Color in the American Staffordshire Terrier by William F. Peterson

Our breed is available in a wide range of colors. Nearly all colors common to dogs can be found in Staffs. I don't believe there is a breed with a wider range of colors. There is a color for everyone. This adds considerable interest to the breed, as there is much truth in the old adage, "Variety is the spice of life."
Brindle, the most common, and probably the most popular color, is seen in a broad range, from black through all shades of fawn and blue. The degree of brindling varies from very heavy, broad striping to sparse, thin, sometimes barely discernible lines. Many dogs referred to as black are really black-brindle. They appear solid black when the brindle stripes are black on a black field. Only by breeding one of these to a solid colored dog, other than another black brindle, can the true color be determined. If bred to a fawn, a true black, without brindling, will not produce brindles.
Apparently, there is yet another type of black. This is really a very dark version of a smutty brown. This smut color can also be seen as a light-grayish or dusky tan (not to be confused with the blues), but can occur so dark as to appear black. There is, in my opinion, only one true black. This is the pure, jet black, with no brindling or shading of a lighter color. These are not often seen, but a good one, particularly if nicely marked with white, is a very handsome animal. Several variations of fawn exist in the breed.
Most often seen is the red fawn, but actually, few can really be called red. The intense, bright-pigmented reds seem to be few and far between. Most fawns are closer to yellow than red. Some concentrated effort by breeders might be advisable to improve the intensity of the pigmentation in the red fawn color. This could be done by utilizing good bright reds in conjunction with true blacks. Successful results have been achieved in the Staffordshire's cousin breed, the Bull Terrier, by mating black and tans to color-bred whites. This, apparently, has been proven to produce very richly colored brindles and bright reds, but since our breed standard calls for the discouragement of both whites and black and tans, the use of these colors is certainly cause for criticism. Another shade of fawn is the buckskin fawn, occurring in various shades of tan. Often the hairs are light at the base and much darker at the tips. Sometimes this color is accompanied by a darker streak, or trace, running the length of the back. Yet another fawn color is seen in the blue fawn. These vary from nearly white to almost a red, distinguishable by the typically slate-colored nose and hazel eyes, as seen also on the dilute-black blue dogs. Persons not aware of these dilutions being permissible in the breed may be inclined to fault these dogs for a light eye. If the eye color is as dark as the coat, no penalty should be imposed. All of these fawns can be seen with or without the black mask, most frequently without it. Apparently, this mask factor is one that is easily lost, which may be something else worthy of the breeder's concern. I think a brightly pigmented fawn with a black mask is a beautiful color, and would hate to see it die out.
Occasionally, a grizzle, or agouti-colored Staff is seen, but these are comparatively rare, and in my kennel the several that have been whelped have died soon after birth. Possibly this color may be accompanied by a lethal factor.