The American Staffordshire Terrier, at one time called the Bull-and-Terrier Dog, Half-and-Half, Pit Dog or Pit Bullterrier and now commonly known as the ”Am Staff,” is a well-balanced dog whose tremendous strength is unusual for its moderate size. This is the modern version of the so-called “Pit Bull.” Am Staffs are stocky, powerful yet agile, well-muscled and highly intelligent members of the American Kennel Club’s Terrier Group. Although descended from dogs bred for bull baiting and pit fighting, and unfortunately still used by unscrupulous owners in illegal dog fighting circles, American Staffordshire Terriers have many remarkable qualities, including their gameness, trainability, loyalty and affection. The Staffordshire Terrier was accepted for registration in the American Kennel Club Stud Book in 1936. The name of the breed was revised in 1972 to the American Staffordshire Terrier, to distinguish it from the Staffordshire Bull Terrier of England, which is much lighter in weight. The American Pit Bull Terrier and the American Staffordshire Terrier are virtually the same animal, with just different club registrations.
Most Am Staffs are between 17 and 19 inches at the withers and weigh on average between 60 and 80 pounds. Their short, stiff, glossy coat can be of any color or color combination, although white, black-and-tan and liver are not preferred in the show ring. Am Staffs require minimal grooming; brushing with a firm-bristled brush and an occasional bath should suffice.