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Why does everyone hate me?

The pit bull (which is really a name applied to several related breeds) is historically and even today one of the most stable and people-friendly of breeds. Which is why we don't understand why, instead of passing legislation dealing with all vicious dogs, and with gangsters and dog-fighters, legislative bodies take the easy way out with pit bull bans.

We're not the only ones who feel this way. Look at these dogs -- loving, loyal, well-cared for pets -- and ask yourself why they are being targeted. And then call your elected representative and ask for legislation that gets to the root of the problem, not just the symptoms.

July 22, 2005 in Current Affairs | Permalink


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» Sorry Again, Again from Dogged Blog
"It is true that Pit Bulls grab and hold on. But what they most often grab and refuse to let go of is your heart, not your arm." - Vicki Hearne [Read More]

Tracked on Aug 8, 2005 2:58:33 PM


I rescued a pitbull when she was 6 months old. I had her around kids and other dogs, over time she started showing signs of aggression toward both. I took her to dog trainers and tried to socialize her as much as possible. She was very friendly towards most people but not children or other animals. I tried my best to break her of this to no avail. It got to the point where i had to put her to down. She was my best friend and it was the hardest thing I have ever done. But she had become a huge liabilty and I could never forgive myself if she were to hurt a little kid (which she came very close to doing a few times), i do think that there are good pit bulls, but at the same time it is not always the owners fault.

Posted by: katie | Apr 30, 2008 11:10:34 AM

I just wish the people that broadcast THE NEWS would get it right, instead of calling every dog that "attacks" someone a Pit Bull. Every newscast I have seen this summer references "pit bull" while showing footage of a dog that is obviously not one. I think alot of society's views on "pit bulls" and dogs in general is because of this.

All it takes is one idiot to ruin things for the rest of us.

Posted by: KCC | Aug 27, 2005 5:15:19 PM

Pitbulls don't harm people. People that are irresponsible owners harm people. I have a 7 year old Pit, Mecca - she is sweet, intelligent, friendly, ridiculously silly, very memorable and engaging. Coolest dog I have ever known. And I dare anyone to be remotely afriad of her.

It disgusts me to the point of illness. Ugh.

Posted by: **RPM** | Aug 10, 2005 4:24:25 PM

I adopted a pit bull pup about four years ago and never had one regret. My Pit bull is the most devoted, affectionate and gentle dog my family has ever known. We don't even call her a dog anymore; she's our "baby". There is no doubt in my mind she's more intelligent then the bureaucrats who are trying to ban her breed because unlike them she’s not ignorant. Ignorance is stupidity and stupidity in the lack of a total understanding of a situation. The bureaucrats are just assuming “Pit bull terriers” are killers; and Mr. Bureaucrat have you forgotten how to really spell “Assume”? Maybe you should take a look at your own spoiled brat children and ask your self, “Who really is more prone to wild violence?” Let’s also not forget the Pit bull is a terrier and I know for a fact that the “Jack Russell Terrier” can also be prone to violent behavior…given the right conditions. But inside a loving home the “Jack Russell” is also a great member of the family, just like any breed of dog. What breed is next Mr. Bureaucrat once you rid the earth of one of God’s greatest creations? Can I suggest the Bureaucrat Breed; the world would be a better place without that bunch of nincompoops.

Posted by: Gadget | Aug 2, 2005 10:01:47 AM

Thanks for a thorough and thoughtful post!

Posted by: Gina | Jul 23, 2005 12:45:09 PM

Ignorance, hysteria and urban legend are terrible grounds for generalizing about dogs, and even worse grounds for legislation.

Compare these quotes:

1. Denver Assistant City Attorney Kory Nelson: "Pit bulls are the 'nuclear weapon' of dog breeds compared with the 'hand grenade' of other breeds."

2. Julie Gilchrist (a doctor at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention who researches dog bites): "If anyone says one dog is more likely to kill — unless there’s a study out there that I haven’t seen — that’s not based on scientific data."

Show of hands---
How many of you heard about the border collie involved in a fatal attack on an elderly man in Indiana on July 1? How many heard about the Siberian husky that killed a days-old infant in Rhode Island on July 14? How about the Massachusetts boy mauled by two wheaten terriers last week ("one of the worst attacks I've ever seen," said the animal control officer)? Or the Wisconsin girl who suffered permanent injuries when a Lab attacked her, "flinging her in the air" several times? (The girl's mother has filed suit against the store where the dog ran loose.) Or the fourteen year old New Jersey boy who needed four hours of surgery after being attacked last week by a friend's bullmastiff? These are the stories that don't get much media coverage---the stories that have "dog" in the headline, as opposed to "pit bull."

If you ask the bureaucrats in Denver (where good dogs are being confiscated and killed) how many dog bite fatalities they've had since pit bulls were banned, city officials will admit that other breeds have been responsible for at least five fatal attacks and dozens of serious injuries. A malamute killed a seven year old Denver girl in May. As Dr. Karen Overall has written, "[Laws] banning breeds will not make you safer, and the illusion that they will do so is dangerous to humans and unfair to dogs." (Canine aggression is part of Dr. Overall's study at UCSF: http://psych.ucsf.edu/K9BehavioralGenetics/ )

Given the problems of overbreeding and the horrendous abuse and neglect so many pit bulls suffer, it shouldn’t be surprising that some of them bite. The impressive fact is that the overwhelming majority of pit bulls don’t bite---not even, in many cases, in the face of abuse and neglect. By anyone’s educated guesstimate, there are more pit bulls in the U.S. than any other breed of dog, and if even the better part of one percent of them were “loaded guns,” “sticks of dynamite,” “ticking time bombs” and “nuclear weapons,” there wouldn’t be enough space on the front page of the newspaper to record the daily fatalities and horrible injuries these dogs would cause.

I keep and train working border collies, and am always struck by the fact that so many border collies in the “best” homes bite---and so many pit bulls in the worst homes don’t.

God know pit bulls suffer terribly from overbreeding. But so do all popular breeds, and this problem can be addressed by licensing dog breeders and establishing (and enforcing) universal spay/neuter regulations---not through legislation compounding the media-driven fiction that there are "safe breeds" and "dangerous breeds." That illusion is why America has a dog bite epidemic in the first place.

Posted by: LS | Jul 23, 2005 5:43:06 AM

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