How did you feel when you read “pit bull” in the title of this article? Did it make you smile because you were thinking about how these dogs are loving and loyal? Or are you in the category of people who think pit bulls are dangerous and a menace to society? Whether you love them, fear them, or are unsure about them, this article is for you.
What Is National Pit Bull Awareness Day?
“National Pit Bull Awareness Day (NPBAD) is a day of appreciation and education designed to change perceptions and stereotypes about bully breed dogs, commonly referred to as “pit bulls,” and their responsible owners. NPBAD was established to educate and foster positive communication and experiences in the communities in which we and our dogs live, and it is an initiative dedicated to restoring the image of the American Pit Bull Terrier. NPBAD was started in 2007 by Jodi Preis of Bless the Bullys, a pit bull rescue and education group in Middle Tennessee. The ultimate goal of NPBAD is to promote the truth about pit bulls. Knowledge is power, and with education and advocacy, the truth will save lives in terms of negating the fear and bias generated by the media, circumvent knee-jerk reactions such as breed bans, and the truth will result in fewer pit bulls ending up in animal shelters.” – http://www.nationalpitbullawarenessday.org/
Are Pit Bulls A Dog Breed?
Not only are they one of the most misidentified types of dogs, but there also isn’t an agreement about what breeds are considered to be pit bulls. The term “pit bull” does NOT describe a specific dog breed. A pit bull is a type of dog, just as retrievers and shepherds are types of dogs. Although there are many opinions on what a pit bull is or isn’t, they might be one or a combination of the following dog breeds:
- American Staffordshire Terrier
- American Pit Bull Terrier
- English Bull Terrier
- American Bulldog
- Staffordshire Bull Terrier
- American Bully
How Pit Bulls Got A Bad Reputation
It’s no secret that these dogs have a bad reputation, and I’m sure all of us have heard awful stories about them in the media. The image that is being portrayed isn’t the truth and is mostly based on the actions of reprehensible owners, not the animals themselves.
Pit bulls are often misunderstood. The stories of attacks, their behavior, and the strength of their bite has taught people to fear this once well-loved breed. Many experts believe that dog fighting has been a huge factor that contributed to their bad reputation. This is because they are often trained to be angry and aggressive. A lack of socialization, inbreeding or bad genetics, abuse, and irresponsible humans are a few more reasons that contribute to aggressiveness in these dogs.
Dogs Aren’t Born Bad
Puppies are innocent when they’re born, and no particular breed is doomed to be aggressive from birth. Before pit bulls were categorized as a vicious breed, they were known as loving caregivers to families with children. Unfortunately, a lot of disreputable statistics and incorrect numbers have led to inaccurate labeling of some breeds as “aggressive.”
The Most Aggressive List
Did you know that Chihuahuas are usually #1 on most lists of aggressive dog breeds? Which do you think gets reported more, bites from a chihuahua or bites from a pit bull? Probably the latter, huh? This isn’t because pit bulls are meaner or more vicious than chihuahuas. It is because chihuahua bites are often underreported, but most likely more common than most people know.
Pit Bulls Make Great Pets
Pit bulls are gentle dogs and make excellent family pets. Anyone that has ever owned one would most likely agree.
Here are a few more reasons to give these dogs a chance:
- They are usually very healthy
- They are athletic but love being a couch potato too
- Don’t require much grooming and are low maintenance
- Eager to please their owner
- Great with children
- Once bonded with you, they’re extremely loyal
- They are quick to overcome a bad past (if applicable)
- They smile when they’re happy
- Easily trainable
- They love people
As you can see, it’s extremely important to give these precious animals a chance at life. So many pit bull-type dogs end up in shelters without any good reason.
It’s up to us as responsible humans to advocate for pit bulls, not just on National Pit Bull Awareness Day, but every other day as well.
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