Types of Pitbulls: Everything You Need to Know

When we think of Pitbull dogs, we usually associate them with bulldog-terrier genetics. However, the only true and original Pitbull breed is the American Pitbull Terrier (APT).

Although the APT has many variations, such as the Red Nose and Blue Nose, there are also other breeds that share the same genetics but are not original Pitbulls.

In this article, we will explore these breeds in detail, discussing their characteristics and differences.

What are all the types of Pitbulls?

To be exact, there is only one type of original Pit bull, the American Pit bull Terrier.

However, it is also considered colloquially as a type of Pit bull by other breeds descending from the same bulldog terrier genetics as the bull type.

So we could consider that there are 5 types of Pit bull dogs:

  1. American Pit bull Terrier
  2. American Staffordshire Terrier
  3. Staffordshire bull terrier
  4. American Bully
  5. Bull Terrier

Let's look in detail at all the breeding lines of the authentic Pit bull and the characteristics of the different types of Pit bulls that exist today. Not all of them have the same physique and temperament, so it is important to get to know them well before adopting the most recommended one for you and your environment.

American Pitbull terrier (APBT)

Many people believe they have an authentic Pit bull when they do not, because a pure Pit bull must meet all of the breed's standards without exception. Let's see what the characteristics of the American Pit bull Terrier are:

  • An American Pit bull terrier should be of medium size and solid constitution, with a defined musculature and an athletic body. The body is longer than tall, mainly in the females, which are somewhat longer than the males.
  • The head of a true American Pit bull terrier should be of medium length, with a wide skull between the ears and flat, as well as a muzzle that should be wide and deep but shorter than the length of the skull.
  • Its eyes should be of medium-low insertion in the skull, rounded and well separated. A purebred APBT can have any eye color except blue, which is not valid in the breed standard, according to the United Kennel Club.
  • High-set ears, natural or cropped. Its tail should be a natural extension of the topline and taper towards the tip.
  • The coat of a pure American Pit bull terrier should be smooth, medium-short, close and somewhat stiff to the touch. Any color or combination of colors is permissible, except for blackbird (a coat with dilute pigment spots) and albino white (albino dogs).
  • The standard weight allowed in the American Pit bull terrier is between 35 lb and 60 lb for males, while the weight of females should be between 30 lb and 50 lb.
  • The size of a true American Pit bull Terrier is determined by the height at the withers (height at the withers is the measurement from the ground to the highest point on their shoulder blades) of 18 inches to 21 inches in males and 17 inches to 20 inches in females.
  • Their hindquarters should be strong and muscular with a moderately broad back. They should be in balance with the forequarters.

What is the temperament of the American Pit Bull Terrier like?

Contrary to what many people think about this stigmatized breed, the American Pit bull Terrier is actually a dog with a sweet, familiar, playful and obedient character. It is a careful breed with the little ones of the house, but it is also a very protective breed, although it is not considered a good guard dog breed.

Although it is true that it is also a territorial breed by nature, so it will need an education and above all, a socialization try very hard since they are puppies. Something complicated sometimes because in many countries they are considered as PPP (Potentially Dangerous Dogs) and they are required to be always tied and muzzled in public places, something that makes their socialization very difficult.

The American Pit bull Terrier is not a breed for people who have never had a dog. It is recommended to have a wide experience in the canine field to have an American Pit bull Terrier. In addition, it is a very energetic breed, which requires a lot of daily exercise. It is not a dog that you take for a walk three times a day and that's it. Therefore, its owner must have the time and energy to cover all of its needs, both physical and educational.

Breeding lines of the American Pit Bull Terrier

There are many variants of the authentic American Pit bull, which have some different characteristics from the original Pit bull but are essentially the same breed. That is, they are breeding lines of the APBT that have not followed the breed standard but have the same genetics. As a result, they are classified as Pit bull terriers.

Red Nose Pit bull

First of all, we can find an important variant that is officially recognized by the ADBA (American Dog Breeders Association), the red nose Pit bull, which is characterized by having a brown nose as well as a coat. Although its origins are not very clear, there is a theory that it is a cross between an Irish Pit bull and an American Pit bull.

