Saturday, December 8, 2007
In what may be the most disturbing article in recent times regarding pit bull ownership, there are lessons to learn and trends to wise up to. In 2005, the Village Voice published an article about Tyler Eison, a man who intentionally trains his pit bulls to be vicious as a means of personal protection.
At DogsBite.org, we've read the article several times. We are still staring in disbelief and scratching our heads. Is the relationship between man and dog evolving into a tool of aggressive defense? It appears that it is, and there are no laws to penalize these owners, nor can victims attain civil recourse if calamity occurs.
Our question to you: Should it be legal to train your dog to violently attack a person? Unlike a gun that must be fired by a human hand, a vicious dog has a mind of its own.
"These are not normal dogs," says Tyler Eison, gazing reverently at a litter of seven-week-old pit bull puppies. "I like having very vicious, angry dogs. I'm going to teach them not to like other dogs. I'm going to agitate them, make them aggressive. That way when it's about business, they are going to be serious."He goes on to talk about his dogs as "his pistols" and cites an incident that erupted where he summoned his dogs to help:
In the late '80s, Eison's car was rear-ended. An argument erupted as two men leapt out of the other car. One of them said he was going to get something out of his trunk. Eison guessed this something was a gun, so he wasted no time in loosing Conan on him. "I wasn't going to let him kill me, so my dog took care of him," he remembers. "I sicced my dog on that guy, man, and beat the other one up myself. I had no choice."Another troubling trend in this story is Tyler's attitude about neutering. It's not just Tyler's attitude either; it spans nationwide. There is a culture of male dog owners that refuse to neuter their male dogs because it takes away the dog's "manhood. Actually, the reverse is true: neutering the male dog takes away the owner's manhood. The Brooklyn Animal Care worker adds:
When the owners come to retrieve their animals [at the shelter] they usually don't mention that they're breeders until she brings up the city policy of mandatory fixing of all dogs in city shelters before they're released. The potential financial loss is not the only reason some owners object. "The men always say, 'You're taking my manhood away.' We get that every week. They say that they can't walk the dog in their neighborhood anymore because people will see that his testicles are gone. They are adamant about it," Clemmons says.Tyler agrees that it would be "embarrassing to be seen with a neutered dog." Then again, because he is a backyard breeder (and sells pups for $2,000) he has a greater reason for abstaining. He takes a crack at animal shelter beliefs:
"Their opinion is that we shouldn't breed, but at the same time they shouldn't be so quick to spay dogs, to take away what God gave them." Dogs are like cars or clothes, he says; people want name brands, not the kind of generic dog you can get at a shelter. With his dogs, people will know they're getting a high-caliber product. He says his bloodline is the Mercedes-Benz of dog breeds.He solidifies the fine qualities of his dogs at the end of the article. He does so at the stake of the writer that tells his story:
"Watch him now, watch him now," says Eison to Rock in a gruff, deliberate voice, periodically jerking the leash. He lets him charge a foot or two toward the doll before yanking him back. It only takes a couple of passes of the toy before Rock is able to grab it. But it is not the toy he's after. He immediately drops it and stares with terrifying intensity at the person who had been holding it. "Rock's bloodline is one of the best. He doesn't want to stop, he'll fight to the death," says Eison. "You'll never be able to come in this backyard again."
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| 12/11/2007 4:40 PM |
Take a really good look at this moron. This is one dispicable human being right here. Intersesting that none of the so called *responsible* pit bull owners have not commented on this story. Could it be that this average Joe, this non-criminal, business type citizen with gold tooth is actually representative of the *responsible* pit bull owners out there?
Even in the comments section on the village voice link, there is only one person coming to the defense of pit bulls and blaming human idiots. I find this odd, considering that on any given news story of an attack, there will be 100-400 comments with at least half of them being, "punish the deed!" and "ban stupid owners" type crap.
Here ya pit people, have at it!
| 12/11/2007 11:33 PM |
What the heck is "responsible" anyway? I will throw up if I hear this term again. In the major city that I live in only 20% of dog owners have a pet license!!!!!! So I guess there are a lot of "irresponsible" dog owners out there. The difference being, my French bulldog won't rip off my neighbors face or kill his dog if he bolts out of the house unexpectedly. Whereas a pit bull might!
