Dear Pit Bull Haters

ray sylvia
Amazing photo of Ray by Sylvia Elazafon

See this dog?  This little old man of a dog?  He is a pit bull terrier type dog.  He is a former fighting dog.  He is the stuff your insane nightmares are made of.  But regardless of what you believe to be true about his breed, he is our beloved family member.

I am incredibly blessed to be able to take Ray with me to work every single day. We spend all day, every day together. He has met and charmed literally thousands of people.  And never once, in all that time, has he been anything but polite and loving with everyone from littles to adults.

No matter where we go, or how we travel, Ray is always willing to meet the people who want to meet him. He doesn’t know or understand that some people hate him because of his breed or how he looks.  He doesn’t know how many people wish he were dead.  And even if he did know, I doubt he would care.  His world is full of people who think he is amazing just the way he is.

Last week I watch Ray gently greet a 4 month old baby who reached out to him.  He was amazingly careful with her.  But you can believe both parents and I were carefully monitoring the interaction. That is what responsible people do…make sure neither was put into a dangerous situation, or one they couldn’t handle.

I am horrified whenever anyone is hurt by a dog.  But invariably dog aggression can be traced to either human action/inaction or a physical issue.  Dogs are hardwired to please and serve us, none more than pittie type dogs.  But every single time a pit bull type dog is vilified in the press, it makes one more punk want to have one.  If these dogs are so bad ass that they have to be banned….that is exactly the dog they want to have. Then they mistreat, torture, starve and beat the dog.  And we wonder why he becomes aggressive.  According to your DBO logic, it must be the way the dog looks.

I am not a pit bull apologist.  I don’t care what breed of dog Ray is.  He could be a poodle and I would feel the same way.  I connect with who he is, not what he is.  As my little brown dog’s health starts to decline, it becomes even more important that I help him build a legacy. Not because he is a former Vick dog, but because he is a member of the most vilified breed of dog on earth.

Ray’s time with us is limited.  But one of his favorite things to do is to go the Village at lunch time, sit on the deck, and soak up love and admiration from the people around him.  He expects nothing less. Because in his world he is a gentle dog with a loving soul.  He is not a ticking time bomb.  He is not a finely tuned killing machine.  He isn’t a devil dog waiting for the right moment to attack.  He is a sweet and shy, funny and stubborn, wonderful old man of a dog.

11174653_689235294556728_1146413075170671355_o
amazing photo by Maggie Dahl

One final thing for you pit bull haters.  Unlike you, Ray is willing to judge people on who they are, not how they look.  Maybe you could learn something from him.

.

Advertisements

118 thoughts on “Dear Pit Bull Haters

  1. I’m sorry to hear that you’ve written off the experiences of pit bull victims so readily. Personally speaking, I honestly didn’t give the breed a second thought until I and my gentle senior dog were attacked by a neighbor’s pits, simply because we happened to walk by, just across the street. The dogs bolted out from their house, no barks, no warning- just a solid mauling out of nowhere. The owner was hysterical, sputtering over and over again about how the dogs had been raised from puppyhood with love and training. My dog required extensive medical attention and was never comfortable around strange dogs again.

    With that experience in mind, I reasonably figure that it’s understandable that I would avoid pit bulls thereafter. This wasn’t a run of the mill dog bite- this was a clamp and tear mauling, unprovoked and deeply uncharacteristic of a dog that isn’t defending itself. The behavior was symptomatic of years of genetic manipulation, to create a dog that fights tenaciously and powerfully. And frankly that’s something I have no desire to be anywhere near, not to mention the same for my dogs/pets.

    Go ahead, call me a “hater”. It’s actually more so that I’m experienced and realistic.

    Like

    1. I have NOT written off attacks so lightly. I am appalled every single time a dog acts out. A DOG….any dog. My dogs are routinely attacked by a poodle from across the street. It has gotten so bad that I carry citronella spray. My brother was horribly injured by a small mutt, when he was doing nothing but running by the house. First question to ask….where the hell are the owners? Why are these dogs running unrestrained? I can understand your fear of how a dog looks because of your experience, but to punish my dogs for one dog’s issue makes no sense.

      Like

      1. What you have done, rescuing a dog and giving it a second chance at life is beyond admirable. You are a responsible dog owner.

