American Pit Bull Terrier vs Atlas Terrier - Breed Comparison

Both American Pit Bull Terrier and Atlas Terrier are originated from United States. American Pit Bull Terrier may grow 28 cm / 12 inches higher than Atlas Terrier. American Pit Bull Terrier may weigh 24 kg / 53 pounds more than Atlas Terrier. Both American Pit Bull Terrier and Atlas Terrier has almost same life span. Both American Pit Bull Terrier and Atlas Terrier has almost same litter size. American Pit Bull Terrier requires Low maintenance. But Atlas Terrier requires Moderate maintenance

Basic Information

Group:
Terrier dog
Terrier dog
Origin:
United States
United States
Height Male:
43 - 56 cm
16 - 23 inches
23 - 28 cm
9 - 12 inches
Height Female:
40 - 53 cm
15 - 21 inches
23 - 28 cm
9 - 12 inches
Weight Male:
16 - 30 kg
35 - 67 pounds
2 - 6 kg
4 - 14 pounds
Weight Female:
14 - 27 kg
30 - 60 pounds
2 - 5 kg
4 - 12 pounds
Life Span:
8 - 15 Years
11 - 17 Years
Litter Size:
5 - 10
4 - 8
Size:
Medium dog
Medium dog
Other Names:
Staffordshire Fighting Dog, Pit Terrier, Pitbull, Pit, Half and Half, Bull Baiter Dogs, Old Family Dog - the Irish name, Yankee Terrier - the Northern name, Rebel Terrier - the Southern name
None
Colors Available:
Red, Black, Fawn or Bucksjin
Several - Brindle, Merle
Coat:
Smooth, Shiny, Short, Single layer
Short and dense
Shedding:
Minimal
Moderate
Temperament:
Affectionate, Courageous, Energetic, Friendly, Gentle, Intelligent, Loving, Loyal, Playful, Stubborn
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Responsive, Social, Sweet
Grooming:
Low maintenance
Moderate maintenance
Trainability:
Easy
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
No
Kids Friendly:
Yes
Yes
New Owners Friendly:
No
Yes

History

The history of the American Pit Bull Terrier might be a confusing one to some dog lovers and certainly to the general public that tends to lump all the “bully” breeds into a category called “pit bull”. This is because of the negative reputation this group of breeds has acquired over the past 30-50 years due to misuse and mis-breeding by the dog fighting industry. This categorization includes the American Pit Bull Terrier, The American Staffordshire Terrier, the Bull Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

There is major confusion and disagreement on the difference between the American Pit Bull Terrier and the American Staffordshire Terrier. The AKC does not recognize the American Pit Bull Terrier as a separate breed, but its founder and the UKC, ADBA do so. In the 1930’s the American Pit Bull Terrier was a recognized breed and in response to the negativity of pit-fighting, they renamed it as the American Staffordshire Terrier.

The American Pit Bull Terrier was developed to be a little larger in size than the Staffordshire in both height and weight. This breed comes from crossing various Bull and Terrier breed to get a working dog. The Amstaff for the most part is bred to be a show dog and is not usually a “street dog” used in dog fighting rings. The direct ancestors of the APBT are the Old English Bulldogs and the Old English Terriers. These dogs are great family dogs, gentle beyond comparison unless raised to fight. They make great therapy dogs as well as police dogs. They are not by nature cruel, aggressive or attack dogs.

Both professional confirmation breeders and street fight breeds have developed new strains of the American Pit Bull Terrier. A few are worth mentioning here.

Old Family Red Nose

One of the oldest strains of the American Pit Bull Terrier they are red in color and that red is a very unique tone. They have a copper colored coat and nose with red nails, red lips and amber or red eyes. These dogs were originally from Ireland and when they came to America they had the red nose. Originally bred for gameness, it is the red color that is sought after now.

Colby Pit Bulls

These are another old breed, but they have black noses and were initially bred by John P. Colby in the late 1800s. These dogs were known to be indominable fighting dogs and were bred into almost every line of American Pit Bull Terriers that exist today. The line is still maintained by the Colby family.

The Atlas Terrier is a rare dog. He was developed in the USA and is a blend of Jack Russell Terriers, Rat Terriers, Border Terriers and Patterdale Terriers. It was in 1990 that Lauren Wolfe developed a breed similar to the Jack Russell, but with a solid colour, and in fact she had two dogs that were solid red in colour. This was as a result of a cross between a Jack Russell Terrier and a Border Terrier.

With the crossing of different terriers, the foundation for the Atlas Terrier was formed. Lauren Wolfe named the breed ‘Atlas Terrier’ because many terriers from various parts of the world were used to develop this specific breed. It was in 2001 that the Atlas Terrier Association was founded.

Description

True to their reputation as fighters, the American Pit Bull Terrier looks like one – powerful, strong and well built. This belies their gentle disposition but too often they are judged by their looks. With a broad, brick shaped head, thick neck and deep chest, they are stocky, muscular and agile. They usually have cropped ears, but the tails are not docked. Their legs are strong and hindquarters especially muscular. These dogs are much stronger than they look. Round soulful eyes are one of the traits that people who keep these dogs as companion animals love about them. They have a scissor bite and one of the strongest jaws of all domesticated canines.

A Feisty, Fun Breed

Atlas Terrier dogs are a small to medium sized dog but with a strong personality. With their two coat varieties – smooth and wire – and coming directly from the Jack Russell Terrier, this feisty dog suits those who want a low maintenance, fun breed who will join them on their walks or jogs. These dogs are brave and loyal and will double as a watch dog and family pet.The breed is accepted for registry and it is classified under the Terrier dog category.

