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The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is a British breed of short-haired terrier of medium size. It originated in the city of Birmingham and in the Black Country of Staffordshire from cross-breeding between the Bulldog and the Black and Tan Terrier. It was bred as a fighting dog and, until blood sports were banned in 1835, was used for ratting, bull-baiting and dog fighting – which last continued illegally after the ban.The Stafford is a descendant of the now extinct Bull and Terrier cross, an ancestry developed in England in the early 19th century. The Bull Terrier, founded by James Hinks of Birmingham, England, the Stafford, the American Staffordshire Terrier and American Pit Bull Terrier all trace back to the bull-type terrier breeds with the common component being the Bulldog.After the banning of blood sports and pit fighting in 1835, attitudes changed which, over the course of centuries, resulted in generations of responsible breeding and further breed refinement of the Stafford as a popular family pet and companion dog. The Stafford's association in early 19th century as a fighting dog made it difficult to gain recognition by the Kennel Club (KC) in the United Kingdom (UK) but was eventually added to their purebred registry in 1935. Staffords first arrived in North America in the mid to late 1880s but it was not until 1974 that the American Kennel Club (AKC) accepted the Staffordshire Bull Terrier into their purebred registry.
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