Give me a break about this responsibility nonsense. How often do you see unleashed dogs (all the time where I live). How often do you see and step in dog poop (pretty much all the time at dog parks).
The issue is not about responsibility -- it can't be given how many other dog owners are also irresponsible. It's about what the breed is capable of when he does bolt out the front door unexpectedly.
| 12/18/2007 4:04 PM |
Trouble with people like you Karen is you only see black and white. As a responsible pit bull owner I'd like to say that I too am horrified by this article. It disgusts me that someone disrespects life, whether that be the life of a human or dog, pit bull or not, enough to promote and breed aggressiveness. Unlike you it doesn't surprise me though. I work with shelter dogs.
According to animalabuse.com pit bulls are by far the most abused, maligned and misrepresented breed of dog in north america.
According to Karen Delise who wrote a very interesting book "Fatal Dog Attacks", one the blogger might want to read, dispells the reasons for these attacks and trust me it isn't the breed. Things that attribute to fatal dog attacks to name a few are whether or not the dog is intact, whether or not the dog is socialized, what the purpose of having the dog is, if it was aquired for fighting or guarding purposes or if it is the family pet. The number of dogs present/pack mentality. Are children supervised around a dog since they can not read the body language of the dog as well as an adult. Last owner responsibilty.
Now not all fatal dog attacks can be blamed on irresponsible owners, but if you read these articles you must see that most of them could have been prevented with some level of care and responsibility from the owner.
Breed statistics wont tell you if an attack happened because of something a human did before hand to provoke one. If it occured because the dog was highly aggressive, if the whole event was unforseeable or due to owner negligence.
Now Dee asked what responsible was, well i can tell you what irresponsible is, the blogger of this website for one. You want to know why owners of pit bulls get so upset it's because the media and people like this blogger only ever want to talk about attacks from pit bulls or a hand full of other breeds. You want to know why you never hear reports of a Lab ripping the face off a child, because no one wants to hear it so the media doesnt ever mention that. Fear is ignorance and people fear what they don't understand, so the media has made a demon out of certain breeds and angels out of others. This is the same thing that was done to the german shepperds and dobermans years ago but throw in the power of the internet and you have a huge mess and hysteria! You can turn around and say they're super killing machines but you won't convince me of that. The truth is I know this breed and more importantly I know dogs and dog behaviour. As a responsible owner I have take the time to educate myself and read between the lines.
Question how many pit bulls do you know? I've known hundreds worked with and shared my home with pits that have been severely abused. Being a responsible owner I socialized them properly with dogs and people. Being a responsible owner I trained them, I educated people in my neighbourhood and my dogs in my hands or the hands of anyone I've ever introduced them to have always been exceptional. That is what a responsible owner does. It's not just about licensing a dog, and picking up after it although yes it includes that. It's about keeping the animal and those it comes in contact with safe.
Oh and by the way I still have all my limbs who would have guessed!
| 12/22/2007 12:05 AM |
Now that above comment just said it all. I couldn't have sid it better myself. To this idiot in the article...he is the reason certain breeds have a bad reputation. It's a shame that people want to train pits to attack people viciously for no reason. I am the proud owner of a pit bull and he is the most loveable dog I have ever had. My little ankle biter terrier was more aggressive and prone to attacking people more than my pit. Needless to say the ankle biter is now gone to another home where they can deal with his aggressiveness...LOL
| 7/23/2008 8:18 PM |
You folks defending the breed - are you being obtuse on purpose? Your little cuddley Punkins will be a sweetie until one day she's not and mauls or kills a visiting 4 year old. Out of the blue! She was never aggressive before!
Read the 2007 death-by-dog stats... PBs maul and kill more than any other breed of dog. Often it was the dog's first time being aggressive and the owners would have joined your chorus of: "My CuddleBuns is so sweeet! She would never hurt anyone." Yeah. Right. Read some of the actual stories about sweet Pits that, for no reason, turn into killing machines.
