Dogs are animals that have become part of human existence. Human beings take care of the dogs in the same measure they take for their children, be it in adoption, feeding, housing, and even taking them to daycare. There are many breeds of dog suited for different people, but if you have never had The Staffordshire Bull Terrier, there is so much you don’t know. The Staffordshire bull terrier well known as Staffie is a dog with big reputation and old history. Before the 19th century, Britain was defined by the famous blood sports such as bear-baiting and bull-baiting. However, after these sports were forbidden by the law in 1835, dog fighting took over.
The Staffordshire Bull Terrier, also known as the early old-style bull terrier was as a result of a cross between the old-style Bulldog with small native black-and-tan terriers. England outlawed dog fighting in the 1930s, but some sources suggest that the sport still takes place in some parts of America and Great Britain even today. The early bull terrier was the common type until the mid-1800s when James Hinks of Birmingham started a breeding program to bring other varieties of the bulldog. The first experiment was conducted when he crossed the early bull terrier with English White Terrier (now extinct) where he got a predominantly white sleeker animal and named him Bull Terrier.
Fanciers of the old-style bull terrier were frustrated on hearing another ‘Bull Terrier’ which was bred, and even though they tried to show people that there could never be other ‘Bull Terrier,’ their efforts bore no fruits. In 1935, the original bull terrier was recognized as the stand-alone breed thanks to Joseph Dunn and the company, and it was given a name Staffordshire Bull Terrier. Staffy dogs were first seen in the United States after the World War 2, and since then, they are common in almost every homestead. There is so much that dog owners don’t understand, but we present to you a list of 20 things only Staffordshire Bull Terrier owners would understand.
They are great for apartment living
Many people across the world have a soft spot for dogs but are afraid of adopting one due to the fear that the apartment they live in might not be enough for the both of them. They, therefore, end up suggesting that they will have one dog when they get into a bigger apartment with a huge playground. Some of these things don’t happen, and such people end up in disappointment after sacrificing their happiness and love for a dog for fear of minimal space. However, unless you are a Staffordshire bull terrier owner, you can never understand that this breed of dog is great for apartment living. They have low energy and tend to remain fairly indoors, and this makes the owner to give testimony that they are great dogs for people with small homes. The only thing a staffy needs is the exercise which should be easy by walking with him around the neighborhood, and he will be happy and contented in a home of any size.
They are sensitive
Many dog owners love their dogs because they provide the companion they want. Playing around with your favorite dog gives the satisfaction you ever wanted. Other people take their dogs for training to enable them learn things fast, but a staffy owner will tell you that staffies are naturally very sensitive. This means that they react according to the owner’s feelings. If for instance the owner is sick or stressed up, the staffy will sense that feeling and will try to curl up beside you until he realizes you are better and happy. On the other hand, if you are happy, your staffy will sense this and will be the first one to share your joy by playing around with you and jumping all over you. Staffies become sad very fast especially if you reprimand them, but if you do that as a way of discipline, your dog will learn and never repeat the same thing in future. However, many dog owners don’t realize this unless they have staffies.
They are very affectionate
Just like how different people are, there are different breeds of dogs with different characteristics. While some dog owners love less active dogs, others look for more active dogs. It’s only Staffordshire bull terrier owner who can comprehensively tell you what kind of a dog staffies are. They are very passionate dogs and good ones to be around with. They love to be played with, and they also enjoy being petted. They are the kind of dogs that desire to join your children in the yard to run around as they run and have fun. They also love to join you on the couch to snuggle up and kiss you. If you come home from work, your staffy will master the arrival time, and you’ll find him waiting at the gate. When he sees you, he will be excited and run towards you as a way of welcoming you back home. Any staffy owner will tell anyone looking for a lovable breed of dog to look no more, as Staffordshire is the right breed for them.
They are very friendly to kids
One of the primary reason for adopting a dog especially if you have children is to provide them with a play toy that can keep them company when you are busy in the kitchen or doing other house chores. Parents are stuck because some of the dog breeds are hostile to the children, and instead of risking their children’s lives, they tend to go for other types of toys. Traditionally, staffies have a bad reputation as fighters but not anymore. Asking a Staffy owner will tell you that staffies are the best dogs for your children. Staffordshire bull terrier has a nickname of a ‘nanny dog’ which does not come in vain. They are actually the best nanny dogs due to their patience with and love of children. They are friendly to small children and a treasure around them, as they pet them, try to pick them up, and chase them around. Naturally, they love the attention, and that explains why they qualify to be nannies. However, it goes without saying that you should never leave the dog alone with your children or expect your dog to baby sit your precious children; take responsibility and monitor how your staffy gets along with the kids.
