Country/Date of Origin: England/1800s
The Staffordshire Bull Terrier, which was bred for the sport of dog fighting, -is a 19th Century variety of a much older bull and terrier cross. After bullbaiting was abolished in England, a smaller, faster dog was created by crossing the bulldog with more agile terriers. The outlawing of dog fighting did not wipe out the breed, it merely went underground. Sad to say, illegal dog fighting continues to this day.
The ruffian street fighter was not granted the respectability of Kennel Club registration in England until 1935 and it took decades for the American Kennel Club to acknowledge it. In 1975 the first Staffordshire Bull Terrier competed in a U.S. dog show. Today, the fire and fight remain but the show dog's temperament has been refined so that it makes a fine family pet.