Dogs : Animal Control

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Man's best friend is a worthy title given to all dogs, and it does not discriminate based on breed. Dogs are capable of love and compassion that people cannot even begin to understand which is why it is so absurd to think that any dog is naturally aggressive and driven to cause harm to people around them. Pit bulls are at the forefront of these damaging claims, despite the countless years that they were known as amazing companions and even nicknamed 'nanny" dogs because of their kind nature and love of children. The smear on the pit bull name started when dog fighting became more prevalent and pit bulls were identified as the ideal dog for these horrific fights due to their strong bodies, high pain tolerance and muscular jaws. Any dog thrown into a terrifying life or death situation, forced to fight and severely abused would undoubtably be scared and lash out to people- because hurt and distrust is all they know. They way a dog is raised is the way it will act in every situation imaginable. Abused and hurt people lash out, why are helpless dogs expected to handle pain and betrayal in a different way? Pit Bulls are no more aggressive than any other dog, and therefore should not have specific laws and regulations restricting the breed.

What most people refer to as a 'Pit Bull" often isn't even a Pit Bull, but rather a mutt. A pure Pit Bull is a cross between Terriers and Bull Dogs which were first introduced to the United States in the 1800's. These dogs were originally bred in England and were separated into two main 'strains" of Pit Bulls. The first was used as guard dogs and for dog fights due to them being bred for their strong jaws and strong, stocky bodies (Pit Bulls). The United States banned the practice of dog fighting which led to the breeding of dogs into the second 'strain" with a smaller body and a calmer demeaner, this dog was used to hunt and be the family pet. 'The Pit Bull breed is strong and very intelligent. They are loyal and courageous. Their main goal is to please their owner. Yes, they look tough, but they have not been referred to as the 'Nanny Dog" for almost 100 years for nothing! (Pit Bulls)" These lovely and caring dogs are still being found by the wrong people. They take advantage of the strong jaw, strong body, and unbreakable bond towards their owner, in order to turn these dogs into something aggressive and frightening. The dogs that are considered dangerous are often trained to kill or be killed.

People often have the wrong idea about dog breeds, which is how misinformation is spread, leading to discriminatory laws and regulations towards loving animals. A common misconception is that biting equates to a bad or aggressive dog, when most times this occurs due to provocation or aggressive and bad ownership. In fact, many of the dog breeds that appear on the '11 Dog Breeds That Bite the Most" are small dogs that one would not consider threatening or aggressive, as well as dog breeds that also appear on '11 Safest Dog Breeds". The top 5 for dogs that bite the most is made up of (Writer, Staff):

  1. Chihuahua
  2. Bull Dog
  3. Pit Bull
  4. German Sheppard
  5. Australian Sheppard

Yet, most of these dogs are not classified as aggressive and do not have specific legislation against them, except for number 3. Although Chihuahuas are the dog that bites the most and would be considered to be the most aggressive by these standards, it is not feared and does not have any regulations against it because of its size. Of these top 5 most likely to bite, three of the five can be found on the 11 safest dog breed list (11 Safest):

  1. Australian Sheppard
  2.  German Sheppard
  3. Bull Dog

The reality of the situation is, people often recognize that biting does not necessarily mean aggressive or violent in nature, so why is that a common belief when it comes to Pit Bulls? Pit Bulls have a reputation for being ?fighting dogs' because their irresponsible and abusive owners force them to fight and teach them to be mean, yet somehow the breed itself is still to blame.

While the initial hope of Breed Specific Legislation was surely to try to protect citizens in certain towns, cities, or states, the effect it has is a harmful one. The negative effects of these laws affect not only the dog and the owner, but the locations in which they were enacted. For the owners, restrictions could mean that their friendly and properly trained and supervised dogs who fall, even slightly, into the breed restrictions, could mean housing problems, legal fees and even the surrender or rehoming of the dog (What is Breed-Specific Legislation). For the dogs, life may become rather difficult since the families consider the dog part of the family and don't want to give them up. This leads to the owners trying to keep the dog without it being known which means the dog is not able to go outside as it should and is not socialized with other dogs and people as it should be. This could also mean that the dog is not licensed, microchipped, or receiving the medical care that it needs. While the owners may mean well and love their dog, breed restrictions force loving families into a tight spot with their beloved Pit Bulls. Such actions can have a negative impact on both the mental and physical health of these dogs. Not only this, but if a restricted dog is found in one of these areas and taken to a shelter it could mean ethnicization for a perfectly healthy and well-trained dog (What is Breed-Specific Legislation). For the communities these laws and regulations effect, the laws have actually been known to inhibit, rather than increase, public safety. Resources are allocated in the wrong areas are not being used effectively or efficiently. When animal control is being used to enforce Breed Bans, their main focus is taken away from things that would undoubtably help makes communities safer, such as: dog license laws, leash laws, anti-animal fighting laws, anti-tethering laws, laws for spaying and neutering, and laws that require all owners to control their dogs, regardless of breed (What is Breed-Specific Legislation). As humans and dog lovers, we should work together to make it safer for all dog breeds and we should get rid of harmful legislation centered around a specific dog breed.

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Dogs : Animal Control. (2021, Mar 08). Retrieved April 18, 2024 , from

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