What's the real apbt history?
I've own an APBT and years later an American bulldog now my question is this: the history on both these dogs are the same exact writing and story telling. Old pictures and painting of the old English bulldogs look more like the APBT ...so what did the English immigrants bring with them to America, and which breed help make the other?? did they breed the APBT bigger to make the American bulldogs, I read that the American bulldog were once also called the American pit bulldog too. I also read that back in England the Blue Paul terrier (now extinct) was crossed with the staffordshire bull terrier that where the blue color came from. The Staffordhire terrier was the Old English bulldog too breed smaller by the coal miners. To add the confusion also there was another terrier breed crossed to make the English bull terrier but the dog fighter didn't use them because they didn't perform well in the pit. So is the APBT the real bulldog?
Part #1... The modern American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT) can trace its roots back to England and the early 19th century. Crosses between “bully” type dogs and terriers eventually produced the modern APBT. Although not recognized as a “breed” and much smaller than the modern APBT, the early “bulldogs” were used as working dogs, controlling unruly bulls for butchers as well as farmers.
These “bulldogs” resembled, phenotypically, the modern APBT but were considerably smaller, weighing in at 15-30lbs. The courage and tenacity that made these dogs good at corralling dangerous bulls made them great at the blood sport of bull baiting.
The year 1835 saw the end of deadly bull baiting (countless thousands of dogs lost their lives to this “sport”) and the emergence of an even more sinister blood sport - dog fighting.
To understand the American Pit Bull Terrier, it is imperative to understand the breed’s fighting origins.
The lower class had used blood sports as an outlet for their frustration and aggression towards the monarchy - pit fighting was, in essence, an outcry and an outlet for that aggression.
Dogs were bred to be courageous, utterly devoid of pain sensations (they, no doubt, felt pain but were bred and encouraged not to express that pain), tenacious and determined.
A quality that was never bred into them was human aggression. Human “aggressive” (aggression may not be the most appropriate term, it is more likely that these dogs simply had a lower bite threshold) dogs were undesirable as these dogs required extensive handling prior and during their fights - most of theses dogs were also family pets so no human “aggression” was ever tolerated.
Dogs that exhibited human “aggression” were typically killed, meaning that only human friendly lines were perpetuated and desired. It is highly unlikely, however, that these culled dogs were naturally more aggressive towards humans than their bred counterparts but their bite threshold may have been much lower meaning that it did not take much for them to turn around and bite their handler. Animals were bred for an increased bite threshold, as far as humans and only humans were concerned, which decreased the likelihood of humans becoming victims of dog bites.
In 1898, Chauncy Bennet formed the UKC, a breed registry aimed solely at the registration and acceptance of pitbulls. The AKC had wanted nothing to do with pitbulls, so Bennet sought to create an organization that would represent the breed as performance dogs. Mr. Bennet added “American” and initially dropped “Pit” from the APBT’s name but public outcry let to “Pit” being added back to the name - thus the American Pit Bull Terrier.
For a pitbull to be accepted into the UKC the dog had to have won three fights - a requirement that was later dropped. Another registry that was started solely for APBT’s, the American Dog Breeders Association was born in 1909. The ADBA was started by Guy McCord who was a close friend of one of the founding fathers of the modern APBT, John P. Colby. The ADBA was created to test the performance quality of a APBT without actual pit fighting; the ADBA’s main focus was on weight pulling competitions with a spattering of conformation shows.
The AKC decided to register Pit Bulls but under a different name - the Staffordshire Terrier, which was later changed to the American Staffordshire Terrier in 1972, or AST. Up until 1936, Pit Bulls and AST’s were physically identical. After 1936, AST’s were bred solely for conformation and their breed requirements became much more stringent. APBT’s were being bred for both performance (fighting) as well as conformation shows and the breed’s standard became much more lenient. The AST’s, phenotypically, became “flashier” with blockier heads, larger chests and a thicker jaw while the APBT’s varied phenotypically from lanky to stocky. Although the phenotypic expression varied in the APBT, relative weight, size and proportion remained constant and dogs over 60lbs were rarely seen. Both AST’s and APBT’s were bred to be exceptionally sturdy and extremely human friendly, not to mention athletic, courageous, and tenacious
The 1980’s saw an upsurge in the popularity of American Pit Bull Terriers as “guard” dogs for drug dealers and also as an expression of ego or “manhood” for street kids. Thus, it began - the production of disproportionately large “Pit Bulls”. For all intensive purposes, these were not (and still are not!) true American Pit Bull Terriers - lines of American Bulldog, Cane Corso’s and other molosser breeds were incorporated into the APBT’s lineage to produce massive brutes. In some cases, a large APBT pup was born and was overused as a stock breeder, thus producing highly inbred dogs with serious behavioral issues. It is a myth that an APBT can weigh 80lbs or more - those are not true Pit Bulls and if a pedigree was attained, at some point, there would be molosser (mastiff) blood added or the dog would have come from highly inbred lines.