Red nose pit bull
Red Nose Pit bull

Blue Nose Pit bull

On the other hand, we have another very similar type of Pit bull, the Blue nose Pit bull. It is well known for having the color of a grey nose as well as the color of its coat. It is not accepted as a pure breed since it is a variation of the Pit bull with different characteristics.

You may be interested in Nurturing Your Pitbull Blue Nose Puppy

Blue Nose Pit bull
Blue Nose Pit bull

Chamuco Pitbull

Bred in Mexico, he is known as the Mexican Pit bull, although in reality, he is much smaller in size, although stronger and more muscular than the original American Pit bull Terrier.

During the breeding work, the strongest specimens were always selected, resulting in the Chamuco we know today. Within the wide range of types of pit bulls, this one is small but very powerful.

It is a very strong breed, and even a large person would be unable to restrain him if he decided to pull the leash in order to attack another dog or animal.

So obviously, it is not really a recommended breed since it can hardly be controlled. Nowadays, it is used as a watchdog or companion dog, but always in the hands of expert trainers.

Mexican Pitbull
Chamuco Pit bull

Stuffawler Pitbull

Another line of breeding and selection of strong specimens for use in fights, however these cruel practices are no longer allowed nowadays, thankfully.

When panting, it is known for being a smiling dog, and its lips take on the characteristic smile shape seen in the photo in an entirely involuntary manner.

Its temperament is very strong and can be very aggressive if not properly trained, so this breed is not recommended for people without experience or physical strength capable of containing them in case of an emergency.

Colby Pitbull

It is actually a line of Pitbulls that are somewhat thinner and smaller than the American Pitbull terrier. However, they are stronger and braver since this breed was developed exclusively to win dog fights.

Fortunately, these types of fights are prohibited nowadays, and the Colby has become a family companion. However, it is not excessively affectionate, so it requires education and training by a professional animal trainer.

The Colby pitbull is physically very similar to the Pitbull, with a slightly wider muzzle and very similar lines.

Related: Colby Pitbull: Characteristics, Temperament and Care

Colby Pitbull Characteristics
Colby Pitbull

Monster Blue

It comes from the cross between American Pit bull terrier and Neapolitan Mastiff, resulting in a dog larger than the Pit bull, stronger, more muscular, and also more aggressive if not properly trained. So it is not a "breed line" as such of the authentic American Pit bull Terrier, but a crossbreeding of breeds with Pit bull genetics.

Blue or grayish in color and with clear eyes, it can reach 130 pounds in weight, with an indefinite height since each breeder marks their own line of work with this breed.

Its physical appearance is very similar to that of the American Bully, although unlike the American Bully, the Monster Blue only allows two types of coat color in the official standards (gray and blue).

The puppies of this breed are also strong and impulsive, so their education should begin at a very early age. As a recommendation, it is necessary to feed it with high quality proteins so that it develops its musculature well.

Blue Monster Pitbull
Monster Blue Pit bull

Cobra Pit bull

Another breed obtained with Pit bull genetics, although this time we find a breed more focused on beauty than fighting. The Cobra is a medium-sized dog that can reach 70 lbs in weight and up to 15 inches in height at the withers.

Its main physical characteristic is its color, predominantly white. Light-eyed specimens are more in demand than dark-eyed ones, although the latter are more prone to suffering from blindness due to cataracts. It is active and dominant, and it requires regular exercise to feel fulfilled and avoid developing bad habits as a result of stress.

American Staffordshire Terrier

Colloquially known as "American Stanford" due to a mispronunciation, and often confused with the Staffordshire bull terrier, which is different. Among the different types of Pit bulls, this is an improved version of the well-known American Pit bull terrier, descended directly from it, but during the breeding work, larger and stronger specimens were selected.

So, at all levels, the Amstaff (American Staffordshire terrier) is a superior dog to the standard Pit bull. It can reach 88 pounds in weight and even measure 19 inches at the withers, data that confirms its superior size.