        I have known a few pit bulls, and by and large, they have all been sweet, slobber monsters. Kisses for everyone! But the only time I’ve ever been bitten by a dog was by a pit bull, that was showing no signs of aggression and then just lunged at my face. Fortunately I wasn’t injured.

        I don’t think you can deny that if a pit bull does latch on to someone or another animal, they are capable of causing more damage than most breeds. That’s one of the reasons they are so widely reported, IMO.

        I have had four labradors, and they have never exhibited even a hint of aggression. It’s just not in the breed.

        If you’re rescuing a dog, my hat’s off to you. There should be a special place in heaven for people such as yourself. But I question the motives of anyone who would buy one of these dogs from a breeder.

        Like

        1. My pit bull was attacked unprovoked by a lab. Je ran to me crying scared and confused. So what say you now? In spite of that attack he has remained loving and sweet to all dogs he meets. All and any breed of dog can attack.

          Like

        2. In Minnesota, a Labrador killed a 4 year old! That was years ago, but any dog can bite, injure, or kill! Training, and being aware of your dog is important, no matter what the breed!

          Like

      2. The problem is not the breed but rather the owner. I own a Golden/Lab, a APBT (American Pit Bull Terrier, and a Chihuahua, out of the three it is the Chihuahua who would bite first and none of my dogs ha ve ever biten, the Golden/Lab and APBT I can not imagine ever biting unless cornered by a mean person.
        I dog I am the toughest on is the APBT because she is judged the hardest of the three and must always be on her best behavior. I had a horrifying experience years ago where a German Shepherd Dog I owned killed one of my smaller dogs, not the rescue bait dog who was a “Pi Bull” so please don’t judge the breed, but do judge the owners.

        Like

    2. Hey, AH, my friendly 80 lb Staffie was attacked on 3 different occasions by 3 different Chihuahuas-Pickles, Peanuts and Boogie who latched on to his left hip. He did nothing but scurried away from attack. Easily he could have picked up any of the 3 by the neck and broken their necks. He didn’t. If your dog was attacked then what WAS your part in it?

      Like

    3. I was mauled by a golden when I was young. It was severe and not a “run of the mill dog bite”. I had plastic surgery on my face. Now do you think it would be realistic for me to judge all goldens beacuse of that? No. I was also nervous about pits until I started volunteering at the shelter. The dogs had been through so much and were so sweet. Ended up adopting 2 and am now a big advocate. Met my husband too. Found out his childhood pit had SAVED a life. A neighbor’s dog charged the kids and his loyal pit busted out the door. The neighbor’s dog had grabbed onto one of the kids at that point and the pit frightened him away. Also, my friend has a pit and her downstairs neighbor has 2 yippie dogs, welp they grabbed on to his jowls in the hall the one day and wouldn’t let go. So you’re telling me we can now judge and hate all little dogs of that breed because of it?? WoW. Might as well get rid of all dogs cause they all can bite. Try doing scientific, peer reviewed research on the matter. Breed is not a factor in dog bites. By the way, just as a training segway, DOG aggression and HUMAN aggression are not one int he same AT ALL.

      Like

      1. I know your question is factitious…but I will give the courtesy of an answer any way. No, I’m not. Which is why I am quoting research from genetic experts. It’s what writers do……find and share the works of those who are experts in their field.

        Like

  2. Do you know another word for a hater? Likely someone who is a victim of a pit bull, less than two percent of them ever find justice. A good many of these people you call “haters” were once pit bull lovers, they found out the hard way that premise “it’s all how you raise ’em” is completely false.

    Regulation in the form of BSL is not “hate”. Fighting to keep the status quo and call anyone who disagrees with you as a “hater”….what do you call that?

    Count me in as a “Hater”…

    I hate when a kid is laying on the coroner’s table.

    I hate it when someone’s Grandmother is poured into the lifeflight helicopter.

    I hate it that dogfighters kill 250,000 pits a year engineering a better killer.

    I hate it that the dog lobby is behaving as corruptly as the tobacco lobby in the 50’s and 60’s.

    I hate it that Pit breeders pump out one Million excess dogs that the taxpayer has to euthanize….
    to top it off they don’t pay taxes.

