Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier: Everything You Need to Know!

Not many dog owners can handle the tenaciousness, energy, and intelligence of a Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier. Yet, with the proper training, this dog breed could end up being one of the most loveable dogs you’ve ever owned. 

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier was recognized as a breed by the American Kennel Club in 1974 and proves to be a loyal companion. 

What is a Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier?

Brindle Staffordshire Terrier
Though intimidating at first glance, these dogs are affectionate family pets

The Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier is a breed that’s been around since the 19th Century when they were being raised in Britain as small fighting dogs. This history may have contributed to their somewhat unfair reputation as dangerous animals, similar to pit bulls, but Staffordshire Bull Terriers are a loving and loyal breed. 

In fact, the Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier is so loyal to its owners that they won’t like being away from you for long periods. This breed suffers from separation anxiety, so they don’t do well with families that spend a lot of time away from home.

A “Staffie,” as they’re affectionately called, needs an interactional family. 

When you add a Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier to your family, you’re adding a loyal companion who brings intelligence, courage, and tenacity to your home.

They’re one of the most popular Brindle dogs. They love company and can be found to hop up on your lap and cuddle for extra attention. 

Unfortunately, this misguided reputation as a fighting dog that has fallen on the Staffordshire Bull Terrier has caused them to be banned in certain areas of the country and around the world.

Some homeowner’s insurance policies also restrict the owning of this breed, so it’s important to check the fine print before you begin the adoption or purchasing process. 

Read More: Why Are Staffies Always in Shelters? See why so many owners abandon their Staffies!

Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier Colors and Coat Types

The brindle aspect of this pet refers to the color of the coat. Any shade of brindle or any shade of Brindle with White is recognized by the AKC, and Staffordshire Bull Terriers can be seen with red, white, black, blue, or fawn colorings. The Brindle aspect usually sports brindle markings that are dark on the backdrop of the dog’s coat. 

If you’re only interested in a purebred Staffordshire Bull Terrier, it’s important to note that the AKC disqualifies black and tan or liver-colored dogs from their recognition. No matter the color and markings, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier has a short, smooth coat that needs minimal grooming. 

You simply bathe them when they’re dirty, which is infrequent. 

Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terriers are easy to spot, with their smaller size, short coat, broad head, and muscular body. They resemble other bully breeds, yet have a distinctly smaller size and ear shape that sets them apart from the American Staffordshire Terrier, Bull Terrier, and the American Pit Bull Terrier. 

Do They Shed?

A benefit to owning a Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier is that it barely sheds, maybe having one heavy shed once a year around summer. They do need weekly brushing to help remove any dead hair and keep their beautiful coat looking shiny, but that’s about it for coat grooming maintenance. Bathing may only be required every month to few months. 

Other grooming requirements for this breed are similar to other brindles, such as brushing your dog’s teeth a few times a week and getting nails trimmed once or twice a month.

Checking the ears for redness, inflammation, or dirt is also needed weekly to monitor your dog’s health since there are some health issues associated with this breed. 

Common Health Problems

Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terriers are a mostly healthy breed, but they are subject to similar health conditions that plague other breeds. The most common health problem with this breed is hip dysplasia. This is an inherited health condition where the thigh bone doesn’t fit correctly into the hip joint. 

According to the Staffordshire Bull Terrier Club of America, the build of this breed makes them predisposed to hip (and elbow) dysplasia. Over time, this could cause arthritis or lameness if not dealt with by a veterinarian.

In addition to hip and elbow dysplasia, other common health problems of the Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier include: 

  • Patellar Luxation
  • Hereditary Juvenile Cataracts in the eyes
  • L-2 Hydroxyglutaric Aciduria
  • Demodectic Mange
  • Atopic Dermatitis 

One way to possibly avoid these health issues is by purchasing your puppy from a reputable breeder who can show you the health records of your puppy’s parents. Although adopting a Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier is ideal in that you’re rescuing your dog, you may not know if your pup is prone to certain health conditions. 

How Can You Find One?

Purchasing a Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier from a reputable breeder is the best way to find out whether your puppy may have inherited any common health conditions.

However, this breed needs a loving home more often than other dogs and can be found pretty easily in rescue shelters. They aren’t the most popular dogs, and with their misrepresented reputation, you may find quite a bit of them to choose from in your local animal shelter.

Staffordshire Bull Terriers have a unique temperament and require a lot of activity, so many times owners adopt them without realizing the time and energy needed to keep this type of dog happy and healthy. 

What Kind of Temperament Do These Dogs Have?

