Staffordshire Bull Terrier Information
The Staffordshire bull terrier (aka Staffie) first came into existence in 17thcentury Staffordshire, England.
Ancestors of the breed were used for bull baiting (teasing bulls before slaughter as it was believed to tenderise the meat).
Once this was outlawed, dog fighting became popular and Bulldogs were crossbred with Terriers to form ’Staffies’ as fighting dogs.
Although they were known for their ferociousness and courage in the dog pits once blood sports became illegal they evolved as excellent family pets, being loyal, affectionate and exceptionally good with children.
Staffordshire Bull Terrier Temperament & Size
Hardy, medium sized, powerfully built dogs that are muscular all over.
They have a low maintenance smooth, short coat.
They prefer human company to the company of other dogs.
Staffordshire Bull Terrier Life Span & Health Problems
The life expectancy of a Staffordshire bull terrier is approximately 14 – 16 years. Generally they have a low susceptibility to illness; however they can be affected by certain conditions. Most can be avoided by genetic testing.
Common Illnesses include;
- Entropion – Excess eyelid tissue causing the eyelashes to turn inward and rub against the surface of the eye resulting in corneal ulceration.
- Distachiasis – Extra eyelashes at eyelid margin which can rub against the corneal surface.
- Hereditary Cataracts – Inherited condition causing early onset cataracts. It can progress to total blindness by 2-3 years.
- L2HGA (L-2-hydroxyglutaric aciduria) Condition affecting the nervous system. Signs usually become apparent at 6 – 12 months and include seizures, altered gait, muscle stiffness and altered behaviour.
- PHPV (Persistent Hyperplastic Primary Vitreous) Failure of certain intraocular structures causing mild to severe abnormalities which may lead to blindness.
- Hip Dysplasia – Genetic condition causing abnormalities in the development of the hip joint, which predisposed the breed to arthritis.