    I hate it that only convicted felons seem to be able to properly identify Pit Bulls.

    I hate the grotesque breed stewardship exerted by the Pit Bull community.

    I hate when family members of officers in state Pit Bull clubs are busted trafficking fighting dogs.

    I hate it that Law Enforcement is continually having to shoot these animals.

    I hate it when radicalized Humane orgs like the Toronto Humane Society spend in excess of $400,000 saving a a Pit that attacked on 4 separate occasions, yet Marie-Helene Tokar can’t get plastic surgery

    http://pitbullpoetlaureate.blogspot.com/2013/01/count-me-in-as-hater.html

    Like

    1. What makes you think we don’t hate dog attacks just as much as you do? Why do you think we lobby for anti-tethering laws, anti-cruelty laws, affordable and accessible spay/neuter services, and puppy socializaton classes? Unless a dog has a medical issue, aggression issues are human issues. Dogs who attack are overwhelmingly dogs who live as a resident, not as a family member, are not fixed, are allowed to run at large, and who have not been trained or socialized. Problem dogs come from problem owners. Owners who have seen a dog’s behavior issues, and choose not to deal with them. Owners who don’t take the time to train and socialize their dogs. Owners who beat, starve or chain their dogs. Owners who get a dog to prove how tough they are. We all want safer communities. We all want responsible dog owners. I think we need to start from that place of agreement to make laws that hold humans accountable.

      Like

      1. Again, calling victims “Haters” and fighting to keep the status quo (every solution you mentioned) what do you call that?

        A goodly majority of victims of serious and fatal attacks were mauled/killed by their family pet, no evidence of abuse. Tax payers ultimately pay for the few irresponsible (all you have to prove is that you didn’t know your dog was vicious, look up the case of Klonda Richey) who end up with prison sentences.

        A good place to start is to admit there is a breed specific problem with pit bulls, and doing nothing about it but calling people who want change HATERS isn’t solving anything, isn’t coming from an enlightened place. We don’t blame pit bulls for being what they are, but we do hold their advocates accountable for the many falsehoods they spread that set well meaning people to fail with these dogs. We get it, these Vick dogs were horrifically abused, kudos for playing your politically correct altruistic hand to promote your agenda of making dogs bred for blood sport mainstream.

        The account of letting this dog interact with a small child is cringe worthy, and should be considered to be child endangerment. Not wise. And then you disclose it, as bragging. So you got lucky this time. Playing chance games with children isn’t advocacy.

        Like

        1. Please take your hate elsewhere. My dog was an amazing soul, who never in his life hurt anyone. Allowing a child to interact with him was not anywhere near child endangerment, and you have no idea what you are talking about. Ray weighed 40 pounds soaking wet. And since he passed away last Friday, without every hurting a living soul, you can, pardon my french, kiss my ass.

          Like

          1. I’m sorry to hear Ray passed away. Thank you for giving him a second chance on life. Ignore the hateful comments, no one can take away from the special bond that you two shared.

            Like

          2. Hope Ray is resting in peace, I must agree with your point of view, Pitbull’s have many, many years of agressive behaviors bred into them. It is our job, as responsible pitbull owners, to breed that out of them. That task bgins with earjy and continual socialization. My pit is a service dog; he goes to convalescent hospitals, as well as, to pediatric wards to provide therapy to sick and lonely seniors and youngsters. He loves his job.

            Like

          3. I’m so sorry to hear Ray passed. I’m also sorry for the hateful and ignorant comments from Meals on Wheels. You can’t expect anyone who refuses to accept that humans are responsible for whatever dog caused the attack that made them this bitter and the others they’re spouting off about to even see reason. They’d have to admit that the ‘perfect family pet’ they’re going on about was really tethered, unsocialized, untrained, not supervised around a small child, outdoors most of the time, etc., and was NOT a perfect pet any more than the others were. Dogsbite people never want to admit people are to blame be, cause they cannot bear to look in the mirror, so they vilify the dogs, who are innocent and at the mercy of the humans they live with. Humans fail the dogs, and dogs pay the price, but sometimes other people pay for the irresponsibility of the dogs’ owners. It’s easier for haters to blame dogs because their small minds can grasp the idea of ‘killer dogs’ more than trying to understand the concepts of what HUMAN behaviors cause a dog attack, or, specifically, what did THEIR own behavior or their family member do that caused the dog to attack? They won’t accept responsibility because THEY are irresponsible just like the owner of the dog. If you ever read their hogwash, they actually think every single dog of each breed is EXACTLY the same because their simple minds cannot comprehend anything else. If they did, they’d have to throw a lot of that garbage out of the window.

