Pit bulls often a misunderstood breed...

Pit bulls often a misunderstood breed (9:49 a.m.)

There are 21 comments on the Las Cruces Sun-News story from Mar 20, 2009, titled Pit bulls often a misunderstood breed (9:49 a.m.). In it, Las Cruces Sun-News reports that:

Kassie Brown and Rena Distasio hear that a lot. So will the owners of Akira, and Ava, and Austin, and Sally, puppies that as part of their education are rollicking around the sunny room, chasing and being chased.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Las Cruces Sun-News.

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Kudos

Las Cruces, NM

#1 Mar 20, 2009
Kudos to RAAP. I i agree completely with the "punish the deed not the breed" slogan. I own a pit bull as well. He just turned a year old, blue and big, he's a gentle giant, and it's unfortunate that many citizens are quick to judge. I think the obediance classes being held is a wonderful opportunity for pitbulls to grown and develope, good luck!
PITBULL OWNER

Las Cruces, NM

#2 Mar 20, 2009
Good job RAAP. It is good to hear that an advocacy group is making the public aware of the true nature of this breed. All the public hears is the negative nature of the pitbull. What most people don't realize is that most of the "good natured dogs" are the breeds which attack more, but are never but on the news or mentioned. I have had three pitbulls fully trained and house broken, and they are the biggest babies ever.This breed is like a person. If the person grow up in a bad enviroment with crime and violence, 90% of the time that person will grow up doing the same thing which they were brought up in. This is the same for the pitbulls. You can never judge the entire breed because there are a few bad ones.
AmericasDog

Toronto, Canada

#3 Mar 20, 2009
Great article.
[quote]We often say the very best people own pit bulls and the very worst people own pit bulls."[/quote]
Truer words were never spoken.
What Breed Specific Laws do is make these dogs VERY attractive to the worst people and LESS attractive to the best people.
That`s what Legislators need to get through their heads.
When they perpetuate the stereotypes and the Myths,the worst of Society will flock to have one of these so called "dangerous" dogs and the would be GREAT owners will shy away.
We need to reverse that.
These are dogs.
Thankfully some Countries are starting to understand that.
"ITALY SCRAPS DANGEROUS DOG BLACKLIST"
http://www.lifeinitaly.com/node/4229
[quote]``The measures adopted in the previous laws had no
scientific foundation. Dangerous breeds do not exist.[/quote]
Remember
"Stubby’s tale: When pit bulls were heroes"
http://www.ohmidog.com/2009/03/18/the-saga-of...
They are still "heroes" to many
SAR Dogs
http://www.forpitssake.org/sar.html
Therapy Dogs
(Leo-former Vick Fight Bust dog)
http://ourpack.org/leo.html
(Hector-former Vick Fight Bust dog)
http://www.postbulletin.com/newsmanager/templ...
K9 Detection Dogs
http://www.lawdogsusa.org/lawdogs.html
http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story...
Champion Athletes
http://www.pitbullunited.com/wallacethepitbul...
"heroes" to kids
http://www.maxtheshelterdog.com/kidsforpits.h...
and
Family "heroes"
http://server.inalbum.com/show/jodipreis/Mess...
These are the ones you don`t hear about
Start questioning the Media headlines when you read 'pit bull'
http://nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/dog-...
I suggest people read
Pit Bull Placebo:The Media,Myths and Politics of Canine Aggression
http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0972191410/re...
Before the pit bull it was the German Shepherd,the Doberman etc.
"..Generations ago the American Pit Bull Terrier used to actually represent this Country..."
~Roo Yori

The Media needs to stop promoting them to the worst people.
Let them be America`s Dog once again.
Pit Bull Mix

Ranchos De Taos, NM

#4 Mar 20, 2009
I adopted a pit bull mix here in town. She is abslutely the sweetest thing and scared of her own shadow. She would never hurt a soul although she may lick you to death. I'm happy to see a positive article about Pit Bulls. They get such a bad rap because irresonsible people take advantage of them and have taught them to do awful things. Caesar Chavez- "The Dog Whisperer" is a huge advocate for the breed. He owns probably 6 of them and has used "Daddy" to train other dogs/ breeds to be more calm and great with families and children. Thanks for opening people's eyes.
The problem is

Las Cruces, NM

#5 Mar 20, 2009
The problem isn't the breed of dog, it's the "breed" of people who own and fight the dogs. Whoopi Goldberg, in defense of Michael Vick's dogfighting, said it's black culture to fight dogs. It isn't. The people who fight dogs are pigss...regardless of their ethnic group (stupid white people also fight dogs but it doesn't make them less stupid).

