Is it nature or nurture? That’s the question for pit bulls these days. Are they genetically inclined to be vicious, or has a bad human warped a few of the breed, giving them all a bad reputation?The author went on to talk about pit bulls rescued from dog fighters (in particular, Michael Vick) - some of them have been deemed adoptable.
Would you adopt one of these dogs? How would you feel about your neighbor adopting one of the dogs?I don't have any easy answers. I've never really interacted much with a pit bull; I generally avoid them probably due to their reputation. I would be very wary of a neighbor having a pit bull because I live in an apartment. But if I lived in a house? And my neighbor had one? I would be okay with that, I think, if my neighbor was a responsible dog owner. I doubt I'd ever get one myself, but that's because the dog part of my heart belongs to beagles. :-)
I perused the comments on the post and read a few aloud to Paul. Some really lined up with how I feel about pit bulls. I'll try to explain it here.
I do think that irresponsible pet owners are a lot of the cause of the bad rap that the breed gets. It seems that pit bulls can be really nice family dogs. However, I don't think they should be taken lightly.
My analogy was this...
It's like a semi-truck driver. Semis are really big vehicles. They ride alongside other much smaller vehicles and even pedestrians on the side of the street. When their drivers are being responsible and following the traffic laws, all the vehicles and pedestrians can coexist in peace. However, you take the irresponsible semi driver. The one who's been on the road for 15 hours straight. Or the one who's been drinking, or just not paying attention. He (or she) makes a mistake, and the semi hits someone/something. When a semi crashes, the accident is really bad. There could be multiple vehicles involved and fatalities. See, it's not the semi itself that's bad - it's that when it DOES crash, it can be much more serious than when a smaller car crashes. You don't always walk away from semi crashes - you might need some plasma cutting just to make sense of the twisted metal. A car can crash, too, and cause fatalities. Sometimes a car can hit a semi and cause further damage. But you have to realize that semis are a more serious vehicle on the road. Therefore, their drivers need to shoulder the extra responsibility and realize the seriousness if they lose control of their vehicle. The drivers need to be even more careful and alert when on the road.
To carry the analogy further, I shudder when I pass semis on the highway. Almost two years ago a semi was the cause of a really tragic accident that took the lives of five people from my alma mater. This doesn't mean all semis are bad, or that all drivers are irresponsible. I certainly don't think semis should be banned from the road. I just hope that we continue to realize that they are serious vehicles, and train their drivers to realize that as well.
In the same way, a pit bull is like a semi. When a pit bull attacks, it's much more dangerous than, say, a Yorkie. This isn't to say that every pit bull WILL attack. I just think the owners need to realize that their dogs can cause more serious damage, so they try even harder to be responsible and raise their dogs in a good, loving situation.
I hope that makes sense. It's certainly not an easy situation; judging from the 89 comments to date on that post, I can see that people feel passionately about this subject!