7 Reasons You Should Own A Red Nose Pitbull

Like the Blue Nose Pitbull, what many think of as a completely separate breed, the Red Nose Pitbull is actually just a different colored Pitbull Terrier.

With it’s checkered history of bull and bear baiting and ties to the illegal sport of dog fighting when found in unscrupulous hands, we have decided to share with you seven reasons why you would want to own this magnificent dog.

1. A Red Nose Pitbull Will Melt Your Heart!

Red Nose PitbullWho would honestly fall in love with this guy? Well, I would.

They look just like all other pits, they are stocky and muscular. Female red nose pitbulls grow anywhere between 17-20” in height and can weigh anywhere between 30 and 50lbs. A male will grow slightly larger, up to 21” in height and anywhere up to 60lbs in weight. They are classed as a medium sized breed.

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Red nose pits are exactly that, red. A Red Nose Pitbull Puppy from birth is very easily identified. They have red/brown/copper tones to their fur, eyes, toenails and nose! It is believed that the red nose originated from the Irish.

The Red Nose Pitbull Terrier was historically used in Britain for bull and bear baiting. The Irish started to notice those Pitties with red/copper tones and decided to cross-breed those dogs. The result, more red noses which eventually found their way into the States, just like the rest of the Pitties.

Some deem the red noses as a rare color, so they are more expensive to buy. Red Nose Pitbull Puppies can range between $500-$2000 but there have been some sold for as much as $11,000! As always, look for a reputable breeder that is breeding for health and temperament.

They aren’t recognized by the American Kennel Club, most likely due to their checkered past and the fact that they are banned in a number of countries and municipalities here in the States.

2. They Are Relaxed, Sociable and Friendly

Red Nose Pitbull SmileWhilst we acknowledge that Pitbulls as a breed are involved in more dog bite related fatalities than any other breed this has to be considered in context:

  • Any dog has the ability to be aggressive.
  • Most dog bite injuries are caused by a dog unknown to the victim.
  • Due to their history, a lot of Pitbulls get into the wrong hands.
  • Dog bites are often a fear response.

We know that all dogs require early socialization and training, this is no different with the Red Nose Pitbull.

Early socialization introduces your dog to the world; those noisy machines, that really tall person wearing a hat and please don’t forget next door’s cat. He learns that he can experience those things and survive. The idea behind this is exactly the same as in humans where each time we learn something new our brain makes a new connection. Every time it is repeated, the connection gets stronger.

If your Pitty has a bad experience with the dog across the street – that’s the connection he makes. However, just like our brains, dog brains are somewhat plastic, which means they are changeable. Neural pathways (those connections) can get stronger or weaker.

In short, we need to expose our pooches to positive experiences regularly and if they do have a bad experience, do our best to counter it, whether this is ensuring they don’t experience it again, or through counter conditioning and desensitization.

Whilst on the subject of socialization, introducing your Pit to children is crucial. Children are unpredictable at the best of times, they run, jump, shout and scream. Create a safe space for your guy, a den under the stairs or a covered crate in the corner of a room. Teach him that if the world is getting too much for him, he can retreat to his safe space.

Safe space training:

  • Ideally, you should start safe space training from puppy hood. Find a space under the stairs, in a separate room or in a crate.
  • Set up the safe space with blankets, bedding, cushions, soft toys, chew toys etc. Just allow your red nose to explore around it for a few days.
  • Intermittently throw a treat into the safe space.
  • Build up to having a chew/stuffed puzzle toy in the safe space.
  • When he starts taking himself into the safe space of his own accord, you could label the behaviour “den” or similar.
  • Keep it a family free zone – it’s his den.

A well socialized Red Nose is the most friendliest dog you could ever wish to meet. They will suit any family with experience of larger breeds and love everyone and think everyone should love them.

3. They Are Very Intelligent Search and Rescue Dogs

Red Nose Pitbull TerrierRed Nose Pitbulls are actually incredibly intelligent making them a dream to train. You will notice that some service dogs are actually Pitbulls; they excel at search and rescue. Take the amazing Pitbull Dakota, who was commissioned by NASA, to recover debris and crew after the Space Shuttle Columbia exploded in 2003.

Pits are obedient, loyal and people pleasers who respond best to positive reinforcement and reward based training. Praise them when they are doing what you ask them to; use rewards to encourage positive behaviour.

You’ve probably heard about dopamine before, it’s a neurotransmitter associated with the reward center in the brain. You can think of it like a save button. We know that when dopamine is present in the brain, we learn new things, when it’s absent, it goes in one ear and out through the other. When we are interested and motivated, more dopamine is released and therefore we remember it. The take home – if we want our dogs to learn, we have to make it interesting and motivating.

