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What exactly is a “Pitbull”?

What exactly is a “Pitbull”?

I remember seeing a post on FB a couple of years ago
talking about “Pitbulls”, and that it is a general term used for about 6
different breeds of dogs that are in the “bully” spectrum, though there is
not an actual “Pitbull” breed.

So, one of the breeds that I am going to focus on
today that is labeled as a “Pitbull” is the:

 American Staffordshire Terrier

Personality is Smart, Confident, Good-natured 

The American Staffordshire Terrier was officially recognized
by the AKC in 1936, it has 18 colors and 9 markings

The
following information is from the AKC

 

Official Standard of the American
Staffordshire Terrier

 

General Impression: The American Staffordshire Terrier should give the
impression of great strength for his size, a well put-together dog, muscular,
but agile and graceful, keenly alive to his surroundings. He should be stocky,
not long-legged or racy in outline. His courage is proverbial.

Head: Medium length, deep through, broad skull, very pronounced
cheek muscles, distinct stop; and ears are set high. Ears
Cropped or uncropped, the latter preferred. Uncropped ears should be short and
held rose or half prick. Full drop to be penalized. Eyes – Dark
and round, low down in skull and set far apart. No pink eyelids. Muzzle
Medium length, rounded on upper side to fall away abruptly below eyes. Jaws well
defined. Underjaw to be strong and have biting power. Lips close and even, no
looseness. Upper teeth to meet tightly outside lower teeth in front. Nose
definitely black.

Neck: Heavy, slightly arched, tapering from shoulders to back
of skull. No looseness of skin. Medium length.

Shoulders: Strong
and muscular with blades wide and sloping.

Back: Fairly
short. Slight sloping from withers to rump with gentle short slope at rump to
base of tail. Loins slightly tucked.

Body: Well-sprung ribs, deep in rear. All ribs close together.
Forelegs set rather wide apart to permit chest development. Chest deep and
broad.

 

 Tail:
Short in comparison to size, low set, tapering to a fine point; not curled
or held over back. Not docked.

Legs: The front
legs should be straight, large or round bones, pastern upright. No semblance of
bend in front. Hindquarters well-muscled, let down at hocks, turning neither in
nor out. Feet of moderate size, well-arched and compact. Gait must be springy
but without roll or pace.

Coat: Short,
close, stiff to the touch, and glossy.

Color: Any
color, solid, parti, or patched is permissible, but all white, more than 80 per
cent white, black and tan, and liver not to be encouraged.

Size: Height and weight should be in proportion. A height of
about 18 to 19 inches at shoulders for the male and 17 to 18 inches for the
female is to be considered preferable.

Faults: Faults
to be penalized are: Dudley nose, light or pink eyes, tail too long or badly
carried, undershot or overshot mouths.

Approved June 10, 1936

 

Source: http://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/american-staffordshire-terrier/

The BEST dog breed ever!

The American Pit Bull

Probably
one of the most-loved and most-feared dog in America.

Up until about 2009, I was a
Doberman Pinscher fan.  My first Dob was
a stray that my mom took in when I was a senior in high school in 1984.  I remember hearing people talk about Doberman
Pinscher’s (always negative talk about how vicious the breed was), which
influenced my opinions until that first Dob in 1984.  I fell in love with Doberman Pinscher
breed.  As time went on, my first Dob
developed bone cancer.  Before she
passed, I had gotten a puppy, and had the two for a short time.  When my 2nd Dob was one year old,
she developed epilepsy.  Medicine helped
control her seizures, but the disease got the best of her, and only 4 years
old, I had to put her to sleep.  Epilepsy
destroyed her central nervous system. 
Unfortunately, I didn’t have another dog to comfort me with my grieving,
so I ended up getting my 3rd Dob puppy in 1999.  That little puppy was such a great companion
for the next ten years.  (Due to health
issues, I had to put this Dob down in 2010. 
Afterwards, I found out that she had Cardiomyopathy (congestive heart
failure).

In 2009, I was working as a NCLB tutor for local school
kids, and one of my students ended up getting a pit-bull puppy.  Every time I went to the student’s house, I
would also spend time with this puppy.  This
puppy was always so happy to see me every time, that I would tell the student’s
mom that if she ever wanted/needed to get rid of the puppy, to let me
know.  Well, I ended up getting this
puppy.  I was told by the mom that the
puppy was actually an American Staffordshire Terrier.

Over the last 8 years, I have learned a lot about Pit
bulls – (did you know that pit-bull is a general term and that there are about
6 different classifications), and that 100 years ago, the pit-bull was known as
“The Nanny Dog”.  I found out that my
little (she is only 35 pounds) girl is “the best” dog that I have ever had in
my life.

I found the following article/information from www.dogbreedinfo.com/americanpitbull.htm
to be very informative!

