Here at Akuna Care we think Staffordshire Bull Terriers are just the best, because when it comes to enthusiasm they are off the charts. They are always up for a fun time, be it a bush walk around the 10 acres of our property or tearing around our huge play yards & trying to work out which is going to be their favourite (tough) toy of the day. That said they are quite happy to get a cuddle or belly rub as well. We reckon when personalities were handed out the Staffy breed stood in line twice!!!
Read on to see how Akuna Pet Resort takes care of holidaying Staffy guests, including their special “breed needs”.
- Nicknames Staffy, Staff, SBT, Staffy Dog
- Lifespan 12 years
- Country of Origin England
- Weight Male 13 to 17kg (29 to 37lb)
- Weight Female 11 to 15.4kg (24 to 34lb)
- Height Male 36 to 41cm (14 to 16in)
- Height Female 35 to 40cm (13 to 15)
- Coat Smooth, short & close
- Litter Size Up to 5 puppies
- Colour Red, fawn, white, black or blue, or any one of these colours with white. Any shade of brindle or any shade of brindle
See above under the various headings how we understand and look after our Staffordshire Bull Terrier guests special needs.
Famous people who ownStaffordshire Bull Terriers past & present
Late conservationist Steve Irwin – Sui
George Gregan Rugby Union player – Arthur
Luke Mangan Celebrity Chef – Winston
Action movie star Vin Diesel – Winston
General George Patton
President Theodore Roosevelt
Author John Steinbeck
Websites with fun information & stories & Organisations that help Staffordshire Bull Terriers
Their tail resembles an old fashioned pump handle.
They are temperamentally ill-suited for guard or attack-dog training because they LOVE people so much!
The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is Australia’s number one canine pet.
The Staffordshire Bull Terrier tolerance of and patience with children has earned him the nickname “The Nanny Dog.”
When Charles Dickens wrote the classic book “Oliver Twist”, he created a Stafford as a companion to character Bill Sykes.
Various bits and pieces
Breeders report that 50% of births are by caesarean section.
It is the only breed we know of that regularly does the commando crawl. (If you own a Staffy you will know exactly what I am talking about)
The Staffordshire is typically a poor swimmer. Employ supervision around pools, lakes, etc as whilst they have the enthusiasm for a swim they do not have the body build for it. They tend to sink like a stone instead.
They also get our vote for being the most enthusiastic dog breed EVER!
Before the 19th century, blood sports such as bull baiting bear baiting & cock fighting were common. Bulls bought to market were set upon by dogs as a way of tenderizing the meat and providing entertainment for the spectators; and dog fights with bears, bulls and other animals were often organized as entertainment for both royalty and commoners.
Early Bull Terriers were not bred for the companion animals of today, but for the characteristic of bravery & courage with the pitting of dogs against bear or bull testing these attributes along with their strength and skill. These early “proto-staffords” provided the ancestral foundation stock for the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, the Bull Terrier, the American Pit Bull Terrier and American Staffordshire Terrier. This common ancestor was known as the “Bull and Terrier”.
These blood sports were officially eliminated in 1835 as Britain began to introduce animal welfare laws. Since dogfights were cheaper to organize and far easier to conceal from the law than bull or bear baits, blood sport proponents turned to pitting their dogs against each other instead. Dog fighting was used as both a blood sport and as a way to continue to test the quality of their stock. For decades afterward, dog fighting clandestinely took place in pockets of working-class Britain and America. Dogs were released into a pit, and the last dog still fighting was recognized as the winner. Despite being trained to be aggressive towards fellow dogs they had to be of very good temperament with people as the handler would have to bring the dog back to scratch for each round. Their fantastic nature with humans continues to this day.
As time went on the modern breed has become a companion pet with a temperament suitable for most households.
Given the amount of beautiful natured Staffy’s that come to holiday with us, we don’t think they will ever lose their popularity and as such will continue to remain one of Australia’s most popular pets!
Contrary to its tough appearance, the Stafford is a gentle, loyal and highly affectionate dog breed and generally a quiet, stable and trustworthy companion. It is important to remember that they were originally bred to be a fighting dog. This sometimes shows in their boisterous nature and in some circumstances a tendency to be aggressive with other dogs. They are suitable for being the only dog in the household or can live happily with other pets if socialized and given the correct obedience training at a young age. Puppy socialisation should include interaction with other dogs and with children. Staffys also tend to be full on with their toys, shaking them to bits and love they love tug games to.
