Staffordshire Bull Terrier | Dog Breed Information

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Staffordshire Bull Terrier: Breed Information

Staffordshire terrier with puppy

Fact sheet

  • Breed name: Staffordshire Bull Terrier / Staffy
  • Classification: Terrier
  • Size: Medium
  • Coat: Very short
  • Colour: Black, white, red, fawn, blue, brindle
  • Personality: High energy
  • Family-friendly: Yes, though best raised with their family from a young age and well socialized
  • Friendly with other pets: Can be friendly with other pets if raised with them from a young age

Staffordshire Bull Terrier Background

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is a descendant of the Mastiff and was bred from the English Bulldog and English White Terrier. The breed was officially recognised in the 1930’s.

Sadly, staffies were used in bull-baiting for many years. However, the breed is now a popular family-friendly dog and are affectionately referred to as ‘staffies’.

Staffies are smart and inquisitive dogs with a desire to be near people. As such, they are sometimes used as therapy dogs. Additionally, the breed can have a tendency to bark, so can make a good watchdog.

Physical Appearance of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier

Staffordshire Bull Terriers have a distinct appearance, with a short snout, big jaws and stocky head. Additionally, they also have a dense, muscular build which makes them surprisingly fast on their feet. 

Staffordshire Bull Terriers can weigh around 13 kg and 18 kg, yet only stand up to about 19cm tall. Their famously short, shiny coat comes in many colours, including black, white, red, blue or fawn.

Staffordshire Bull Terrier Behaviour and Temperament

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is a faithful ‘people dog’ that can be great around kids if well trained. In addition to this, staffies can be very trusting with strangers. Notably, some breeders suggest keeping an eye on your staffy when out and about to make sure they don’t get stolen for illegal dog fights.

Furthermore, staffies have a reputation for being aggressive with other dogs and animals. As such, early training and socialising are absolutely essential. This is a breed that is best for confident pet owners, rather than first-timers.

Dark Staffordshire Terrier on the beach

Training and Exercising your Staffordshire Bull Terrier

Staffordshire Bull Terriers are strong, high-energy dogs that need to be well socialised and trained. Furthermore, the staffy can be a little headstrong, so puppy training is best for a well-adjusted adult dog. 

Notably, staffies can be aggressive toward other dogs, so always keep your staffy on a leash if you’re out on a walk.

The muscly staffy loves to run, chase and play fetch. As such, if you don’t want your garden to be ruined, you must exercise your staffy for about 30 minutes daily. A bored, understimulated staffy can be quite a handful and potentially destructive. Therefore, be sure to give your staffy plenty of chew toys to keep their massive jaws away from your furniture.

And importantly - if you live in a very warm climate, don’t overdo the walks and keep them to the cooler part of the day. This is because staffies are sensitive to hot weather and can easily overheat.

Living with a Staffordshire Bull Terrier

As mentioned, staffies just love being near their human families and are happiest curled up on the couch. However, they also need access to outside spaces to play and sniffle. Therefore, if your staffy can enjoy both worlds, you will have a well-behaved best friend for life.

As they are such social dogs, it’s best not to leave a staffy home alone for hours at a time. Therefore, it's a good idea to have a Pawshake pet sitter drop by to give them a walk when you are too busy.

Staffordshire Bull Terrier Health

Staffordshire Bull Terrier are low-maintenance dogs that are easy to keep fit and healthy. Furthermore, the list of hereditary ailments that a staffy can experience is quite short. A Staffordshire Bull Terrier will live to about 12 years of age.

Some health conditions that can come up in Staffordshire Bull Terriers include:

  • Hip dysplasia 
  • Knee issues
  • Allergies and skin conditions
  • Stomach sensitivity
  • Cataracts
  • Epilepsy
  • Heart disease
  • Hypothyroidism


Staffordshire Bull Terriers have very short, shiny coats. Therefore, you won’t need to worry about brushing to detangle their fur. However, the breed does shed, so will need a weekly brush and a bath once a month or so. Furthermore, you can maintain your staffy’s coat shine by wiping it down with a soft towel. 

Does your Staffordshire Bull Terrier need training and socialising while you are at work? We can help! An experienced Pawshake pet sitter can entertain your Staffordshire Bull Terrier when you are too busy. Start searching for a perfect pet sitter in your neighbourhood today.