"Speer makes a 135 gr. JHP Short Barrel 38 Spcl. +P round especially for snubbies." What Cheapshooter said there is correct.
The trick to making power out of snubbies is to use fast powder. Pressure is good; but snubbies require that the pressure be developed quickly.
Most "defense" rounds are made with slower powders (especially .357 mags, but we're talking .38+p here). In the case of .38's, I suspect they are geared for 4" barrels or so. The Speer 135g GDHP SB (Gold Dot Hollow Point - Short Barrel) is the only ammo I know specifically designed for snubbies. They have fast powder that develop pressure quickly, and minimizes noise and muzzle flash, while pushing the slug as quickly as possible. They also have a large hollow cavity, designed to open up at lower velocities. Excellent ammo. I have them in my .357 for home protection. (My .357 is a 4" barrel, but I want less noise and flash for home protection.)
And for the record, I'm not employed or affiliated with Speer in any way lol.
If you ever find yourself in a fair fight, it's because your tactics suck." -- Allen West, quoting Marine 1st Sgt Jim Reinfinger