At Akuna Care we have designed our pet accommodation so that each guest has its own big comfortable indoor room with an attached large grass garden yard section so that social guests can go outside anytime they like during the day to say hello to their dog neighbours, which is great for dog friendly dogs like Staffys. If your dog is not so dog friendly we can make sure they have a private grass yard section.
Their happy, enthusiastic disposition also means that guests who are new to staying at our Pet Resort are quick to settle in and super excited about bonding with our loving pet carers. The carers carry liver treats as well just to make sure your Staffy knows they have come to the right place for a holiday.
It is true that Staffys play rough and due to this are generally not welcome at many kennels/pet resorts. This is also because 90% of kennels/Pet resorts put multiple dogs in the one hotel room to make more money and the owners of these kennels have found that Staffy’s don’t suit this arrangement. These same kennels/Pet resorts do not welcome dogs who have not been desexed.
But here at Akuna Care we are happy to have your beautiful, boisterous staffy come and holiday with us because we don’t dog stack. This means your staffy will enjoy its own private room and grass yard and when it is time for a play time it will be given one to one with a loving carer out in one of our huge play yards. (Note – all playtimes are done one to one for the health and happiness of our pet guests)
As for being enthusiastic with their toys we have it sorted having spent 10 years sourcing the toughest and most fun toys you can imagine. In fact when we want to trial a new toys toughness we give it to a Staffy to play with to see how it goes. We are also always up for a game of tug but usually the Staffy guest wins!
So if you want your Staffy to have a fun holiday I can assure you we have the most fun Pet Resort ever with lots of choice of fun activities like bush walks and play times and plenty of treats like bones and pigs ears and chicken drumsticks etc to choose from.
In other words we are Staffy heaven!!!
Staffy are fun-loving & extremely boisterous when young so require training and firm handling when they are puppies, as an uncontrolled adult can be quite problematic. They can also have a bad habit of jumping and nipping at your face as a show of enthusiasm & love. Obviously not a great behavioural trait but again this can be easily controlled by early training.
With training you will need to find what rewards your Staffy likes the most. Sometimes this can be food, or praise but often in the case of Staffy’s it is a favourite toy or game.
Note – Keep in mind that when using a toy an untrained staffy will often mistakenly bite at the hand holding the toy. There is no aggression in this behaviour they are just so focussed on the toy they don’t realise your hand is in the way.
If you would like to play your dog socially with other dogs (ie go to dog parks or beaches) it is important that they get socialised very early on with a good variety of dogs so that they can learn the right amount of enthusiasm and strength to use.
Being taught how to walk on lead is something you will want to get onto early as well as Staffys are just so ridiculously enthusiastic about getting where they are going, they will pull on a lead till they choke. In fact many owners use body harness’s for their Staffys to reduce this problem, but even with a walking harness you will be rewarded tenfold for the leash training effort you put in early on.
It might also help to wear you Staffy out a bit before a training session by playing some fun games like playing tennis ball retrieving, tug games & frisbee. This is so they are not so bursting with excitement when a training session begins and hence can pay you a little more attention.
Staffy’s like all dogs can be destructive with toys etc and they certainly have the chops for it, so it is important to make sure they have tuff toys available and different kinds of mental challenge treats (like treat balls or tough rubber toys stuffed with treats or a frozen chicken stock etc). Giving your Staffy a chew treat like a bone will also be most appreciated and can occupy them for hours.
Note – Staffys are heat sensitive dogs and do not have their own off switch – (ie they keep going full on till they keel over) so it is important to monitor your Staffy during playtime, training and walks and to make sure they take a break when they are obviously worn out.
At Akuna Care we don’t offer specific training programs but we do understand how important dog manners are and as such follow basic rules of training such as making dogs sit before their dinner and for treats, making sure we go through gates and doors first and also deterring jumping and biting by firmly saying “No” and rewarding good behaviour with liver treats.
Staffys like all dogs have their own set of behavioural issues but unfortunately they also have a bad reputation with the general public, due largely to the media who portray them as vicious. Being a Staffy owner I am sure you have experienced people crossing the street to avoid walking past you with their own dog. Try to be forgiving because these pet owners are only responding to what they have been told by the media.
So firstly it is important to note that this reputation is not entirely unfounded due mostly to two facts,
1)The Staffy having been breed as a fighting dog.
2) That when they do have a fight (usually defensively) they do so much damage to their opponent due to the size & crushing strength of their jaws. It is often said that Staffy’s don’t start a fights, but they do finish them!
Their cause is not helped either by a small minority of Staffy owners who think the more aggressive and territorial their Staffy, the better! This is obviously a problem with the owner not the dog but presents as a dog problem when the dog inevitably injures another dog, a person or worse a child.
