It seems that the internet is burning up with memes displaying pit bulls aware that PETA does not seem to be on their side. Apparently, the well-funded organization has decided to team up with some anti-pit groups, supporting the establishment of National Pit Bull Victim Awareness Day in October 2015.
Other worrisome groups seeming to want to classify all pit bulls as dangerous are: Dangerous by Default, Protect Children from Pit Bulls and Other Dangerous Dogs, and BanPitBulls.org. But two important questions are:
What really defines a pit bull?
“Pit bull” is really a generic term. Dogs with certain characteristics, not necessarily all of a certain breed, are thrown under one big umbrella by the folks wanting them banned. The targeted dogs, then, are those with the block-shaped head, stocky chest and short hair and may be one of many types of terriers. So, it would be tough to legally ban with Breed Specific Legislation all the dogs which fit this description.
How Ethical is it to Target the Countless Numbers of Good Dogs, Along With the Few Aggressors?
Let’s look at some exemplary pit bulls and try to imagine a world without them:
Captain Cowpants, with his own Facebook page, is a wonderful therapy dog, helping foster animals find new paths in life.
Libby, below, just completed her police department training in Texas. As it happens, she is focused and not easily distracted by that which might set off other dogs. She has a promising future in a K-9 narcotics detection program. Other agencies have discovered the trainability of pit bulls, as well as their affordability. (After all, Libby was a rescue!)
Read more about her at Libby MCCO K-9
Then there’s Howard, also a rescue, who ended up saving many lives in Afghanistan as a detector of IEDs, or Improvised explosive devices. Pit Bull Advocates features him and his heroic deeds on their Facebook page. Unfortunately, because he was a pit bull, he was not allowed to sleep on base!
Groups Which Promote the Appreciation of Pit Bulls
- Pit Bull Advocates
- Protect Pit Bulls from BSL
- Pro Pit Bull
Perhaps more education about properly raising pit bulls would be helpful in alleviating the numbers of dogs with aggressive behaviour, which gives all pit bulls a bad name.
It is suggested that those interested in raising one be:
- Familiar with dogs in general and not a first-time dog owner
- Ready to work with the dog in obedience training
- Aware of the need for regular exercise a large dog has
- Aware that the pit bull is a powerful and highly motivated dog
- Aware that some types of pit bulls were bred over the years to fight other dogs, and keeping that in mind when bringing one into a home with other dogs, as well as monitoring them when around strange dogs.
Seriously – how can you not want this little guy to have a great life?