Black Pit Bull Breed Information, Traits, & Characteristics

The black pit bull is a medium-sized terrier dog of European origin. There are four pit bull breeds with the black color genre: the American Staffordshire terrier, the American bully, the Staffordshire bull terrier, and the American pit bull terrier. Black pit bulls are also commonly referred to as black pitties, black bullies, and black Staffies, depending on the breed type.

Black pit bulls are fun, loving, courageous dogs of a medium build. The dogs weigh 30 to 70 pounds and live for 12 to 16 years. The dogs are friendly and loyal, and with the right training, they make good family pets.

Black pit bulls typically cost $500 to $1,000.

Black Pit Bull Characteristics & Overview

Common names:Black pit bull, black pitty, black bully, black Staffy
Origin:Various countries in Europe, depending on the breed
Breed group:Terrier
Height:15–21 inches
Weight:30–70 pounds
Coat:Single coat, short length
Life expectancy:12–16 years
Temperament:Intelligent, courageous, playful, affectionate, self-assured, stubborn
Shedding:Light shedder
Barking tendency:Moderate, usually when feeling threatened, protective, or bored
Cost:$500–$1,000 USD

Origin & Purpose

Black pit bulls were first bred from bulldogs and terriers in 19th-century England, Scotland, and Ireland, for the purpose of bull-baiting, dog fighting, and ratting.

The United Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1898 as the American pit bull terrier. The term “pit bull” is still used to refer to several dog breeds, including the bull terrier, the Staffordshire bull terrier, and the American Staffordshire terrier.


The average lifespan of a black pit bull is 12–16 years. Factors affecting the dog’s lifespan include its diet, its daily activity, and its quality of care. Dogs that are fed healthy foods and encouraged to exercise frequently are more likely to live longer than sedentary dogs that don’t maintain a healthy diet.

Black Pit Bull Appearance

Closeup portrait of beautiful black pitbull dog on black background

The black pit bull is any pit bull breed with a black coat. Most black pitties are solid black. The “tuxedo” pit bull is a rare breed of the black pittie, named for its white chest markings.

Height and Weight

Black pit bulls are considered medium dogs, with a height at the withers of 15 to 21 inches, and a weight of 30 to 70 pounds. The dogs have stocky, muscular bodies and are heavier than most dogs of a similar size.

The size and weight of a black pit bull vary depending on the dog’s genes, diet, activity level, and breed. American pit bull terriers are the largest of all pit bulls, and the Staffordshire bull terrier is the smallest pit bull breed.


The black pit bull is single-coated with short smooth fur. A pittie’s black color is caused by dominant genes, which make markings in other colors uncommon. Black pit bulls are light shedders and require minimal bathing and brushing.

Head & Face Shape

All black pit bull breeds have a square-shaped head, almond-shaped eyes, a long muzzle, and a thick neck. The dogs have rose-shaped ears (unless the ears have been cropped) and fleshy noses. Most pit bulls have low foreheads, giving their heads a wedge-shaped profile.

Black Pit Bull Personality and Temperament

The black pit bull is intelligent, courageous, playful, affectionate, and self-assured. According to the American Kennel Club, pit bulls are keenly aware and very trainable. However, pit bulls are generally stubborn, making this breed unsuitable for people who don’t assert dominance by taking the role of “pack leader” with their pet.


Black pit bulls rarely bark without reason and can be trained to be quiet. A pit bull is most likely to bark if it feels nervous, bored, threatened, provoked, or protective of its owners.

Black Pit Bull Care

A black pit bull terrier mixed breed dog looking cross-eyed as a person holds a treat in front of its face

Caring for a black pit bull is easy, as long as you have the time and energy to commit to training, exercising, and socializing the dog. With the right care, black pit bulls are friendly, loving dogs with happy-go-lucky personalities.

Food Needs

A black pit bull should be fed about 1 pound, or 2 cups, of food per day. The dog’s food should be split into three or four separate meals to prevent overeating. Pit bulls are muscular dogs that burn a lot of energy, so a high-quality protein source should bake up the bulk of their diet. A mixture of wet and dry food offers the dog hydration and dental health benefits.

Grooming Needs

Grooming a black pit bull is easy because the dog has short smooth fur. Peak shedding seasons for pit bulls are during the winter when the dogs grow into a heavier coat, and in the spring when they shed their heavy coat out. Bathe your black pit bull every one to six months, and brush your dog’s fur at least once a week.

Exercise Needs

Black pit bulls need between 45 minutes and 2 hours of exercise per day, including walks and playtime. The dogs have high exercise needs and are best suited to owners who have plenty of time to walk and play with their pets, rather than leaving their dogs in the yard to entertain themselves.

