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Dog Bites and Breed Issues.

Due to a number of recorded attacks by dogs in recent years new legislation has been adopted in an attempt to prevent and/or stop these incidents. Fair or not, these new laws are often singling out specific dog breeds. The breed most frequently targeted by these laws is the American Pit Bull. In the most extreme cases some cities and towns are banning the breed altogether. Unfortunately, for many years and even in some cases today, the Pit Bull has been bred to be a fighting dog. The Pit Bull is a mix of other breeds such as the Staffordshire Terrier and bulldog. The intent was to develop the instinct and the strength to fight. Sadly these dogs now are punished for a trait previously desired in the breed. Other breeds such as Rottweilers commonly are subject to similar breed specific restrictions.

One solution, while not complete, is to promote responsible ownership coupled with an awareness that additional responsibilities that come with owning large powerful dogs. While bad behavior and poor demeanor can be present in most any breed, most people would agree that they would rather face an angry Chihuahua than an angry Pit Bull. In general, stating these opinions is often preaching to the choir. Many owners even of large breed dogs that are not known to be aggressive such as Great Danes will admit their breed of dog isn’t suited for everyone. Understanding and taking proper measures to ensure that all dogs, but especially these large powerful breeds stay under their owner’s control at all times is needed.

Even though a dog may have a great demeanor, he should still be properly contained in public as well as at home. This guarantees not only the safety of others, but protection for your for dog as well. It is also a courtesy for others who may be uncomfortable or scared by dogs, or simply do not want them in their yard. Be aware of common traits of the breed of dog you consider adopting. Large dogs as well as sporting dogs often require more exercise than other dogs. Bad behavior can result if these needs aren’t met; barking and digging are common problems in this situation. Finally, good training and socialization is a good idea for all dogs, but a must for these powerful breeds. This will teach them how to handle numerous situations, creating a good canine citizen.

Unfortunately, responsible owners often pay a price for those who don’t properly care for their pet. Debate on how to deal with dogs that are dangerous or perceived as dangerous is likely to continue. Hopefully responsible owners can help these dogs that have been done a disservice by generations of unfortunate breeding practices.



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