At first glance, you may find the Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier to be commanding and even a bit scary due to its muscular, strong build, powerful stance, and intense glare. Yet, these dogs have a loving and sensitive temperament and will enjoy playing with your kids more than starting trouble. 

From its early years as a puppy, the Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier will have a loyal and loving temperament. They’re usually not shy with humans, even new ones, and are intelligent.

However, they’re also tenacious, stubborn, free thinkers who like to do things their own way. Therefore, training these dogs early is imperative. 

You may find your Staffordshire Bull Terrier’s temperament is enthusiastic and loving with humans, but this breed isn’t welcoming to other dogs. Early socialization is required because Staffie’s don’t mix well with other dogs and dog breeds.

Socialization training should start early, around 8 to 10 weeks of age, to ensure your pup will play well with others. 

Once you feel comfortable with your Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier’s socialization training, you may be able to take him to the local dog park as long as you keep your pup on a leash. You’ll need to be aware of the vigorous exercise needs of this highly energetic and athletic dog breed. 

What are Their Exercise Needs?

Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terriers are muscular, athletic, and energetic, so they’ll need an owner who has the time for daily walks. Unless you’re confident with your dog’s socialization, you should never walk a Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier without a leash since he could be aggressive around other dogs. 

These dogs are energetic and require daily exercise

Since daily exercise is needed, a home with a secure, fenced-in yard is perfect for the Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier. That way, you can simply open the door and let this strong, energetic dog run around the backyard. Just be careful on hot days because Staffordshire Bull Terriers don’t handle heat well and are prone to overheating. 

Daily walks, playtime, and other forms of exercise are imperative for Staffordshire Bull Terriers, but you should always have fresh drinking water handy in hot or humid climates. Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terriers have even been known to love playing in the water, so a kiddie pool could be perfect for lounging outside on hot days. 

That said, their short and stocky build makes swimming difficult, so you’ll want to monitor these dogs in deeper pools. Staffordshire Bull Terriers are also vigorous diggers, so you may need to reinforce the bottom of your fence with concrete, chicken wire, or wooden panels to ensure your pet won’t dig underneath the fence. 

Speaking of fences, a purebred Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier may have no problem scaling your six-foot backyard fence! They’re strong, compact dogs who can leap incredible heights and should be monitored in the backyard if the fence isn’t too high. 

If your Staffie doesn’t get the required amount of exercise, he will more than likely become destructive in the home. These dogs have strong jaws that can easily rip through shoes and furniture. A common amount of exercise needed is usually 2 or 3 walks or playtimes a day that can range from half an hour to 1 hour. 

Do They Make Good Pets for First-Time Dog Owners?

Because the Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier needs quite a bit of daily activity, a first-time dog owner who works a lot or a family that isn’t home all day wouldn’t work well for this dog breed.

This breed is also not for the timid or faint of heart. That is, the Staffie needs a confident dog owner who can handle its strength and stubbornness.

Similar to the Pit Bull, Brindle Staffords love to chew on anything and everything and have strong jaws. Therefore, new dog owners will need to provide their Staffie with durable, tough chew toys early.

They also may not do well with owners who have other pets, including cats and other dogs, even with the proper socialization and training. 

That being said, Brindle Staffords are some of the most loveable breeds towards their owners and are trustworthy. They’re the perfect people dog and can be found most days lying on the couch next to their beloved owner.

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is definitely a companion dog and will suffer from separation anxiety if left alone for a long period of time. 

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier will more than likely work better with an experienced dog owner who has the time needed to expend this active dog’s energy and socialize him with consistent training so that he can be acclimated with other animals.

That way, you’ll have a happy, faithful member of the family who doesn’t destroy the home with chewing and digging. 

Are They Good With Children?

The Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier is named the “nanny dog” for a reason, as they have a wonderful sense of patience with children. This doesn’t mean he’ll double as a babysitter since Staffords may not know their own strength. Yet, you’ll find that this dog is patient and gentle with kids and would make for a wonderful family pet.

Lifespan12-14 years
Weight24-38 pounds
Height14-16 inches
Suitable ForExperienced dog owners, Protection, Families
Grooming RequirementsMinimal brushing and bathing
Health ConcernsHip and elbow dysplasia, patellar luxation, hereditary juvenile, Cataracts in the eyes, L-2 hydroxyglutaric aciduria, demodectic mange, atopic dermatitis
TemperamentsLoyal, intelligent, gentle, stubborn


As previously discussed, the Brindle Staffordshire Bull Terrier may be banned or restricted in your city or county. It also may be restricted by your homeowner’s insurance. Therefore, it’s important to research the area in which you live and your insurance policies before committing to adopting this loyal member of your family.

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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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