The World Seven Deserves (by Joanna Stewart)

Introduction

JoannaPicI have heard many stories of Pitbull type dog attacks and it just breaks my heart. I feel so badly for the dog. It is terrible thinking of the mental and physical abuse it takes to turn a dog into a “killer” or “vicious”. I personally have been interested in this topic for five years, ever since I owned my first Pitbull. I remember hearing all these terrible stereotypes of Pitbulls on the TV and internet. I would look at my dog and think “that is ridiculous”. That is when I made it my mission to change as many people’s opinions on these dogs as possible.

This term I worked with a wild horse names Cassie. I trained her to be able to walk on a halter like a normal horse. I actually got her more accepting of people and that is an amazing feeling. It was great to see a skittish horse turned into a healthy socialized horse that can be handled by more than one person. I learned that when we want to change anything in this world, we have to do the work with our own hands. When we donate money or give “likes” to a cause, that isn’t actually changing anything. It is much more gratifying and helpful to take your body and use it to better a situation.

I hope that I can encourage readers to take action. In the theme of animals it would greatly help if individuals actually volunteered at shelters and worked hands on with animals. As we know, shelters are full of Pitbulls and they all could use love and training to help better their chanced of finding a forever home. I want people to act now because sitting around and wishing you could help doesn’t change anything. If there is room in your home and heart, go look at adopting a dog. It doesn’t have to be a Pitbull; every dog deserves a loving environment where they feel safe and secure. A world where we humans show as much humanity as our pets would be a beautiful world.

Myth: Pitbulls Are Inherently Vicious

 In this world there are not any animals that are born dangerous or malice. Every animal has its own drive for survival, like Alligators. They are not inherently dangerous; they are just born with instincts. No dog has an instinct to kill or maim when they are born. There is nothing vicious about Pitbulls except the people who own them and abuse them. In the world of all canines, there are many different reasons and types of aggression. It is important to show that all dogs can be aggressive, and not just one type is always aggressive. A dog can be aggressive for many different reasons. These types of outburst can plague any breed of dog. There are many things that all canines are capable of doing. All of these aggressive behaviors and types of behaviors can be found in any breed. It is important for people to see that all dogs can become aggressive, and not one breed of dog is 100% aggressive. Fear based aggression, Protectiveness, Redirected aggression, Territorial aggression, Possessiveness, Predatory aggression, Frustration, Pain induced aggression, and Social aggressions are all types of “vicious” behaviors that all dogs can show. (“Aggression in Dogs”)

Myth: Pitbulls have the Highest Bite Force 

I think this myth makes me laugh all the time because it is just so ridiculous. It really makes me feel bad for individuals who actually believe this because their intelligence level must be below average. One of my favorite studies on this was done by Brady Barr. When it comes to dog’s bite forces the Rottweiler came in as the number one with a measurement of 328 PSI. The German Shepherd came in second with a reading of 238 PSI. Finally the American Pit Bull Terrier came in third with a reading of 235 PSI. This shows that in fact, Pit Bull type dogs do not bite harder than any other type of dog in their size class. To put these readings into perspective, humans have a bite force of 127 PSI. Hyenas and Alligator Snapping Turtles have a bite force of 1000 PSI. The highest bite force reading Brady Barr received was from a Crocodile of 2500 PSI (“Dangerous Encounters”). I think his research did wonders for the Pitbull community really showing that these dogs are not the strongest ones around.

Myth: Pitbulls have Lock Jaw 

When it comes to the idea that Pitbulls have a locking jaw mechanism built in that no other dog has, it is also laughable. A researcher did a study on the jaws of dogs and his findings were great. ”We found that the American Pit Bull Terriers did not have any unique mechanism that would allow these dogs to lock their jaws. There were no mechanical or morphological differences. . .” Dr. I. Lehr Brisbin, University of Georgia stated (“Fear vs Fact”). I feel like this study shouldn’t have been necessary because it is so outrageous. I have never had an experience where any animal has been able to hold on to something so strong it made me think their jaw was locked. I am very happy that this myth could be put in a “Ridiculous Myths” graveyard where it belongs.