The majority of APBT breeders scoffed at these “bigger but not necessarily better” lines of dogs (I say majority as the minority would be the people who are actually breeding larger dogs).
Even “professional” (I use that term loosely) dogmen/women (those who fight dogs) were horrified to see the onslaught of massive hulks, for in the pit ring/box, bigger does not mean better performance.
Today, the vast majority of APBT’s do not get over 60lbs (and this is true for AST’s) and the vast majority are household pets. Unfortunately, a minority of Pit Bulls are poorly socialized, chained, abused, neglected or allowed to roam free and inevitably attack a living creature, typically a child. As with any breed of dog, it is imperative for owners to properly socialize their dogs and that means exposing them to everything imaginable: from young to old children, from the elderly to the wheelchair bound, from umbrellas to kites, etc.
Dogs should never be chained outside or left outside in the backyard for most of the day as that is simply creating a dangerous dog by circumstance. The APBT’s that have attacked have ALL been poorly socialized, under trained, and neglected - they never learned appropriate behavioral skills to cope with the outside world. All that these dogs had were the poor social skills that only a chained or neglected dog can receive; since they were never taught to suppress some of their predatory instincts, these dogs inevitably hear a screaming child and see the child running and instinct takes over.
APBT’s are no more or less difficult than any other dog to train or socialize. Owners most certainly need to understand the dog fighting history and take necessary precautions by ensuring early socialization with other dogs and monitoring of their interactions with other dogs. And even with extensive socialization, some APBT’s may never become comfortable around other dogs, so each dog should be treated as an individual with careful consideration. By their very nature, APBT’s strive to be around humans - centuries of breeding have seen to that. They need a kind heart AND a kind hand - physical reprimands are useless and ineffective for any dog and should rarely, if ever, be employed.
APBT’s have been used by the FDA and USDA for sniffing out bombs and drugs and have been used by the military as well as police forces. APBT’s have also been used as therapy and service dogs; in fact, the first certified hearing dog in Alaska was an APBT. APBT’s are great at weight pulling as well as agility, schutzhund, obedience and carting. As far as temperament is concerned, APBT’s have consistently scored an 82% and higher on the American Temperament Test Society’s evaluation, higher than Goldens, German Shepherds and most other breeds. With socialization, training and a kind hand - APBT’s are wonderful companions for all walks of life: from families to single individuals, from joggers to apartment dwellers, and onward.
article credit : Marji Beach
Is this what you read?
Yeah, one of the first things I read when doing my research. But still a little confused The History of both breed (APBT and AMERICAN bulldog)...I know that the AST & APBT were the same beed 70 or 80 years ago but for the sake of simplicity the APBT will mean both here.
Argument and theory and claims:
Historians of the American Bulldogs believe this dog to be the Original bulldogs of England, what was known back then as Old English Bulldog.??
If that was true, then:
APBT then would be an American Bulldog with Terrier cross 100s of year ago??
Pictures claimed to be of those early Bulldogs look more like the APBT of today??
because of those old Pictures and painting of the old English bulldog I believe that what we call APBT today were those dogs.
So it would seem to me that the American Bulldog borrowed the history of origin from the APBT for whatever reason...is that a common thing inventing or stealing a history of certain dog??
This is very confusing trying figure out which came 1st. But I believe that the American bulldog is here today because of the APBTs...if there was no AST/APBT then there would be no AMERICAN Bulldog.:hammer::hammer:
I jus got the biggest headache
the American bulldog was created in America after the Irish/English immigration.
J.D.Johnson used what ever looked like a bulldog too create his strain,even Labradors used for stock work on farms,if there were any lines of old bulldog imported to the USA they most certainly were crossed to other breeds or became extinct.Neither the ab,nor the apbt are the bulldog of old but modern creations,especialy the bulldog[American].even performance lines such as Hines,painter/margintina were infused with apbt blood too add fire to there temperaments.and yes it is true,the American bulldog was known as the American pitbull dog up until the early 80's.
i have posted this somewhere else, this dog was imported back in the 1800's and looks to be of dogs that could be from a colby line or any old blood here in america
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