Pit Bulls are Okay

On social media and all through the web, you see pages and articles dedicated to “Pit Bulls are not Pets” or “Pit Bulls are Bad Dogs.” It seems opinions are split down the middle when it comes to this breed of dog to the point that some communities throughout the United States have banned them within their limits.

But really, is it a dog breed that is getting a bad rap?

Some experts say this is the case because Pit Bulls are not the only breed with the potential to be aggressive. Even the beloved Rottweiler can become aggressive if it has reason to be. Unfortunately, it is the Pit Bull that gets all of the media attention.

Irresponsible Owners

There are many Pit Bull owners that jump to the breed’s defense and there is a reason for this: they treat their dogs with the respect that they need to be good dogs.

Many times, a Pit Bull becomes aggressive because it has been raised by the hand of an irresponsible owner who encourages aggression because of the dog’s macho image. This is a breed that can fight and protect and, unfortunately, there are some owners that focus on that and not the fact that a Pit Bull can be a gentle dog.

Aggression Toward People and Other Dogs

According to experts, the Pit Bull isn’t really aggressive with people unless it is encouraged to be. They are, however, less tolerant of other dogs than many other breeds. This is why it is good to have a Pit Bull by him or herself. This is why you may hear of Pit Bulls attacking other dogs, but the Pit Bull usually has to be provoked in some way.

When an owner is responsible and they properly train their Pit Bull to not be aggressive and the breed is treated with the respect it deserves, then the odds of the dog being aggressive drops significantly. When the dog is treated as a part of the family, the dog is going to be more watchful than aggressive.

Pit Bull Myths

Some common Pit Bull myths include:

  1. Pit Bulls can tolerate a lot of pain – Although they look tough and they are muscular, they do not tolerate pain well. The myth that Pit Bulls tolerate pain well comes from the fact that they may be less responsive to pain when they are agitated or aroused.
  2. Pit Bulls have locking jaws – Pit Bulls are not anatomically different from other dogs, so their jaws do not lock. They are simply like other terriers and they shake something when they grab a hold of it. It doesn’t mean that they are going to hang on forever, but an owner needs to know how to break up a fight or get their dog to let go of something.
  3. Pit Bulls are unpredictable – The thought is that a Pit Bull can be fine and then it all of a sudden turn on a person. Experts say that a Pit Bull is no more unpredictable than other breeds.

So if you are considering a Pit Bull, you will have to counteract negative perceptions about your dog. If your Pit Bull is friendly with other dogs, you will want to continue with that socialization. You can also come up with tactics do distract your dog if he or she gets intimidated and make them understand that they can’t play rough (rough play is common among most breeds). If you have other pets, make sure you introduce your Pit Bull to your pets slowly.