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Friday, July 18, 2014

Stereotypes bad for dogs and other living things

(Photo by Ildar Sagdejev)
Some people cringe at the very thought of being near a pit bull.

However, the exact definition of “pit bull” is often up for grabs.  Although this name technically refers to the Pit Bull Terrier (a cross between Old English Terriers and Old English Bulldogs), it has become a catch-all term for breeds with a variety of genetic backgrounds.

So how did pit bulls come to strike terror into the hearts of those who otherwise love dogs? That can be blamed far more upon human influences than upon the breed itself.

Although some pit bulls have been “selectively bred for their fighting prowess,” many have simply been trained by people to engage in such “bloodsports” as “bull baiting, bear baiting and cock fighting.”  Wikipedia
explains that pit bulls have also been “used for illegal dog fighting.”

What people don’t usually know is that pit bulls can also make wonderful companions and/or therapy dogs. The Associated Press recently reported on a pit bull that saved a deaf boy’s life by alerting him to a house fire. 

When this pit bull smelled smoke, he began frantically licking the sleeping boy’s face.  The boy awoke and got out in time, taking the dog with him.  Firefighters were afterwards able to save his cat.

Although the house suffered approximately $175,000 worth of damages, its occupants were all fine – thanks
to the efforts of a concerned and loving pit bull.

Copyright July 18, 2014 by Linda Van Slyke   All Rights Reserved

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