The difference between American Staffordshire Terriers & American Pit Bull terriers

I am sure this will open up a great battle but I need to post this.  I wanted to share all my research on the differences between American Staffordshire Terriers (AST) and American Pit Bull Terriers (APBT).
  As you all know I joined the Austin “Pit Bull” -hate that term Task Force. At our last meeting I volunteered to create an educational video/demo for the staff at TLAC in hopes we could help lower incorrect breed identification. Here is where it gets interesting.
  I decided to hit the national breed registrations groups in order to compare the breed standards of the AST and the APBT. The end result is not only frustrating but saddening to me as well.
There is only ONE breed registration group that see the two as seperate breeds, the North American Kennel Club. So it is the only registry that can be used to compare the two as separate breeds.  Since NO other registry lists the two seperately.
  The differences in the breed standards they list are completely geared to the APBT being the “fighting” dog of the two and they BOTH have the same breed standards. The only difference they state, is that conformation of the head of a APBT is not as important and varies because it has the LEAST to do with whether they WIN or LOSE a FIGHT!! They proudly state in their conclusion of the breed standards, when referring to the APBT : “In his winning form he is a fighting machine…a thing of beauty.
The only other national breed registries that view APBTs are the UKC (Started solely for the purpose of registering his “fighting” dog) and ADBA again started for APBTs and as far as I can tell, has no other information of ANY other breed on thier site. Enlighten me if this is not the case.

Now lets see the breed standards for both the AST & the APBT:

The Comparison of American Staffordshire Terriers (AST) & American “Pit Bull” terriers (APBT)

General Appearance: (AST) Strength for size
                                            (APBT) Square

Size: (AST) Height and Weight in proportion
          (APBT) Height and weight ratio same (or proportionate)

Head: (AST) Broad Skull, pronounced cheeks, Lips close and even (no looseness) Jaws well defined, underjaw to be strong
            (APBT)2/3rd of the shoulder (Broad), 25% wider at cheeks (pronounced cheeks), Not “Lippy” (close and even),Lower jaw- wide and well developed (Strong)

Neck:  (AST) Heavy, no looseness of skin
             (APBT) Moderate length and muscular (heavy) Skin should be tight with no dewlap (no looseness of skin)

Shoulders: (AST) Strong muscular, blades wide
                       (APBT) Blades are wide and muscular

Body: (AST) Chest deep and broad
             (APBT) Chest is deep, moderately wide (or broad)

Tail: (AST) Short to size
          (APBT) Stops at hock (short)

Legs: (AST) Front- straight, no bend Rear-well muscled, let down at hocks

            (APBT) Front- elbows set close to body (straight) No bowed legs (bend) Rear- strong and musuclar well bent at hock (let down at hock)

Coat: (AST) Glossy, stiff to touch

            (APBT)  Glossy, smooth, moderately stiff

Color: (AST) Any color

              (APBT) Any color

These were taken from the registry breed standards. Where is the difference?

So you tell me if you have a APBT ( Only seperated from ASTs by a site that clearly welcomes fighting dogs and how to make a “fighting machine”) or an AST . I have an AST,  a handsome and loving one.

“Pit Bull” is NOT a breed!

  Everyone that knows me knows that I will voice my opinion.  I am not concerned about being politically correct and I certainly welcome anyone to a good debate.  That being said, this post is strictly written because of all the ridiculous hype recently about the breeds I love the most; the bully breeds.  I too have in the past called them “pit bulls”, but I vow to take a stand and no longer do this.

   That’s right, I will no longer call them “pit bulls”. Why? Because my friends, unless a dog has been put in a fight ring, they are NOT “pit dogs”!!! Any dog can be classified as a “pit dog” if has been in a fight ring.  Today so many people misidentify a bull breed; thousands of dogs are killed because they LOOK like a bull breed in some states.  The bull breeds I am discussing here: American Staffordshire terriers, Staffordshire bull terriers, Bull terriers, American Bulldogs.  I strongly think if we the bull breed lovers truly want to help the breed we need to STOP calling them “pit bulls”.  To the breeders out there that breed what they call APBT’s you truly need to take a stand and call them American Staffordshire terriers. I know it is a pride thing but really, are you putting your dog in a fighting ring??  If you are you should be arrested period.  If you stand behind people that fight their bullies, again you should be arrested. Period.

  I have seen more TV shows pop up lately about bully breeds, “Pit boss”, “Pit bulls and Parolees”, etc.  I love that they are helping the bull breeds and my hat is off to them, but seriously stop calling them “pit” dogs.  It only strengthens the fear people have.

      The term “pit dog” has been around for thousands of years and if you dive into history archives, “pit dogs” were mainly Molosser breeds, not just one type of dog.  You can find more information about these dogs here: .

  Even the Humane Society refers to the label “pit bull” as just that, a label.  Many people misidentify dogs; they see a short, stocky, bigheaded, muscular dog and call it a “pit bull”.  Unless they have been in a pit ring fighting this is an inaccurate name.

   Tremendous amounts of people out there think ALL bull breeds are dog-dog aggressive. This is also not true. Do they have the tendency to be dog-dog aggressive, of course; but so do other breeds. Any dog can be dog-dog aggressive, it depends on how they are handled and trained.  I have hundreds of cases of herding breeds and small breed dogs that are highly dog-dog aggressive.  I am called for more Australian cattle dogs (heelers) and Great Pyrenees, with dog-dog aggression then any bull breed.  These breeds are tenacious when it comes to their attacks.  These are also the two breeds of highest percentages for resource guarding issues. 

  So why are so many bullies in the news and not other breeds?  Many owners that have contacted me for their herding dogs killing or attacking their pack members make it a point to keep their dogs away from other dogs.  Unfortunately irresponsible owners own the bullies you read about.  The majority of bully attacks on humans and dogs happen because they are taught how to be persistent and are “resident” dogs, not pets.  What’s the difference? Karen Delise, founder of The National Canine Research Council has the facts on her site:  I suggest anyone interested in bully breeds take the time to read her site.

  I urge all the bully breed owners, rescuers and lovers to STOP calling their dogs “pit bulls”. Lets see if we can truly make a difference for the breeds we love so much!!