Well, where I live in upstate NY, the whitetail deer is an extremely
dangerous animal and considered by some to be a very real threat to human
existence. It is for this very reason, and the deep and abiding concern I
hold for my fellow man that I devote myself unselfishly to the annual
pursuit of this animal in the name of eradicating this particular threat to
Greetings and Salutations....
On Sat, 02 Oct 2004 22:16:41 -0700, Doug Winterburn
LOL! a good point...however, again, apples and cantelopes.
All those are wild animals...not ones that have thousands of years
of close association with humans and the domesticating effects
I realize it verges on tasteless to introduce facts into an off-topic argument
in this newsgroup, but if anyone is interested, here are some references on the
'dangers' of pit bulls that I turned up in a quick google search.
An article on pit bulls and the problems involved in pit bull rescue.
A FAQ on what pit bulls are really like
A report on an Alabama Supreme Court ruling finding no evidence pit bulls are
inherently more dangerous than other breeds.
Long experience with pit bulls.
A good discussion of pit bulls and aggression.
(IMHO, this source makes too much of the fatality statistics. While pit bulls
probably less likely to attack a human than other breeds, there is no question
that a pit bull's
strength and quickness means it can do a lot more damage when it does attack.)
I know you love pit-bulls, and from the fervor you're showing in
defending them, and the links you've gone through the trouble to find,
I've no doubt that you have good dogs. I've no doubt that your
friends are good dog-owners as well. You've probably never met a pit
bull you didn't like- believe it or not, I get it.
On the other hand, I have never met a responsible pit bull owner. I'm
not saying that there are none, or even that it is very uncommon- but
it is not possible to draw a conclusion that is completely
inconsistant with every experience you've ever had. If I were to tell
you Black and Decker made THE BEST woodworking tools on earth, and
posted links to pictures of masterfully crafted furniture, and
hundreds of testimonials saying the same, would you believe me? Even
though your experience had shown you that that brand was inadequate
for almost every task you tried to apply it to? Could you change your
mind because I said so, or because someone put up a website that said
I don't want to prevent anyone from owning dogs of any breed. I just
would like to see those dogs taken care of properly. If you have a
pit bull, and love it as a part of your family, great. Just don't
assume that it acts the same when you are not around, and let the
animal go roaming about the neighborhood. That's all I or anyone else
has the right to ask of you. Do what you like on your own property-
hell, keep an elephant in your backyard and an alligator in your
bathtub for all I care. But if said elephant steps on my car, don't
expect your assertion that the elephant is a noble, wise and gentle
creature to change the fact that I can't get to work that day! And
don't expect the fact that not all pit bulls are the devil incarnate
to change the fact that it is damn scary when a muscular, viscious
animal corners you in your own yard.
I've got a friendly little pooch that doesn't seem to be a danger to
anything but table scraps, but I don't let him wander around on his
own- not only because he could be a danger to someone who is strange
to him, but also because he lacks the discernment to look both ways
before crossing the street, or to prevent himself from crapping in the
neighbor's yard. So the breed of dog is not all bad; fine, I'll agree
to that- but the overwhelming tendancy in my experience is for the
wrong kind of people to adopt that breed, and that- more than anything
else, is what makes them dangerous. I've seen other kinds of dogs
cause problems, but all of those others put together do not add up to
even 1/10 of the trouble I have personally witnessed when a pit bull
is present. The statistics [in the link another poster provided] show
that pit-bulls and rottweilers (which I have seen to be friendly,
gentle dogs) cause over 50% of all dog-related deaths. There must be
*something* there, even if the statistics are skewed.
You could argue that not all bites lead to death, and you would be
right. I don't have any statistics showing the tendancy of each breed
of dog to bite- but for my buck, I'd rather get a superficial flesh
wound from a spaniel than be killed by a pit bull.
Again, I do not believe that people should be prevented from owning
pit bulls- I just don't want them growling at me on my property.
I would say that the responsible pit bull owners far out-number the irresponsible
owners. But that doesn't mean the irresponsible/psycho owners don't exist and that
they don't produce some very dangerous dogs. (Hell, there are creeps out there who
fight their dogs.) As I say, some people shouldn't be allowed to own a goldfish.