Since: Jan 09

Las Cruces, NM

#6 Mar 20, 2009
Pit Bull Mix wrote:
Caesar Chavez- "The Dog Whisperer" is a huge advocate for the breed. He owns probably 6 of them and has used "Daddy" to train other dogs/ breeds to be more calm and great with families and children.
He must be a remarkable man.

Imagine...training dogs, uniting farm workers...all while being dead for some 16 years.

I fully expect to read page after page of postings by people who tell stories of how a particular pit bull was the sweetest, most gentle dog, etc etc, right up until the moment when it viciously attacked someone without provocation.

These stories will be countered by many who talk about their loving pits, while blaming the poor or dangerous behavior of some pitbulls on poor training, the gangster/rap dogfighting mindset, etc. The whole "Blame the deed, not the breed" contingent.

In my mind, there is a reason that many insurance companies will refuse to provide homeowner's insurance to people who own pitbulls, and, less frequently, rottweilers. These insurance companies are in business to make a profit, and they have no ax to grind against any particular breed. They simply use their actuarial tables to determine whether or not a risk is worth insuring. Many have determined that homeowners with pits are either uninsurable, or require a higher premium.

Pitbull defenders can rant about negative myths, "bad raps", and poor owners all they want. The insurance companies are guided by statistics.

And I agree with "Pit Bull Mix" that Cesar Millan is an incredible dog trainer. If you are a regular viewer of "The Dog Whisperer", you have seen Cesar gently reprimand many owners because they do not provide AT LEAST a 45 minute walk/exercise period for a dog, every day.

In this crazy, hectic world where parents (single and dual) are juggling schedules, working overtime, running around with kids and errands, etc....how many owners truly have both the expertise and the time necessary to properly train AND exercise a dog that, lacking said training and exercise, has a higher likelihood of reverting to its aggressive nature?

I fully expect pit owners to attempt to discredit or ridicule my comments. I know how special and treasured the bond and love between a dog and its owner can be.

But your arguing that pitbulls are not, by their nature, a more aggressive breed, is like arguing that retrievers are not better hunting dogs than a Pomeranian.

"It's in the genetics". Wishing or believing otherwise will not change that.
AmericasDog

Toronto, Canada

#7 Mar 20, 2009
BottleRocket

Stories aren`t needed when you have Facts and Science.

The facts and the Science support the dogs.

[quote]The insurance companies are guided by statistics.[/quote]

There are NO statistics because there is no National Bite Registry.

"Dog Bite Studies"
http://nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/dog-...

Both the CDC and AVMA have issued Statements
CDC/AVMA
http://nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/wp-c...

[quote]There is currently no accurate way to
identify the number of dogs of a particular breed,
and consequently no measure to determine which
breeds are more likely to bite or kill.”
- Centers for Disease Control Statement[/quote]

[quote]“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."
Julie Gilchrist/MD, Centers for Disease Control
Co-Author, JAVMA Special Report[/quote]

AVMA Letter
http://nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/wp-c...

[quote]In contrast to what has been reported in the news media, the data contained
within this report CANNOT be used to infer any breed-specific risk for dog
bite fatalities (e.g., neither pit bull-type dogs nor Rottweilers can be said to be
more “dangerous” than any other breed based on the contents of this report). To
obtain such risk information it would be necessary to know the numbers of each
breed currently residing in the United States. Such information is not available.[/quote]

Science does not support what you are stating
http://www.journalvetbehavior.com/article/S15... (07)00264-X/abstract

[quote]Comparing the results of golden retrievers and breeds affected by the legislation, no significant difference was found. A scientific basis for breed specific lists does not exist[/quote]

http://www.animalfarmfoundation.org/pdf/DowdA...

[quote]The current study has statistically shown, based on a defined temperament test, that the classification of dog breeds and dog breed types (breed groups), with respect to their aggressiveness toward humans is not supported scientifically.