            Like

          4. I was always a little prejudiced against pit bulls. But my husband talked me into getting one. He is the sweetest, kindest, my gentle dog I have ever met. And for what ever reason he chose me. He follows me room to room always watching and cuddling with me. He is gentle with everyone he meets especially children and elderly. He loves all dogs and cats he has met. As I sit here typing he is cuddled to my side. I have had many dogs my entire life. I have had shelties, chows, Rottweiler, jack Russell’s, english bull dogs, keeshonds, and mutts. And by far Scout my goofy, wonderful pitbull is my best tempered. Best personality, most loyal, and wonderful companion. I am so blessed to have him and I admit before him I didn’think much of the breed. I heard all the horror stories and thought that was the truth. Last year my daughter was attacked by a weiner dog, her face was torn open on her nose and lip. Funny thing no news story about the attack or the fact the sake dog bit someone else a week prior. I then realised that they dont post those stories because they dont sell like a pitbull attack. So much fear and hate are due to fear and misunderstanding the breed.

            Like

    2. What I hate are people so uneducated on the subject that they have NO CLUE of the actual science. What science does tell us is that breed in NOT a factor in or cause of dog bites. Major and reputable animal organizations ALL agree that breed is not a factor in dog bites-just one of the reasons the CDC for example has stopped tracking dog bites by breed. Just about every factor that DOES cause dogs bites is preventable by humans. If you are so educated, why have dog bite hospitalizations increased or remained the same in cities and countries where the breed is banned? Look at Denver- there have been MORE dog bites since the banning of pits. People frequently incorrectly misidentify pits as the dog with bit. The dog that killed the woman in Montreal that was repeatedly called a pit- yep it was then identified as a BOXER. But that headline just isn’t as grabby. Even including the many dogs who are MISIDENTIFIED as pits, less than 1% will ever bite. You have a FAR greater chance of being hurt by another human. They have gone so far to study the pit bull brain to find that it is like any other dog. It is not “wired” differently. And by the way I was attacked by a golden when I was a toddler. I needed plastic surgery to repair the damage. Should I hate ALL goldens because of it? No. Was it is the news? Hell no. Hmmmm, wonder why? So I won’t count you as a hater, but I will count you as judgmental and incredibly uneducated.

      Like

  3. We’ve got 5 rescues, two of which are “pitbull types” Buddy is an American bulldog/lab mix that was dumped in our yard and Jack is amstaff/bull terrier mix that is a foster failure. Buddy is my constant shadow, my love sponge and my highly intelligent, focused and competitive agility partner. I am in always in awe of how he gives 100% every time we compete and and how proud I am to step to the start line every time. Jack is our youngest, our “booger” and constant source of amusement. He’s so smart, I have to be careful what I ask him to do. He’s started agility training and proving to really like it. He’s going to have “big paws” to fill to keep up with Buddy and his advanced border collie sister, but we’ll see how far he wants to take it 🙂

    Like

  4. I had a Dobie, she has passed, back in the day when Dobies were “mean bad aggressive” dogs. She was the sweetest thing, loved everyone! The only time she ever got defensive was when my husband and I were hiking and he went a little further up the trail and I was resting with the dog. A man came up the trail and she positioned herself in front of me and growled real deep and long! Mind you, we had met many hikers that day and she did not react to them. There must have been something she sensed. We used to say that if anyone ever broke into our house, she would sit on them and lick them to death!! As you all say it is totally how they are raised.