All you can do as a responsible Staffy owner is do the right training when your Staffy is young so you have a well behaved socially acceptable dog and to take any opportunity you can to explain to non Staffy owners what a beautiful, loving, fun, happy breed they are.
Staffys can be a bit destructive at times, particularly when puppies or young adults, if they are not given suitable alternatives to expend their energy and natural desire to chew.
A lot of Kennels/Pet Resorts won’t take Staffy guests because they can’t joint board/dog stack them into the one accommodation space and also because they believe they can’t joint play them due to aggressiveness.
Neither of these issues are a problem at Akuna Care as every dog is given one to one care. This means that your Staffy will have his own private hotel room and attached grass yard where he can nose hello to his neighbours.
Play times and walks are also done one to one so your staffy will have a carers undivided love and attention and won’t have to share any toys or love during his/her playtime.
If your staffy is not particularly dog friendly that s ok to as we have grass yards that are panelled such that they don’t see other dogs so are more relaxed and happy throughout their holiday stay.
High energy dogs such as Staffys can definitely be destructive with toys and bedding etc if they don’t have a positive outlet for their exuberance. Here at Akuna we don’t get much destructive behaviour due to the fact that our guests have plenty of space in their hotel room and can romp around their own grass backyard anytime they like throughout the day or say a nose hello to their dog neighbours. Our play times and bushwalks are also a good energy busting activities. So you can rest assured that your Staffy (on a suitable “Care package”) will come home in the same happy, normal state they were in when they arrived for their holiday instead of a dog that’s bouncing of the walls due to lack of exercise and stimulation.
At Akuna Care we are up definitely up to the challenge of wearing your Staffy out but don’t worry if you have an elderly Staffy because our more senior guests still enjoy a playtime, it is just spent getting loving cuddles and belly rubs rather than chasing a ball. Our senior Staffy guests also definitely enjoy a strolling walk around our property as there are so many interesting scents to enjoy.
At Akuna we have lots and lots of toys for your dog to play with when they have a play time out in one of our big grass play yards. We have spent some years finding the best toys possible that are fun but durable. You know what though? – The most favourite toy is still the good old fashioned tennis ball! That said most Staffy’s like nothing better than a good game of Tug! Also if you would like for your Staffy to have its own favourite toy in its hotel room then just send it along.
So the good news is that behavioural problems due to pent up energy levels and lack of stimulus or company is not going to be a problem for your Staffy when it comes for a holiday at Akuna Care Pet Resort.
Staffy’s are without doubt a high energy level dog, as anyone who has owned one will tell you. In fact their unfettered exuberance is a big part of their overall charm! A Staffy puppy/teenager is like an explosion of energy and time passing by doesn’t seem to dint this energy level much until they are well into the late stages of being a senior citizen. At this point they are more likely to prefer sunbaking and belly rubs but will still enthusiastically muster the energy for a good brisk walk or some tug games.
Fun energetic activities “Energy Busting” is what we do best at Akuna Care with the option of bush walks, play yard fun/love times and dam swims. In addition your dog has its own grass outdoor yard that they have access to from 7am to 7pm every day so they can romp around in this space as much as they like. If your Staffy is a senior citizen it will not have the same high exercise needs but will still love having as much one to one cuddles and loving in a play yard fun time as can be had. So for our senior citizen Staffy guests we simply swap power walks for gentle strolls and loving play times. The daily amount of these fun activities is linked to the “care package” you choose for your Staffy. If you are not sure what “care package” would suit your Staffy best simply give our office a call as we are happy to discuss your pets needs anytime.
So you can rest assured your Staffy will come home in the same happy normal state that they came for a holiday instead of a dog that’s bouncing of the walls due to lack of exercise.
So whether it is for energy busting or loving company your Staffy’s activity needs are well catered for at Akuna Care Pet Resort.
Although Staffys are hardy little dogs, be cautious not to overdo it in warmer weather, as the breed is sensitive to heat and doesn’t have an off button when a fun time is being had.
Like most members of the Bulldog/Bull terrier group, Staffies rush in where angels fear to tread leading to accident- prone behaviour, and they rarely develop road sense so keep your Staffy on lead near roads.
Pale-coloured Staffy’s with pale noses, are susceptible to sunburn and skin cancer. Using sunblock is a good fix for this problem.
