Selecting the Right American Pit Bull Terrier Puppy

Several factors any future owner must consider.

American Pit Bull Terrier PuppyYou are now ready to select your puppy. You have decided that you are an APBT person and that you can live with this determined, courageous and smart dog. You have checked out the local ordinances for breed-specific legislation and you have talked to your neighbors about bringing a Pit Bull into the community.  Your entire family is ready for this new arrival into your home and lives.  You have done your homework and have located a reputable breeder who has a litter available. 

You arrive at the appointed time and the breeder has the puppies ready for you to look at. They should be a happy bunch, clean and groomed. Their noses will be wet, their coats will have a glow or sheen and they will have a nice covering of flesh over their ribs. You will be ready to pick up one of these rascals and cuddle him in your arms.

You should ask the breeder if the sire and dam of the litter have had their temperaments tested. These tests are offered by the American Temperament Test Society (ATTS) and responsible breeders of Pit Bulls will be familiar with this organization and will have had their animals tested.  The breeder will show you the score sheets and you can easily determine if the litters parents have the personalities you are looking for. In addition, this is an excellent indication that this is a responsible breeder. 

Temperament testing by the ATTS is done on dogs that are at least 18 months of age; therefore puppies are not tested, but the sire and dam of a litter can be tested. The test is like a simulated walk through a park or a neighborhood where everyday situations are encountered.  Neutral, friendly and threatening situations are encountered to see what the dogs reactions are to the various stimuli. Problems that are looked for are unprovoked aggression, panic without recovery and strong avoidance. The dog is observed for behavior toward strangers, reaction to auditory, visual and tactile stimuli and self-protective and aggressive behavior. The dog is on a loose lead for the test, which takes about ten minutes to complete. As of December 2002, 405 APBTs had taken the test, with 337 passing, for a percentage rate of 83.2%, which places the breed in one of the upper percentiles for good temperament.

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