More Pit Bull Attacks in the News

I know we keep having the debate about whether Pit Bulls are bad news or whether they just sell newspapers, but I found both of these articles in this week’s northeastern Ohio news, and wanted to share it with you. Whether the dogs were vicious by nature or by nurture, both stories are truly tragic.

First, from NewsNet5, a little girl in Akron used a chair to beat a 90-pound Pit Bull off of her 10-pound Shih Tzu, leaving the smaller dog needing $3,000 in treatment.  The article includes the following advice for dealing with potentially dangerous dogs:

The Akron Department of Animal Control said the best way to deal with pit bull attacks is to report vicious dogs before something bad happens.

The first step is to talk with the dog owner and ask the owner to better restrain his animal. If nothing changes, and the dog is still on the loose, residents are urged to contact their city or county dog warden.  Residents can also report an aggressive dog to their city police department, making sure to file a police report  while officers are on the scene.

The other news comes from CantonRep.com.  A Canton woman came home from work to find her neighbor’s car in her driveway.  She went next door to ask them to move their car, and a pit bull dashed out and attacked her.  The dog tore a blood vessel in her leg and bit into her face so deeply that she has stitches inside her mouth.  Scary!

I know there are so many people who love their Pit Bulls, and I’d like to believe they’re right – that the dogs are just misunderstood, bred badly, and raised to be violent.  But when stories like this continue to appear in the media, at some point I have to begin wondering.  I mean where there’s that much smoke, when do you start yelling “fire”?

Until next time,

Good day, and good dog!

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11 thoughts on “More Pit Bull Attacks in the News”

  1. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….nnon L.
    Very well said! I was hoping someone would bring up that fact!!!!! Pit bulls were BRED as visious dogs. To be strong to protect, and to fight. Even if they are tame they are dangerous. You have to be cautiouse with any visous dog breed, and be responsible for what they are capable of! That makes a good pit bul owner. If you have a pitbull and say he wouldn’t hurt a fly or of course your child can pet him. Makes for a bad owner. Be aware what there capable of please! and quit the underestimating what these dogs can do.

  2. absolutely all breeds of dogs can bite or be vicious. the same way any person can become violent or havecriminal acts. my mother bred and raised australian terriers all my life. she has workerd at a non-kill animal shelter for years in the past, also was a vet tech for many years, been a representative for dog food educating people on the necessary nutrients for their animals, she is also a humane investigator, and currently is a dog trainer…….. did i miss any other area covering experience with dogs? ah yes, a dog groomer, well thats where i come in. i am a dog groomer and have been for going on 8 years now. I would like to share my most favorite story and just one of my arguements on this certain topic. So, in all of my experience of being raised with dogs my enitre life(I am 24) being in so many different surrounding of dogs, our family dogs ( couldnt even count how many we have had), meeting and seeing behaviors in the show ring, dealing with rescue dogs(we have fostered many dogs and saved many dogs lives), mainly seeing, meeting, handling, and working on hundreds of dogs a WEEK! I would say i am quite educated and have much knowledge on ALL breeds of dogs. So, gettting down to the point now that you know my backround. in my 8 years of grooming, i have not met one aggressive pitbull or been bitten or growled at EVER by a pitbull!!!! I can tell you that i am amazing at my job but grooming dogs involve doing a few things that most dogs may not be too fond of: trimming their nails, removing hair from their ears to prevent ear infections, brushing out a few knots(90% of people do NOT brush their dog, removing undercoat, touchin g their feet when they have ticklish paws, grooming older dogs that are in pain or have a hard time standing ect. it really can go on and on. the point is that in my profession i get bite at just about EVERYDAY and i would like to share with you the most common breeds that do the biting or growling and have major attitudes, are you ready??? because your jaw is about to drop, and again…..none are pitbulls or rotwielers or doberman pinschers, or mastiffs, or akitasya know all those breeds that ingnorant non educated peoople call “the bully breeds”.the breeds are mainly shihtzus, cocker spaniels, chihuahuas, toy poodles, puggles, goldendoodles, lhasas, bischon frise, keeshounds, huskies, chow chows, your favorite “family dogs” golden retrievers and labs, ect. i can go on and on all day! I would also like to let you know that i DO NOT discriminate against any of these breeds. not one of them!!!! on the note of pitbull behaviors…lol they are sweet and loving dogs that are full of cuddling and kissing during the bath the drying the nail trim ear cleaning, ect. i have met hundreds of pitbulls in my life and they all have this sweet loving additude, even pitbulls that have come from homes where they were abused by being beaten, starved, fed gun powder, put in a ring to fight, ect. many rescue pitbulls are scared, shy, and timid… they become so loyal and appreciative that they were taken out of that kind of envirnment. sadly, not all pitbulls are considered to be “easily adoptable” due to the torment they have been put through. open up your heart and understand this, have compassion for all breeds. I, myself own a pitbull, so does my mother, and also my sister. granted, i have heard my own share of stories on pitbull attacks. this is very sad. however, understand that these certain pitbulls are owned by (im ust going to say it) stupid irrisposible people. the way you raise any dog has everything to do with what kind of temperment they will have… the same way you raise your children.for example, may i ask: what would be a common behavior of a child growing into an adult that was abused by being beaten, abused in any sort of way, or raised in a violent home. there is a psychological pattern in human beings the same way there is with dogs. i really do hope this has helped others understand a bit more on pitbulls and the bad reputation that they have recieved over the years. have a wonderful day :)