Start training young and ensure you continue it throughout their life; as we mentioned, their brains are forever changing!

4. They Have Good Health and a Strong Temperament

Red Nose Pitbull PuppyThis one is true – but in reality, which dog doesn’t have any health issues?! Unfortunately, there are some health issues that we are noticing in the Red Nose Pitbulls.

Hip Dysplasia – this is when there is abnormal development in the hip joint. Depending on the severity, it can often be managed through therapy and medication but surgery is an option. Dogs will present with lameness, altered gait and pain.

Degenerative Myelopathy – Previously known as CDRM, is a progressive disease of the spinal cord. Most common in older dogs. They will present with loss of coordination of the hind legs, often wobbling or knuckling over.

Kneecap Dislocation – also known as luxating patella. This is when the kneecap doesn’t sit in the trochlea groove. There is evidence which suggests some genetic component to this condition, therefore those dogs showing a predisposition should not be bred from.

5. They Crave Human Companionship and Interaction

Red Nose PitRed nose pitties do not cope with being left alone. As an adult you should not be leaving your guy for any longer than he can cope with, especially no more than 3-4 hours.

It’s not because there is anything wrong with red nose pitties – all dogs are separation averse. Think about how we have ended up with our pet dog – humans domesticated them. Dogs are therefore used to human interaction and not particularly enamored by the idea of being away from them. Dogs will tolerate isolation – if you make it as short and as least boring as possible.

Red Nose Pitbull Terriers love being with you, playing in the yard or just following you to hang the washing out. Watching TV? They will be curled up right next to you.

If you can give upwards of 60 minutes exercise per day with some extra time spent working on some training or brain games and as little time alone as possible you will have the most loyal and loving comrade.

6. Red Nose Pitbulls Require Little Grooming

Two Red Nose PitsWet paws, slobber and dog hair. All in a day’s work for any dog owner.

Thankfully the Red Nose Pitbull is pretty low on the grooming front. A couple of brushes a week will be ample to keep his coat in tip top condition. Pitties have a short, smooth coat which will have two major blow outs per year.

Keep an eye on his teeth, eyes and ears, regularly cleaning them. Introducing health checks and grooming from a young age is an important part of his socialization and makes it much easier when he needs to be handled at the veterinarians office.

If your puppy is reluctant to be handled or groomed, pop some dog friendly peanut butter (no added xylitol as this is toxic to dogs) on the kitchen cupboard (or any wipe able surface) for him to lick whilst you are handling him.

If you have a helper, you can ask them to hold a chew to keep him busy for longer. This can help with those puppies who can’t stop themselves trying to chew the grooming brush.

7. They Love To Eat With You

American Pit Bull TerrierSteak dinner evening and those eyes are looking up at you. Although not renowned for scavenging, just like any other dog, the red nose pitty likes his food.

Whilst the odd safe table scrap isn’t of detriment to your red nose, he really needs to be gaining his nutrients from his own diet. On average, a pitty will consume around 30 calories per lb of body weight per day. So if he’s weighing in at 55lbs, he will need around 1650 calories per day. A high quality dog food should have good sources of protein and fat as your guy will need 2.62g of protein per kg of bodyweight and 1.6g of fat per kg of bodyweight.

Red nose pitties are supposed to be muscular and stocky – you quite often see the definition in their muscles.

Ensure you don’t confuse this stocky appearance with being overweight. You should be able to feel his ribs and from a birds eye view his body should have an hour glass figure.

As we have mentioned previously, there are a number of skeletal issues that Red Nose Pitties are prone to, obesity is a risk factor in a number of them. If you have any concerns with the health of your Pitty, speak with a veterinarian.


Have we put you off this affectionate, friendly, and loving guy? Thought not.

The Red Nose Pitbull still has a way to go to dispel those misconceptions many people have about them. We aren’t denying their barbaric history – they were used for bull and bear baiting and then this was outlawed.

However, most Pits are the most loyal and obedient dog you could ever wish to meet, they will do what you ask them to.

When raised right, with early socialisation and positive and consistent training, the Red Nose Pitbull is a faithful, majestic and confident dog. They suit any family who has experience of larger breeds and who have time to spend exercising, playing, training and curling up on the sofa.

They will hike through woods or play ball in the yard – they’re just happy being with you. We know they don’t cope with being left alone, so try to keep this to a minimum.

Have you owned a red nose before? Or do you have experience with this dog? Leave us a comment below to let us know!

John Woods Autho Bio Picture
John Woods is the founder of All Things Dogs, member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, graduate in Animal Behavior & Welfare and recognized author by the Dog Writers Association of America.