But those are the owners, not the breed.
No one should let their dog of any breed run around loose. That is irresponsible and
dangerous to the dog and everyone else. Dogs that run loose tend to have real short
life spans. I can't understand how anyone who claims to care for a dog can allow it.
Well, if the dog is viscous, it's not going to be moving very fast. :-)
Seriously, being confronted by any dog that is acting aggressively is scary. It
shouldn't happen and it is a sign of an irresponsible owner to let a dog run loose.
The fact that are no inherently dangerous breeds doesn't mean there aren't any
Don't confuse dog-related deaths with dog bite incidents. Problems with
identification aside, dogs like Rotts and pit bulls are strong, fast animals and
when they do bite they tend to do a lot of damage. I'm not surprised they account
for a disproportionate number of deaths. But apparently, as best we can judge from
the dog bite reports, the _number_ of biting incidents pretty much tracks the
popularity of the breed.
You should not have to tolerate _any_ dog growling on your property. Any dog that
does is a candidate for removal -- either by animal control in a reasonably
well-policed county or by more direct means if you don't have that option.
You are probably correct, but you can't prove it by my real life experience.
I've known of a half dozen pit bulls that are downright vicious. So are
their owners. I just don't happen to know of any good dogs and good owners
no matter how many exist.
The Pit Bull has become a status symbol for punks, gander members and other
unsavory character. Cruise through a major city in the "lesser"
neighborhoods and you will see them. The hoodlum wannabe walking his pet
pit bull. He may not be able to flaunt a gun, so he does the next best
thing for status.
IIRC correctly, the dog in Our Gang Comedy was a pit bull. Dobermans are
also docile when bred properly, nasty when not. Probably other breeds too.
That's the key. Owner's the influence.
We've a large but well-behaved German shepherd, and some of my daughter's
college friends from Chicago wouldn't come close even when he was showing
all the "friendly" signs. Reason was "where we come from the only people
who have dogs like that are people who want vicious dogs."
Personally, I believe the larger the dog, the better he must behave.
This entire thread boarders on a religious war so I was going to stay out of
the thick of it, but at one point while reading all of the overstatements on
both sides of the issue the thought did occur to me that it was not that
long ago that German Shepherds and Dobermans were spoken of exactly the way
the Pit Bull is today. Especially the Doberman - it was common folk lore
and fire talk to rag on how they turned on their owners with no warning or
provocation. Stay tuned - someone is yet bound to introduce the Rottweiller
into this thread...
as the owner of a number of dobies over the past 20+
years, friend of many others, and having known a
number of rottweilers, etc, i know there are all kinds
of factors which determine a dog's personality, how
it will *tend* to react in various stressful situations,
and how it *might* react under extreme situations...
dogs are people too: they have definite individual
personalities, quirks, habits, and tendencies; our
training, discipline and interaction can all obviously
influence how their personalities are expressed...
of course, *any* breed can be made more viscious
if that character trait is bred for (purposefully, or
as a result of coexisting with some other trait being
bred for), or trained for... obviously, the bigger/stronger/
more agressive breeds are going to make that much
more of a threat when they 'go bad'...
i'd be willing to bet dollars to donut holes that
there are *really* far more dog bites from chihuahua's
than any other breed; its just that while 90% of the
doberman/etc bites may get reported in some fashion,
i bet 90% of the chihuahua 'bites' don't get reported
because A. it's embarassing B. what's to report ?
ow, i got four little dents on my ankle...
some of the most consistently agressive, badly
behaved, and snappy dogs i have met, are the
yipyap breeds; the thing is, because they can be
swept aside with your foot, their 'agression' is
not as threatening as a pit/dobie/etc, and thus
is often not recognized as the nasty behavior it is...
some very few dogs are just born mean, a
bunch more are made mean by willful or casual
mistreatment, and *any* dog -regardless of training-
can 'go postal' if it is in circumstances where
it feels threatened and can't escape...
same goes for people...
dogs is people too...