Its character is active, dominant, and self-confident. It is not as impulsive as the American Pit bull terrier, but we should not provoke it. It is a guard dog. He needs daily exercise, discipline, and a healthy diet to keep him happy. Doing work will make him feel fulfilled, so it is not convenient to keep him bored. As reported by the American Kennel Club.

American Staffordshire Terrier Pitbull
American Staffordshire Terrier

Staffordshire Bull Terrier

Affectionately known as Staffy, the Staffordshire bull terrier has little to do with the Amestaff mentioned above. The character of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier is very cheerful and laughing, even playfully. Among all types of Pitbulls, this is a very active dog that loves to exercise, making it ideal for exercise, hiking, or mountaineering lovers.

Unlike the other types of pitbulls, it is not so dominant and therefore not so prone to being aggressive, as indicated by the AKC (American Kennel Club). However, he is a strong and intelligent dog, and if he is in danger, he will not hesitate to show all his strength. His physical size is somewhat smaller, reaching 44 pounds in weight and 15 inches in height at the withers. Although his muscular build will immediately make us see that this is a great little dog.

Staffordshire Bull Terrier Dog Breed
Staffordshire Bull Terrier

American Bully

This type of Pit bull is obtained from the crossbreeding of the American Pit bull Terrier and the Staffordshire terrier. It is a strong and muscular dog that resembles the Monster Blue in appearance.The American bully, also known as the "Bullypit," can weigh up to 110 pounds and stand up to 17 inches tall at the withers.

The character of the American bully is dominant and territorial, so from puppyhood it must receive an intense and disciplined education. Since it is a physically very strong dog, we should not make the mistake of training it for aggressive purposes. According to information from the United Kennel Club.

At home it has quite calm behavior, although in the street it is an earthquake that loves to walk, run, and enjoy outdoor stays enjoying the mountains, like almost all types of pit bulls.

American Bully Pitbull
American Bully

Bull terrier

The Bull terrier is also classified as one of the descendant breeds of the Pit bull genetics, although its size and physical appearance are somewhat different due to the fact that other breeds were also used in the breeding work.

Colloquially known as the cone-faced dog or shark dog due to its elongated muzzle, it is a medium sized dog that barely exceeds 66 pounds in weight. According to the American Kennel Club standard.

As a companion dog, the bull terrier is extraordinary, very attached to his family and somewhat stubborn. But with other dogs and/or animals, it is a danger, since its territorial instincts make it a very impulsive dog.

Due to its robust physical appearance, it is not a breed for people who have never trained a dog.

Bull terrier
Bull terrier

Which type of pit bull is most suitable for me?

We must keep in mind a few important facts before adopting a pit bull or breeding with pit bull genetics, since the characteristics of these dogs are very peculiar. First of all, it is not a breed of dog indicated for young people. There are many teenagers who only want a Pit bull to feel safe or to hesitate among friends to see which one is braver.

To have a pit bull or a related breed, it is absolutely necessary to be mentally mature and to have a lot of experience taking care of and educating dogs. Pit bulls are very energetic, dominant, and territorial dogs.

This does not mean that they are dangerous, but they are potentially dangerous if not properly trained. Many of the types of Pit bulls mentioned above require a PPP license in order to adopt them.

Related: 10 Questions You Should Ask a Dog Breeder

In addition:

  • They aren't couch potatoes; they need a lot of exercise on a regular basis.
  • We should never educate them with violence, nor incite them to be violent.
  • It is best to train and socialize them conscientiously, making it the most advisable to go to a professional dog trainer.
  • We must be cautious if we already have another dog or animal at home.
  • We must follow a series of obligatory rules, such as the use of muzzle in those considered PPP, to contract insurance, etc......
  • The cost of maintenance is high.
  • In spite of the fact that many of them receive the nickname "nanny dogs," we should never leave them alone with small children.
  • It is critical to socialize them from the time they are puppies. Many of them, however, are prohibited from running free, even in designated areas for canine recreation, let alone without a muzzle. It will be extremely tough to socialize as a result of this.

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