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The Origin of the Pit Bull?

Discussion in 'APBT History' started by Mouser, Mar 29, 2006.

  1. Mouser

    Mouser Big Dog

    I have heard two lines of thought on this subject. I'm curious to know what everyones opinion is to the true origin. One group says that Pit Bulls, have always been their own type of dog, since the begining. The other camp thinks, that small molassers, or mastiff like dogs, were crossed with small terriers to develope the modern day Pit Bull, albeit, this was probably started a couple of hundred yrs ago. What side do you favor, or is there another opinion. If the latter view is correct, would it be possible to re-create a pitbull, with the proper breeding, and culling? I'm not asking for your opinion on it being right or wrong to breed dogs, it's only a hypothetical question, is it possible to re-create them? Mouser
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2006
    david63 likes this.
  2. well the pitbull is a cross of the extinct english white terrier and the bulldog and i think maybe another type of terrier if my memeroy serves me right.pitbulls didnt exsist imo untill this cross was made and the pitbull terrier was formed,everyone has their own opion as to how they were created and such but i belive thats the truth on how they were created.and they were crossed in england i belive the they were brought to america by the irish and they have stayed ever since and been americas favorite dog until the last 15 or 20 years.so i belive the true origin is the crossing of a few diffrent breeds.
  3. 14rock

    14rock GRCH Dog

    Ah, I like this thread.

    It is my opinion they have been around mostly unchanged since the beginning. I know, that there have been other breeds mixed in with the original dogs to create what we now know....I'm simply stating that I think there has always been "pitbull" stock has always been around in some form, and although they may have had minor mix-breedings, they were usually kept pretty similar.

    I do not buy the mastiff/terrier cross at all. Maybe a generation, or two, or three of breedings like this has happened in the past 200 years, but I think it was pretty rare to breed a "pitbull" to a completely diffrent dog, and have it work well enough to be bred.

    Do I think a pitbull could be created today from other stock? No. You could "build" a breed that looked like a "pitbull" but you will not get the heart, stability, and tempermant a pitbull has.
    david63 likes this.
  4. chinasmom

    chinasmom CH Dog

    This is the extinct White and Black and Tan Terrier.
  5. chinasmom

    chinasmom CH Dog

    I'll try again.

    Attached Files:

  6. chinasmom

    chinasmom CH Dog

    I thought it was a cross between the extinct Bulldog and the Terrier I posted a pic of.
  7. as far as i read and was told it was the bulldog and the english white terrier.and rock is right they havent really been changed at all since the pitbull was made and could be bred to get the same type of dog with each litter.but no they were not bred to big mastiffs other wise if that was some of the foundation stock used to create this breed they wouldnt top out at normal weight to be in the 20lb range all the way up to the 50lb range,it just doesnt go together that they would have mastiff blood in them and only weigh that much instead of in the 100lb mark some wheres.
  8. mikefromMD

    mikefromMD Top Dog

    My understanding is that the Manchester Terrier was in there too.
  9. Scotsman

    Scotsman Top Dog

    Well from what I've read about Terrier's in general there really wasn't any specific breeds of terriers as we know it today. They had types from region to region, but not specific breeds. I've read stories of some of the old bull-n-terrier crosses having wire coats.
    Also stories of pit dogs being is the U.S prior to the Revolution.
    I do believe they cam from a cross of the old bulldog and terriers, but not any specific breed.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 30, 2006
  10. Mouser

    Mouser Big Dog

    Well Texas, there are all different sizes of molosser, I was thinking the small ones. I have had alot of experience with small terriers, Patterdales, JRT's, Borders, Lakeland, Boston, and Rat terriers. Some of these dogs, have a tremendous amount of pluck, they ain't got the same kind of gameness as a pit dog, but they are game none the less. With all of the trouble brewing for big pits, well you can see where I'm going. I'm posting some pics of former terriers I've owned. I have pics of them with game taken hunting but don't want to offend anyone. These dogs are good hunting dogs, and have the ability to get the job done, what ever it takes. I'd like a game terrier in the upper teens, to low twenties, that could produce the same consistantly. Mouser

    Attached Files:

  11. chinasmom

    chinasmom CH Dog

    Look in my gallery Mouser and take a look at the two terriers I have. They hunt sqirrel mainly, but have tracked and cought rabbit. They are a whole lot of fun, You should see 'em climb a tree. LOL
  12. I think we've all heard the story of the Romans conquering...well, everyone, and coming across these huge "Mollassian" dogs, respecting them for their stength and defensive blah blah blah, and taking some with them. If then, these style dogs began being bred for protection, war, or animal fighting, those people may too, have realized they needed something with more stamina, therefore selectively breeding the smaller, more athletic ones. They could have been on a road to success a few (alot) generations later, and then realized what they really needed, was some of the tenacity of the old terrier breeds. the story goes on from there. This may seem ridiculous to think that small game apbts came from huge stock, but after 100 years of breeding, you can change the size of anything...and remember that breeding a big dog to a small dog doesn't produce a medium dog. You'll get some big, and some small...or all big or all small. In that mindframe, it would have rather easy to "breed for size"...and then REALLY easy with the intro of the 15 pound terrier. I dont know for sure, no body does. I sure would love to go back and be a fly the wall watching the history in FFW...to see what really happened. Wouldn't mind seeing some of the old Irish dogs do battle either.