The complex and contributing conditions related to the upbringing of individual dogs are not considered by BSL and such laws unfairly target the vast majority of individual dogs, which are temperamentally stable. The temperaments of animals are fundamentally and universally acknowledged to be influenced by age, sex, early socialization, early nutrition, training, health and genetics, while BSL only takes one of these factors into account.[/quote]

More Science
http://www.dapbt.org/research.htm

If you have any Science to support what you have stated as "fact"

[quote]
"It's in the genetics". Wishing or believing otherwise will not change that.[/quote]

please cite the Study or Studies for all to read.
Poor Article

Las Cruces, NM

#8 Mar 20, 2009
To any number of the above posters...
"She is abslutely (sic) the sweetest thing and scared of her own shadow."
Fear is a leading cause of dog bites.
The issue at hand is not that Pit Bulls bite any more or less than any other breed, it's that they are capable of killing a human adult when they do so. Same goes for Rottweilers. And any other dog roughly 75 pounds or so.
So when any dog is scared, hungry, agitated, injured or in duress of any kind, they will bite. The big question is, will that bite potentially kill you? The answer for Pit Bulls is yes more frequently than for most other breeds.
AmericasDog

Toronto, Canada

#9 Mar 20, 2009
To "Poor article"

ANY dog has the potential to kill you.
Fatalities are extremely rare by ANY dog of ANY Breed.

There are estimated to be ~75 million dogs in the U.S.
There are approx 20-30 Canine fatalities per year (All Dogs)
That means 99.99996% of dogs don`t kill.

AND at least 90% of all bites by all dogs are considered minor.
http://nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/dog-...

Pit Bulls do not cause injuries unlike other dogs
http://nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/dog-...

[quote]Do pit bulls inflict injuries unlike other dogs?

No breed or type of dog has a particular method of attack or inflicts an exclusive type of injury.

*** Claims that one breed of dog inflicts injuries unlike other breeds have no merit.[/quote]

It stands to reason that a larger dog has the potential to cause more serious injuries than a smaller dog but size doesn`t really matter when you`re 6 weeks old.

And BTW the 'Pit Bulls' aren`t all that big.
There are many Breeds a lot bigger than the 'Pit Bull' Breeds.

[quote]The big question is, will that bite potentially kill you? The answer for Pit Bulls is yes more frequently than for most other breeds.[/quote]

And actually the answer to the first part of your question is NO,a dog bite by ANY Breed is extremely unlikely to kill you.(See above)

And the answer to the 2nd part of your question is unknown.

You`re obviously not reading what has already been posted here.

So please quit making up your own "statistics"

http://nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/wp-c...

[quote]“[The study] does not identify specific breeds that
are most likely to bite or kill, and thus is not
appropriate for policy-making decisions related to
the topic… There is currently no accurate way to
identify the number of dogs of a particular breed,
and consequently no measure to determine which
breeds are more likely to bite or kill.”
- Centers for Disease Control Statement

“In contrast to what has been reported in the news
media, the data....CANNOT be used to infer any
breed-specific risk for dog bite fatalities…”
- AVMA Statement[/quote]
Troy

Albuquerque, NM

#10 Mar 20, 2009
Until this time last year i couldn't have agreed more. I have a 4 y/o Rott and at the time a 1 y/o pit. Both are scared to death of their own shadow and wanted nothing more than to play and lick you. I even got comfortable with letting my young kids play in the backyard by themselves provided the curtain was open and i could still see them. Great dogs, i had them since birth and treated them w/ the upmost respect and love. Then out of the complete blue while cleaning up the yard, my pit went nuts and wanted to tear apart anything in sight including my Rott. I was able to intervene about 1 second before he latched onto my 4 y/o son. I pinned him up alone while we cleaned the mess he created, including all the blood from my hand/arm and my Rott. After giving him about 3 hours to cool down, i opened the gate only to have him charge me before i even had the gate open. This was a completely different animal than what i had for the last year. Luckily, my Rott had my back and charged the pit before he killed me. I'm 6'2 and in great health and physically fit. I was no match for this dog as he was possessed to kill someone or something. My Rott probably saved my tail and allowed me to get the professionals over to dispose of that beast. There was NO reason for him to "snap." He was programmed to be aggressive and his time came that it was time to act out.
AmericasDog

Toronto, Canada

#11 Mar 20, 2009
Troy,
How would you explain the millions of Pit Bulls that don`t "snap" as you put it, if it`s "programming"

How would you explain the behavior of individual dogs of other Breeds that seemed to have "snapped" out of the blue?
Programming or...?

Did you have a necropsy done on your dog to see if your dog was ill or had something wrong with it,such as a brain tumor etc or if it had gotten into some poison?

