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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Scoville at Dad's BS: One compelling reason for a dog (49) RE: BS: One compelling reason for a dog 15 Apr 07


I like pit bulls. I've given shots to plenty of pit bulls with almost no trouble (less trouble, in fact, than with many other breeds). Of course, people who care enough to get their dogs regular veterinary care are also generally not people who are in it solely for image, so their dogs tend to be better-raised and better-behaved, which applies to all breeds. Most of those "problem" breeds are great dogs if you know what you're doing and aren't in it to show off.

I'm also appalled at how unrealistic some people are in their expectations of dogs. We used to get people in all the time asking about what kind of dog they should get if they wanted one that "wouldn't bite". Well, there's no such thing as a dog that doesn't bite. Some of them have to be pushed to extremes before they will snap, but every dog has a limit. If you let your kids climb on the dog, play with its food, pull its ears, poke it while it's sleeping, etc., somebody is going to get nipped. Dogs sometimes discipline errant puppies by putting their mouths over the pups' muzzles, which is one reason so many children get bitten in the face (that, and kids' faces are often mouth-level with dogs). If the kid has not been taught or is too young to understand dog respect, the two should be kept apart unless closely supervised. My own dog has never growled at anyone and loves human attention, and I would still never, ever, leave her alone with a child.

Our previous dog was cute but did not tolerate strangers, and I was horrified at the number of mothers who would see us out for a walk and encourage their little kids to run up and pet him. I know that people don't want kids to be afraid of dogs, but a lot of children outgrow that once they are old enough to understand intellectually what dogs' body language means and how they should react. I was absolutely terrified of dogs as a child but did just fine with them once I felt like I could understand them. (Meanwhile, my parents were thrilled that I was too afraid of them to get close enough to be bitten since there were at least four unsafe large dogs living on our block when I was small.)


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