American Staffordshire Terrier (Amstaff)

American Staffordshire Terrier

American Staffordshire terrier, often called Amstaff , is a strong, brave and loyal breed. Despite their rugged exterior, these dogs are known for their gentle and loving nature, especially towards their families.


The American Staffordshire Terrier originated in 19th century Britain, where bulldogs and terriers were crossed to create a strong, fast dog for sports such as bull and bear baiting. After these sports were banned, these dogs were brought to the United States where they evolved into two distinct breeds: the American Staffordshire Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier.


These medium-sized dogs have a height at the withers that varies between 43 to 48 cm for males, and 41 to 46 cm for females. Their weight is between 18 to 27 kg for males and 15 to 24 kg for females.

Appearance and Coat

The American Staffordshire Terrier is a muscular and powerful dog with a broad head and short ears. They have a short, shiny coat that can come in a variety of colors and patterns.

How much fur does an American Staffordshire Terrier shed?

Amstaffs shed moderately, but their short coats require minimal maintenance. Regular brushing can help minimize shedding and keep the coat healthy.

How much exercise does an American Staffordshire Terrier require?

As an active and muscular breed, the American Staffordshire Terrier requires a lot of exercise. At least one hour of activity each day is necessary to keep these dogs happy and healthy. This exercise can include long walks, jogging, swimming, or playing in a safe and fenced area. Their strong bodies and sharp minds also make them excellent at dog sports such as agility, obedience and tug of war.

Is the American Staffordshire Terrier family friendly?

Despite their strong appearance, Amstaffs are known to be very loving and family oriented dogs. They are loyal, protective and often patient with children. However, due to their size and strength, interactions between Amstaffs and small children may need to be supervised, but this is of course individualized from individual to individual.

Acquiring an American Staffordshire Terrier

Before getting an Amstaff, you should be sure that you can meet their physical and mental needs. These dogs require daily exercise and mental stimulation to prevent problematic behavior. Although they are known to be loving and friendly, they can also be reserved with strangers, so early and consistent socialization and training are necessary.

Despite their sometimes negative reputation, Amstaffs can be great pets for the right owner. They are loving, loyal and courageous dogs that can become wonderful members of the family with the right training, socialization and love.

The difference between the American Staffordshire Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier

There are two main types of Staffordshire Terrier: the American Staffordshire Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier. These two breeds differ in both size and origin, despite both being descended from the same early parent breeds.

American Staffordshire Terrier

American Staffordshire Terrier, also known as Amstaff, is the larger of the two breeds. These dogs usually stand between 43 to 48 cm in height at the withers and weigh between 18 to 27 kg. They are known for their muscular build, broad head and strong jaws.

Originally, the Amstaff was developed in the United States from dogs imported from Great Britain. Americans preferred a larger dog, so the breed became larger over time. Today, the Amstaff is considered more versatile than its British cousin, used in everything from dog fighting to farm dog and even search and rescue.

Staffordshire Bull Terrier

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Staffie, is the smaller of the two breeds, with a height varying between 35 to 40 cm and a weight between 11 to 17 kg. Despite their smaller size, Staffies are still very strong and muscular dogs.

Staffordshire Bull Terriers were developed in Great Britain and were originally intended for bull and bear herding, and later for dog fighting. Despite this combative history, Staffies are known to be incredibly affectionate with people, and are even nicknamed the "baby watchdog" due to their patience and love of children.

Both of these breeds are known to be loyal, brave and loving towards their families, but they are also high energy and require a lot of exercise. They can be reserved around strangers and other dogs, so early socialization and training is important.


Size : As I mentioned before, the most obvious difference is the size. Amstaffs are generally larger and heavier than Staffies. An adult Amstaff weighs between 18 to 27 kg, while a Staffie usually weighs between 11 to 17 kg.

Head and face : Both breeds have broad heads and strong jaws, but there are some distinct differences. Amstaffs often have a more pronounced stop (the transition between the forehead and the nose) and their nose is usually wider and more square. Staffies have a more distinct "chewing gum smile", which is unique to the breed.

Ears: The ears can also differ. Staffies usually have "rose ears", which fold back at the base and stand up at the tips. Amstaffs often have semi-erect or fully erect ears, depending on whether they are cupped or not. However, it should be noted that ear cupping is prohibited in many countries, including Sweden.

Coat : Both breeds have short, shiny coats, but Amstaffs come in a greater variety of colors and patterns than Staffies.

these are general observations, and individuals within each breed can vary considerably. In addition, both breeds have a wide range of individual personalities, making each dog unique!

How many American Staffordshire terriers are there in Sweden?

In Sweden, there are 10067 registered American Staffordshire terriers as of 2022-12-31.