Why Are Pitbulls So Muscular? (And How to Keep Them Big)

Pitbulls are by far one of the most controversial dog breeds due to their strong build, misconceptions about their jaws having the ability to lock, and their history of being exploited at underground dog fighting rings.

People who aren’t as familiar with them may be interested in learning more about their innate traits, and how to properly care for this block-headed breed.

In this article we will be answering the questions: why are Pitbulls so muscular? Are Pitbulls the most muscular breed? As well as covering care information, like the best diet and activities for these dogs, as well as jobs they best excel at!

Why Are Pitbulls So Muscular?

Pitbulls are very muscular due to their genetics. In the past, this breed’s ancestors could be found provoking animals far larger than themselves for a wide range of reasons, so they had to be strong, fast, and use their jaws as protection. 

Pitbulls are considered medium to large breed dogs who can weigh anywhere from 30-90 pounds when fully grown. They have an average lifespan of 12-14 years and are categorized in the Terrier breed group. Pitbulls are often described as being loyal, playful, fearless, and protective.

Are Pitbulls the Most Muscular Breed?

The Pitbull is commonly known as the most muscular breed of Canis lupus familiaris. Originally bred for bull-baiting, working on farms, and hunting various types of vermin, this breed’s ancestors passed down the genetic traits that give us the stocky and strong Pitbull as we know them today!

They are not inherently aggressive to humans but due to their breed’s history, they do have a high prey drive and need to be properly socialized with people and other animals as puppies to ensure no aggression issues happen in their adult life.

Pitbulls are considered great dogs for families due to their affectionate and goofy personalities but require obedience training as they can be stubborn and hard-headed at times.

The Best Diet for Keeping Your Pitbull Strong

Creating a high-protein diet regimen for your pet may sound like a difficult task, but there are endless options for a variety of different budgets. Hills Science Diet, Purina Pro Plan, and Royal Canin are 3 of the brands that are most highly recommended by veterinary professionals all over the US.

They have a variety of kibble, wet food, and treats that were created with digestible proteins like lamb, chicken, a variety of different vegetables, and helpful additives for joint health.

Due to their muscular frame, Pitbulls require a high protein diet to keep them strong and happy. Pitbulls are prone to a few genetic health issues like hip dysplasia, arthritis, allergies, and skin issues, so a proper diet is crucial to give your pet their best shot at living a healthy life.

Another very easy way to incorporate high protein food into your Pitbull’s everyday diet is by adding raw or scrambled eggs to their kibble once a day.

Peanut butter is a high-protein snack that most dogs enjoy, but verify that the peanut butter you are going to feed your pet is dog-safe, as the human version contains an ingredient that can be harmful to dogs.

Homemade dog-friendly oatmeal and peanut butter treats are a great way to incorporate protein, and there are hundreds of recipes available online that are easily accessible.

It is always highly recommended to reach out to your primary veterinarian for their opinion before changing your pet’s diet, as too much protein can be harmful to pets with preexisting kidney or liver issues.

Activities to Build and Maintain Their Muscle

Pitbulls have a high prey drive and need a minimum of one hour of daily exercise to stay happy. Activities like walking and running with your dog multiple times daily are great ways to maintain muscle mass.

Behavior problems like destroying furniture and digging can arise in your Pittie due to boredom, daily exercise is a great way to avoid any issues relating to this.

If you are unable to exercise with your pet, activities like playing fetch, tug of war, or even running through training drills a few times a day will give your pet the necessary components for building and maintaining muscle.

Swimming is another great way to exercise your Pitbull, but always ensure safety by providing your pet with a doggy lifejacket. Rest is essential for your Pitbulls health. Strenuous activities must be limited, and your pet should be able to rest, cool off, and rehydrate before continuing with any form of exercise.

Due to their predisposition for joint issues, adding a joint supplement to their diet can be helpful in avoiding any painful issues arising in your pet. Veterinary clinics typically default to using Glucosamine which is widely available across many pet supply stores and websites.

As mentioned above, a good diet filled with healthy proteins is necessary to build and maintain muscle. Without it, your Pitbull can begin losing their muscle mass and this could potentially cause several health issues.

What Jobs Do Pitbulls Excel At?

Pitbulls are classified as working dogs due to their original breeding purpose as bull-baiters and farm dogs. They would excel at a variety of jobs, but do not need to have professional titles to work!

Herding livestock is a great example of a job that this breed would do well with, but they would require strict training and socialization to not overpower any farm animals they may work with.

Pitbulls are commonly used as protection dogs for families. Trainers are typically the best way to ensure that your Pitbull can properly distinguish threats against your home and ward off any intruders.

Activities like scent work are great mental jobs that any Pitbull can accomplish due to their high levels of intelligence. Hiding treats under blankets and in various hidden spots around your home allows your pet to exercise their sense of smell and enrich their mental stamina.

Obstacle courses made for dogs can be a great form of mental and physical exercise! You can easily make your own at home with any scrap building materials that may be lying around your house.

Pitbulls are also a great breed for hunting, tracking, and retrieving, so if you are a person that enjoys bird or large animal hunting, you could train your Pittie to aid you!

Training courses catered to tracking and retrieving are a great resource for someone who isn’t well versed in successful training methods, as well as finding helpful, free training videos online.


In this article, we covered a wide range of important things you can incorporate into your Pitbull’s everyday routine. From healthy high-protein diets to maintaining your dog’s physical and mental stamina and prowess, you now have the knowledge to raise a safe, happy and healthy Pitbull.