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« PETA now seeks to kill animals not in their care | Main | Weekly Roundup - Week ending 3/28/10 »

March 27, 2010

Comments

Brent

Jason,

If you accept that there are tens of thousands of pit bulls have rewarding lives, then the idea that they possess some type of gene that causes them to snap seems pretty ridiculous -- because if there is a breed-specific gene that causes this, then they would all, by definition, have to have it.

And yes, to a degree, I believe there is a bit of a media conspiracy against pit bulls. For the past four years, I've gotten a chance to see virtually every bite dog that has come into our shelter in our community of half a million people. And they come in every breed, shape and size. And the ones that commit major dog bites, and are truly dangerous also come in virtually every breed. I can also tell you that in all certainty that the attacks that get reported by the media are not a representative mix that resembles what we see in the shelter. At all.

But what we do find is that the cases we see do cluster in certain areas and zip codes that are more prone to other types of violence. If you looked at a severe dog bit map, and a shooting map in our community I think they would be pretty tough to distinguish with a couple of exceptions. We see a remarkable number of dogs that come in via bite cases that bit during the middle of some other type of domestic dispute.

This is again why I think it's really important to look at the other factors involved -- including how the dog is cared for, treated, socialized with the family, violence surrounding the family, and when the dog was removed from its litter (something that I think would be a major driver in severe dog bites if we only had that information for even most cases).

And sure, people say they'd never had a problem with the dog, and the dog just snapped in these cases because it's easier to blame the dog than to say what really happened and assume culpability.

I'm all for holding people accountable for the actions of their dogs -- but to assume that the cases are genetic when the evidence suggests otherwise is going to prove to be an ineffective solution.

Miles Omally

It truely angers me to see that website spreading vicious lies and collecting money to kill one of natures truest loving loyal friends. I own a pitbull and I would kill to protect her from assholes like the douchbag who blogs bs about the breed on dogsbite.org !! These people need to be stopped from posting such crap!!

Broc

It's a real shame that so many Google searches relating to pitbulls result in her site appearing at the top of the search results.

Doug

Pit bulls are killers fuck what any of u ignorant/stupid people think

Brent

LOL. I do love the irony. If that were true Doug, there would be literally tens of thousands of people being killed by pit bulls every year given the millions of pit bulls that exist in the US.

John Whitford

Colleen Lynn, the owner of dogsbite.org was jogging and ran up from behind on a dogwalker with a pitbull. While there was ample room to pass on the left, she chose to pass on the right where there was little space and startled the walker and dog. She accepts no blame for her poor judgement in creating a situation where a startled dog bit her. She sued, got money and decided to have a vendetta against pits. Bad site, bad info and very distorted and opinionated writing.

Benjamin Gunnells

I knew her "sources" couldn't be legit. I've seen studies and reports saying what she has on her "myth" page is actually true (meaning she calls it a myth that it's treatment and not genetics that lead to attacks)...of course I couldn't stomach reading all of her supposed myths so that's just the first half of them.

I almost punched my screen I was so angry reading her "myths" page. I've always heard vets and animal behavior experts saying breed bans have NEVER worked because of the very fact that it's treatment of the dog that causes attacks not the breed and there have been MANY breed bans.

German shepherds were once a breed looked at with just as much hate as bull terriers, yet now it is generally accepted that they are one of the best dogs to have. Of course sites like dogsbite are just like sites that make up "most dangerous dogs" on youtube...common theme is they list large dogs...THEY EVEN PUT GREAT DANES on there! It would be laughable if it weren't for so many people believing them.

Becca

Awesome article!! I am glad that I stumbled across this after reading the terrible crap on dogsbite.org! I have worked in animal rescue for over 5 years now. I have taken in more dogs than I can count of all breeds. I was bitten once and it was by a small Maltese mix dog. Did I report it (as it was owned)? No...but I wonder, if everyone reported small dog bites, how many would there be? My husband was bitten by a Boston Terrier pretty badly. Of course, he didn't report it because it was his brother's dog. Now, with that said, when big dog's bite, it causes more damage than a little dog...true. But that is with any large dog!
My second rant is saying that most dogs involved in bites are pit bulls. Were they DNA tested? Do you know how many "pit bull mixes" that once DNA tested aren't even a breed classified as pit bull? Several...
Again great article!!

Jamie

I know this post was years ago but I appreciate you for setting the record straight pit bulls are just like any other breed it's how they are raised. I have 5 children and we have two pit bulls who are a part of our family and who are very protective of my children and my husband and I and I have no idea what we would do without them. These people are obviously obsessed with the pit bull breed because she was supposedly attacked by one and I'm sorry she was hurt by a dog but you CAN NOT JUDGE EVERY DOG BY ONES ACTIONS!! My dogs Macky and Chunky Monkey are everything to our family, I have a grandson who is now 6 months old and our dogs make sure he is safe and ok and give him lots of kisses all the time and when something is wrong with him they let us know. Thank you again for your post.

paul mason

Great post brent,looking through how informative it is ,just glad i didn't waste my time reading ,closely waiting for more blogs from you

Tom ORourke

I see dogbites.org list facts of real world cases. I do not see anything wrong with that. Fact is many dogs are dangerous in the general public. That is true of dogs from good homes and good breeders. Dogs can be unpredictable. Dogs with superior physical traits can inflict damage. This is my opinion based on real life working in a veterinarian hospital.

Jon

Doing a research paper and wanted to know more about the pit bull breed and see what were the myths about them. And came across dogsbite.org and looked at the myths than facts and seemed one sided than googled if that website was a reliable one and saw this journal entry

Tony Solesky

I believe the reason dogsbite.org has been so successful is because they have actual court cases, Police reports and human medical professionals corroborating their stats.

That coupled to the facts that all of the fatalities they cover from news reports are verified by Police reports, death certificates, insurance companies and of course the victims themselves.

I believe the big key is that organizations that promote the dogs perspective have zero training or experience with dog attack victims, given victims are sent to medical doctors not veterinarians. Having only 3rd party information it could be easy for animal rights groups to wrongly conclude dogsbite has no experience but in reality, all of their experience is medical, legal and aftermath. They are quite the expert.

Brent

Tony, The reason they've been so "successful" is in a world where reporters want "both sides" of a story, DBO (and its various ghost orgs) is the only remaining anti-pit bull voice.

Contrary to your assertions, medical doctors do not understand dog behavior and why they bite. Neither do lawyers or former telephone psychics.

This has led DBO to make false conclusions about dog bites because they don't understand dogs, or dog behavior. Thus, they cherry-pick their information to support their false conclusions and leave un-mentioned mounds of peer-reviewed research that completely contradicts their opinion, and eliminate any comments that would attempt to clarify their mis-statements.

And yes, the community that opposed DBO (which is mostly everyone) involves the National Animal Control Association and various state animal control associations -- who absolutely do work with dog bite victims and (gasp) dogs. And, they don't ignore the vast catalogs of science.

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