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The Truth about Pit Bulls

Wednesday, October 17, 2012 - 4:00pm
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“Pit Bull.” There is no other breed of dog—or arguably, any other animal at all—whose mere mention can elicit such strong opinions. Try a word-associate game with your friends: Ask them what they think of when you say “Pit Bull.” Chances are that by the numbers, their responses will be more negative than positive. And it’s no wonder: No other type of dog is as widely banned from housing, legislated against, or incorrectly vilified by the media.

How did we get here?
Pit Bulls were once widely considered ideal family pets—affectionate, loyal and gentle with children. But in recent years, these dogs have suffered tremendously from a combination of overbreeding, bad publicity and irresponsible owners. In reality, the overwhelming majority of Pits and Pit mixes are sweet goofballs who have gotten a very bad rap.

Learn the truth.
National Pit Bull Awareness Day, on October 27, is a day of appreciation and education designed to change perceptions and stereotypes about Pit Bulls and their responsible owners. Please take a moment to learn the truth about these wonderful dogs and consider rescuing one of them from a shelter.

Are you a proud Pit Bull parent? Please participate in National Pit Bull Awareness Day, and help us dispel the myths about these dogs by leaving a comment below about your wonderful pooch.

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Lori Hanks

I adopted my lab/pitbull mix from the humane society ten years ago now, and it has proven to be the best decision I have ever made. For a decade now my precious rescue has been my best friend, companion and guardian, and I love him with all of my heart and more. While it's true he has some quirks from the abuse he suffered before finding his true family, he is such a wonderful dog that the extra time and training are well worth it. I will definitely be a loyal fan of the breed forever, and will always work to help improve their reputation.

Erika

Nena is a 4 year old Pit Bull mix. We rescued her from a local Humane Society when she was a few months old. She has grown up with my human daughter of the same age. She couldn't be a more integral part of our family. As for her disposition, she allows my preschooler (and when she was a toddler and an infant) to do anything she wants to her, not that I allow it. Since my daughter was a baby, Nena likes to share her pillow when they lay on the couch. Nena's got a heck of a bark on her, but that only works on strangers. Everyone who has met her knows what a sweetheart she is. And she'll stop right in the middle of that ferocious bark and give me a big kiss if I put my face near her's. We have an elderly neighbor who was definitely under the Pit-Bulls-are-villains spell until Nena. Now he finds it quite amusing to put a piece of cookie on his knee and tell Nena to 'leave it' repeatedly, until he's ready to tell her to 'take it.' Hey, it's a great command, and Nena's good at it. She's so eager to please, that trumps the temptation of the cookie. And believe me, she wants that cookie. She doesn't get junk food at home! Nena thrives on positive praise; her whole body wiggles with excitement and she goes in for lots of licky kisses whenever she's complimented. Nena's friendly with our 3 cats. One likes to rub against Nena like a cat does around a person's legs. Maybe she's claiming Nena as her territory? Nena loves bubbles and being splashed with water. She will get in the baby pool with my daughter and me and whine to be splashed. Nena likes the dog park, but if there's an altercation, you'll find her at the other end of the park. She wants no parts of dog fighting. She likes to play with all the neighborhood dogs. She can be a wuss, which means she likes to glue herself to my leg or bark if she's scared, but she's always been comfortable with children and other animals. Nena is a loving, patient, loyal, snuggly teddy bear. We love her with all our hearts. My only fear with Nena is what we will ever do without her!

Joe

About 15 years ago I found a pit wondering the streets of mid-town NYC.
I called her over and she right away approached me and I knew she was mine.
Well, I brought her home and had our vet look at get. She was in good health and my wife and I decided to name her Sheba. She was the most lovable dog I had ever seen. She would intimidate people, but once you got close, she would just luck you and roll on her back. Unfortunately, 3 years later we found a lump and it was cancer. We had to have her front right leg amputated. She was fine for about a year, but the cancer came back. It was aggressive and we had no choice but to put her to rest. At the vet, when they placed the IV needle all she did was lick the vets hand. Everyone lived her at the vet and there was not one dry eye. She left an impression wherever she went. Till this day I get sad thinking about it, but I always feel good knowing that I had the opportunity of having her in my life. Her picture is still up on the wall at the vet and continues to bring smiles on the faces of those who met her. Pits are great dogs and everyone should have at least owned one in their life.

