Dog Breed

American Pit Bull Terrier

Confidence KingGuard Dog
Primary image of American Pit Bull Terrier dog breed
Full Name
American Pit Bull Terrier
Alternate Names
Pit Bull, APBT, Pitty
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Life Span
10 - 15 years years
Weight
40 - 100 pounds
Description

More commonly referred to simply as the "pit bull" - this is a very strong willed dog, that has high energy, and is quite intense. They need an alpha-type owner, ideally with previous dog ownership experience.

The pit bull is a very intelligent breed, and likes to feel they have a job to do. By default, they will take on guarding their home and family as their "job". They are very loyal, brave, and protective of their family. If they are trained well, and have a disciplined upbringing, they can be a great dog. However, they are the dog breed which accounts for more bites and attacks that lead to hospital visits, than any other, so owning a pit bull comes with great responsibility.

The American Pit Bull Terrier, is not recognized by the AKC as a purebred, but is recognized by the UKC. One of the reasons it is not recognized by the AKC is because there is a huge range in both weights, colors, and body types for APBTs. Overall the pit bull is a healthy dog, but irresponsible breeding in the last decade or so has led to many health problems. They are oftentimes bred purely for mass, and rare color variations, rather than health and temperament.

Origin
United States of America
Bred For
Fighting
Attachments
    Family Considerations
    Child Friendly

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier good with children? Nearly all dogs enjoy playing with small children, but some can play too rough, or be a bit careless. In some cases dogs can get jealous of small children, or try and "herd" them due to their natural instincts.

    Stranger Friendly

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier friendly with strangers? Getting a dog that is friendly with people really depends on what your lifestyle is. Dogs who are more cautious with strangers oftentimes make good guard dogs, which can be a great fit for some owners. If you are social, live in the city, or frequently have guests over, you may want to consider getting a stranger friendly dog.

    Dog Friendly

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier friendly with other dogs? Of course this is particularly important if you already have another dog at home. However, it's an important factor to consider as well if you plan on frequently going to the dog park. Otherwise, even a dog who is not automatically friendly with other dogs can be an excellent fit, as they can still be affectionate with their human family.

    Likes to Cuddle

    Does the American Pit Bull Terrier like to cuddle? All dogs want love, but they have different boundaries when it comes to physical affection. If you plan on frequently having a dog on your lap or pushed up against you, then you should consider whether this breed enjoys that.

    Playfulness

    Does the American Pit Bull Terrier like to play? All puppies are playful, but as adults certain dogs are more playful. If you have children, or otherwise want to keep your dog active with plenty of play, there are plenty of options of breeds who will be happy to play all day.

    Service Dog Ability

    Does the American Pit Bull Terrier make a good service dog? When looking to train a service dog it's important to consider how they were historically bred, and if their personality makes a good fit. A service dog must be smart, patient, and obsessed with pleasing their owner. Working dogs are a good fits since service dog 'work' gives them a feeling of accomplishment from doing a job.

    Overall Ease of Breed
    Ease for Novice

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier good for first time owners? Dogs that are good for first time owners are ones who are easy to train, and are eager to please their owner. Very large dogs, or dogs with very high energy may also not be the best for first time owners since it adds a layer of complexity.

    Training Potential

    How well can the American Pit Bull Terrier be trained? This rating is about the training potential of the American Pit Bull Terrier. Dogs with high training potential oftentimes are good service dogs, police dogs, and dog show competition dogs. This does not necessarily mean they are the easiest to train, since many will be very intelligent and demanding.

    Amount of Shedding

    Does the American Pit Bull Terrier shed a lot?

    Ease of Grooming

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier easy to groom?

    Exercise Need

    Does the American Pit Bull Terrier need a lot of exercise?

    Personality
    Intelligence

    How smart is the American Pit Bull Terrier?

    Amount of Barking

    How much does the American Pit Bull Terrier bark? Does the American Pit Bull Terrier bark too much? It depends on your lifestyle, and where you live. Dogs use barking to communicate, keep guard, and alert. A strong bark can be a good characteristic for guard dogs, or flock guardian dogs who need to be vocal.In apartment living you should consider getting a dog who is less vocal.

    Guard Dog Ability

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier a good guard dog?

    Tolerates Being Alone

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier good at staying alone? Is the American Pit Bull Terrier independent?

    Home and Environment Considerations
    Good for Apartment Living

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier a good apartment dog? Can the American Pit Bull Terrier live in an apartment without becoming frustrated or destructive? Typically people immediately consider the size of the dog, but energy level and historical habitat are also factors.

    Size

    How big is the American Pit Bull Terrier?

    Tolerates Heat

    How much does the American Pit Bull Terrier tolerate hot weather? When is it too hot for a American Pit Bull Terrier?

    Tolerates Cold

    How much does the American Pit Bull Terrier tolerate cold weather? When is it too cold for a American Pit Bull Terrier?

    Potential to Run Away

    Does the American Pit Bull Terrier try to run away? Some dogs have natural wanderlust and are escape artists... they will do everything to get out and explore.

    Physical Characteristics
    General Health

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier a healthy dog? The general health of a American Pit Bull Terrier should be measured not just by how many years they live, but how often they have health issues during their lives. It is important to know which health conditions your breed is prone to- hip problems, eye problems, bloating, and arthritis are all common dog health problems.

    Energy Level

    How energetic is the American Pit Bull Terrier? Is the American Pit Bull Terrier too energetic for your lifestyle?

    Amount of Drooling

    How much does the American Pit Bull Terrier drool?

    Prey Drive

    Does the American Pit Bull Terrier have a large prey drive? Does the American Pit Bull Terrier like to chase birds, cats, and other small animals? Prey drive can be bothersome at the park, but really an issue at home if you have small animals, since this comes as a natural instinct for dogs with high prey drive, to chase cats, birds, etc.

    Athleticism

    Is the American Pit Bull Terrier atheltic? Is the American Pit Bull Terrier fast and strong?

    The American Pit Bull Terrier is a purebred dog that belongs to the Bull Terrier sub group, which falls under the larger Terrier dog breed group.
    Terrier group: Anyone who has had a terrier knows that they come with a big personality. Across the Terrier dog group there is much variation, but they are all feisty, proud, and extremely loyal to their family. With this strong personality comes stubbornness, so they are not the easiest dog, especially for a first time dog owner. However, with training and a strong owner, they can be some of the most rewarding dogs- their strong personality is fun, active, and will always bring something new. Terriers were originally bred for hunting, exterminating small vermin, and home protection. Terriers are a healthy and athletic breed. Because of this they require a good amount of exercise.
    Bull Terrier sub-group: Bull Terriers are a funny dog breed. Bull Terriers have so much energy to the point that they can be described as intense, but they are friendly and always looking to have a good time. They are built like bowling balls, so sometimes with the combo of playfullness, intensity, and physicality can be too much for small children, despite their good intentions. On the other hand, they do love children and will be willing to play 24/7. Bull Terriers are extremely loyal and brave as well. They can be used as personal protection dogs, or guard dogs, but need to be well trained. Despite their goofiness, and deep bond and love they develop with their owners, they are not an ideal dog for a first time dog owner because of their huge personality. Certain breeds have been bred for fighting, so they have a certain level of aggression in their DNA. So just like any dog, early socialization with other people and dogs is crucial.

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