If you are an avid dog lover, it is highly likely that you’re fond of pit bulls. These medium-sized dogs are one of the most interesting, intelligent, and loyal pets that an animal lover can adopt. Pit bulls are often formally known as the American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT), the American Staffordshire Terrier (AST), or the Staffordshire Bull Terrier (SBT). In fact, some people even confuse pit bulls with the American Bulldog. My own pit bull needed an allergy-free bed so I go the best hypoallergenic dog bed money can buy, that was how much I loved him and that is how far owners (like myself) are willing to go. The breed itself is a type of dog, which further includes different breeds. Among these, the red nose pitbull and the blue nose pitbull families are particularly studied due to the interesting characteristics and differences they possess.
An Overview of the Breed
Even though pit bulls are medium in size, these dogs are muscular and extremely strong. In general, pit bulls are considered ferocious and violent. In reality, dogs of this breed are extremely loving and loyal.
In the 1800s, pit bulls were bred to fight in competitions and dangerous events just to entertain humans. They were mostly trained to act as bait for bulls in bullfights, which were then killed. This sport was soon declared to be illegal, after which pit bulls were steadily brought at home as pets.
Even though both these types share the same heritage, they differ based on colour, price, physical characteristics, health, temperament, and many other factors. However, common misconceptions regarding these differences claim that these two types of pit bulls are completely different. While the differences are apparent, they still belong to the same family. Due to this, these two dogs share major traits in terms of personality and temperament.
Here are some major differences between a blue nose and a red nose pitbull –
Let’s begin by learning the origin and history of these two types. The Blue Nose pit bull is originally Irish and was born after a terrier and bulldog were crossbred in the 19th century. The Red Nose pitbull also originated from Ireland, after which they were enthusiastically brought to America. The breeding of the Red Nose pitbull was carried out using a family of varying pit bulls. Also considered as a particular strain of the pit bull, the Red-Nose pit bull was also famously called the “Old Family Red Nose” by breeders. In particular, they were called “Irish Old Family Reds” – a name inspired by their recessive red traits. This lineage was particularly admired by most breeders and dog owners. Today, this type of pitbull is less known and owned because these are slowly dying out.
Post emigration, these red nose pit bulls were crossed with other strains of pit bulls, which gave birth to the American Pit Bull Terrier or APBT breed. Despite being named a different strain, most pit bull terriers with red noses are still called the Red-Nose pitbull. The Blue Nose pit bull, on the other hand, was less admired for its history and lineage.
Major Physical Traits
The most distinct features that also set the two dogs apart are the coat and nose colour. This is mainly due to the presence of recessive genes, which are inherited from parents. As the name suggests, pit bulls with red noses are known as Red Nose Pit bulls, whereas pit bulls with blue noses are called Blue Nose pit bulls. In the latter, the skin on and around the nose of these dogs, which also resembles the texture of leather, carries a dark blue hue, which makes them aesthetically pleasing.
Red nose pit bulls may appear more intimidating than blue nose pit bulls, mostly because of their muscular build. At the same time, these dogs were bred and used inappropriately in the past, mostly for violent reasons, which adds to its negative reputation. However, if trained and loved, red nose pit bulls can be extremely friendly, soft, and loyal companions. They possess a stocky frame, which is quite apparent in all pit bulls. They possess large heads and are particularly intimidating. Due to this, most people prefer to walk away than pet these loving creatures. If you give them a chance, they are extremely fun.
Apart from this, both types share similar height, average weight, and build.
While most pit bulls possess black noses, blue nose pit bulls are distinguished on the basis of their blue-hued nose. As mentioned, the colour difference between these two dogs set them apart. Other than this, they share similar physical traits. The presence of a particular gene in blue nose pit bulls is responsible for the dog’s bluish-grey coat. This recessive gene dilutes black hues and changes the dog’s coat and nose colour.
Since the Blue Nose pitbull is more attractive, most dog lovers are instantly attracted to them. Due to this, most dog breeders are particularly keen on breeding the Blue nose pit bull and sell them at a higher price. That being said, breeders label them as a ‘rare’ breed, thereby justifying their high price and demand. Even though they are beautiful, you cannot label them as rare as they hardly differ from the Red Nose and other pit bulls.
Most uninformed pet owners consider slight variations in traits and colour as a major difference between strains of pit bulls. In particular, blue nose pit bulls are considered more aggressive than others, which is completely untrue. The genetic variation does not affect the dog’s behaviour and aggression.
While adopting a dog is a noble act, some people are inclined towards buying a pit bull as these are not readily available for adoption. For this reason, you should always consider the pricing and the difference between these two breeds once you decide to buy one. Needless to say, as the demand increases, the prices will increase too. Pit bulls, in general, are high in demand all year round.
In particular, the “Old Family Red Nose” pit bull is more expensive as compared to normal Red Nose or Blue Nose pit bulls. Funnily enough, blue nose pit bulls were more expensive in the past, which has drastically changed over the years. There have also been many fluctuations in prices for both types of pit bulls. In recent times, red nose pit bulls are rarely bred, which has made it difficult for pitbull enthusiasts to find one to adopt or buy. Due to this, the price of red nose pit bulls has drastically increased. Since the demand is high and the supply is low, red nose pitbull breeders are unbothered about their sky-high prices.
