The Truth about Pit Bulls

Wednesday, October 17, 2012 - 4:00pm

“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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Christine Di Chario

I have been working in dog rescue for many years helping all breeds of dogs. Within the last 3 years we have had the pleasure of working with Pits/Pit Mixes. Our family now consists of 3 wonderful ladies, Leah, Molly and Maybaline. They make us laugh at their playful and loving antics and couldn't imagine life without them. Although our plan was to only foster them, they found their fur-ever home with our family! We love our Pit Bull cuddles at night and even though we have a King Sized bed we have no room. Not only did they steal our bed but their ran off with our heart too! We have many other Pits/Pit mixes come into our home while they were looking for their fur-ever home and we have never had a problem! We fell in love with this breed for their devotion, love energy and playfulness! Love Ling the Pitties!

Erica Kugler

My husband and I adopted Lexi, a young mutt, at the beginning of the summer in 2009. That fall, we were buying our first home and decided Lexi needed a sibling. We spent lots of time at adoption events and searching online, but couldn't find the right dog. I remember scrolling through countless pages of pit bulls on petfinder, but kept saying "I don't want a pit bull." They were so cute, but my mom kept feeding that thought that pit bulls weren't a good dog to adopt. We came across a rescue's listing on craigslist for an adoptable Vizla mix. There were only 2 pictures, but she was adorable. We applied to adopt her and the rescue brought her to our home. Her name was Pumpkin and when she jumped out of the back of that van, she jumped right into my arms and kissed my face, then my moms, then my husbands. She bonded instantly with Lexi. We finalized the adoption a week later and my husband said to me, Pumpkin looks an awful lot like a pit bull. I kept insisting that she didn't, until he showed me a picture of what they called red nosed pit bulls. Pumpkin was a spitting image. I couldn't believe it - I adopted a pit bull and fell in love. She was our wake up call. All that time I believed pit bulls weren't good dogs because of what other people and the media had said. I was ignorant and feel terrible that I ever thought that way about these wonderful dogs. We now foster pit bulls and are huge pit bull advocates. I try to educate people who are ignorant, like I was. And if they still don't believe me, Pumpkin does all the convincing - she can't hold her licker!


Heartwarming to hear all the OVERWHELMING postiive stories. The few negative comments thrown in with no proof or backing don't even deserve a mention. This has convinced me to adopt a pit bull when the time is right. Thanks pit bull owners!


Only the dedicated and educated owners of pit bull type dogs understand their true greatness.

Gloria Quay

Frankie, my brown and white, green-eyed beauty, was a rescue from North Shore Animal League America (NSALA). She helps change people's opinion of this terrific breed every day. Not only is is sweet, loyal and affectionate to all people BUT she loves other dogs! People who meet her have often never met a real live pit. and are shocked to learn that such a gentle, friendly dog is a pit Frankie is certified by NSALA and as a volunteer I take her to schools with me to do presentations. She can meet over a hundred kids and still wag her tail in delight to meet more! I highly recommend this breed to all.

Pamalah MacNeily

I rescued a pitbull in Mexico who was heartworm positive. Sweet, but she had some dog aggressive issues. Probably had to fight for her life in Mexico. My Sister has her now. Great with all dogs we bring into her house, her kids dogs that come over. She is aggressive with dogs she does not know on a leash.

The other pittie was going to be put to sleep in RedBluff, CA. We got her. Wouldn't give her up. She does that full body pit bull wiggle that tells everyone "I Love You, You are my Best Friend". She is the meeter, greeter for our business. Everyone loves Dinah.

My name is Dazie,

I weigh about ninety pounds soaking-wet, I live in harmony with a Collie whose name is Lyra, and I've become the shadow of my newest part time mistress, JC. I have brownish black fur that is a little bit bristly to the touch, but shines in the sunlight and loves nothing more than to be gently petted by my owners. At bedtime each night, I scurry into the foyer of my master's house to awaken Lyra so that we can go outdoors one last time for the day to sit side-by-side in the snow and go potty. (Lyra is much older than I and she lost most of her hearing a few years ago and so I straddle her on all fours and bark very loudly in order to awaken her.) Lyra is my best friend. We eat together and we play together.

Every night, because Lyra can no longer climb the stairs to my master's bedroom, I go alone to their bed. They encourage me to jump-up onto their bed (I've recently gained a bit too much weight so I have a little bit of anxiety about being able to make-it up that high) but they remind me that I can do it. Soon my courage has risen high enough that I believe I can do it too, and up I go! (Of course, my master and mistress are my spotters.)

When I'm ready, I dig at the top of the blankets with my paw, and they know that I'm prepared to make my journey underneath the covers down to the foot of the bed where I love to sleep (all toasty warm) each night. These two humans are very comical in that they seem to find this amusing and affection provoking, so I never disappoint them. First, of course, I exchange numerous kisses and hugs with them as we bid each other good-night.