Different Sizes

There are 3 sizes of Atlas Terrier – toy, miniature, and standard. The toy variety is 23 to 28 cm tall at the shoulder and weighs 2.7 to 5.4 kg. All three varieties are the same except for height and weight.

The Coat - Smooth or Wavy?

The coat of this dog is thick and may come in a variety of colours such as brindle or merle. The Atlas Terrier is also found in solid colours and sometimes you will find that they have white markings on the face, feet or chest. Most times the tail of the Atlas Terrier is docked, but if not, the tail curls over the back. The ears of the Atlas Terrier are V-shaped and they fold forward.

Health Problems

Though the American Pit Bull Terrier is healthier than most large dogs, they do have an issue with hip dysplasia. Breeders have been working to breed this out of the APBT and their work in this area has helped with the other issues with the patella, heart and thyroid. The APBT can have skin allergies and Demodex Mange. This condition can be either deadly or just a localized skin issue. Immunizations and testing is essential for this breed. When not immunized, American Pit Bull Terrier puppies have a greater incidence of parvovirus than other breeds. They also might have cataracts and congenital heart disease.

The selective breeding program of Atlas Terriers has meant that this is a robust, spunky breed free of any major health concerns. While they are a low maintenance breed with longevity on their side, you still have to be a responsible pet owner and see that your Atlas Terrier puppy gets all those must have injections.

Vaccinating your Atlas Terrier Puppy

Tiny puppies are susceptible to infectious diseases and will have to be vaccinated against them from 8 weeks on and then also get an annual booster. The diseases to be vaccinated against include hepatitis, distemper, parvovirus, coronavirus, eptospirosis and parainfluenza. Vaccinations must be kept up to date and it is mandatory for your puppy to be vaccinated against rabies.

Caring The Pet

Feeding

How you feed your American Pit Bull Terrier puppy is important to her health as an adult and long life. The adult dog should be fed one and a half to two and a half cups of high quality food twice a day. Puppies should be fed more often as they grow. DO not feed your APBT soft or canned dog food. Their food should be dry. Be careful not to feed too much as you do not want an obese American Pit Bull Terrier.

Health issues

As previously mentioned this is a healthy breed with problems with:

Cataracts

These are usually inherited, and the pup may show signs early, or they could be developed later in life. They can be removed.

Hip dysplasia

Hip dysplasia as in many larger, stronger breeds this can be a major problem. Breeds should test for it and APBT breeders are attempting to breed it out of the APBT.

Congenital Heart Failure

This is a congenital issue that breeders are also breeding against and if they have it your American Bit Bull Terrier was likely born with it.

Allergies

Many APBT are allergic to grasses or out outside allergens. Shots or medication can deal with these.

Exercise and games

This is an athletic, joyful breed that loves to play, love sports and loves any activity that bonds it with its family. Some of the many sports the American Pit Bull Terrier likes to participate in include: agility, obedience competition, weight pulling, lure coursing and fly ball. He also needs backyard exercise and daily walks.

When walking your American Pit Bull Terrier, make sure she is on a leash as the breed has a tendency to be aggressive with other dogs coming into their space. The APBT loves to work. They are good therapy dogs, search and rescue dogs, even service dogs.

As a medium shedder, the Atlas Terrier will require some grooming. Grooming is easy and a brush twice a week with a rubber-bristled brush will remove those loose hairs and give his coat a sheen.

Feeding the Puppy

Always make sure you’re feeding your tiny puppy the right quantities of a food type. Always feed your puppy food which is appropriate to his age. Your 8 week old puppy will require 4 meals a day. A highly active breed such as the Atlas Terrier will require more protein for energy.

Speak to your veterinarian about the perfect diet for your puppy and about wet- or dry foods. There is the choice of feeding your puppy commercial dog food or your own home-prepared meals, but then you want to be sure that your puppy is getting the right balance of minerals and vitamins.

Once your Atlas Terrier is about a year of age, he can go onto one meal a day or a lighter meal in the morning and the evening. Remember to ensure that there is always clean, cool water available for your puppy.

Characteristics

For those who live with the American Pit Bull Terrier there is no better dog. The APBT loves people and loves children. They think they are lap dogs, and they certainly are watch dogs. They love their people but their barks at strangers at home are not because they are protecting their people but rather they are greeting the strangers into their home. Unfortunately, they will not greet another dog in the same way. However, when their people are seriously threatened they will give their lives to defend them.

These are strong, confident dogs who want to please their people. They love children and make great family dogs but require a strong owner and a strong pack leader. The need to be under control around other dogs and because of their strength, need a strong owner. It is their aggression towards other animals that must be controlled.

Atlas Terriers most certainly have a bit of the Jack Russell in them and these dogs are social, outgoing, mischievous and affectionate. They’re just like your regular naughty child and having one of them in your home will mean energy and lots of fun and games.

This is a highly social breed and he won’t like to be left alone every day. Just like a human child, he will need to be stimulated to ward off boredom and to prevent him from becoming destructive.

Learning Abilities

The Atlas Terrier just loves games and if you’re ready for a game, he will be more than ready to take part. He is intelligent and will therefore responds well to training and socialization. When properly socialized, Atlas Terriers get along well with children, and because they’re not an aggressive breed, if they’re properly trained and socialized they will get along with other pets too. Atlas Terriers make excellent pets, but he is a strong willed dog and will require an owner who is firm, but fair.

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