More on pit bulls...

So yes, my new book has a pit bull in it. The research has come pretty naturally - I'm a pro with petfinder - but I keep finding dogs I want. Like this one.
She knows how to sit, shake, high five, and bark "I Love You!" It's not her fault she's a stray - her owner is in jail and she's got no home. I mean, I'm only human...
A friend of mine who works in a shelter kept posting about pit bulls on Facebook and I was like, yeah, yeah... aren't they kind of scary? Why are you so obsessed with pit bulls.
Then she posted a link to the American Temperament Testing Society's page.
They run thousands of dogs through a challenging temperament test every year. If a dog fails the test, it's because they showed unprovoked aggression, panic without recovery, or strong avoidance. It's a much more difficult test to pass than the Canine Good Citizenship test that so many dogs take to prove that they're reliable. Pit bulls passed at about 86% - so for every hundred dog about 14 didn't pass, and they tested around 700. Golden Retrievers passed at a rate of 84%.

And then *I* became obsessed with pit bulls. Why have they been so maligned? Why do people fear them? Why do we read about so many pit bull attacks. Why not Golden Retriever attacks? Or Schnauzer's that only passed at 66%.

It's been a fun journey. I'm almost done with this book. But it's really only used such a small part of all that I've learned. Fortunately, I have a blog. :)


Mirka Breen said...

That pit-bull in the photo looks positively wasted. Reminds me of a few people I’ve known, but no pit-bulls.
I enjoyed your post.

October 10, 2011 at 8:23 AM
Mystery Robin said...

Yeah - there were normal pictures of her on petfinder, but I just loved the crashed out in front of the tv pose. ;) Looks like about the energy level we need in a dog!

October 10, 2011 at 8:49 AM
inluvwithwords said...

Wow, that is one relaxed dog. I don't want to have to fight with my pets for space on the couch. But it does make for an amusing picture =)

October 10, 2011 at 10:26 AM
Mystery Robin said...

LOL! Who's fighting? I'd just give her the couch - so long as she lets go of that remote...

October 10, 2011 at 10:58 AM
Jennie Bailey said...

I love telling people we have a pit bull just to see the look on their face. We're not what people expect - and neither are most of the real owners out there who have chosen this breed for our family. We have a saying among the families - once you go pit, you don't quit. I have never owned another breed that seems to live as much for people as this one. Velcro dogs! They do get such a bad rap. We had a really severe attack here and the child had to have reconstructive surgeries. It was a purebred lab who had terrorized the neighborhood for quite some time. The dog lived outside was intact and had a breeding female. Not socialized, not trained, simply used for breeding. The news trucks showed up to cover the pit bull story - and left when they found out it was a lab. I asked one of the reporters when she was getting in her van "Aren't you going to cover it?" She said, "No. People only want to hear about pit bull type dogs." It didn't even make the local papers. Very eye opening.

We live in a very exclusive neighborhood and most of my neighbors also own them (pitties) - all rescues, all indoor dogs that are speutered, well socialized, well trained and great with kids. But ours aren't the dogs who make the news. Unfortunately. I wouldn't own any other breed and neither would my family. 90 years of owning the breed without ever having a single issue. Ever.

I can see why you love that girl - 8 years is the perfect age and all the work has been done for you! She's uber adorable.

and it's GREAT to have you back!!

October 10, 2011 at 7:41 PM
Mystery Robin said...

Thank you! It's good to be back! And that story about the lab is so telling. Thank you for sharing it. People are so cynical of so many things, but you mention pit bulls and yet the news reports have clearly done their damage.
And yes - "all the work has been done" is exactly what I'm looking for. Not that I'm not ready to train and work with a dog - but after potty training three people I'm happy to get a dog that's well past that stage. ;)

October 10, 2011 at 10:29 PM

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