coat. It requires little grooming, and only the occasional bath to maintain cleanliness. A rub down with a cloth weekly helps keep the coat soft and shiny.
The Pit Bull is a term used for both the American Staffordshire Terrier, American Pit Bull Terrier, and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier (among other similar breeds). They all share ancestry through the English Bulldog and various Mastiff breeds, which were used in the development of these dogs. Other similar breeds in stature and purpose include the American Bull Terrier, the Boxer, and the American Bulldog.
Interesting Facts about the Pitbull:
1. Pit Bulls are exceptionally athletic, and have been known to jump fences up to six feet high.
2. Pit Bulls frequently lived inside the homes of their owners in eighteenth century Britain, and gained the nickname of ”Nursemaids dog” because of it.
3. Because of their physical strength, Pit Bulls are frequently used as rescue dogs; three Pit Bulls participated in the effort to find survivors after 9/11 in New York City.
4. Petey, a beloved character from Hal Roachs Our Gangs (later: The Little Rascals) in the 1930s was an American Pit Bull Terrier.
5. A Pit Bull named Norton was inducted into the Purina Animal Hall of Fame after saving his owner by waking up her husband from his sleep after she went into anaphylactic shock from a spider bite!