Staffordshire Bull Terrier

Staffordshire Bull Terrier

Staffordshire Bull Terrier

Why do I need to know?

It is important to know as much as possible about your potential pets or common traits your dog may have.  Here at Rose Cottage we make it our priority to ensure we have the knowledge and we want to share that with you.  

There are some breeds we are unable to take, which is much to our regret, but we have to make sure every dog can enjoy the facilities here at Rose Cottage.  The way we care for your dogs would make it impossible to offer this to some breeds, due to the nature of the dog breed, but also the care that breed may need.     

We will always recommend the best, to our knowledge, place to take your baby.  If we find we are unable to take your dog.


The Staffordshire bull terrier or Staffy is an older breed than the previous two and led to their development (it should also be noted, that the Staffy is the only one of the three recognized by both the AKC and UKC).

A compact pupper with surprising strength, the Staffy is beloved for his “smiling” appearance and goofy nature. 


Unsurprisingly, the Staffy’s history is quite similar to that of APBTs and AmStaffs. Tracing their original roots to the bulldog, Staffies were developed for blood sports.

However, while the Staffy’s roots are horrific, but he went on to become a beloved companion around the world. Not only is he a good house dog, but since he’s a terrier at heart, he earned his keep by controlling unwanted pests like rats.


Staffies stand 14 to 16 inches at the shoulder. Weight varies from 24 to 38 pounds. He should be muscular but still agile and never so bulky that he looks cartoonish or struggles to move smoothly. He’s a solid dog whose thick neck and broad shoulders suit his overall shape. 

The Staffy head is short and broad with defined cheeks, giving him the “smile” we mentioned above. His nose is always black and his eyes should be dark. His ears stand but fold at the ends, adding to his overall alert, concerned expression. 

Staffy coats are short and smooth, and they should always appear shiny.


Staffies come in an array of colors and patterns, including brindle, fawn, black, and blue. The only forbidden patterns per the standard are liver and the black-and-tan combination.

Common Health Issues

Staffies are generally healthy and live between 12 and 14 years. They do have some health concerns in their history, including:

  • L-2-Hydroxyglutaric Aciduria – a recessive disorder that affects the central nervous system of the dog. Clinical signs usually appear between 6 months and one year (although they can appear later). Symptoms of the disease include some or all of the following, epileptic seizures, “wobbly” gait, tremors, muscle stiffness as a result of exercise or excitement.
  • Elbow dysplasia
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Cataracts
  • Luxating patella
  • Skin allergies

Breed Registries

  • American Kennel Club
  • United Kennel Club

What to expect from an Staffordshire Bull Terrier

A Staffy suits family life, as the only thing bigger than his smile is his heart.  He loves being with his human friends and does best when he’s a central part of the family unit.  He should never be left alone to exist in a yard or kennel, as he’s too sensitive.

Socialisation with strangers, dogs, and other animals is necessary to avoid aggression.

The Staffy is one of the more difficult breeds on our list to train.  He is intelligent and often thinks he knows what’s best, so he is not a dog for beginners.  Positive training is essential in getting control of this independent streak early.

You should never trust him off leash in an open area, as his prey drive compels him to chase whatever he sees, whether it’s a bunny or a drifting bag.  Staffies are known to have lock jaw.  This is not strictly true, however, they do have such strong jaw muscles.  I guess the lock jaw comes from the fact that staffies tend to hold and choke their prey, as opposed to, bite and bleed.  The jaw is a bit wider than many dogs and they fight with a different style and tactic.

This is really important to be aware of.  Yes it sounds like we are being negative, not at all.  We know Staffies are beautiful, they are just prey driven.

A little bit more…

Your Staffy will be a regular shedder that leaves his short, spiky hair behind on furniture.  Brushing as needed can cut down on these deposits.

Staffies require daily exercise to stay content.  A long, meandering walk or hike with lots of sights and smells can satisfy both his physical and mental stimulation needs.

He also thrives with high-intensity exercise, such as jogging.

His muzzle is shorter, however, so keep in mind that he can overheat in warmer weather.

Lots of Love

I hope that has given you some food for thought.  Learn more about us here at Rose Cottage.

Lots of Love, as always

Join us next time for more top tips on your beautiful dogs and their healthy foods and treats

Dawn, Lilly and Tucker

Get in Touch