If you’re looking to expand your family to include a new dog, your first question is likely to be “Which breed is best?”
One answer to that question may surprise you: pit bulls make great family pets. Like all dogs, pit bull terriers are individuals who are just as likely to be safe and gentle as any other dog. No breed or type of domesticated dog is inherently dangerous or aggressive. (As you may have read previously, “pit bull” isn’t even a breed at all. It’s a term that has evolved to describe a certain set of characteristics like muscular bodies and broad heads.)
The American Temperament Test Society provides a uniform program of temperament testing for dogs. In their temperament tests, pit bull-type dogs passed at a higher rate than many other popular breeds. Another peer-reviewed study found that nearly 85 percent of dog bite fatalities were from unneutered dogs. The most common secondary factors were:
- lack of socialization and positive interactions with people and animals
- abuse or neglect
- tethering for long periods of time.
Breed had nothing to do with it – a fact recognized by the State of Nevada, which prohibits breed discrimination with a provision that states, “A dog may not be found dangerous or vicious based solely on the breed of the dog.”
The bottom line is that dogs, like people, are individuals. Treating them that way, and providing them with the appropriate care, training, and supervision is the best way to ensure a happy and safe environment your dog and your family.
This is the latest in a series of blog posts on pit bull education. Our special thanks to Maddie’s Fund #ThanksToMaddie