American Staffordshire Terrier

  • Other Names: Amstaff, Am Staff, Staffie, Staffy
  • Size: Medium-Large
  • Life Expectancy: 12 years
  • Average Weight: 62 pounds (28kg)
  • Average Height: 18 inches (46cm)
  • Grooming: Easy
  • Shedding: Average
  • Exercise: Average
  • Training: Average
  • Color: All Colors
  • Country of Origin: United States
  • Personality: Confident, Loyal and Affectionate


American Staffordshire Terriers were originally bred from bulldogs in England that were used for dog fighting and bull baiting. These dogs were bought into America in the 1900s and were accepted into the American Kennel Club in 1936. They were originally named “Staffordshire Terriers” but this was changed to “American Staffordshire Terrier” to differentiate them from the Staffordshire Bull Terrier (from England).


The American Staffordshire Terrier is a stocky, strong muscular looking dog. They are found in all colors, but shouldn’t have more than 80% white. Their ears can be cropped but it is preferred that they are uncropped. American Staffordshire Terriers have short tails that are not docked and their coats are smooth and short. They are very strong dogs for their size and have strong, broad heads. The American Staffordshire Terrier has larger bone structure than their cousin the American Pit Bull Terrier. Their athletic bodies make them ideal for agility, obedience and tracking dog sports.


American Staffordshire Terriers are good-natured and always want to please. They are very protective over their families and will fight courageously if provoked. They should be well socialized as puppies so they are not aggresssive towards other dogs. They are very good with children and make affectionate and loving companions. American Staffordshire Terriers are excellent guard dogs and very protective of their owners property. They have a high tolerance to pain and will fight to the death if cornered and threatened. With proper training and socialization American Staffordshire Terriers are protective, loving family companions.


Firm training is essential with these dogs, they need an assertive owner who can show leadership and set firm boundaries. Early socializing is important with other dogs. American Staffordshire Terriers are intelligent and very obedient dogs with the right owner.


American Staffordshire Terriers need daily exercise. When out for walks or runs, they need to heel behind their owner and always follow when going through doors or entry ways. This is important as part of their training so they know that humans are always the leader. Without adequate physical activity they can become difficult to handle.


Their short coats are easy to groom. They are average shedders, so regular brushing helps to minimize shedding. They only need bathing as necessary.