Pocket Pitbull

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First off, what is a Pocket Pitbull? A Pocket Pitbull is a cross between an American Pitbull terrier and a Patterdale Terrier. However, do not let the name fool you, these are not small dogs but more of a smaller version of the parent breed.

This adorable, loving breed is known by many names. Pocket Pitbull, Pocket Pit, Mini Pit and Miniature Pitbull. This hybrid is slightly different in the UK and USA due to government legislation, but they are very similar dogs. 

A Pocket Pitbull, when trained and socialised properly is a wonderful family pet, finely attuned to his human’s emotions and mood.

Pocket Pitbull Appearance and Size

They are Medium rather than small dogs. they have short and shiny coats and display a lot of the physical appearance of Pitbulls. These dogs can weigh around 11 to 22 lbs when fully grown and stands at 12 to 16 inches in height. Because it is a crossbreed, expect there to be some variation.

Pocket Pitbull Chatacteristics

Due to the mix of the breed, Pocket Pitbulls hold on to a lot of the Patterdale energy and inquisitiveness. They are smart but can also be stubborn so need an experienced dog owner and thanks to their bulky build, they are strong and have a tendency to pull when lead walking. Pocket Pitbulls are popular with owners who want a tough looking dog but one with the friendly loyal side and smaller in size.

Are Pocket Pitbulls viscious?

As with any dogs, a lot of this is to do with their upbringing. Many have sadly been trained to fight and then neglected. If a pocket pit is brought up with humans and other dogs from a puppy and properly trained/well exercised it is unlikely that it will be aggressive. However, never leave a dog alone with children as any dog can snap at any time.

Pocket Pitbull Health

They are prone to a few Pitbull health issues including hypothyroidism and hip dysplasia.

This adorable, loving breed is known by many names. Pocket Pitbull, Pocket Pit, Mini Pit and Miniature Pitbull. This hybrid is slightly different in the UK and USA due to government legislation, but they are very similar dogs. 

A Pocket Pitbull, when trained and socialised properly is a wonderful family pet, finely attuned to his human’s emotions and mood.

About The Breed – Pocket Pit

In America, the Pocket Pit is a cross between a purebred American Pitbull Terrier and a purebred Patterdale Terrier. Due to the Dangerous Dogs Act of 1991, this hybrid in the UK is a cross between a purebred Patterdale and a purebred American Staffordshire Terrier or English Staffordshire Terrier. This is because breeding ‘pitbull’ breeds is banned.

They have been popular as a hybrid in America for decades, where the first Pocket Pits were bred. Their popularity in the UK has only risen in the last 10 years. This is due in part to the reputation bully breeds have for being aggressive and dangerous, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Bullies and bully crossbreeds are kooky, affectionate and friendly dogs. Eager to please, they are highly intelligent and get on well with other dogs provided they receive proper socialisation. Far from being dangerous, bully breeds and crossbreeds have long been used as therapy dogs for hospitals and nursing homes, as well as training as search-and-rescue dogs. In the last few years, they have also become more common as law enforcement dogs, since they acute sense of smell makes them perfect at detecting illegal substances, blood and money.


The Mini Pit has a very short, glossy coat which is always smooth. They have the stocky body of the bully breed but the shorter height of the Patterdale. Since both breeds have a high chase instinct, recall is a very important part of a Pocket Pit’s training.

There are many possibilities when it comes to coat colours and markings as both parent breeds have a variety of gene combinations. In contrast to most other dog breeds, black is not the most common coat colour for Mini Pits. 

Coat colours include:

  • Blue 
  • Chocolate 
  • Liver
  • Tan
  • Tricolor (black, chocolate, white OR blue, tan and white)
  • Chocolate brindle
  • Tan brindle

Most puppies have white markings, but solid coats do occasionally occur. 

White markings can show on the feet, legs, chest, belly, face and tail. Occasionally a dog may have white markings on his back, but this is not as common in Pocket Pits.

Dogs with all white or mostly white coats are generally a different colour underneath, since the white colouring is actually markings covering the ‘true’ coat colour.

Height and Weight 

Pocket Pitbulls bred in America are generally taller than those born in the UK. This is because the American Pitbull is slightly larger than the American Staffordshire Terrier and almost double the height of the English Staffordshire Terrier.

Height ranges from 12 inches (30cm) to 16 inches (41cm). most of this height comes from the body since Pocket Pits have short and stocky legs.

Weight depends more on the bully parent than the Patterdale. Again, American Pocket Pits will tend to be heavier than their British counterparts. A healthy adult Mini Pit can weigh between 22 pounds (10kg) and 50 pounds (23kg). weight can also be affected by how much muscle the dog develops.

Pocket Pit Bull Temperament

The Patterdale and Staff breeds share a lot of character traits. Both breeds enjoy exploring and investigating, with scent a big motivation for their attention. They also both have a high prey drive and will chase anything that moves- birds, small animals, toys and people. It is important to teach your Pocket Pit from an early age what is acceptable and what isn’t. Chasing the neighbour’s child is a definite no-no, but tennis balls we can chase all day long!

Both breeds are also quiet, only tending to bark when they feel it is necessary. Loyal and protective, both breeds or a crossbreed of the two, take protecting the home very seriously, but are never aggressive towards people unless provoked or trained to behave that way.

They also have differences. Patterdale Terriers are brave and feisty dogs, whereas Staff type breeds are more likely to be nervous in new situations and also more likely to startle at unusual sounds.

Pocket Pits can take after either parent breed when it comes to personality, so there is no guarantee. As with any hybrid, crossing can result in an entire litter of puppies all exhibiting different characteristics and mannerisms.

Their most endearing quality is their love of attention. Pocket Pits will follow their owner around the house and loll beside them on the couch. For owners who allow their dogs to sleep in their bed, Pocket Pits make the best cuddly buddies!

Rescue Pocket Pit Bulls

Unfortunately, due some backstreet breeders selling dogs for illegal fighting and naïve owners choosing a bully breed for their looks, staff crossbreeds are the most common in rescue centres. Their stubborn nature and easy distraction means they need consistent training or they can quickly develop behavioural problems.

If you are thinking of adding a Pocket Pit to your family, there are lots of shelters with hundreds of Pocket Pits waiting for their forever home. No-kill shelters in America like Bobbie’s Pit Rescue and Sanctuary take unwanted or abandoned bully breeds, rehabilitate them and adopt them into new homes with families who understand their needs.

Here in the UK, bully crossbreeds like the Pocket Pit are all too common in rescue centres. There are breed specific charities such as Am Bull Dog Rescue, who aim to educate the public about these crossbreeds, as well as taking in unwanted dogs, rehabilitating them and carefully selecting appropriate foster homes and adoption families.

If you are interested in Patterdale crosses, you might also like read about the other Patterdale terrier cross dogs available such as a Patterjack, Patterbea or Patterpoo.

4 thoughts on “Pocket Pitbull”

  1. Hi. How do I get a real pocket pitbull? Not a pocket bully with the wife legs and stubby body. I mean a apbt and patterdale mix. I am looking for one.

    • You can look for good breeders in your area – where are you based? I would also recommend the RSPCA and Dogs trust as they are excellent charities that rehome. They sometimes have Pocket Pits in!We are UK based by the way, but we don’t actually breed!


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