  3. I have found a blog entry that talks about a study of dog bites done in the Netherlands (link below). Assuming the sources can be trusted it shows how education of dog owners has an important role in preventing bites. Thou I cannot see any details of social circumstances of the dog that bite I.e was it mistreated or trained to fight. I wonder if there have been any studies into the social circumstances of animals that bite. Or is my main contention obviously wrong when you look at the raw data?

    On the point that Linda raised:

    “It is hard to believe that the majority of Pit Bull owners are less responsible than other dog owners. In other words, the reason there are more fatalities from Pit Bull bites is due to nature not nurture. The Pit Bull not only has the nature to kill, it has the strength to kill.”

    It is not the percentage of Pit Bull owners as such that are irresponsible but the majority or irresponsible owners that go for Pit Bulls. This would account for larger number incidents reported as those more likely to bring up, train a ‘dangerous’ dog are more likely to own a Pit Bull.

    I would also say that unless you are intending to breed your dog then I would SPAY and NEUTER them anyway. I have been told this calms the dog down regardless of breed. Susan, would you say Spay or Neutering has a greater effect on Pit Bulls than other breeds?

    Nature v’s Nurture? As with most problems of this complexity the answer is somewhere in-between. If the Pit Bull Breed did not exist then another breed would be in the press all the time. However I can not see a skin head walking down the street with a Pekingese.

    Rob.

  4. I have been rescuing bullys for a couple of years now. I am educating people on the breed, on spay and neuter and have seen many different pits.

    It is in their “nature” to bring down game. 100 years ago they were praised for bringing down food for the family. They were never bred as guard dogs. You are much more likely to be be bitten my dobies, rotties and shepards. And by the way, strongest bite is not the pit but german shepard first, rotties second then the bully breeds.

    I have broken up fights between 5 pitbulls and was never even snapped at. Yes, the problem lies when people act like game. Running, screaming, squeeling children. All of these things can trigger the game instinct. All dogs chase when someone runs. You run from a bully breed and you will be bought down if the animal has not been desensitized to the behavior. Do NOT get a bully breed if you are not willing to learn about them. Just like Stallions, only a few horse owners should own them. SPAY AND NEUTER YOUR BULLIES.