Since: Jan 09

Las Cruces, NM

#12 Mar 20, 2009
Troy wrote:
Then out of the complete blue while cleaning up the yard, my pit went nuts and wanted to tear apart anything in sight including my Rott. I was able to intervene about 1 second before he latched onto my 4 y/o son. I pinned him up alone while we cleaned the mess he created, including all the blood from my hand/arm and my Rott. After giving him about 3 hours to cool down, i opened the gate only to have him charge me before i even had the gate open. This was a completely different animal than what i had for the last year.
Troy, we hear stories like yours time and again, yet people like "AmericasDog" will continue to quote their "studies" and link to websites that are created by other pit bull lovers, and then claim those "statistics" somehow disprove your very own reality.

And for every "statistical study" that AmericasDog links to that shows how pit bulls are simply the victims of bad PR and myths, there are countless studies like the following, which is a study of dog attacks by breed from 1982 - 2006. Of the 2,209 attacks doing bodily harm (which require extensive hospital treatment), 1,110 were pit bulls and 409 were Rottweilers.

http://www.dogbitelaw.com/Dog%20Attacks%20198...

As I stated previously, do you really think insurance companies pull their actuarial ratings out of thin air (as AmericasDog seems to claim with his "there are no studies" declaration), while imposing some unjustified vendetta against pits and Rotts simply because of some unsubstantiated "myth"?

I realize I won't change AmericasDog's opinion, and he won't change mine. It seems the only time the defenders of pit bulls ever change their minds is when they see what can happen first hand, like Troy did.

Troy, I'm happy that you and your son didn't suffer severe injuries.

Your experience wouldn't even be included in the study I linked to above.

You weren't "mauled" sufficiently.

By the way....did you ever check for that "brain tumor", or whatever other explanation/excuse the defenders so brazenly employ?

Since: Jan 09

Las Cruces, NM

#13 Mar 20, 2009
AmericasDog, you pulled a quote out of context from the Center for Disease Control and used that as one of your defenses that there are no statistics to back up the "myth" of the deadly pit bull.

Funny thing was, when I googled "dog attacks cdc" I came across a report from the CDC showing the results of a 17 year long study from 1979 to 1996 of "Dog breeds and cross-breeds involved in dog bite-related fatalities".

Of the 160 fatalities that resulted from a single (non-hybrid or non-unidentified) breed, 60 deaths were as a result of a pit bull attack, 29 by Rottweilers, 19 by German shepard, and 14 by Husky.

That's 37% of all breed-identified dog attack deaths during that 17-year period.

Perhaps such a study is one of the rationales for those homeowner's insurance policy provisions that supposedly have no studies to back them up?

Of the 50 deaths attributed to "Crossbreeds", wolf hybrids were responsible for 14 deaths, German shepards for 11 deaths, and pit bulls for 10 deaths.

There were 199 deaths attributed to "breed unknown", including dogs that were pack dogs without owners.

The above information is on Page 4 of a CDC publication at:

ftp://ftp.cdc.gov/pub/Publicat ions/mmwr/wk/mm4621.pdf

Need more of those "studies and statistics that don't exist...from the CENTER FOR DISEASE CONTROL!!!

"Top 10 Most Dangerous Dog Breeds

22 reported dog bite related human fatalities in the United States in 2004.
2005 - 29 human fatalities.
2006 - 26.
In 2007, there were 33 human fatalities. 45% of the attacks occurred to adults over the age of 18, and 55% occurred to ages below. Pit bull type dogs were responsible for 67% of fatalities, the next closest breed was the rottweiler at 12%. But all dog breeds are potentially dangerous. In 2000, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported that 25 breeds of dogs were involved in 238 fatal dog bites from 1979-1998. Here it is the compiled list of the most dangerous dog breeds:

1. Pit Bulls (Weight: 55-65 lbs.)

Pit bull is one of the most brave and dauntless dogs that usually takes on any opponent. Therefore they take part in dog fighting. It is common knowledge that this dog breed can even mangle the human to death as pit bull locks its jaws onto the booty until it is dead.

2. Rottweilers (Weight: 100-130 lbs.)

Due to their intense territorial instinct these dogs are very aggressive. Rottweilers are commonly used as guard dogs.

3. German Shepherds (Weight: 70-100 lbs.)

This breed of dogs is known as a smart and vigilant one. As German Shepherds proved to be confident and fearless local authorities such as the police K-9 unit use German Shepherds as a police dog.

4. Huskies (Weight: 44-66 lbs.)

Despite of their energy and intelligence this breed is not regarded a good guard dog. It is caused by its kind temperament and personality characteristics. However it should be marked that between 1979 and 1997 fifteen fatal cases were caused by huskies.

http://www.dogs-names.net/dangerous-dog-breed...

Pretty conclusive studies, especially when pit bulls don't even come close to being in the Top 20 dog breeds in the United States.

