The American Pit Bull Terrier has its early origins from England but is registered with the name to differentiate it from the smaller Staffordshire Terrier. It was developed from crossing the bulldog and terrier types with the purpose of coming up with a breed that combined the strength and massiveness of the bulldog with the gameness of the terrier. It was first used to bait bulls and bears but when the sport was deemed inhumane the Pit Bull Terrier was then used for dog fighting and ratting. Over time however, the breed has become more popular as house pets. Its height ranges from 18 to 22 inches and weighs between 22 to 110 pounds. It has a brick-like head which is broad between the jaws, a thickly muscled and well defined neck, and a deep and thick chest. Its ears are typically cropped, the teeth form a scissors bite and the tail is thick and tapers to a point. It has a glossy, smooth, short and slightly coarse coat where all colours are deemed admissible.
Despite its imposing appearance, the American Pit Bull Terrier is actually a people-pleaser. They are good-natured, amusing, loyal and affectionate. It is an excellent guard dog that is highly protective of its owner and the property. They are very good with children and will even put up with rough play. They have a high pain tolerance and when trained and socialized at an early age, their aggressive tendencies can be minimized. They are a generally healthy breed although may be prone to hereditary cataracts, allergies to grass and congenital heart disease.