I recently checked out the San Diego Doggie Street Festival, a really cool new annual event in town, and was in doggie-lover heaven the entire time. There were tons of rescue groups on site with all kinds of dogs for adoption, from puppies to older dogs and specific breeds to totally mixed up mutts. I even caught a performance by the very talented frisbee-chasing Disc Dogs in Southern California.
But when I called my dad later to tell him about the event, I was a little disheartened by his reaction to my excitement over the pit puppies.
My dad is a dog-lover just like me. I’ve never seen him meet one he didn’t love immediately. But one of the first things he said was, “Lisa, don’t you dare come home with a Pit Bull.”
What!? But Daddy, why not?
In talking about it more over the weekend, my step-mom said she probably wouldn’t come to my home if I had a Pit Bull and certainly wouldn’t let my two-year-old niece (her granddaughter) around one either.
Since working at PETCO, I’ve learned a little bit about these so-called “bully breeds” and the extraordinary numbers of them that wind up unwanted and homeless every year. Clearly, Callie and her sisters are a perfect example.
I understand they’re strong animals and could be dangerous if they turn aggressive, but isn’t that true of most larger dogs? And can’t proper training, socializatoin, love and care by responsible pet parents make that a less likely thing to worry about? Are the reactions of my parents based on reality, or on misconceptions perpetuated by the media and horror stories like Michael Vick’s?
As a future responsible pet parent, I’d like to know the truth:
Why do Pit Bulls get such a bad rap?