They are friendly with strangers
There are various dog breeds, most of which are aggressive and unfriendly towards strangers. Most dogs are friendly to the familiar people such as family members and neighbors, but a Staffordshire bull terrier will tell you that you know nothing if you’ve never had a staffy. Staffies are friendly to strangers especially if well trained to appreciate all people. Thus, staffies are one breed of a dog that greets and welcomes your guest with a nuzzle or a wagging tail. Some of the dogs are shy, but staffies will never show any signs of aggressiveness or discomfort around strangers. Even though they have their origin as a fighting breed, they are not aggressive towards strange dogs and get along very fast. This characteristic is exceptional which makes staffies perfect to bring to the dog park and walk around with around the neighborhood.
They are easy to groom
Many people are afraid of adopting dogs because most of them are hectic to keep. However, a staffy owner is the only person that understands how easy it is to groom a staffy. Keeping a staffy is easy as you don’t have to cut their fur every time and then because they are naturally short. Besides, you don’t have to bathe them every day thanks to their short fur. This means that food particles cannot stick to their fur and they cannot stink easily. However, for them to be hygienic around you, you can bathe them once in a while. Interestingly, because they have short and wiry hair, shedding is nothing for you to worry about.
Obesity is not common
At this time and age, obesity is a common health problem, not only for the human beings but also to the dogs. In spite of being common, it is dangerous. Obesity in some dog breeds affects knees leading to surgery. However, Staffordshire bull terrier knows everything concerning staffies and will tell you that staffies are not susceptible to obesity. They are active and tend to run around the yard or when playing with your children which make them to cut the excess fat in their bodies. Amazingly, they have a fast metabolism capable of keeping them trim. Their masculine nature makes it difficult for them to pack on unnecessary pounds in their bodies. The only thing you need to do as staffy owners will advise is to take your dog for exercise and avoid overfeeding them, and you will never complain of heavyweight.
They have a tendency to wander
When it comes to wandering, staffies are no exception from other dog breeds. They are naturally curious. Anything unusual within its sight triggers emotions making them to act. For instance, if your staffy sees a rabbit hopping through the yard, he will chase after it. Besides, when they see a stranger walking around the neighborhood, they are likely to run after them to get to know them. Given that curiosity killed the cat, a Staffordshire bull terrier owner will tell you to keep your dog on a leash to avoid troubles.
Some people keep dogs because they were advised to do so by their friends or family members, saw one from their neighborhood and liked him, or due to pressure from their children. Keeping a dog because you were forced to is not good because it does not bring the bond between you and your dog. Adopting a dog is a decision that one makes, and it should come from the heart so that you can benefit from the affectionate associated with pets. Love for dogs also comes in knowing the essential characteristics of what you want. If you’ve never had a staffy, you cannot understand his characteristics unless you ask. That’s why a staffy owner will tell you that staffies are average dogs that stand between 1ft 2inches to 1ft 4 inches at the shoulder with 24-38 pounds as their average weight. They have a powerful stance and are muscular and strong. Their coats come in different solid colors are they are generally easy to train.
They have strong jaws
Not unless you are a staffy owner, you can never understand that staffies have powerful jaws. They are carnivores and love meat just like any other dog breed, but Staffordshire bull terrier will tell you how important it is for you dog to chew. Chewing is one of their hobbies especially as puppies, and therefore, you should provide them with something to chew such as chew toys and plenty of bones. Providing them with something to chew does not only satisfy their chewing urges but also keeps the condition of your furniture safe. This is because failure to provide something to chew makes them to chew anything even if it’s your favorite furniture.
They have accommodative temperament
If you ask many dog owners, they will be quick to say that the reason they prefer a certain breed of dog over others is temperament. Everyone, of course, wants an accommodative and cheerful dog. Today, many people associate Staffordshire bull terrier with his history as a fighter, but a staffy owner will tell you otherwise. They will be quick to tell you that staffies are very accommodative and require two things in life. One, close human contact and two, a chance to play. He has a close and cordial relationship with people such as that all he wants is to be close to you but not exiled to the yard. Again, he is athletic and likes to have a walk and play around over being stuck inside the entire day. Staffy owners have succeeded in keeping these dogs because they share their time both inside and out. Staffies are well-behaved, and you can notice their mild temperament as long as they’re given body and mind exercise. A staffy owner will tell you to give your dog at least one hour of vigorous exercise every day.
Staffordshire bull terrier has a long life expectancy
Life expectancy is vital when looking for dog breed to adopt, as you don’t need a dog with short life expectancy and the one that you’ll part ways soon after establishing a cordial relationship with. Staffy owners understand that staffies have a long life expectancy that ranges between 12 to 14 years but must be under good care and proper nutrition.