How to Get Involved

I think going to actually walking dogs would be great way to help out the animal community. There are also a lot of dogs who just haven’t been around people as much as necessary to facilitate a good home. The simple act of sitting in a room with a dog can work wonders for their level of socialization. The ultimate gift we can give animals is a loving home. It is a huge responsibility but I think the benefits of having a shelter pet vastly out weights the sacrifices we make as pet owners. It is so rewarding to see a dog blossom from a shelter dog into a loved dog. The happiness these grateful animals exude is infectious and makes life more enjoyable in my opinion. I challenge you to take action. When you see those sad ASPCA commercials don’t just send some money, go and work hands on. Your time and energy is more valuable than any dollar amount.

I think these shelters would be great to volunteer at or use to find a dog up for adoption. I personally have gotten most of our family dogs form Clackamas County Dog Services.

  • Local Humane Society
  • Clackamas County Dog Services
  • The Pixie Project
  • Family Dogs New Life Shelter

Annotate Sources: Learn More

Greenwood, Arin. “It’s Time to End the Prejudice Against Pit Bulls.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 23 June 2014. Web. 12 Aug. 2015.

This article talks about how we as a society is very progressive but still Neanderthal like when it comes to our opinions on “Pitbulls”. There are many factors that give these dogs a terrible name. One of the biggest problems is that Pitbull is a term that encompasses three different breeds of dog. Our society on the other hand thinks a Pitbull is any dog with a big head. It also talks about how all the bite statistics out there have been proven wrong and points out that not all bites are reported so the data is flawed from the beginning. It is a really good article that supports my causes with facts and logic.

“The Truth About Pit Bulls.” ASPCA. American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty of Animals, 2015. Web. 12 Aug. 2015.

I really enjoy this article because it gives tips on how to raise a healthy socialized dog. It is directed at Pitbull owners but these are still good ideas for every breed. These tips are for when you get a puppy but I don’t think the age should matter. It talks about socialization which is probably the most important thing an owner can do for their dog. It points out that yes Pitbulls are decedents of bait dogs and were eventually bred to fight, but that doesn’t matter. Golden Retrievers were bred to fetch downed birds and they are now being trained as Service dogs. We create what we want from these dogs; history doesn’t dictate their ability to be a good dog.

Greenwood, Arin. “10 Stereotypes About Pit Bulls That Are Just. Dead. Wrong.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 27 Sept. 2014. Web. 12 Aug. 2015.

The fact that owners are being punished for loving this breed of dog is very saddening. The legislation and bans on these dogs forces owners to make a decision, be homeless or leave their beloved dog behind. I feel that is a very unfair situation to be in and this article demonstrated that. It talks about common myths that people actually believe about Pitbulls and talks about how they are untrue. It is an easy article to read and really goes along with my theme of Pitbulls are wonderful dogs and shouldn’t be treated any different because of their big heads.

Work Cited

“Aggression in Dogs.” ASPCA. American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty of Animals, n.d. Web. 04 Mar. 2013

Dangerous Encounters with Brady Barr. Perf. Dr. Brady Barr. National Geographic Channel, 2005. Tv Episodes.

“Fear vs Fact.” NCRC. National Canine Research Council, n.d. Web. 04 Mar. 2013.

Greenwood, Arin. “10 Stereotypes About Pit Bulls That Are Just. Dead. Wrong.” The Huffington  Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 27 Sept. 2014. Web. 12 Aug. 2015.

Greenwood, Arin. “It’s Time to End the Prejudice Against Pit Bulls.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 23 June 2014. Web. 12 Aug. 2015

“The Truth About Pit Bulls.” ASPCA. American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty of Animals, 2015. Web. 12 Aug. 2015.

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