Do you think pit bulls get a bad rap? Should the owners be held responsible?

MeriYa

Well-known member
The other day I saw a story on the news where a young woman dropped her baby girl off at her mother's house so that the grandmother could babysit while the mother went to work. The stories I saw said that the mother did this every day. I think I saw about 3 pit bulls at that house via aerial footage from a news helicopter. Of course the dogs were being led away, but so often it seems to me like the owners get away with putting their kids, especially little kids, in this predicament in the first place. I find some of these stories highly suspect.
 

HereSadie

Well-known member
Gosh, I waver back and forth on the pit bull issue. I wouldn't want to own one, even though I know some are great dogs. I do think the owners should be held responsible. That goes for any pet, though, not just dogs and not just pit bulls.
 

Vinny

DR & CRR Founder, Consultant Lead
Staff member
This is such a controversial topic and a good one in my opinion. In my experience and being a professional in the industry as a trianer and behavior consultant I would agree 100% that it all comes down to education.

Most cases involving a dog bite usually comes down to humans missing a red flag or many warning signs. I hear and also get called in on many cases involving a dog bite or bites. Many of these cases are also in professions such as petsitters, walkers or daycares. Many are also involving family pets.

All dogs can bite and will bite if put into the wrong environmental context. So much goes into animal behavior from a dogs parents/breeding to socializing during the critical/imprint stage.

In my opinion education on these topics is in such need to help set more humans and canines up for more success.

For the original question, yes I believe some breeds do get bad raps! I can honestly say that a high percentage of dogs bites or the serious attacks or deaths can be avoided with some education. Do we blame the pet owners more? I honestly don’t know!

I am part of the industry for many years and it truly is an uphill battle trying to educate the public about animal behavior and safety. Our industry alone has issues with different ideologies which causes many conflicts and derials with education in my opinion.

Great topic and wish we had better answers and plan to help educate!
 

Ryan

Active member
I don't blame anyone or even the dog when these things happen. It is how nature designed dogs to bite and early humans trained these wild animals into pets. However, these animals retain their instinct to defend themselves through barking and grinning, then biting when the first two warnings were ignored.

I also wish there's a good way to disseminate proper education to everyone who has dogs as their pet.
 

Pipsqueak

Member
I don't blame anyone or even the dog when these things happen. It is how nature designed dogs to bite and early humans trained these wild animals into pets. However, these animals retain their instinct to defend themselves through barking and grinning, then biting when the first two warnings were ignored.
Well, if a person or another dog gets badly hurt, you need to assign blame so the medical bills get paid. I'd say it depends on the situation, but generally speaking, owners should be held accountable for their dogs whether it hurts a person or it destroys property. The owner is in a position to know their dog better than anyone else. They should keep their dog safe and the public safe.

In my city, the owners are responsible if their dog bites someone who is trespassing in their yard. I think that's ridiculous. By law I could shoot the person if I felt threatened, but if my dog bites the person, it's at my cost.

I also wish there's a good way to disseminate proper education to everyone who has dogs as their pet.
We have the world wide web and libraries full of books.
 

Ryan

Active member
We have the world wide web and libraries full of books.

Easier said than done, especially with owners who think they know everything already. I agree with you on this, but irresponsible dog owners don't even bother knowing the proper do's and don'ts of having a dog.
 
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