DogsBite.org - On the flip side of the ASPCA's Adopt-A-Bull contest, which at best appears reckless, is an organization that does not shy away from pit bulls and safety issues. Pit Bull Rescue Central -- one of the leading pit bull educational websites on the Internet -- is startlingly clear when it talks about the realities of pit bull ownership.
- It is a fact that our APBTs, ASTs and pit mixes come with a built-in fighting heritage. It doesn’t matter where we get them from, whether it be the pound, a stray we pick up, or a puppy we buy from a breeder. The majority of pit bulls will, at some point in their lives, exhibit some degree of dog-on-dog aggression ... We cannot predict when or where it will happen and we can’t love, train or socialize it out of the dog. Pit bulls may not start a fight, but they will finish it.
- Do not bring an adult Pit Bull to an off-leash dog park or any other area where it may come into contact with other dogs running loose.
- Early socialization MAY help, but is not a guarantee that your Pit Bull won't become dog-aggressive at some point. ALWAYS be prepared for it!
- Take note that a fight can strike suddenly and for no apparent reason. Warning signs can be very subtle with Pit Bulls and even completely absent in certain cases.
- Remember that these dogs were "bred" to fight Submission signals that would indicate the end of the hostilities can be ignored in the heat of a fight by Pit Bull type dogs.
- Pit bulls are terriers and were bred to recognize other dogs as "prey." Simply put, in a fight, the other dog becomes a "rabbit." Terriers grab a hold of their prey and shake.
- Remember that a fight may not always be preceded by growling, barking or posturing. One second everything is fine and the next the dogs are going at it. Excitement and external stimulus, such as a squirrel or cat running up a tree, can trigger a fight.
- A wagging tail doesn't mean a dog won't fight. In fact, a wagging tail is often a signal of excitement and the faster the tail goes the more excited the dog is. As explained above, intense excitement can trigger a fight.
- A break stick is a device made to be inserted in the mouth of a Pit Bull (behind the molars) to gently pry its jaws open and release its grip on another animal or object.
- Keep in mind that most dogs fight differently than pit bull dogs. A pit bull's inherent reaction in the heat of a fight is the one of a Terrier with a prey. The pit bull will work to get a solid grip and then hold and shake.
- Turn the stick as if you're twisting the throttle of a motorcycle. This action will open the dog's jaws enough to pull the dog back by the collar. If both dogs have a hold, you will then have to break the second dog from the first. Just remember... Straddle, Grab, Break!
06/02/08: ASPCA Pushing Pit Bull Adoption: Adopt-A-Bull Contest