Who’s a Good Boy? Pitbulls, Apparently

Sophomore John Fuhrman’s pit bull, Gus, wearing a hat.

Photo By John Fuhrman

Sophomore John Fuhrman’s pit bull, Gus, wearing a hat.

Cierra Mason, Staff Writer

Whether you’re a dog person or not, you’ve probably heard the phrase “pit bulls are dangerous dogs.”
However, were these rumors always being told about the pit bull breed?

For hundreds of years, pit bulls were used for numerous jobs: farming, companionship, protecting the family, and even babysitting children.

In fact, pit bulls were used as a mascot for America during World War II, because they were fearless and protective.

Upon hearing the word “pit bull”, most don’t imagine a dog licking the face of a newborn child or helping around the farm, they imagine a dog with blood dripping from its teeth.

“A lot of people approach my dog carefully, but he’s a kind dog,” said sophomore John Fuhrman, who owns a pit bull.

So, how did these innocent, friendly dogs become known as such “vicious” animals?

During the 70’s, people started to use these dogs as fighting dogs, placing spiked collars on them. Some even went as far as to tying multiple rubber bands around the dog’s tails and cutting their tails off days later.

This created the image that some have of them now, aggressive and scary.

“People are scared when I walk my dog, it makes me feel bad for my dog,” said sophomore Adelyn Fowler.

Though these dogs have a bite strength of 235 pounds of pressures, the third strongest bite strength of all dogs, hardly any pit bulls use all that strength. However, the ones that are trained as fighting dogs do because of the people who trained them.

The way the dogs are trained affects the way they act. If a dog is trained to fight, it’ll fight. If it’s trained kind and well, it’ll act well.

It is the owner’s fault if the dog turns out aggressive.

People tend to breed these dogs in order to make money, the average pit bull costing around $250, without paperwork.

Sometimes, these dogs get put in the wrong homes, with people who want them to fight, or they get abandoned. This results in shelters overflowing. For example, the SPCA has multiple pit bulls coming into their shelters on a weekly basis.

Since there is a stereotype towards these dogs of them being vicious, most people don’t want a pit bull, especially one that comes from a shelter and isn’t a puppy.

“It doesn’t seem like every pit bull is a biting machine, but sometimes a loyal and nice guard dog for a family,” said Fuhrman.

Because nobody wants these dogs, most are “put down” by the shelter to leave room for more dogs to come in and get adopted.

Currently, the SPCA on 6201 Florin Perkins Rd, has a deal going on until Jan. 1. They’re waiving all adoption fees for any animal. This deal includes the pet’s shots, first dose of flea medicine, microchip and getting spayed or neutered.

This is a good opportunity to save a loving dog from getting put down in the shelter, no matter the breed or age.