What is my complete identity? I'm a five year old Pitbull. Tragically, most people believe that I was born to be bad. In fact, they believe that I'm bad to the bone. I want you to know that, as my owners would gladly tell you, nothing could be further from the truth! The truth is that there are bad people who take advantage of my tendency to be competitive and very well able to protect my master not only from ill intentioned people, but from any ill-intentioned dogs, as well. These bad people train me to use that tendency to beat-up and harm other dogs, and yes, even humans, too.

I'm writing this letter to you because I want you to know that I've been given a bad rap based upon what has been done to me by violent people. I am no different from humans in that, whatever ways I'm trained during my growing up years, are the ways I will behave as an adult. If I am trained by mean, abusive, violent owners, I will learn to be mean, abusive and violent. If, on the other hand, I am trained by gentle, loving humans, I will grow up to be a gentle and loving pet.

So please, I plead with you to keep an open mind regarding my brothers and sisters! We are, by nature, extremely intelligent, loyal and loving animals who would give our lives for those we love. Please raise us with tender loving care and that is the way that we will treat everyone with whom we come in contact..

Please don't lock us in your basement and teach us vicious techniques with which to fight and even kill our own kind. (Even humans can learn to kill and so, you see, we are really not that different from you!) Let us love you and those dear to you. For we have hearts the size of Texas, if only we are given the understanding, love and the chance to develop our loving ways.

You will know that you have been truly loved, only when you have been truly loved by a Pitbull. My name is Dazie, and I speak the truth.

©2010 by JC Eberhart

© JC Eberhart and JC Eberhart 1974 – 2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to JC Eberhart and JC Eberhart with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


I adopted my Winnie Girl 4 months ago from gentle souls pit bull rescue. she is my second pit.she is a 100% blue pit, that was a breeder dog at a very young age.she ended up in the pound where she was rescued. i am her 3rd and last owner. she will be 3 this november.i also have 2 small rescue terriers which she absolutly loves. my little 12lb terier is alpha dog and bosses and pushes her around. winnie still loves her and lays on the floor to get to there level when playing with them.she is so sweet. we have our typical puppy chewing issues, but nothing she would ever do would make me give her back.she will grow old with me.i take her camping & hiking. she loves all animals and cats from day one loved her. she is such a goofy gentle soul.she make sme laugh everyday.

Lisa Doeling

My husband and I have been the proud and very blessed owners of 2 Pit Bulls to date (there will be more). Our first was rescued off the streets in a very bad neighborhood in Phoenix as a pup around 7 months old. She was our trusted companion for over 13 years. She went out with us on the horses, played gently with all the animals we had at the time (goats, sheep, ducks, chickens), she even rescued a baby Barbados that was born up against the fence and after being born, found himself on the wrong side! She cleaned him and wrapped around him and kept him safe and warm until we returned and then barked to let us know something was up! We went out back and here she was, being 'Mommy' to a new born lamb! She was the same when we had our first grandchild. The baby would spit up alot as she had problems with her tummy and it would be a race between 'Journey' (our son named her as it was quite the journey on a Friday night to go get her from her rescuer)and I to get to the baby to wipe the spit up off her face. The baby would laugh so hard if Journey got their first and licked her! She mothered everything that hit the property, snuggled in bed at night, rode in the car like a seasoned traveler and never met a stranger. When Journey was getting old and we knew we wouldn't have her long, we were informed by our daughter who had gone to the Humane Society in Deming, NM (we were living in Silver City at the time having moved from New River in AZ)that there was a pair of pits there and one was marked the exact opposite of Journey and she knew I needed to see her. Our Journey looked like a Victrola dog, white with black patch on face and patches on body. One white ear on the black patch side, adorable! Well, Gracee Jayne (as she rapidly named) was black with white. Her and her brother had been dumped near the Mexican border and wandered up to a road crew and these wonderful people fed them every day and made sure they had water and kept trying to find owners or a home. When the work was done, the dogs trusted them enough to be picked up by them and brought to the Humane Society where they had a 'Do Not Put to Sleep' order on them and would even pay the adoption fee for a GOOD home and pay to support them until adopted! I was in tears over their generosity! We adopted her of course and the brother was also adopted. After we had her about a month I even got a call from one of the road workers asking how she was and telling me how happy they were that these loving animals had forever homes! They had named them 'Pot Hole' and 'Dip Stick' if I remember right! Well, she is 10 now and same story! Loves all the grandchildren and the 2 great grandchildren, wins 'Non-Pit' people over on a daily basis, everyone who meets her, loves her and she has blessed our entire family more than we could ever do for her! They truly are the best, most loyal, loving, SMART, eager to please dogs on earth! Bad people force them to do Bad things to survive and that should be held agains the human who knows better rather than the poor abused dog, just trying to figure out how to survive. I can't say enough about going after the bad owners and rescueing the dogs, not punishing them for something beyond their control!!!!

Robin Blakesley

We lost our beloved Pit Bull,Queenie this past March,after being blessed to have her with us for over 11 years.We rescued her at 10 months and she became the most wonderful dog.She was gentle with our house full of cats,never got on the furniture,even though she had full range of the house,and was playful and funny.We miss her so much,but now know that we will never have any other breed.