Some hereditary health problems can occur in the breed. The following are some conditions to be aware of:
Hip Dysplasia – Hip dysplasia is an abnormal formation of the hip socket that, in its more severe form, can eventually cause crippling lameness and painful arthritis of the joints. It is a genetic trait that is affected by environmental factors. It can be found in many animals and in humans, but is most commonly associated with dogs, and is common in many dog breeds. Hip dysplasia is the most common single cause of arthritis of the hips
Patella Luxation – (also known as trick knee, subluxation of patella, floating patella, or floating kneecap) is a condition in which the patella, or kneecap, dislocates or moves out of its normal location. The condition usually becomes evident between the ages of 4 to 6 months.
Atopic Dermatitus (skin problems) – Atopic dermatitis is one of the most common causes of chronic itching in dogs. Atopic dermatitis is caused by an allergic reaction (hypersensitivity) to one or more substances in the environment. Various substances, called allergens, can trigger atopic dermatitis. They are often the same allergens implicated in human allergic conditions such as hay fever and asthma.
L-2-Hydroxyglutartic Aciduria – L-2-hydroxyglutaric aciduria (L-2-HGA) is a neurometabolic genetic disease affecting humans and dogs. Symptoms associated with affected dogs include seizures, ataxia, dementia, learning difficulties and head tremor. Dogs can start showing the symptoms from as early as 6 months to as old as 6 years.
At Akuna Care we do daily health checks so as to quickly pick up on any health issues that might arise such as skin rashes or ear infections. With any type of health problem the trick is to catch it early and treat appropriately. The golden rule is “The sooner you catch a health problem the faster it can be treated and resolved”.
If your Staffy is prone to skin rash’s let us know and we will keep a close eye on this and also check your dogs belly and underarms daily. If a flare up occurs we can start applying/administering any cream or medication you have sent along. We are also happy to give medicated baths if you have sent along a special shampoo for this purpose.
For Staffy’s that have leg or joint problems we tailor a fun exercise schedule around their particular needs. For example if your Staffy in not allowed to jump around or stop quickly during a ball game we make sure all of our pet carers know of this health issue and go about your Staffy’s play/walk/love time with these health requirements in mind.
We have found that most Staffy’s are a sensitive to both hot and cold weather. With this is mind we provide comfortable hotel rooms that are REALLY well insulated. This means your Staffy’s accommodation space remains cool in summer and warm in winter. If your staffy is particularly heat sensitive you may want to consider taking up the option of an air conditioned room. These are quite popular in the hotter months of the year so get in quick. Plus take a look at our new “Doggy water park” for a cooling and fun summertime activity.
Playtime wise, we make sure our Staffy guests don’t overdo it by insisting they take a break and have a drink when needed. Once recharged they can get back to the business of having tons of fun!
Our arthritic, post cruciate surgery & hip/elbow dysplasia guest’s benefit greatly from the design of our Pet Resort facility, as it has been built to have NO STEPS. We intentionally designed our complex this way so that dogs with mobility problems would easily be able to move around without putting stress on their hips, back and legs.
We use a fantastic local vet practise called “Cessnock Vet” www.cessnockvet.com.au that specialises in many areas of canine health care so if vet care is required for your loved Staffy whilst they are holidaying with us you can be sure he or she will be in the very best of hands & receive the best care available.
Staffy’s are great at maintaining a good body weight, largely down to the energy they burn in their unbridled enthusiasm for life. In fact I reckon we could light up Sydney if only we could harness the tail wagging energy of the local Staffy population.
They can get a little bit porky as they reach old age and slow down, so you need to reduce their food intake a little bit at this point.
Even though Staffys are good at maintain their weight you will be comforted to know that at Akuna we feed a premium grade vet recommended dry food called “Royal Canin” which our guests love. We match the amount we feed closely to your pets breed & weight. We also weigh your pet upon arrival to establish how much they should be fed and then re weigh weekly throughout your pets holiday stay so as to make sure a healthy weight is maintained. In addition we keep records on how much food your pet is eating and what (if any) is left on a daily basis so if your pet is losing weight or putting weight on we know whether we need to increase or decrease their portion of food. If you would prefer your dog to lose/gain a little bit of weight we can even help with that, so just let us know when you book your dog’s holiday stay.
The very short, smooth coat of the Staffy requires little grooming. I like to think of them as wash & wear & they take seconds to wash & dry. To easy!
At Akuna you can request a brushing any time you like but I would think your Staffy would prefer an extra game of tug instead. They do benefit though from a regular weekly to fortnightly bath as this helps to keep skin irritations at bay, particularly if an anti-itch shampoo is used. And what dog doesn’t enjoy a good massage under a shower of warm soapy water!