  5. In the United States in 2008, 65 percent of human fatalities caused by dog bites were caused by Pit Bull bites. Though any breed will bite, the Pit Bull bite is far more likely to lead to death, most often the death of a child in his own home. (see http://www.dogbite.org)

    It is hard to believe that the majority of Pit Bull owners are less responsible than other dog owners. In other words, the reason there are more fatalities from Pit Bull bites is due to nature not nurture. The Pit Bull not only has the nature to kill, it has the strength to kill.

    On the nature/nurture argument: there is an 8 out of 10 chance that a biting dog is a male dog, according to the Humane Society of America. Clearly, this is nature, not nurture. Same goes for Pit Bulls vs. other breeds. Nature, not nurture is the reason this breed kills more people (usually children) than any other breed of dog.

  6. Ah yes the Nature vs Nurture argument. Shannon I think you are right that genetics plays a part. Some dog breeds do have more propensity to be vicious than others. It is why wolf and dog cross breeds are illegal in the UK.

    However it is important that we recognise that how a dog is brought up plays an important part in how it behaves. If you were to take 2 clones of a Pit Bull or a Bullmastiff or a Rottweiler, If you then were to give one clone to a good dog owner and one to a bad dog owner. The dog owned by the former would be much safer than the latter.

    There are always going to be exceptions to this, there will be someone, somewhere that has brought up their dog perfectly well and one day the dog turns on them. Thou I never heard of it. All the dog attacks that I can remember involve dogs that are mistreated or trained for Dog fighting or both.

  7. Maltese were bred for many years to be lap dogs. They were BRED to have the traits of a lap dog. Labs and Retrievers were bred for years to fetch. They were BRED to have the traits of a retriever. These characteristics are part of the DNA because they were BRED in.
    Some traits are not the owner, it is GENETICS and BREEDING.
    And Pit Bulls were for 100 years BRED to be Pit bulls.

  8. I do think that the press do like a good scary story so they can whip their readers up into a frenzy. I also agree with Heather that other dogs do bite. We had a Old English Sheep Dog/ Afgan hound cross called Boot (He had the height of the Afgan and the build of an Old English). He bite my father on 2 separate occasions. Both of them were when he restrained Boot from attacking other dogs. The second time he almost bit through my Fathers hand.

    Dad put this down to the fact he had rescued Boot from a Dark room, starving and matted. Boot was roughly 2 when we found him and was 10 when he bit dad for the first time. I was roughly ten at the time and if I was my father I would have had Boot put to sleep as could not have trusted him around any children. However, Boot never showed the slightest aggression to me or anyone else and he died at the age of Sixteen. So any breed can be aggressive/ dangerous.

    I would say that as long as a responsible owner a dog from an early age is:

    Shown that you are the boss (without being cruel).
    Shown affection
    Socialised with other dogs (off the lead)
    and (perhaps controversially) is not kept in a crate.

    I have done this and all ‘my’ (admittedly only 2) dogs have been exceptionally well tempered.

    As for the press, In the UK the dogs that bite are those that are mistreated and they are more likely to be pit bulls because the sort of people that will mistreat an animal get these kind of dogs. In fact they are being used as weapons in muggings. This is since the UK implemented a mandatory prison sentence for anyone found carrying a knife. The dog used are again pit bulls so the press latch on to this and again blame the breed and not the owners.

    I think I will shut up now as I could probably go on for a very long time…..

    Rob.

  9. I’m a loving Pit Bull owner and believe that it’s 100% the owners and not the breed. This is true for any dog and the reason Pit Bulls get press is because it does sell newspapers, if news of other breed’s dog bites were publicized, I think it would pretty apparent that more breeds bite than pit bulls and you would be scared of your neighbor’s lab or huskie!

    With that said, the reason for the publicity in Ohio is because Pit Bulls are considered vicious dogs in Ohio legislation and they are attempting to repeal that which has led to many local municipalities to begin their own BSL legislation and the more negative publicity they can get, the better chance it will be passed.

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