I do agree with AmericasDog on one point: ANY dog can kill, and there was a reported mauling by a Yorkie in one of the CD reports.

But some dogs kill more frequently than others.
Troy

Albuquerque, NM

#14 Mar 21, 2009
BottleRocket wrote:
<quoted text>
Troy, we hear stories like yours time and again, yet people like "AmericasDog" will continue to quote their "studies" and link to websites that are created by other pit bull lovers, and then claim those "statistics" somehow disprove your very own reality.
And for every "statistical study" that AmericasDog links to that shows how pit bulls are simply the victims of bad PR and myths, there are countless studies like the following, which is a study of dog attacks by breed from 1982 - 2006. Of the 2,209 attacks doing bodily harm (which require extensive hospital treatment), 1,110 were pit bulls and 409 were Rottweilers.
http://www.dogbitelaw.com/Dog%20Attacks%20198...
As I stated previously, do you really think insurance companies pull their actuarial ratings out of thin air (as AmericasDog seems to claim with his "there are no studies" declaration), while imposing some unjustified vendetta against pits and Rotts simply because of some unsubstantiated "myth"?
I realize I won't change AmericasDog's opinion, and he won't change mine. It seems the only time the defenders of pit bulls ever change their minds is when they see what can happen first hand, like Troy did.
Troy, I'm happy that you and your son didn't suffer severe injuries.
Your experience wouldn't even be included in the study I linked to above.
You weren't "mauled" sufficiently.
By the way....did you ever check for that "brain tumor", or whatever other explanation/excuse the defenders so brazenly employ?
In all honesty, no i did not have him checked for anything that prompted his reaction. Even while i had him caged up awaiting the animal shelter to arrive, i sat outside talking to him and bewildered at what had just transpired. While i sat there w/ him..wanting so bad to believe that this didn't just happen..i was looking at a completely different animal than what i had the day before. He was full of hate and anger, not to mention covered in blood. At the time, i had no interest in evaluating him. I simply wanted him out of my household. You can make a statistic or research say anything you want, and if you are a pit bull lover...then you will choose to believe the statistics that support your theory. I still think pits are beautiful animals, however my belief in their behaviour has been overhauled and noone can change that. When i first gained interest in my pit (and rott) i did months of research on them to ensure i wasn't making a bad decision. I went against the popular vote of society, friends and family and advocated for these dogs. I had this blown up in my face 1 year after bringing the pit home.
To the gentleman that asked about the "other millions of pits that don't snap." I don't have an explanation for you, but you won't convince me that at some point those millions won't snap. Granted, there are exceptions to the rule and not all will. I just hope those owners/neighbors/kids are as fortunate as i was.
Troy

Albuquerque, NM

#15 Mar 21, 2009
AmericasDog wrote:
Troy,
How would you explain the millions of Pit Bulls that don`t "snap" as you put it, if it`s "programming"
How would you explain the behavior of individual dogs of other Breeds that seemed to have "snapped" out of the blue?
Programming or...?
Did you have a necropsy done on your dog to see if your dog was ill or had something wrong with it,such as a brain tumor etc or if it had gotten into some poison?
Your questions/comments are well recieved. As i already mentioned, i can't explain why some pit's don't "snap." Just like i can't explain why other breeds occasionally do snap. I don't claim to be an expert, a doctor or anyone that has any value to back my beliefs. I don't personally believe that there are millions of pits that haven't snapped, unless you include puppies or pits that haven't grown into their skin yet. But if there are 5 million (guess) pit bulls in the US and 1 million have never "snaped," your question of "what about those that don't snap" seems like a valid question. In all honesty, you are hiding the reality. 1 million is alot, but in this case it's only 20%. Leaving 80% that DO snap. Those are not good odds unless you are playing the lottery, not good odds when someone's life is on the line. Cats are programmed to sleep, be cuddly and lazy. People are programmed to think, learn, love, walk, talk, ect. Pit bulls are programmed to be aggresive and defend themselves and their own belief system. Even at the expense of a human life.
mom

Montclair, NJ

#16 Mar 21, 2009
Maybe the people who cross the street are like me---walking with their little son who has already been mauled by a "bully" breed, that was supposed to be a friendly pet of his relative. A dog that had come through all sorts of obedience training too. You own these powerful breeds and hen confidently announce that your dog would never hurt anyone. It just has not happened yet. The dog that torn my child's head apart was five or six years old. The attack came out of the blue with no growl or warning but terrible damage was done in seconds to his face, ear and scalp.
Linda

Albuquerque, NM

#17 Mar 21, 2009
Pit bulls were once America's dog — movie star, our mascot during World War I, companion to Helen Keller. Trends in dogs rise and fall; where Rottweilers and Dobermans once ruled as the "bad" dogs to fear, pit bulls, a conglomeration of bull/terrier breeds and mixes, now reign.

