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Quick "pit bull" info for shelters, rescues, etc.

Discussion in 'Rescue & Adoption' started by KateNLeo, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. KateNLeo

    KateNLeo Big Dog

    Quick "pit bull" info for shelters, rescues, etc.

    There may be a stickie here somewhere, but do y'all have a BRIEF document you refer people to when they are considering, or avoiding, adopting a "pit bull"? Something with just some general basics about the breeds we love to provide guidance?

    I was just thinking tonight how helpful it might be for shelters here to have something available like what follows. I'd say 80-90% of the dogs in shelters around D/FW are "pit bull" dogs. Well, and chihuahuas. Lol....

    Here's a very rough draft/first attempt of what I was thinking. What would you insist on including with the goal being to get the most important info in their hands in as concise a format as possible. Feedback/revisions or alternatives welcome! :)

    Thinking About Adopting or AVOIDING a "Pit Bull?" Read this first.

    1. There is a breed called the "American Pit Bull Terrier" (APBT) however the term "pit bull" is most commonly used by the general public in reference to a number of bull breed dogs and mixes including but not limited to the American Staffordshire Terrier (AST), the Staffordshire Bull Terrier (SBT), and the American Bully.

    2. Most bull breed dogs are known to be very people oriented. They thrive in the company of people and as a result do NOT make good guard dogs!

    3. The APBT, or any mix that might include APBT, does have a propensity for dog aggression. This is to be expected in the same way that you would expect a Beagle to follow his nose, retrievers to love water or a Shih-tzu to bark. It will not present in every one, but it is not considered abnormal by any means when it does.

    4. Dog aggression typically appears at some point during the dogs first two years of life, however it may appear at any point during the dog's life. Therefore, just because you raise a pit bull with another animal, there is no guarantee that they will always get along. Owners should always maintain close supervision of their pit bull with all other animals and be prepared to crate and rotate if needed.

    5. Dog aggression is NOT the same as human aggression. Human aggression is never an acceptable characteristic in APBTs. As stated above, APBTs love people.

    6. Because of their strength, the terrier tenacity, and the propensity for dog aggression, dog parks are not a good idea for these breeds. Furthermore, owners should familiarize themselves with the use of a break stick and always have one handy. It is a myth that a pit bull's jaws "lock" but they do typically grab, hold and shake when fighting versus the noisy, snappy, fighting of other breeds.

    7. The notion of "nurture vs. nature" is an oversimplification of these breed's inherent qualities. It would be naive of any owner to assume that they can nurture dog aggression out of these dogs. Again, it may not occur in all dogs, but it should always be anticipated.

    8. These breeds are typically very strong and healthy animals. They are also very intelligent and fairly easy to train. They enjoy a challenge and can be taught to do almost anything. "Pit bulls" excel in many dog sports including agility, weight pull, rally and dock diving. Because of their love of people, they can also make great therapy dogs.

    9. The key to owning any "pit bull" is responsible ownership. A well educated owner is the pit bull's greatest advocate!!
  2. _unoriginal

    _unoriginal Cow Dog

    Couple things..

    I'd say something about them being a high energy dog. They need lots of physical AND mental stimulation. Give some examples, tug of war, flirt pole, spring pole, bike run, etc.

    Also would add something about the dog being escape artists. They shouldn't be left unsupervised in a yard unless they are properly tethered or kenneled because it's common for these dogs to be able to easily scale a 6' privacy fence.

    Lastly, I would add that the GP incorrectly refers to other breeds as "pit bulls". It is better to use the true blanket term of bull breeds and then use that term throughout the remainder of the document rather than flip-flopping between bull breed, pit bull, APBT, etc.
  3. KateNLeo

    KateNLeo Big Dog

    Excellent. Thank you!!
  4. Blueduck1105

    Blueduck1105 Little Dog

    This is a nice little intro of information thanks!
  5. Tiffseagles

    Tiffseagles GRCH Dog Premium Member

  6. I would also include information on the correct way to introduce the new dog into your house such as the two week shutdown and a guide to introducing the dog to the resident dog(s) and also the crate and rotate. If people are still interested in the dog after reading all of this, then the dog may have a forever home.
  7. KateNLeo

    KateNLeo Big Dog

    Thanks for that handout, Tiffs. It's longer than what I was thinking but full of good info & I like the way they use "bull and terrier" instead of pit bull.

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