Anna Gray

I have to affectionate pit bulls, My boy is 3 yrs and loves to give hugs and kisses. My 11 girl loves to get her butt scritched and rub herself up against you. They both love the walks and my boy like to go hiking up at Griffith Park and wallow in the water hole at the top of Griffith. Candy my girl is a Red Nose and Blu my boy is Brindle.

kathy randall

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=2Qw22uyhNdk

Sandra Barron

I am the mother of 2 pitbulls and a pitbull mix. They are an male American Pitbull Terrier (Bruno), a female Red-nosed red (Little Red) and a pitbull/chow mix (WACy). All three were rescues. We do keep the pitbulls separate from the pitbull mix and our other 3 dogs when they are outside only because they are so high energy and much younger. When Bruno and Red are playing, it is incredible to watch. They fly through the air and bump chests. They wrestle on the deck. But even though he is larger than her by 20 pounds, he lets her win almost everytime. They are incredible with us. They do believe they are lap dogs. WACy is the alpha of our other pack. She was raised by two wolves and learned early that it was her place to help raise puppies. She was so gentle with any puppy she came in contact with, plus she was a good teacher and disciplinarian. She is now 11 years old and a bit slower, so we don't give her that job anymore. These girls and guy bring so much pleasure to us that it's like a party sometimes. That's why I use the screen name "PittieParty" on one of my sites.

Bill Blair

You are not helping the problem by writing a silly fluff article that does not deal with reality AT ALL . The pit bulls that people have as pets right now are from piles of puppies that end up in the shelter, bred in the ghettos by idiots who know NOTHING about breeding and often ARE breeding them for fighting, therefore choosing the most negative characteristics to breed for. These dogs are NOT being bred responsibly and haven't been for YEARS. You have also not mentioned the fact that they have the capability of doing way more damage than other breeds when they bite. When you misrepresent these dogs it doesn't help the problem. It's just lies upon lies.

Dean Boese

I had, up until recently, a great pit named Nina. She was loveable and dumb and enjoyed nothing more than to be curled up on a bed next to a human sleeping. She was lazy and loved everyone in my family especially the six year old, probably because the six year old was forever dropping food. She passed from cancer recently at the age of twelve (she was quite the old lady by pit standards) but I have never had a more loving or goofy animal and I miss her dearly.

Thomas Severinghaus

My 17 year old Pit/Blue Healer Lane, is a JOY and loves kids. S a "rescue" dog (my daughter took her away from a "breeder" that used her as a "bait dog")that I got 15 years ago!
She LOVES children and tolerates them extremely well. However and sadly, she's not a dog that you can put with other dogs, due to her life before we got her.
I believe that, if you have a pit, you have a friend for LIFE! They're no different than any other canine with the sole exception of a bad raputation.
She's protective of the house and God help anyone who tries to break in. Once she's introduced to someone like a pet sitter, she's loving and affectionate... she may just lick you to death though! LOL.
I HOPE that people get over their unnecessary fear of these wonderful animals. When they're not taught to be an agressive fighter, they're sweet and calm disposition is second only to a mother to her children.
After she passes, my wife and I will have nothing other than Pits. We're THAT sure of their nature as a protective, family dog.

Ashley Pollock

I have two wonderful pittie mixes! Penny Lane is a rescued beagle pit mix who is one heck of a hunter, keeping our garden free of all types of rodents! Ramzee is our recent rescue pup who is so willing to learn and to please, part pit and what we think is lab as he can not get enough frisbee time! Both came from rough starts, Penny being thrown from a car and Ramzee returned to the shelter for having "too much energy". Both of my babies are excellent alert dogs but will only end up showering the visitors with kisses! I usually have snuggle bookends when on the couch... Penny on one side and Ramzee on the other. They are so willing to please and to learn. They are both absolutely amazing around my sister's 3 young children. Some how instictively knowing they need to be even more gentle on leash or when taking treats. The major key to having such lova'bull' pitties is training and exercise! This breed is truly amazing! Full of love and respect and an ability to be such goofy goofy clowns I don't think I could ever have any other breed! These are not just dogs, these are loyal companions that will pick you up even on your worst days. Give them the training, love and respect they need and you will have a best friend for life! I feel so bad for the people with such closed minds that they aren't even willing to see the true light of the breed. Wake up people... your bias is aimed at the wrong end of leash! My dogs would change your mind..........

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