Physical Strength and Health
Some of the most common health problems that most pit bulls face are joint issues, allergies, heart disease, and cataracts. So, if you are planning to adopt or buy a pit bull, be prepared to ensure your dog’s health.
In particular, the Blue Nose pitbull faces a recessive black pigment dilution that may cause issues related to vision and hearing. This dilution may also lead to excessive hair loss, sensitive skin, or allergies. Both dogs need regular exercise in the form of walks or game sessions conducted in your yard or a nearby park. As compared to blue nose pit bulls, the red nose type requires a bit more socializing and relevant training.
Both types of pit bulls should switch to solid food in around 4 to 8 weeks, depending on specific health requirements or underlying issues. The diet requirements for both pit bulls are similar. The main food items that should be fed include beef, poultry, pulverized vegetables, corn, etc. Do not feed a diet that is rich in carbs as it can make them obese. Feeding a fibre-rich diet is still acceptable.
While it is known that most pit bulls can be ferocious or aggressive, blue nose pit bulls, in particular, are soft and offer a lot of love. All you need to do is encourage and train them to listen to you and be sweet. By doing so, your dog will turn into a lifelong companion. Both types of pit bulls are great around children and can socialize if trained to. If the pet owner has had a baby, the pit bull is often well-mannered and will never be aggressive with the child. In fact, they play with the kids of the house and are ready to take a playful beating as well. Kids, too, are generally unafraid of pit bull pets, which is quite surprising given the intimidating personality that most pit bulls possess. Kids perceive these dogs as stuffed animals that are fun to ride. Even if both types of bulls are kissed, cuddled, pulled, sat on, hugged, or grabbed by kids, these dogs are calm and reciprocate equal fun without complaining or being aggressive.
In particular, red nose pit bulls prefer being around people and not just kids. Due to their loyal nature, they are highly likely to bark on strangers and protect their owners. In return, they expect the love to be reciprocated by the pet owners. For this reason, in some cases, pitbulls can be effective service and therapy animals.
The barking and protective nature don’t necessarily make them great watchdogs. They never view a stranger as a potential threat but a friend they’ve never met before. This is particularly witnessed in blue nose pit bulls. However, when it comes to children, their protective instinct kicks in. Even though most pet owners are advised not to leave their pit bulls alone with their kids, proper training and socializing can lead to an unbreakable friendship between the two.
However, they do not prefer to be around other animals, especially if they are not brought up together. Both types get along well with each other. While both types are kind and rarely prone to violence, lack of training can cause a major temperament issue, mainly due to their inherent violent genes. However, since training these dogs is easier, you can keep them calm and playful.
As a general rule, the Blue Nose Pit Bull is more prone to health problems this is down to the recessive black pigment that gives the dog its notable coloured nose. This sadly then causes them to get health problems like being more prone to sensitive skin, some loss of fur and long term problems like loss of sight as well as hearing.
While both breeds will always have colour variations it is the blue nose pit-bull breed that has the biggest range of variations. This of course also means they are the more sought-after breed as you can end up with much rarer varieties of colour. While you do need to be aware that some breeders will pass the more unusual colours off as “rare” it is worth checking images of the same breed online to see just how “rare” that variation is.
While there are no major differences in their diets you can target the diet of each breed differently to benefit the stronger qualities of each breed. Red-nosed dogs tend to have much better quality hair when fed on a diet of brown rice, corn and poultry, but Blue-nose breeds have a much more sensitive stomach tend to need a diet with more oil-based foods like fish.
While size differences in breeds are not noticeable until they are much older there are some varieties you might want to consider. Blue-nose breeds tend to be smaller, but more muscular and red-nose breeds tend to be taller and leaner. While there are small differences and of course often dependant on their upbring and trailing it is something more noticeable as time goes on.
Irrespective of the differences, both types of pit bulls are extremely loyal and fun. Whether it’s a Red Nose or a Blue Nose pitbull, this breed is always the right choice for dog lovers. The misconception of these two types being completely different is mostly floated by breeders as their livelihood depends on the number of dogs they sell. This is only possible by stating obvious differences between the two and creating a selling point for each type of pit bull. If it is successful, their dogs appear more desirable to the buyers. While it is unethical, uninformed pet owners fall for it, which has led to this perception.
Before you choose a type and a particular pit bull pup you are interested in, make sure that you know the breeder and their work. This is mainly because many breeders try to retain or maintain the colour of the breed during inbreeding. Dog breeding and selling have become a major business worldwide, which has also put this breed at risk. They use pure blue stock for breeding, which often affects the health of the puppies. In other words, every generation is at risk, which is also a threat to the breed. So, if you are looking to adopt or buy a dog and decide to get a Blue Nose pitbull, try to search for another type or breed of dog. Most breeders are more concerned about generating revenue and less about animal welfare, which is quite disheartening. So, if you are a true animal or dog lover, look for other options or dig deeper before making a choice.
Lastly, if you do get one of these types, make sure that they are treated well and trained to be gentle as they are more prone to fighting and violence. Both these types of pit bulls belong to the same family and form great pets. Apart from their colouring, they possess some minor differences that barely set them apart. So, do not be picky and adopt a dog from a shelter. If you like pit bulls in general and are able to find one at the shelter, consider yourself lucky.