I am too darn lazy tonight to create a post with loads of photos, so I’m posting something I wrote a few weeks ago. Instant Post!
There’s a chance I’ll probably take a lot of heat from Pit Bull breeders but I need to talk about something that’s been on my mind for many years. I truly believe that there are no bad dogs and they all go to heaven because I’m a dog lover.
I listened to a news commentary on the radio today from a breed specialist who commented: “The only dog attacks reported by the media are by Pit Bulls. What we don’t hear are attacks of other breeds such as German Shepherds and Rottweilers. These dogs [Pit Bulls] get a bad wrap.” Well, I think the latter two breeds are excellent guard dogs and they don’t intend to maul or kill.
I don’t think a week or two goes by that I don’t hear of a Pit Bull on the news that has mauled a human or another animal and sometimes they attack their owners. They include any breed labeled American Pit Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, Staffordshire Terriers, or any dog determined to be a Pit Bull type.
In many States such as New Jersey, ownership has its consequences and restrictions. I believe it’s necessary in all States.
Recorded in Best Friends Network, this breed was, at one time, referred to as “nursemaid”, because of its devotion to young children and family.
Quoted in the above article: “Today, however, the breed often attracts the worst kind of dog owners--those who are only interested in them for fighting or protection. It's a shame what has happened to this loyal and affectionate breed-but as the pit bull population has increased so rapidly, shelters are now struggling to deal with an overflow of image-plagued, hard-to-place dogs. And despite its illegality, people are still training and breeding pit bulls to participate in dog fights in cities and towns across the country.”
Why does this hideous, illegal sport continue all over the country? I’m outraged. Greedy breeders and irresponsible dog owners are responsible for the maligned reputation and behavior of this breed.
Because of this, I will admit that I will never enter a home of a friend with a Pit Bull present. Sorry - my fear of its unpredictable aggression will sound an alarm and I'm scared. I have a story to tell about my dilemma with this breed.
During the summer of 2005, I was living in Delaware and was preparing to move to North Carolina. Six weeks prior to our move, our wonderful military U.S. Air Force neighbors moved away and rented their home to a family who brought their two pit bulls home two days after they moved in. It was a Monday evening, after dark, and I was surprised. I met them outside and, masking my fear, inquired about their dogs’ social skills. From the owner, I learned her dogs hadn’t been socialized much. Well, that was just GREAT NEWS and I could feel the hair raise on the back of my neck! There was a split-rail fence lined with heavy-gauge wire separating these two massive bulls from my little Boston Terriers. There was a female (alpha) and a male romping around quite energetically!
My decision was to keep my dogs on lead and supervised while in the yard. I observed the Pits' behavior next door often, as they were usually unsupervised and I felt determined to get to know them with treats and neck rubs. There was no play-bowing between the four dogs. Chloe and Bella sensed something different from other dogs they loved to play with. Bella, my younger Boston who is easily frightened, raised her hair and shouted to them, sensing something not quite apparent to humans, I think. I surely didn’t need Bella to piss off a Pit Bull, so I became more guarded. Chloe was passive but would join in with Bella's blasts when she thought it was necessary.
There was no more of this for the next six weeks. They were on a lead most of the time and I was always present. Something told me I needed to be with them and to never let my guard down.
Two weeks after getting acquainted with our new canine neighbors, I took Bella outside on lead to relieve herself at 10pm. I was looking at the yard next door to see if the Pit Bulls were outside and I missed a step off the deck, tumbled and broke my ankle in two places, but I held on to Bella’s lead! I had ankle surgery the following day, but that’s another story. My husband was working in North Carolina and I was alone.
During the next month while I was on crutches, I was fortunate to have neighbors come in to let the dogs out several times a day. I always insisted that Chloe and Bella be taken out on lead and asked that everyone be aware of the dogs next door, please… Including my husband and daughter, most people thought I was overreacting and my fear was unjustified. There was eye-rolling. I love my dogs deeply and didn’t care if family and friends were annoyed with me. There was a lot at stake here! My gut told me so.
Two weeks after our leaving and settling in our new home in North Carolina, I received a phone call from a neighbor who had helped me out in Delaware. She had news. Those two Pit Bulls, within a minute or two, chewed through the wire on the split rail fence and attacked a Sheltie on the front street who was being walked by a ten-year old girl. Cries of help from the little girl brought two men onto the street with two-by-four lumber to beat the dogs off the poor, severely injured Sheltie. The little girl was unharmed, physically… The animal control agency imposed strict rules on the owners of those dogs. Too late, in my opinion.
For six weeks, I was blessed. They could have chewed through my side of the fence whenever they had the urge. If I heard mayhem, with my ankle in an air cast, I would have crawled down the steps of my deck, hopped on one foot, and used my crutches as a defense weapon to save my beloved dogs. I can’t even bear the thought of what might have been.
Does anyone have a beloved Pit Bull who doesn't have these characteristics? Has anyone had a similar experience? If so, I'd like to know about it.
a return Visit
4 years ago