According to dog breeders I've spoken to, the Doberman was once bred for
agressiveness. I certainly remember them that way from my (long ago)
childhood. But in the last few decades, the agressiveness has been
deliberately bred out of them. The few I've met recently have certainly
been a lot friendlier than the ones long ago.
The same may apply to the German Sheperd - I don't know about them.
But I do have a question - what is a pit bull? What were they bred
from? I'm familiar with bull terriers, but the dogs I've seen called
pit bulls look more like a boxer/Rottweiler mix. They weren't around
in my earlier years.
You "conservatives" are really reaching since even President Bush has
admitted that there were no stockpiles. If he can admit that, why can't
I suppose you're one of those who also think Saddam was responsible for
I've given up arguing the facts. The signature will stay till after the
Oh yes, thanks for the pit bull reference. As I responded to Rick, I'm
familiar with most of those breeds. But the "game bred" dogs shown on
the site are close to what's called a pit bull around here. Add a
little height and weight and shorten the muzzle and that's it.
Pit bulls (AKA American Bull Terriers) were bred from medium size terriers with a
large admixture of bulldogs of various sorts, plus anything else that looked like
it would be an advantage for dog fighting -- or so the commonly accepted story
goes. According to that version, they were gradually developed after bull baiting
became impractical/outlawed in urban areas in the United States and was replaced
by the 'sport' of dog fighting.
Pit bulls were bred for strength, speed and 'gameness' -- the unwillingness to
quit -- as well as to be handleable since the owners had to separate them
repeatedly in the fighting pit. They were specifically not bred for aggression or
'viciousness', although aggression was trained into the fighting dogs later. As a
breed their outstanding mental traits seem to be a willingness to do anything to
please their owners and the unwillingness to quit.
Actually pit bulls have been around for at least 150 years, as best we can judge.
They show up commonly in art from around the turn of the 20th century and were
widely used as mascots and symbols of American fighting forces about the time of
World War II and were also common in early movies. "Petey", the Little Rascals
dog, was a pit bull.
All that said, there is a lot of confusion about 'what is a pit bull'. At one
extreme you have people who call any medium or large, short-muzzled dog that
bites a 'pit bull'. (I have seen the term applied to a Bedlington Terrier in a
TV news story!) There are also people who lump a number of distinct breeds, such
as ABTs (true 'pit bulls'), English Bull Terriers, English Staffordshire
Terriers, and several others as 'pit bulls'. At the other you have the people who
apply the term only to ABTs used for fighting.
General use is to apply the term 'pit bull' only to American Bull Terriers, which
are recognized as a breed by some kennel clubs (but not the AKC). You can go on
their web sites and find breed descriptions.
Those are good questions, btw. They held define what it is we're talking about
Thanks Rick. But I'm familiar with those breeds. And you're right,
they're often called pit bulls.
But the pit bull photos I see in Spokane show a larger dog. They don't
have the sloped nose of the bull terrier and they're bigger than the
Staffordshires. Oh well, probably just another case of mistaken naming.
I think the ones I'm talking about are crossbreeds.
I suspect also a considerable lack of nerve endings close to the surface.
My former Pit Bull/Boxer seemed impervious to pain. She walked into the
kitchen one night with one of the cats hanging from her lower lip by its
fangs. All 8 pounds of cat just swaying back and forth and that 'can
somebody get this cat offa me' look. She was one of the gentlest dogs I've
ever owned, but she was never off the leash off our property and, though
she was well trained, if we saw other animals on a walk I literaly tied the
leash to my arm. She did not suffer other creatures off the property.
ROF,LVH. Poor long-suffering dog. But that _is_ funny, especially in light
of the prior content of the thread, which would attempt to convince us any
dog that had ever even _seen_ a pit bull would eat the cat and look for
Reply to jclarke at ae tee tee global dot net
I think a Boxer/Rottweiler mix would produce a dog roughly 3 times larger
than a Pitt Bull. I put them on the large end of the small sized dog group
or small end of the medium sized dog group. I have a small female Chocolate
Lab that is larger than the typical Pitt Bull.
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