Q:

How can you tell if a pit bull is purebred?

A:

The American Dog Breeders Association describes purebred American Pit Bull Terriers as athletic, heavy dogs that do not stray into bulkiness with defined and smooth musculature. The head must be in proportion to the body with a neck long enough to seat the head above the top of the back when upright. They must be socialized and gentle without displaying signs of aggression or timidity.

Pit bulls are typically well socialized, so unruly behavior or aggressiveness may indicate that a dog is not of a pure pedigree. The proportions are also an important factor in determining if a dog is purebred.

If no pedigree is available, breed is determined by appearance, but pit bulls are difficult to categorize because the word refers to over 20 breeds, not including those that are mixed with Boston terriers, French bulldogs and English bulldogs. Because of this ambiguity, some breeders and researchers criticize the unreliability of visual markers for identifying breed.

An alternative to visual identification is DNA analysis. The documented accuracy rate for DNA identification is much higher, averaging 90 percent. Another important factor in the improved accuracy rate of DNA analysis is that many animal control officers and veterinarians are not trained in breed identification. Some states and buildings prohibit the ownership of pit bulls.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What should I feed my pit bull puppy?

    A:

    A pit bull puppy, according to PitBulls.org, should be fed a high-quality diet consisting of 34 to 40 percent protein, 14 to 17 percent fat and 20 percent or less of carbohydrate. In addition, the puppy food should contain only 1.1 to 1.5 percent calcium.

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  • Q:

    How many puppies can a pit bull have in one litter?

    A:

    Most pit bulls have litters of seven to 10 pups. A female pit bull may have a litter ranging from two to 12 pups, depending on her health and size. Additionally, the size of the litter usually depends on whether it is her first litter or a later litter.

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  • Q:

    What do you feed a baby pit bull?

    A:

    From birth to approximately 4 weeks of age, pit bull puppies should drink only their mother's milk or a nutritionally fortified puppy milk replacement formula. During and after weaning, a pit bull puppy can start to eat dry food.

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  • Q:

    What is an albino pit bull?

    A:

    Some pit bulls have albinism, an inherited trait that prevents cells from producing the pigment melanin. This lack of pigment gives cells a pink, white or bleached appearance. Albinism can be complete or partial, but not all animals that are white have albinism. Dogs with no pigmentation are rare, but some breeds of dogs are prone to partial albinism.

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