Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier (Facts & Guide)

During the 20th century, the American Staffordshire Terrier was commonly referred to as the all-American pet. Otherwise known as the “AmStaff,” this brindled beauty is a sturdy and loving dog breed.

The American Staffordshire Terrier was originally bred for hunting vermin and for farm work, which is how this dog developed its strength and spirit. The Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier makes for a wonderful family pet, as they can be affectionate and social even towards strangers.

Its notable features are its stocky and wide head, along with its rear folding ears that are usually short.

What Is A Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier?

The American Staffordshire Terrier is related to the Pit Bull
This breed shares the same roots as the Pit Bull Terrier.

The breed’s history is worth spotlighting. It shares the same roots as the Pit Bull Terrier, which was brought from Great Britain to America and mixed with bulldogs to create a less aggressive, but hard-working animal.

While this dog’s muscular stature is impressive, the breed remains a sociable and respectable companion.

The brindle coat presents a light tiger-stripe up its chest and neck, with more subtle darker shades flowing around the rest of the coat. AmStaffs are sometimes confused with the smaller, British Staffordshire Bull Terrier or with the Pit Bull.

For more on the beautiful and unique brindle coat, check out our guide to the best brindle dog breeds!

Brindle Coat Types and Grooming Requirements

Amstaffs come in 7 brindle variations
Amstaffs come in 7 eye-catching brindle color variations.

The AmStaff’s Brindle coat comes in seven variations that are recognized by the American Kennel Club.

They include:

  • Blue Brindle
  • Brown Brindle
  • Fawn Brindle
  • Red Brindle
  • Black Brindle
  • Liver Brindle
  • Blue Fawn Brindle

The brindle coat on the AmStaff is tiger-striped, with a brown and blackened background on the remaining coat. It has a number of variations that present an interesting, tortoiseshell pattern, with a lighter stripe flowing up its chest.

In regards to grooming, caring for the short coat of the AmStaff is relatively easy. Weekly brushing with a soft-bristle brush will help keep this dog’s coat healthy. A bath for messier events is also recommended. This way, the pup will avoid developing an all too familiar musky scent.

Brindle American Staffordshire Cost

These dogs are not difficult to come by and can be commonly found in animal shelters available for adoption or for purchase from breeders.

Adopting a rescue can cost several hundred dollars, but expect to pay around $2,000 if you plan to purchase your AmStaff from a breeder. Show-quality dogs can sometimes cost even double that price.

Where to Find a Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier

Variations of the Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier are commonly found amongst breeders and local adoption centers. There is a high variety of colors recognized by the AKC, which offers breeder reference checks.

We recommend communicating openly with breeders to understand how they respect and care for their litters. It should be possible to ask for information on the health history of the breeding pairs, as well.

Common Health Problems and Lifespan

Amstaffs have a lifespan of up to 16 years
American Staffordshire Terriers can live up to 16 years when given the proper care.

According to PetMD, the American Staffordshire Terrier may develop minor health problems in its lifespan.

These include:

  • Elbow dysplasia
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Osteoarthritis

While ailments commonly develop in old age, we recommend introducing regular exercise after the breed is at least one year old to encourage healthy development.

Activities that are low-pressure are great for dog joints, and potential owners should consider practicing these exercises with their American Staffordshire Terriers. 

In terms of lifespan, the AmStaff is expected to live approximately 12 to 16 years with adequate care. Low-stress exercise and regular check-ups for common health concerns will ensure they stay healthy during their retirement years.

Temperament and Personality Characteristics

Amstaffs can be standoffish
Amstaffs have a tendency to show aggression, but with adequate training, this trait can be harnessed.

Two qualities the AmStaff Terrier is known for are their playful and hard-working attitudes. They are affectionate to strangers and are generally fine with children. 

However, should a combative animal take a stance towards them, this breed of Terrier will show similar aggression. First-time owners should be aware of this and take measures to ensure they can handle less friendly encounters.

While this dog may look imposing, it will show an extreme amount of affection towards its owners. There is no question that with adequate training, the headstrong, confident, and good-natured AmStaff won’t leave its owner’s side.

Exercise Needs of the American Staffordshire Terrier

The breed’s physical and psychological health requires key maintenance. This includes extended, challenging exercise routines.

Below is a description of safe and enjoyable activities to engage in:

  • Physical exercise: The American Staffordshire Terrier will make an excellent gym partner. Playing chase, tug of war, and using a “dowel rod” will keep them busy for hours.
  • Obstacles and agility platforms: These social exercises are highly recommended for this breed. Dog parks often contain them, and having other animals around is an excellent addition for the AmStaff, which is quite the socialite.
  • Water games: We highly recommend taking this natural swimmer to a lake, pool, or water hole. Of course, training is a must beforehand to ensure all swimmers are safe and happy during this excursion.

These dogs are smart, athletic, sociable, and thrive on physically complex activities.

Is This Breed Good for First-Time Dog Owners?

Brindle Amstaffs come in various patterns
Though Amstaffs aren’t recommended for beginners, they can make great companions for experienced owners.

It’s difficult to recommend this breed for first-time owners for several reasons. The American Staffordshire Terrier is commonly associated (and closely related) to the American Pitbull. Therefore, problems with public perception and potential aggression from the dog will keep newcomers at distances.

It’s common knowledge amongst seasoned dog owners that proper training and good ownership are most important when it comes to these types of dogs. However, some people are still standoffish when it comes to these large, beefy, bully breeds. 

Additionally, raising and training this animal requires extra socialization and a highly confident owner to match this dog’s equally strong will. The AmStaff is known for a bit of destructiveness and rowdy behavior when young and when bored. We highly recommend an experienced pet owner care for them.

About Owning a Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier

Brindle American Staffordshire Terrier
When given the proper training and socialization, these dogs can be great for families.

Below, we’ve curated a list of the pros and cons of caring for an American Staffordshire Terrier.

Advantages of this breed:

  • Fits in well with an active household and does well with children
  • Easy to groom and train
  • Sociable with strangers
  • Courageous and affectionate temperament 

Drawbacks of this breed:

  • Can be confrontational in the presence of unruly pets
  • If they develop boredom, they can become rowdy and destructive
  • Requires an equally energetic and confident caregiver

American Staffordshire Terrier traits and key facts at a glance:

Lifespan12 – 16 years
Weight50 – 80 pounds
Height17 – 19 inches
Suitable ForActive families, couples, singles, children
Grooming RequirementsWeekly brushing
Health ConcernsThyroid, hip, and joint concerns
TemperamentLoyal, loving, energetic, playful, social

While the Brindle AmStaff is less popular than it once was decades ago, it remains the compact and personable animal it’s always been. The breed is dedicated and loyal, making it a great fit into an active family that will keep it entertained.

Confident caregivers should provide their AmStaff with training at an early age. If not, expect a rambunctious dog with attitude and aggression. That’s why having an armory of toys and nearby adventures are must-haves.

The AmStaff is a privilege to own, and it will treat you wonderfully if you provide it with the great care it deserves.

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Jesse Hopping, CCDT

Jesse is a natural-born dog-lover certified dog trainer (CCDT), dog foster, and former volunteer at Richmond SPCA and surrounding dog shelters for over 10 years. Her pack includes a Bernedoodle and 3 Boston Terriers. She’s sipping caramel coffee and watching her pack play in the sun when she’s not writing blogs. Jesse has her Certified Dog Trainer designation from CATCH Canine Trainers Academy since 2018 and and majored in English from the University of Virginia.

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