American Pit Bull Terrier


A medium sized American Pit Bull Terrier
American Pit Bull Terrier Quick Summary
Also Known AsAPBT
Height (at withers)18-22in (46-56cm)
Weight 35-55lbs (16-25kg)
Hair Colour(s)Varies
Lifespan12-14 years
Energy LevelHigh
Litter size5-10
Barking TendencyLow
Exercise requirementsMedium
Ease of trainingMedium
Suitability for kidsLow
Animal compatabilityLow
Aggression levelsHigh
Distress if leftMedium

The American Pit Bull Terrier is a strong and stockily built dog. The body is well muscled with a thick neck, a deep chest, well sprung ribs and a tail that tapers to a point. The head is very broad with powerful jaws, round eyes and often cropped ears. The coat is short and dense, and the colouring varies greatly. They differ in appearance to Staffordshire Bull Terriers by having fewer bulldog traits to the face and body.


American Pit Bull Terriers are powerful but friendly dogs. Despite their bad press, they are generally good-natured, affectionate and are extremely loyal, and so make fine companions and family pets. They are intelligent and very eager to please, and are generally obedient, but they are also willful and require dominant owners and correct obedience training and socialisation. Therefore they are only suited to those with experience of dog ownership and training. They are energetic dogs too that, without adequate exercise or stimulation, may become bored and destructive. When properly socialised and trained from a young age, American Pit Bull Terriers can be good around kids and other pets, and they have a high pain threshold that is ideal for tolerating rough play. However, in my opinion it is not a good idea to have these dogs around young children because any dog can have a bad day and the risk is not worth taking. These animals are very protective of their owners and property and so they make good guard dogs.

History & Skills

American Pit Bull Terriers originate from America, as suggested by their name, and were bred as all around working dogs for farms and were sometimes referred to as the poor mans horse. Developed from Bulldogs and Terriers, their tenacity and strength saw them used in the sport of pit-fighting. This violent past mixed with bad press reports regarding Pit Bull attacks, some of which were probably not even Pit Bulls, have caused this dog to become classed as a dangerous dog and banned in some areas around the world. These much loved trusty companions have received a pretty bad press, and it is worth noting that the aggressive tendencies that were bred into these animals are generally aimed toward other dogs and animals rather than people (when not correctly socialised).

Breed Specific Ailments

American Pit Bull Terriers tend to live between 12-14 years. Although a healthy breed, some of the problems that have been noted includes congenital heart disease, hip dysplasia, cataracts and allergies, especially to grass.


American Pit Bull Terriers are medium shedders and so may not be suited to those suffering with allergies. Their grooming requirements are low and their short coats will simly need occasional brushing and shampooing. A rub down with a cloth now and again will give the coat a nice sheen.

Exercise & Environment

American Pit Bull Terriers tend to live indoors and can be suitable for small homes such as apartments as long as they are adequately exercised. They tend to be active indoors and will need a daily walk, and they prefer warmer climates.


FCIFCI - Federation Cynologique Internationale
KCThe Kennel Club (UK)

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