In a recent post, a commenter left a message about a "bait dog" trend. Back in October, we addressed a separate "bait dog" issue. The most recent comment identifies a growing trend among the pit bull rescue community. A convenient way to adopt out a dog formerly used for fighting is to call the animal a "bait dog." This tricks the potential adopter into believing the dog was a victim, not an aggressor.
Comment: I'd like to alert dogsbite readers to another growing trend in the "pit bull rescue" community...the placing of former fighting dogs as pets by claiming they were "bait dogs". There is a growing trend of "rescue angels" explaining away dog-aggression and obvious scarring and injuries, by claiming the dog was used as a bait dog. Potential adopters are led to believe that the dog the shelter workers are trying to "sell" them was "forced" to fight, and was a victim, not an aggressor.
The ridiculousness of these claims is not immediately obvious to potential adopters; how would shelter workers know the dog was a bait dog and not simply the loser in an organized dog fight? The answer is, they don't. It is unlikely that a real bait dog would have survived...claiming every scarred up pit bull was a victim and not a willing opponent makes it easier to adopt out dangerous pit bulls...by preying upon the tender hearts of animal lovers who don't understand the true nature of the fighting breeds.
Please share this warning with others in the dog-loving community...encouraging the placement of highly dog aggressive pit bulls in our communities puts all of our companion animals in danger.
10/14/08: Comment: Bait Dog Myth Perpetuated by Pit Bull Advocates
08/31/08: Comment: Rehabilitation is Too Risky