  1. My red nose is the best thing & best friend in my life. Totally amazing. We exercise at least 2 hours per day, he keeps me in shape. He is very intelligent, loving, fun, the perfect dog. I want to protect him as much as he wants to protect me. Great with kids, likes the snow, likes the water, can be stubborn sometimes, and is well mannered. Perfect 10

  2. My Rednose was a stray I picked up hiding under my truck. She was about three months old. Shes one of the best dogs I’ve ever had and gets along with my other dogs great.

  3. I have a red nose pitbull her name is Lilo and she just love’s everyone the only thing she will do is lick you to death, she is my baby.

  4. First dog I got was a female red nose from a rescue few years later picked up a male red nose for her they are good friends love them so much

  5. My sister had the most loving and playful red nose that you could ever imagine. He could sense a squeaky toy from 20 paces and always knew when you had one. He loved to play and be fussed and would always wag his tail no matter what.
    His temperament was always the best but could always protect the home if needed. He made my sister always feel safe and she loved her “baby boy”. Sadly after giving him the most amazing life after being rescued and him loving her to bits he sadly died from a tumour that ruptured. He was the best dog you could ever wish to have and was loved by everyone. He will be sadly missed

  6. Leada is my 11 week old red nosed pit. She is sweet and smart an I enjoy her very much. I have 2 cats and so far so good, I also have 5 grand kids that she is not sure about, only she is spooked very easily by almost every noise new; or loud voice, kids playing, other dogs barking. She hides under my bed and that worries me greatly. Any suggestions?

    Kim & leadda

    • Hi Kim,

      Great news that things are going well so far with your puppy. She’s likely feeling overwhelmed at at all the recent changes in her life. She’s probably decided that under your bed is a great place to stay safe. We need her to learn that she can be safe in other places too.

      Have you considered crate training her? This isn’t a punishment, it’s giving her a safe place to retreat to. Somewhere she knows is hers and you can teach your Grandkids that it’s a no-go zone. As she grows she’ll still need a place to go to, but she’ll soon be too big to fit under your bed.

      You also need Leada to associate all those things she’s wary of, with good things. So if your Grandkids are making noise and movements in one room, head into another room with Leada and give her a chew or some treats. You may be better having a barrier or partition separating the kids from her, so she knows she’s safe and she can get used to them from a distance. Let her watch and be patient.

      Introduce the kids one at a time, but on Leada’s terms. If she’s running away, she’s not ready. Let her watch from a distance again and give her a chew or a slow-feeder. She’ll be distracted enough to stay in the general area and hopefully start to associate the kids with good things!

      Only introduce Leada to the kids when she’s ready. This may take longer than you’d hoped, but we want to set her up to succeed!

      Always supervise the kids with Leada and teach them how to interact with dogs. For example: kids need to give dogs space, never take toys/chews from them, never interrupt their eating and let the dog come to you. This is where crate training can be a saving grace. Teach the kids that if Leada chooses to go to her crate, she just wants some quiet time and to leave her be.

      Be patient, arm yourself with plenty of treats and chews. Leada just needs to learn that all these new things aren’t as scary as she thinks. If you are concerned about her behaviour, please see the advice of a qualified trainer or behaviourist.

      • Hi. I have 2, 1 red nosed and 1 blue. My red I rescued (or she rescued me) was from Chicago animal control. She is just the sweetest girl. My blue I rescued as well only from a young couple who couldn’t handle her. I see no difference in my girls as far as their nose color. My red is APBT and my blue is straight up Staffy. I can’t imagine my life without them.

    • Professional training saved me. I have had dogs for 40 years but never a pit. I went for training because she is so powerful & can be stubborn. Training is always on going but has work perfect. She is 19 months, well behaved, socialize, friendly & lovable. Good luck.

  7. I a have a 4 year old female rednose snuggle bug. Very friendly to people and children and loves the vet, however she’s picky with dogs and only gets along with some. This is a breed for experienced dog owners as they also tend to bit stuborn at times.

  8. I’ve currently had my red nose pitbull for 2months he sleeps in my bed, loves my 4 year old nephew to pieces loves playing and is overall the best puppy I have ever had. Whoever came up with the theory that pitbulls are dangerous for kids clearly didn’t know how to take care of his doggie and in any case humans would be the ones making them aggressive because they are naturally the cutest dogs ever

  9. I got my first pup about 3 weeks ago. A lady had found their litter on the side of the road and shared the babies on Facebook. The vet said they were only about 6 weeks old at the time. My little red nose has been an adventure already and this article really helped explain a few of his tendencies to me.

  10. My girl is almost 5 yrs and I couldn’t be happier. Very sociable with people and other dogs. A little more work than other breeds (training, exercise requirements etc) but well worth it. Intelligent, loyal, great companion. Also a great hunting dog.

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