Pit bulls can be apartment dogs, as long as their owners are willing to take them out for fresh air and walks every two to three hours during the day.

Mental Needs

Black pitties are social, have a strong need to please, and thrive with mental stimulation. Play mentally stimulating, one-on-one games with your black pit bull for 30 minutes to 1 hour every day to help your dog thrive and reduce the likelihood of misbehavior due to boredom. Black pitties enjoy fetch, agility training, tug of war, and hide-and-seek. When you’re too busy for playtime, leave treat-release toys and other gameplay toys for your dog to play with.

Common Health Concerns

A pit bull’s black fur doesn’t predispose the dog to any unique health conditions or diseases.

Black pit bulls may suffer from commonly-known pit bull health problems, such as:

  • Hip and elbow dysplasia — A condition that causes the hip or elbow joints to develop improperly, resulting in decreased activity and range of motion, limping and lameness, and difficulty running, jumping, and climbing stairs. Treating this condition in black pit bulls with a diet to reduce weight, and follow veterinary recommendations for anti-inflammatory medications and exercise therapy
  • Hypothyroidism — An endocrine disorder characterized by an underactive thyroid, which causes unexplained weight gain, dull, dry hair, lethargy, lack of interest in exercise, and cold intolerance. Treat disordered black pit bulls with thyroid replacement hormone medication.
  • Retinal dysplasia — An eye condition that occurs when the retina develops abnormally, causing the gradual deterioration of sight and eventual blindness. Currently, there are no known cures for the condition

Most of these diseases are hereditary and can be avoided by buying your dog from a reputable breeder with proof of health screening for the parent dogs.

Black Pit Bull Training

Training a black pit bull is easy due to the dog’s intelligence and eagerness to learn, and  consistent, authoritative training is essential to prevent the dog from misbehaving out of stubbornness and boredom.

Pitties respond best to positive reinforcement, so use rewards-based training for the best response from your dog. Praise your dog and offer treats when your dog follows your commands.

To prevent antisocial behavior later in a black pit bull’s life, train and socialize the dog when it is eight weeks old by introducing the puppy to various people and environments. Begin toilet-training and leash-training your puppy when it is about 12 weeks old.

Black Pit Bull Price

The black pit bull is a moderately priced dog. Black pit bulls are common, so they’re priced similarly to white, fawn, brindle, and other-colored pit bulls. The cost of a black pittie depends on whether you buy from a breeder or adopt the dog.

How Much Is a Black Pit Bull?

The average cost of a black pit bull is $500 to $1,000. Black pitties from a premium lineage may cost $5,000 or more.

Factors affecting the cost of a black pit bull include:

  • Breed — The American bully is the most expensive, followed by the American Staffordshire terrier, then the Staffordshire bull terrier, then the American pit bull terrier
  • Age — Puppies cost about $500 more than adult pit bulls
  • Adoption vs. purchase — Adopting a pit bull costs half as much or cheaper than purchasing the dog. Adoption fees for pit bulls are $20 to $250

How Much Does It Cost to Own a Black Pit Bull?

The average annual cost of owning a black pit bull is $2,000 a year. The exact cost depends on your lifestyle and what you decide to spend money on. If you just buy the essentials for your dog — including food, medications and healthcare subscriptions, grooming and walking supplies, and toys — you’ll spend less per year than somebody who splurges on expensive treats, private training, and professional dog-sitting for their pet.

Is a Black Pit Bull Right for You?

A black pit bull terrier on the meadow

Black pit bulls are friendly, loving dogs, but they’re not suitable for some people or lifestyles. Make sure you consider your situation carefully when deciding whether or not a black pit bull is a right pet for you.

Black Pit Bulls Are Suitable for:

Black pit bulls are great family pets, but only when the dogs are properly trained and socialized from a young age. The dogs have high exercise needs and are ideally suited to people who have the time and energy to dedicate to training and bonding with an intelligent, people-oriented dog. Pit bulls are good companions to people of all ages, and a trained, socialized dog can be trusted without supervision around children.

Black Pit Bulls Are NOT Suitable for:

Pit bulls need regular daily interaction with their owners and become anxious when left alone, so don’t buy a black pittie if you’re away from home for long hours, or you can’t commit enough time to give your dog the attention it deserves. A black pit bull isn’t suitable for you if you don’t want to train and socialize your dog to prevent its behavioral issues. Pitties are high-energy dogs, so don’t buy a black pit bull if you can’t commit to daily one-hour walks or lead a sedentary lifestyle.

About Thomas Woods 224 Articles
Thomas has been a dog lover since he was 6 years old when his parents got him a rescue Labrador. Since then his love for dogs has lead him to study Animal Behavior & Welfare. He now keeps a six year old English Bullmastiff and educates pet parents through his online publication Perfect Dog Breeds.

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