1) Always use a registered Staffordshire Bull Terrier breeder
If you are looking to purchase a Stafford, you should always plan on using a registered Staffordshire Bull Terrier breeder. This is the only way to guarantee that you get what you pay for!
Stories abound of people who decided to try and save a few bucks because they weren’t going to show their dog, and bought an unwrapped Staffordshire, only to end up with a completely different dog than they expected. I even heard stories where the so-called parents on display were NOT even the REAL PARENTS!
Buying from a registered Staffordshire Bull Terrier breeder gives you peace of mind AND the option of documents that certify your dogs’ lineage. Whether you decide to take on the dog roles or not is entirely up to you!
So you got the message now then – ALWAYS USE A REGISTERED STAFFORDSHIRE BULL TERRIER BREEDER. And don’t just take the word of the “nice” person selling you the puppy that the dog has a pedigree!
2) Always ask to view the originals of the Pedigree papers for the parents or the Pedigree papers and a Certificate of Service if only the bitch is on view and she was bred to a stallion from another breeder.
Check out the Staffordshire Bull Terrier breeders’ documentation, including kennel name and prefix number, and make sure everything is up to date!
DON’T WORRY: If they are solid Staffordshire Bull Terrier breeders, they won’t mind; in fact, they WILL EXPECT you to check it out, if they seem doubtful, it’s time to get very suspicious about that pup’s pedigree!
Staffordshire Bull Terrier breeders follow breed standards that have been established to verify and maintain certain key characteristics that define how a Staffordshire Bull Terrier looks and moves, etc. This standard and the documentation supporting a dog’s lineage is your guarantee of purity – there’s simply no other way to be sure!
3) Be vigilant for DEFECTS in your puppy: Using a registered Staffordshire Bull Terrier breeder ensures that you are purchasing a dog with proven and traceable bloodlines, but a dog may still have defects.
Here is the Breed Standard taken directly from the Book – A Guide for New Owners of Staffordshire Bull Terriers by Dayna Lemke – (Page 26), it is an international standard and is the same all over the world.
While it applies to an adult dog, certain aspects of the Standard (eg, color, eyes, teeth, etc.) will also be visible in a puppy.
the official standard from the breeder of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier General Appearance The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is a smooth-haired dog. He must be of great strength for his size and, although muscular, must be active and agile.
Size, Proportion, Substance Height at shoulder: 14 to 16 inches Weight: Dogs, 28 to 38 pounds; bitches, 24 to 34 pounds, these heights being related to weights. Failure to comply with these limits is a fault. In proportion, the length of the back, from the withers to the root of the tail, is equal to the distance from the withers to the ground.
head Skull short, deep, wide, very pronounced cheek muscles, defined stop, short forehead, black nose. Pink nose (Dudley) to be considered a serious fault.
eyes It is preferable that it be dark, but it may have something to do with the color of the coat. Round, medium in size and arranged to face forward. Light eyes or pink eye rims will be considered a fault, except that where the layer surrounding the eye is white, the eye rim may be pink.
Ears Rose gold medium punctured and not large. Complete fall or complete puncture to be considered a serious fault.
Mouth A bite in which the outer side of the lower incisors touches the inner side of the upper incisors. The lips must be tight and clean. Very underbite or overbite is a serious fault.
Neck, Topline, Body The neck is muscular, rather short, clean in outline, gradually widening towards the shoulders. The body is well set, with a level topline, broad forehead, deep chest and well sprung ribs, being fairly light in the loins. The story is uncoupled, of medium length, low set, tapering to a point, and quite low in carriage. It should not be screwed in very much and can be compared to the handle of an old pump. A tail that is too long or poorly curled is a fault.
forequarters Legs straight and well boned, quite apart, without slack in the shoulders and without weakness in the pasterns, from which the feet protrude a little. Dewclaws on the front legs may be removed. The feet should be well padded, strong and of medium size.
hindquarters Hindquarters should be well muscled, hocks low with knees well bent. The leg should be parallel when viewed from behind. Dewclaws, if any, on the hind legs are usually removed. Feet as in front.
Coat Smooth, short and close to the skin, whiskers should not be trimmed or removed.
color Red, fawn, white, black or blue or any of these colors with white. Any shade of Brindle or any shade of Brindle with white. Black and tan or liver color to be disqualified.
Step Free, powerful and agile with economy of effort. Legs move parallel when viewed from the front or back. Perceptible impulse of the hind legs.
Temper From the past history of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, the modern dog draws its character from indomitable courage, high intelligence and tenacity. This, coupled with his affection for his friends and children in particular, his calmness off-duty, and his dependable stability make him an all-purpose dog.
Disqualification Color black and tan or liver.
Approved on November 14, 1989 – Effective on January 1, 1990 NOTE: There is also a minor flaw mentioned that a Staffordshire Bull Terrier breeder might forget to tell you about, because while undesirable, it is not a serious flaw. The defect is called short fingers.
4) Finally, ask to see any certification that the puppy has been checked out by a veterinarian; again, a proper breeder will expect this.
Follow these simple steps and you’ll be well on your way to having a healthy, certified Staffordshire Bull Terrier puppy that will win your heart!