Saturday, July 14, 2007

Bully Breeds

I still get an email of "Today's Headlines!" from the newspaper in Colorado. Some of today's news includes another pit bull mauling someone story. At the beginning of the story, they say neighbors help save a grandma and 3 babies from a pit bull. They don't mention (until about halfway down) that the babies weren't the ones being attacked, and that's the point in the story that they decide to tell you that the babies were in the house (with their babysitter) when the great-grandma, who doesn't live at the house, walked in with her homeless grand-daughter (the babies' aunt I guess). And the dog attacked them. The cops showed up and killed the dog.

In the last paragraph, one of the neighbors says "I think the dog was protecting the babies." but then goes on to negate that by saying he doesn't understand how people could own vicious dogs (keeping in mind that so far, there's no proof the dog was ever vicious really, what he means is ' could people own vicious dog breeds?').

My issues with this:
1. replace "Grandma and Aunt" with "Burglar and Child Molester". Do you think the dog would be given all this post-humus shit? No, it probably would have gotten a freaking medal.
2. Pit Bulls are generally bred to be suspicious of strangers and protective of their family.
3. In the early 1900's, Pit Bulls were sometimes used as babysitters for the children of the rich and famous. Mostly because they mauled people that got close to the kids (unless the pit knew the in that person had to be around the pit bull a couple times a week). Hey, it made sure your kid was safe from kidnappers and therefore the inevitable ransom. Of course, breeding a dog to have a high tolerance of pain is going to make it a good companion for kids and a good fighter.

Then there was this follow up article. Wait, the Great-Grandma and Aunt were actually the Grandma and Cousin to the BABYSITTER?
Issues (aside from apparently there are people not even related to the babies entering the house):
1. The Aunt/Cousin lady says she stabbed the dog multiple times with a knife, but it still attacked her grandma...Bullys (way back in the day) were bred to withstand vast amounts of pain, and to stick to whatever they were doing even if it meant they were going to die. This is why stabbing, shooting, and pepper spraying these dogs usually doesn't stop them (which, is admittedly, probably bad...and this is part of how they get their bad rap). At the same time, German Shepards, Malinois, and Mastiffs exhibit this same trait of being able to withstand pain to get the job done. This, of course, isn't accounting for the little dogs--which usually don't do as much damage to people, but man, some of them are very aggressive and vicious.
2. The cops show up and shoot the dog once. It still was acting aggressively and so they shot it again, killing it. I'm sorry...but I think if I was shot by the cops I'd probably be acting pretty aggressively too.
3. The rule is that you have to keep your dog penned when it's at home? Wow...what a great way to make sure your dog is more willing to bite ANYONE (including the children in the house). "Yes yes, I've got this brilliant idea--I don't want my dog to bite anyone, so I shall keep it away from people unless absolutely necessary. And then I'll act all surprised when it's suspicious of all people and finally snaps and bites someone!"
4. I absolutely agree with the spaying and neutering. So, in the words of Bob Barker, "please remember to spay and neuter your pets!"


Jon said...

Well, this is the same police department who employed an officer who shot an ivalid to death in his bed, because he had a Pepsi can in his hand and the cop thought it was a gun.

I have my suspicions of a police training program which doesn't teach you how to distinguish a pop can from a gun. So, animal behavior training is probably no better, at the Academy.

Ross said...

Man, that's a sad story all around, I wish people would be more logical about these things, too many dumb decisions are made in the heat of the moment.

Anonymous said...

stupid humans grrrrrr.