  13. Remo

    Remo Pup

    Let me put my 2 cents in! In the end, none of us where there. I am going to give you an insight on how things still work in the UK with working dog breeders.

    There are still many active people around in the Uk that breed terriers for their abilities to hunt. These people dont give a toss about pedigrees and breeds really. If they have two hunting dogs that they believer are great and could contribute with something, they put them togheter and breed puppies. And those puppies are labeled after what they look and act like! Not after a paper. And if they breed the offspring back in some of the original breeds I am sure the name the breeding after that. Papers and genealogy really does not mean crap for them as long as their dogs do their work.

    I am sure they had the same mentality a couple of hundred years ago when the ancestors of the Pit Bull where created, by the same kind of crowd I might add. And I am sure a lot of people had the same way of doing it when the dogs came to the US. I am sure that there has been a Pit Bull for a long time as some one stated earlier! And I am sure that the majority of the genes have been the same for a long time. But we are kidding ourselves if we think that there has not been other contributions made.

    But with the above said, I dont beleive in no 50/50 cross either. I think it is just a too easy way to describe a more complex reality! "the strenght of the bulldog crossed with the endurance of the terrier". Sounds like bullshit to me! Any one with fairly amount of insight in breedings knows that you probably just would get a dog that neither had any endurance nor any strenght! If they bred for gameness they where sure as hell going to continue to breed for gameness, not cross with a cur and fool themselves they would get strenght! Why would any one like to have a strong cur? ;)
  14. tommy3

    tommy3 CH Dog

    I feel that there is alot of confusion regarding it all. You hear people say that pit bulls were originally used for bullbaiting and so on. In my opinion, the American Pit Bull Terrier never existed until they were specifically bred for the pit. Hence the name, American PIT Bull Terrier.
    Their ancestors were used for bullbaiting, rat dogs, and so on. Just because these dogs share an ancestry with the APBT, it does not make them APBTs.
    If their ancestors were bullbaiters, etc, how does that make them pit bulls? I have indian ancestors, but I'm not indian.
    Those dogs were whatever they were bred for. They certainly weren't bred for the pit. Therefore, they should not be considered pit bulls. They could be considered bulldogs or ratdogs, but if they never were bred for the pit, they weren't pit bulls.
    Once the breed was specifically bred for fighting through generations, it became a pit bull.
    Therefore, in my opinion, to say pit bulls were originally bullbaiting dogs and rat dogs is false. However, it can be true to say that their ancestors were these things.
    houstonapbt likes this.
  15. oh yeah i think it is entirely possiable to have some of these little guys blood in gamedogs because they used terriers for the speed and such,so yeah i absolutley belive that it is possiable but i still dont belive that there is any type of mastiff in the original crossings to make our breed,only today are people doing such and thats where you are getting these super sized dogs that are so geneticly inferior to our game dogs.when they were just being bred normaly you never got a huge 100-150lb dog you were doing great years back to get a dog that weighed 55 pounds.but thats why i dont belive that there is any mastiff in our breed origanly but today they are crossing anything and everything to get what they think will make em a fast buck.
    david63 likes this.


    Terrier's were bred into the bulldogs or bulldog types to add ability and gameness. The bulldogs! not the fat little ass scratchers we have now were used to add thick skin and bone for durability. Some of the larger dogs even had long hair. Hounds were also used to add pure meaness to the mix! If you have ever been around any of said breeds you understand what I'm saying.
  17. i have been around plenty of hounds slick but i have yet to find a hound with ''pure meaness'' and i dont really see any hound like resemblence in our breed so i think you might be a little off there.but as far as the bulldog you are right they were added for the thick skin and heavy bone but also they were there for thier pure meaness a pure bulldog of old was a force to be reckond with they would tear you apart for nothing and they crossed that with diffrent types of terriers to get your pitbull but i never heard of hounds being in them espically for meaness because hounds imo just aint mean dogs they wernt bred for it they were bred for their scenting abilty.


    My answer to the last question is, I don't know but maybe the UKC or AKC and the folks breeding Bluffs can answer that for ya! People need to think about the questions before they ask something. Pit bull describes a dog used in a pit. Which could be any breed if they have the sand for it. APBT'S are respected mutts with a pedigree!


    Not been on any hunting expeditions with hounds then? Well, I see a few breeds in the gamedog we have today. Don't let the ears fool ya. Hell, I seen enough redboy type hounds to prove this. There aint anyone on Gods green earth that can tell us what all is in the breed we have.
  20. no slick i have only been on hunting expeditions with hounds and i have never seen a hound do anything i would call vicious or anything, i mean yeah they can kill a coon or bay at some pigs but their specialty is scenting and i wouldnt even compare their gameness to that of a gamedog,and i still see no similarites in our dogs to hound dogs if there was there would be the ears and if they didnt have that they would have the larger nose area or they would just be built like a hound dog real tall and built for speed and hunting,and you are right no one knows for sure what is in this breed of dog but i serioulsy doubt there is any hound or mastiff in our dogs.[​IMG]

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