Feeding and nutrition
Dating back in the history of Staffordshire bull terrier, they were originally meant for fighting. Even though staffy owners don’t adopt them for fighting, their ancestry must be respected by proper feeding that meets their nutritional needs. You should feed your staffy with high protein food because they are naturally energetic and need extra nutrient. However, regardless of whether you feed your dog wet or dry food, always ensure he has access to fresh and clean water. They are fed twice a day which should be a small breakfast and a larger meal in the evening. The feeding guide for an adult staffy is as follows;
- Dogs weighing 4kg should have 67-78g of meal a day
- Dogs weighing 5kg should have 79-92g of meal a day
- Dogs weighing 6kg should have 91-105g of meal a day
- Dogs weighing 7kg should have 102-118g of meal a day
They are prone to diseases
Staffordshire bull terriers, just like any other dog breeds are prone to illnesses. Diseases are common in day to day life because even human beings are prone to sickness. When human beings get sick, they consult a doctor. Similarly, if your dog shows any sign of sickness, you should see a vet without delay. Staffies are known to suffer from various acquired and hereditary health issues, and not unless you keep one or more staffies, you can never understand. The most common health disorders are; hereditary cataracts (HC), L-2 hydroxyglutaric aciduria (L2HGA), distichiasis, Persistent Hyperplastic Primary Vitreous (PHPV), posterior polar subcapsular cataract (PPSC), and mastocytoma. Understanding these health disorders helps the owner to know their signs and symptoms and take preventive measures.
The cost of keeping Staffordshire bull terrier
It’s only a staffy owner who understands that keeping a staffy is not a walk in the park. After deciding to adopt one, you must be prepared to empty your bank accounts. A pedigree staffy puppy will cost you anything from £250 to over £1000. As stated, staffies originated from England, but you’ll be surprised on hearing that a basic insurance cover for a 3-year old staffy is £21 and £47.30 for a lifetime policy every month. You will also spend between £30 to £40 every month on buying the best quality dog food regardless of whether they are wet or dry. Adding to this list of expenses is the veterinary cost that includes initial vaccinations, neutering or spaying during the right time, and annual health checks. Veterinary costs add up to more than £800 a year. In the US, buying a puppy costs $1500 to $2000. Unless you are Staffordshire bull terrier owner, you can never understand the financial burden associated with keeping a staffy.
Staffordshire bull terrier is an intelligent dog full of stability and confidence. They at times seem to be stubborn, but under the right hands and correct training, they catch up well and learn very fast. They are intelligent and will always test how far they can go during training, and therefore, it’s only the owners who understand this and manages the condition by matching their intelligence with the correct amount of training. They also should be handled with firm but gentle hands. It’s not easy to get your dig focus especially at a tender age, but once they get your attention, they will listen to you and learn. Staffy owners will tell you how important it is to train your dog early before they pick any bad habit that could e challenging to correct when they already of age.
They are not excessive barkers
One of the reasons to adopt a dog is to guard you and your properties when you are not around and when you retire to bed. Some dog breeds are well known for barking excessively even when they should not. This makes it almost impossible for the owners to notice any intruder within their premise or any strange animal in the backyard. A Staffordshire bull terrier owner understands that staffies are well-behaved dogs that bark only when necessary. They will always be quick to let you know when something is amiss.
They are highly adaptable
Many people are afraid of adopting a dog because they are afraid that the dog will not adapt to the new environment. Even though this could be true, a staffy owner understands that staffies are highly adaptable. If you want to bring one from rural areas to your urban home, don’t panic as he will adapt with no time. The only thing he needs is plenty of mental stimulation, daily exercise, and your company.
They have an average prey drive
Having small animals in your homestead is something to worry about when it comes to deciding on adopting a dog. There are various breeds of dogs with a strong prey drive such that when left for few minutes with other animals, they turn them into meat. However, Staffordshire bull terrier understands that a staffy is accommodative, home-oriented, and friendly to strange animals and people. However, based on their origin, some staffies possess strong prey drives that give you a reason not to allow them to run freely because they could attack small animals especially other dog breeds.
They are prone to separation anxiety
Closing our list of 20 things only Staffordshire Bull Terrier owners would understand is something hard to notice especially if used to other hypoactive dogs. As stated, staffies are people-oriented. Their lives revolve around people. Unless you are a staffy owner, you can never understand that staffies suffer from separation anxiety especially when left alone for a long time. This condition makes your dog to become destructive and use their powerful jaws to damage properties such as furniture, as a way of expressing and relieving stress.