Their advocates say it's not the dog but its owner; Burque Babes' motto is "Punish the deed, not the breed."

Yes Very well said!! This coming from the owner of a beautiful Rottweiler.

“Music moves me, UGLY!! Hehehe”

Since: Nov 08

Here, there, everywhere

#18 Mar 21, 2009
Kudos wrote:
Kudos to RAAP. I i agree completely with the "punish the deed not the breed" slogan. I own a pit bull as well. He just turned a year old, blue and big, he's a gentle giant, and it's unfortunate that many citizens are quick to judge. I think the obediance classes being held is a wonderful opportunity for pitbulls to grown and develope, good luck!
Id have to agree with hte punish the deed not the breed. I am a proud owner to a very well behaved, very gentle Rott I adopted at 1 yr old, she is now two. I have owned others in the past and all have been great dogs. With the right training and the right owners they are good dogs!!

The bad attitude from the ownerruns through the leash to the dog!!
Chiuahuas can turn on you as well..... granted thier bite may not be as bad but they are still aggressive little rats!!
bob

Austin, TX

#19 Apr 1, 2009
people are stupid
Amanda

Rockport, TX

#20 Apr 1, 2009
The truth is while other breeds top the "bite list" the pit bull is the breed that most commonly goes for the kill. Just a couple of days ago a couple of pit bulls killed a baby here in San Antonio. These were the family pets. The grandmother came back in after hearing the attack (she was heating up a bottle) and they turned on her. The only reason she survived is because she had grabbed a knife and stabbed the dogs. About a month ago a toddler was mauled by pit bulls in S.A. I hear stories like this ALL the time and 9 times out of 10 pit bulls are involved. A little girl in our church was attacked by a couple of pit bulls while riding her bike last year and they ripped half her face off while trying to bite her neck and bit the arms of the man trying to help her. There has been a study done on the subject and here is just a part of it:

"The deadliest dogs
Merritt Clifton, editor of Animal People, has conducted an unusually detailed study of dog bites from 1982 to the present.(Clifton, Dog attack deaths and maimings, U.S. & Canada, September 1982 to November 13, 2006; click here to read it.) The Clifton study show the number of serious canine-inflicted injuries by breed. The author's observations about the breeds and generally how to deal with the dangerous dog problem are enlightening.

According to the Clifton study, pit bulls, Rottweilers, Presa Canarios and their mixes are responsible for 74% of attacks that were included in the study, 68% of the attacks upon children, 82% of the attacks upon adults, 65% of the deaths, and 68% of the maimings. In more than two-thirds of the cases included in the study, the life-threatening or fatal attack was apparently the first known dangerous behavior by the animal in question. Clifton states:

If almost any other dog has a bad moment, someone may get bitten, but will not be maimed for life or killed, and the actuarial risk is accordingly reasonable. If a pit bull terrier or a Rottweiler has a bad moment, often someone is maimed or killed--and that has now created off-the-chart actuarial risk, for which the dogs as well as their victims are paying the price.

Clifton's opinions are as interesting as his statistics. For example, he says, "Pit bulls and Rottweilers are accordingly dogs who not only must be handled with special precautions, but also must be regulated with special requirements appropriate to the risk they may pose to the public and other animals, if they are to be kept at all."

The part that is scary is that they can be perfectly sweet and gentle for years and then just one thing sets them off and they can kill someone. It has to be a part of these particular breeds-otherwise the statistics don't make sense. I continue to be VERY wary of pit bulls. Many people make bad dog owners but you don't hear too much about killer golden retrievers or corgis. I think there's a reason for that.
PITBULL OWNER wrote:
Good job RAAP. It is good to hear that an advocacy group is making the public aware of the true nature of this breed. All the public hears is the negative nature of the pitbull. What most people don't realize is that most of the "good natured dogs" are the breeds which attack more, but are never but on the news or mentioned. I have had three pitbulls fully trained and house broken, and they are the biggest babies ever.This breed is like a person. If the person grow up in a bad enviroment with crime and violence, 90% of the time that person will grow up doing the same thing which they were brought up in. This is the same for the pitbulls. You can never judge the entire breed because there are a few bad ones.

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