Your Purebred Puppy, Honest Advice About Dogs and Dog Breeds

Sensible advice for raising your American Staffordshire Terrier puppy so he lives a long healthy life and seldom needs to visit the vet. Learn about the most common health problems and issues in American Staffordshire Terriers, the best dog food diet for feeding American Staffordshire Terrier puppies and adult dogs, the truth about vaccinations, spaying and neutering, and natural health care.


11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy, my best-selling dog health book

American Staffordshire Terrier dog breed

American Staffordshire Terrier Health Problems and Raising an American Staffordshire Terrier Puppy to be Healthy

By Michele Welton. Copyright © 2000-2013

Quiz – How Long Will Your Dog Live?
How To Raise a Healthy Dog
Feeding the Best Dog Food
Feeding the 2nd Best Dog Food
Vaccinations: Needed or Not?
Are You Sure Your Vet Is Good?

The most common health problems in American Staffordshire Terriers:

Though many breeders pretend it isn't so, hip dysplasia is a major problem. The Orthopedic Foundation of America evaluated the hip X-rays of 2200 American Staffordshire Terriers and found 25% dysplastic. That's just terrible.

Elbow dysplasia is another serious problem. Over 330 X-rays of American Staffordshire elbows were examined and 16.5% were dysplastic – the 11th worst rate of 82 breeds.

Other orthopedic diseases that occur in the AmStaff are luxating patella and osteochondritis.

According to the Michigan State University Thyroid Database, American Staffordshire Terriers have the 18th highest rate of hypothyroidism of 140 breeds (up to 20% affected).

Heart disease (especially subaortic stenosis, but also cardiomyopathy) is occurring more frequently in AmStaffs.

Skin problems are common in the American Staffordshires, especially allergies that cause itchy skin and can lead to bacterial skin infections (pyoderma). Demodectic mange is very common in American Staffordshire Terrier puppies and teenage dogs. Tumors (especially mast cell tumors) and cancer are a big concern in the AmStaff.

Serious eye diseases in the breed are progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), cataracts, and entropion.

Inherited deafness can occur in American Staffordshire Terriers puppies who have a lot of white on their head.


Can you prevent health problems from happening to YOUR American Staffordshire Terrier?

Yes, often you can.

  1. Some health problems are genetic, which means inherited from parents. Genetic health issues are common in American Staffordshire Terriers today because of unwise breeding practices. My book, Dog Quest: Find The Dog Of Your Dreams, shows you how to find an American Staffordshire Terrier puppy who is genetically healthy.
  2. Other health problems are environmental – caused by the way you raise your dog. My best-selling dog health book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy shows you how to prevent environmental health problems by raising your American Staffordshire Terrier puppy (or adult dog) in all the right ways.

Here are my dog health tips for raising a healthy American Staffordshire Terrier puppy or adult dog:

Dog lifespan quiz How Long Will Your Dog Live? – Take This Quiz!
Based on your dog's breed and how you're raising him, this personalized quiz will help you understand how long your dog might live – and most importantly, how you can increase his life expectancy.


Obedience instructor and author Michele Welton Dog Health Care – The Sensible Way
Read my advice on daily health care so your American Staffordshire Terrier lives a long, healthy life and seldom needs to see the vet.


Real homemade dog food The Best Dog Food For Feeding Your American Staffordshire Terrier
The best diet for feeding your American Staffordshire Terrier is real food. Real chicken, turkey, beef, bison, venison, fish....This is not "people food" and I'll tell you why.


Natural dog foods for your American Staffordshire Terrier. The Second-Best Dog Food For Your American Staffordshire Terrier
If you can't feed homemade dog food, here are your next-best choices.


Information on booster shots for your American Staffordshire Terrier. Vaccinations and Booster Shots: Needed or Not?
How many vaccinations does your American Staffordshire Terrier puppy really need? Does your adult AmStaff need yearly booster shots? The vaccination guidelines have changed. Find out what many vets aren't telling you.


Information on choosing the best vet for your American Staffordshire Terrier. The Type of Veterinarian I Recommend
Is your veterinarian really the best choice for your dog? Learn about the differences between vets who practice conventional, holistic, and alternative veterinary medicine.


Information on spaying your American Staffordshire Terrier. Spaying Your Female Dog: Pros and Cons
Advantages and disadvantages of spaying your female American Staffordshire.


Information on neutering your male dog. Neutering Your Male Dog: Pros and Cons
Advantages and disadvantages of neutering your male dog.