Unless Pit Bulls can stop being the ridiculously loyal, loving, and nurturing dogs they were bred to be, there will never be an end to their reputation. There is a large number of people in this world who really think Pit Bulls are born on a mission to kill.
Recently, I had a mother (she’ll remain anonymous) of 5 scream and run out the house when she saw one of my Pit Bulls. She did it hysterically. Her children, ranging from the ages of 13-24, immediately walked over to my dog to play as they usually did. I could not understand why the mom had decided to yell and run out the door only after she asked if it was a Pit Bull. It really bothered me. Here’s someone with absolutely no dog education, and she reacts in a way that can easily lead her children down a blind path. Which it did, because her youngest son later that week played 2 sick jokes on me. He came running to me twice on separate occasions, screaming and moaning that Jasmine (the Pit Bull) had bit his finger. The son’s been around these dogs for months already, but the mom never met the dogs until that unfortunate day.
Of course, like any good dog owner, I ran toward my dog, startled, knowing she would never hurt a fly, but still with the thought there is no reason for this kid to be lying. Surely, once he saw me attend to him in all seriousness he laughed and showed me his hand. Nothing wrong. I almost blew up.
I later explained what happened to his mother and she felt awful. Which she should. I made sure she felt what I felt. And that’s the fear dog owners get when their furry-kids are in trouble. I told her that acting the way she does around this breed of dog she can barely identify can leave an everlasting impression on your children. She couldn’t live with it, and she was very upset that her son would go through that much acting to play a joke like that. And, so, within 2 weeks, she was in love with my dog. During her rehabilitation, on multiple occasions she said, “Jasmine’s a rottweiler, right?” Then on another, “Jasmine’s a beautiful English Bulldog.” Sigh. As Pit Bull owners, it’s easy to see why the Pit Bull will forever suffer.
For all the dog-layman people out there, Pit Bulls required a very particular set of traits for gameness. Their chores required these dogs to be all-in on the task–no questioned asked. Whether it was hunting wild boar or working on the farm, the Pit Bull in early America has been noted doing just about every single task a dog can be set to do. Pit Bulls were also great babysitters of young children and made the most wonderful family companions with kids of any age. They are sharp and easy to train. The Pit Bull, without hesitation, I say, is a super-hero breed of dog.
I don’t think there is anything a Pit Bull can’t do. And I think it’s that very thought that made, and makes, people use the Pit Bull for their entertainment.
People laugh when I tell them you need a loving and loyal dog to do some of the monstrous things people do with Pit Bulls. If humans wanted, we could train Pit Bulls to jump off a cliff–no questions asked by the dog. Somehow, we’ve engrained traits to make them do things that aren’t natural for any dog to do. Fighting for no real cause is no trait even a wild animal possess. Wild animals rarely fight to the death, and when they do, there’s probably feeding and breeding grounds at stake–all things a domesticated dog takes no part of in the circle of life. Dog’s have no clue how to survive on their own.
If dog’s fight to the death, it’s because they are unsocialized and overloaded with adrenaline–only caused by humans. And again, any dog can fight to the death.
Pit Bulls to some, are just trophies. Status symbols. They are definitely on the chiseled and god-like athleticism side of the dog anatomy spectrum. So they attract a large demographic of people that cause serious harm to the breeds reputation.
Because of the Pit Bulls god-like athletic abilities, low maintenance (can you imagine long-haired Pit Bulls?), and superior loyalty toward humans, they will always be the wandering victims to a human’s alter ego trying to blow off stress.
The Pit Bull is on an amazing road of recovery thanks to educational television programs, and celebrity dog trainer, Cesar Milan, who’s sidekicks has always been a Pit Bull, among many other organizations.
I would love to hear your stories about someone suggesting your dog is dangerous because of the breed.