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American Pit Bull Terrier


Overview of American Pit Bull Terrier

Did you know that “Pit Bull” is not a breed? It actually encompasses American Pit Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, and mixes of those breeds! These often misunderstood dogs have unfortunately developed a controversial reputation—both in the United States and internationally, largely due to illegal dog-fighting rings and numerous high-profile attacks reported in the media in recent years,. But for a good portion of their history, they were known as America’s dog! The iconic RCA dog, Petey in the Little Rascals, and Sergeant Stubby (the most decorated dog of WWI) were all American Pit Bull Terriers. Contrary to popular belief, Pit Bull jaws don’t lock. Naturally agile, they are highly active and energetic dogs. While aggression is not characteristic for Pit Bull type dogs, socialization and training are key for a happy life. This medium to large dog breed (30-80 lbs) resulted from combining the courageous Old English Bulldog (bred specifically for the blood sports of bull and bear-baiting) with the more agile build of a terrier. They come in almost every color and coat pattern, with brindle and fawn being the most popular.

Common Health Conditions & Recommendations for American Pit Bull Terrier

Heart Disease:

Dogs with heart disease can either have an acquired condition (diet, environment, etc) or a congenital condition meaning that they inherited it from their parents. Acquired heart disease is more common and accounts for 95% of all heart disease.

Recommendations for Heart Disease in American Pit Bull Terrier Dogs:

Common Health Conditions & Recommendations for American Pit Bull Terrier

Skin Cancer:

Dogs have certain areas like their noses and ears that have little to no hair to protect against harmful sun rays. Pooches with light skin and thin coats like the American Pit Bull Terrier are more prone to developing skin tumors and damage to their skin from sun exposure.

Recommendations for Skin Cancer in American Pit Bull Terrier Dogs:

Common Health Conditions & Recommendations for American Pit Bull Terrier


Dogs can become anxious when they come into contact with other animals or people they are unfamiliar with. Separation from an owner or a move to a new home can also trigger symptoms including excessive barking, chewing, inappropriate urination, and aggression.

Recommendations for Anxiety in American Pit Bull Terrier Dogs:



They are eager to please, intelligent, and very loving, but unfortunately, not everyone is a fan of the breed and many are surrendered to rescues. If you're thinking about bringing a Pitty home, please consider rescuing one. American Pit Bull Terriers are one of the few dog breeds that can learn to trust humans again after extreme abuse. Socialization is the key to owning this breed; lots of positive reinforcement and affection can bring out this pup's sweet temperament rather than encourage their fighting instincts. Like Popeye, the American Pit Bull Terrier is full of muscles but as sweet as can be!

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