The truth about pit bulls

On Dec. 3, the Chesterfield City Council will vote on allowing breed-specific dogs, pitbulls, in dog parks such as Eberwein Dog Park. Currently, pitbulls are classified in the

On Dec. 3, the Chesterfield City Council will vote on allowing breed-specific dogs, pitbulls, in dog parks such as Eberwein Dog Park. Currently, pitbulls are classified in the "Dangerous Animal Ordinance."

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The American Pit Bull Terrier, or commonly known as the pit bull, receives such a bad rep.  I don’t think anyone’s safety is jeopardized when they are around a pit bull.  My family and I were given a dog as a Christmas present. It was a pit bull.  As soon as my neighbors found out it was a pit bull, they threatened us with a call from the police if he ever got loose.  It didn’t make sense to me seeing as my dog was more afraid of his own reflection than he was of humans.  He wouldn’t hurt a fly.  I believe that pit bulls are treated unfairly due to misinformation and wrongful stereotypes.

Many people believe pit bulls are inherently dangerous. It is true that they were bread for dog fighting purposes, however, they do not inherit these fighting characteristics. It is a myth and equivalent to saying a human inherits the characteristics of a serial killer; it just does not happen.  Just as any other dog, the pit bull will act how the owner trains it to act.  If the owner trains it to act like a dog fighter, then it will be a dog fighter.  But if the owner trains it for responsible guardianship, you will end up with a loving, family dog.

It is also believed that pit bulls result in the most human-related fatalities than any other breed.  What many people don’t know is the insane population of pit bulls.  Between rottweilers with a population of 900,000 and 39 fatal attacks, german shepherds with population of 240,000 and eight fatal attacks, and chows with a population of 780,000 and 17 fatal attacks, the pit bulls population is more than five times that of those dogs.  With a population of 5,256,000 and 66 fatal attacks, the probability of being attacked by a pit bull is lower than many other breeds.

Researchers have proved that the behavior of a dog depends on many things, but breed is not one of them.  They believe the behavior of a dog depends on whether or not the dog is neutered or not, gender and mistreatment and inadequate supervision. About 97% of fatal dog attacks, the dogs were not spade/neutered.  Also, an unneutered dog is 2.6% more likely to bite than an unneutered dog.  Male dogs are also more likely to bite than female dogs.  Pit bulls are the most common breed of dog to suffer from animal abuse.  The abuse from a human automatically changes the behavior of the dog causing it to act out.

My pit bull has gotten loose quite a few times, and my neighbors do call the police every single time.  And it is safe to say that my dog has been to jail, but the police officers always tell us how good of a dog he is.  He has never bit anyone with the intention of doing so. He likes people-food and lacrosse balls, just like any other dog.

On Dec. 3, the Chesterfield City Council will vote on allowing breed-specific dogs, pitbulls, in dog parks such as Eberwein Dog Park. Currently, pitbulls are classified in the “Dangerous Animal Ordinance.” It requires the animal to be registered in the city and be leashed and muzzled in public. Chesterfield City Manager Michael Herring and Chesterfield Police Department deemed the suggested change as safe and that the breed is as safe as any other.

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