Blame the owners not the dogs? How lame. I don't care if the poor misunderstood PB was mistreated as a puppy. Think other breeds aren't mishandled? Yet other breeds do not maim and kill as often as PBs. I mean, are you Pit owners really that much more irresponsible and stupid than folks who own other breeds? Don't PB owners SEE how dangerous their dogs are? Obviously you don't! Your post, (and the dozens like it on other sites) makes it clear that PB owners DON'T see how dangerous their dogs are... which makes your well trained, well treated Pits really, REALLY dangerous. It's like leaving a loaded pistol laying around and telling everyone (even yourself) that it's harmlessly not loaded. What do you think the chances are that there's gonna be an "accident" with that pistol? And whose fault would it be? That pistol never shot anyone before!
The criminals who own PBs are one thing. They want vicious, powerful killer dogs? I say we should force them to downgrade their "dogs of mass destruction" to less powerful canine weapons. But they are not the main problem. The average person who thinks their Pit is harmless... THEY are the main problem. Folks like the Pit defenders here make the mistake of thinking their dog is safe while the reality is that keeping a PB as a pet is like keeping a cougar as a house cat. It purrs, can be taught to use a litter box, and is sweet until one day it isn't... and then somebody pays an unimaginably horrific price.
So, do we, as a society, protect ourselves before the maulings and deaths by banning an ultra dangerous breed or do we prosecute each individual dangerous dog after each disfigurement or death?
I know you think you're a nice, responsible PB owner... but by the time your PB is declared dangerous it's too late for the girl scout maimed on your front lawn. Think it won't happen? Look at the stats. Read the stories. Most of the owners are not "bad" people. They are regular people like you. And look what happened.
| 11/16/2009 1:05 PM |
I hate people like the jerk in this article & there should be a law against training puppies this way but until there is, there will be dangerous dogs out there. I don't know why the authorities aren't allowed to take this guys dogs away & prevent him from owning a dog again. His training methods could be considered abuse & that should give them the right to remove the dogs while they are young.
There should be manditory altering of any dangerous breed before the pups can be bought or adopted. Shelters have it for all adopted pets. I think if they can't breed them for money or use as "bait dogs" anymore then the supply & demand would be lowered eventually.
I just spent hours reading the stories of attacks & deaths due to pit bulls. While I believe the problem is in the bloodline of the breed, I also believe that some of them where the fault of the adults in charge of the babies & children victimized. You don't own a pit bull if you have kids! You don't leave a baby alone with a doberman! So now you have a dangerous breed + an idiot owner = a dead baby! Read the stories!
Now, anyone that thinks it isn't the breed needs to read 2 particular stories in this site. "Pit Bull puppy chews child's foot off"! "Pit Bull pup chews toes of baby's foot."! Like the judge said in one, "Puppies chew shoes & furniture. Not toes & feet!" At very young ages they already are showing the desire to consume human flesh!!! That is not in the 'training'. That is in the breeding bloodline! Puppies born to aggressive adults will have a natural instict to be aggressive too! Think about that!
I think fighting dogs is a sin b/c no animal should have to go through that hell but that does not excuse them when they attack pets or humans!
I found out the hard way last week that there is a pit bull 2 blocks away, when it got out of it's fence & ran across 2 backyards to get to us while we were walking our lab. I will never get the sound of it's snapping teeth & jaws out of my mind! I was able to keep it from getting my dog by kicking it & then the owner came for it. He was very nasty & though we should not have been out walking our dog. We don't go on his street b/c of the dog that bangs into the wooden fence & barks. We were on our own street. This is the same dog that went after our dog this summer while my husband took our dog alone but was on that street. Our dog got out of her collar & ran with the pit bull right behind her. Someone got it then too. Fix the fence!
Guess what the authorities told me?? Next time call us so we can see it out of the fence and fine the owner! FINE THE OWNER????? Will that fix any wounds on our dog or us?? Will that fix the fence to keep the dog inside?? Am I supposed to stop to make a call while my dog or myself is being chewed up????? Where is the help for the citizen??? It's all in favor of the dog owners.
We bought pepper spray but doubt if it will work. I haven't walked my small lab since that day!
And this aggressive pit bull appears to have had puppies fairly recently. They just keep passing on the traits in the bloodline...
All states should have the same laws about unprovoked attacks. If a dog kills or maims someone or a pet they should be evaluated for disease & then put down. There are no dog prisons & this isn't a ball game with 3 strikes & you're out. Sorry...