The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is rated high on Bark Busters’ list of popular breeds, coming in as the 4th most popular trained breed in the USA, and 3rd in the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and New Zealand
They are energetic, fun loving dogs and in great demand as the all-round family dog. Staffordshires are a very loving breed that want nothing more than to settle down for a cuddle with you after a fun-filled day. It is their sweet nature, their ability to romp and play and then cuddle and chill out, that keeps them near the top of the ‘most popular breeds list’ around the world.
This breed is generally over-exuberant in their display of affection and all Staffordshire’s possess that trait of squirmy jumping and licking as they greet their human when they arrive home. This is what most Staffie parents love about the breed, but it can be a turn off for those who can’t cope with the ‘rough and tumble’ behaviour. With patience, education and training, they can be just as well behaved as any breed. They are definitely worth the effort.
The breed has a defined muscular appearance that can look intimidating, but their natural love of people shines through and wins everyone’s heart in no time.
The Staffie(as its affectionately referred to), is classed as a medium sized dog with a similar appearance to the much larger, more powerful American Staffordshire Terrier and American Pit Bull Terrier.
The Staffordshire Bull Terrier originated in England and is a tenacious and courageous short coat breed. It was one of the breeds used for bull and bear baiting before the 19th century when sports such as cockfighting were common place and animal rights not yet fully in place.
As far back as the 16th Century, there was a common practice at the cattle markets to set dogs on the bulls and cattle as a way of tenderizing the meat and providing entertainment for the spectators. Fights with bears and other animals were also organized as entertainment.
The early bull dogs and terrier types were remarkably different from the breeds of today and were selected mainly for their gameness, inbred courage and aggressiveness.
Terriers and other popular dogs of the time, bred with bulldogs, provided the ancestral foundation stock for the Staffordshire Bull Terrier.
Eventually the practice of these blood sports was phased out or eliminated in 1835 as animal rights organizations like the RSPCA came into being however, the practice of dog fighting still continued, where folks could test the fighting strength and courage of their dogs in secret locations. Dog fighting was a form of entertainment and involved gambling. These dog fights usually took place in a pit and the last dog standing was declared the winner.
Despite its violent history, the modern-day Staffordshire Bull Terrier is a breed that has the ideal temperament to be a family dog and trustworthy companion.
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