DESCRIPTION

The Pit Bull immediately strikes one as being a dog of
power, passion and undying willingness. The brick-like head, which is
especially broad between the cheeks (to house the powerful jaws), is carried
upon a thickly muscled, well-defined neck. The neck runs into a deep, thick,
well-sprung chest. The American Pit Bull is a very muscular, stocky, yet agile
dog that is extremely strong for his size. The tail tapers to a point. The ears
are generally cropped, though this is optional. Docked tails are not accepted
by the UKC or the ADBA. The eyes are round. Both the ADBA and the UKC do not
accept blue eyes or the coat color merle. The American Pit-bull Registry does
accept a merle coat. The teeth should form a scissors bite. Its coat is made up
of thick, short, shiny hair. All colors are admissible. Shades of brown to red
with a matching red/brown nose are referred to as red-nose Pit Bulls. Shades of
gray with a matching gray nose are referred to as blue-nose Pit Bulls.

Temperament

The American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT)
has a strong desire to please. The APBT has evoked more human emotional,
rational and irrational response than any other breed that exists today. By no
means are these dogs’ people-haters or people-eaters. Their natural aggressive
tendencies are toward other dogs and animals, not people. However if they are
properly socialized
with a firm, but calm, confident, consistent pack leader,
they will not even be aggressive with them. The American Pit Bull Terrier is a
good-natured, amusing, extremely loyal and affectionate family pet that is good
with children and adults. Almost always obedient, it is always eager to please
its master. It is an extremely courageous and intelligent guard dog that is
very full of vitality. Highly protective of his owners and the owner’s
property, it will fight an enemy to the death. It is usually very friendly, but
has an uncanny ability to know when it needs to protect and when everything is
okay. The American Pit Bull Terrier can be willful with meek owners and needs a
firm hand. They are generally okay with other pets if they are raised with them
from puppyhood. They are very friendly, but not recommended for most
people, because most people do not understand how to properly raise and
treat a dog
. Problems arise when one does not understand natural dog
behavior
, seeing the dog as having human emotions,
and ends up with a dog who thinks he is the boss of the house. For a smaller,
not as powerful dog, people can sometimes get away with this, however, for a
powerful breed, one really needs to understand and follow this concept of
keeping a dog. An excellent guide to learning how to properly treat a dog is
the Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan (recommended to all dog owners regardless
of the breed they own). Excellent with children in the family, they have a high
pain tolerance and will happily put up with rough child play. As with any
breed, they should not be left alone with unfamiliar children. Used as
all-around working farm dogs, they were referred to as “the poor man’s
horse.” Later they were used as fighting dogs; the powerful American Pit
Bull may go for the throat of strange dogs. A minimum of training, along with the proper amount of
exercise
and a firm pack leader, will produce a tranquil, obedient dog. Socialize very
thoroughly when young to combat aggressive tendencies and be sure to keep the
dog under control when other dogs are present. Teach this dog respect for
humans by not allowing it to jump up and
not allowing it to enter doorways first. The humans must make the dog heel beside or behind
them when walking
. It has given outstanding results as a guardian of
property, but is at the same time esteemed as a companion dog. The objective in
training this dog is to achieve
pack leader status
. It is a natural instinct for a dog to have an order in its pack. When we humans live with dogs,
we become their pack. The entire pack cooperates under a single leader; lines
are clearly defined and rules are set. You and all other humans MUST be higher
up in the order than the dog. That is the only way your relationship can be a
success. When properly trained and socialized, this is a very good dog and
a great family companion. Unfortunately, some choose to promote the fighting
instinct in the breed, giving it a bad name. If you would like to witness what
a well-balanced Pit-bull is like, tune into the Dog Whisperer and check out
Daddy and Junior along with the rest of Cesar’s pack of Pits. Daddy has since
passed on,  however there are still many
episodes that air with him. R.I.P. Daddy.

 

Source: www.dogbreedinfo.com/americanpitbull.htm

Pets and Thunderstorms, Fireworks, and Stress

This is a very interesting article.  Thunderstorms can be very stressful for our four legged family members.  Fireworks (Fourth of July) can also be very stressful.

Caring about our fur-children is very important, and learning different methods of keeping them calm during Thunderstorms, fireworks, crowds, parties, is something we should all remember.

It’s interesting…. my lil girl (35 pound American Staffordshire Terrier aka Pitbull) recently has gotten nervous with thunderstorms, however last week during July 4th fireworks being set off my my neighbors, she was calm.  I know many friends with dogs though that the fireworks caused a lot of stress for their furry, four legged family members.

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Thunderstorms & Lost Pets

We had a huge thunderstorm last night here in our corner of the Pacific NW. Like Texas-size huge. Our cats deal with it better than our dog, Saffron. We gave her the valerian-based calming supplement we use (RelaxSaver), put her in her awesome Th – source