    Like

    1. It’s definitely not just how they were raised, or Ray and the rest of the Vicktory dogs would never have been able to be adopted out to the public! It’s a mix of how they were raised, the genetic predisposition of that individual dog, and how they are currently being treated. Many abused dogs go on to become wonderful family dogs after being rescued. Ray being a shining example of this 🙂

      Like

  5. I also have an old man pit named Bullitt he has never met a stranger and loves any and all attention. spoiled, yes he is very spoiled. Bully is 13 and i am also afraid his time with us grows short but I love him like my child and my child loves him like a brother. I will never find another precious one like him. I love him and will mourn when he crosses the rainbow bridge. Unless you have had a bully you will never know how loyal trustworthy and loving they are. There are more people scared of my yorkie at 5 pounds than Bully at 65. Dont hate the breed hate the ignorance of others that give these beautiful creatures the bad rap they have.

    Like

  6. Dogs are not born vicious. They are taught to be by humans either through abuse, fear, training or the owners action/inaction as you mentioned. Pit bulls have been a “status” symbol. A mean backyard dog who’ll tear your face off if you “mess” with me or my family. Sad. Pit bulls only want love and affection just like any other dog. Any breed or mixed breed dog has the potential to be mean based on what they are taught and how they are raised. Thank you for your article. It only confirms my post. Bless you for seeing beyond the hype and looking into the true heart of any dog.

    Like

    1. I think they are beautiful, they are rare in Australia but from research about the breed has told me that it’s the monsters make them aggressive by making them fight and what ever else they do to them. Then of course any dog can be a little aggressive depending on circumstances. I would just like to share l have a Jack Russell, he barks when anybody is at the door although l do have a sign saying Do Not Knock If selling something, but these people disregard the sign, assuming there is a friend at the door l open it and Snoopy has a little bite. He is a fantastic guard dog. Last week he had surgery and the nurse that took his bloods and shaved him came to him on his check up and when she tried to stroke him, well he again had a little bite. This is not normal for him, he is only protecting himself or us and l would say that most of your normal and raised with love pitties would do the same. I love them, infact l would one but not sure how Snoopy would react!!!!

      Like

  7. A big thank you to everyone who has rescues big bundles of love. I was shopping several local shelters for a small to medium sized dog and I saw a skin and bones pit bull covered in scars and trying to tear her way out of the cyclone door of her cell. Even half starved she was 50 pounds, up from 35 when she was brought to the shelter. She was terrified of everything. the slightest movement or noise made her jump. But when I knelt down by her cage, she wagged her tail. it was love at first sight. So much for getting a small dog. several years later, she’s a healthy 75 pounds and was so gentle with other dogs I fostered, I got her a “puppy” for keeps, a boxer/pit mix who had been in the shelter for 6 months waiting for a person. Honeybear (sweet as honey, strong as a bear) and Salisbury (aka meathead) are inseparable.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. 7 years ago coming up in august I was asked to watch a neighbor’s amstaff. The few times I had seen this dog prior to the day she came to stay with me she had been steadly been being treated pretty bad by her former owner. He was a 24 year old kid who thought he could make her into a fighter, but she wasn’t like that. He couldn’t beat the sweet out of her. He would beat her daily and then he stopped feeding her altogether. I used to hear a dog being just beaten badly when I first moved there, but at the time I had no idea where it came from. It kind of echos where I live and it is hard to pin point although I did try. So he asked me if I will take care of his dog while he is out of town working and I jumped at the chance to get her away from him. Now Lacy Lou at that point was a year old and down from 75 pounds to 20 pounds and on her very last legs. I was shocked when I saw her when he brought her over to me. The last time I had seen her she was still at full weight. She had yeast all over her body and she was just one huge festering welt. Her eyes had no light in them like they had when I had seen her prior All she could do that first week or so is eat, go out to poop, and sleep on my love seat. She was very sick, and just very tired. Around the second week I had her, she was showing signs of improvement and the light started to come back into her eyes. I could see hope in her again. I decided at that point that I was going to do what I had to do to see that she never went back to the old owner and that she would be with me forever and I would protect her. I changed her food and made an appointment for her to see the vet. I got some stuff to stop the itching from the infection she literally had all over her body and she started to blossom right in front of me. Other people in the complex noticed and they too wanted me to keep her. When this guy got back be asked me to hold on to her for a couple of more weeks and I told him no problem. I didn’t tell him she would be staying with me. Anyhow, to make a long story short, he owed me money and let me keep Lacy for the debt. I found out later, and this made me bawl my eyes out, that my sweet Lacy was the dog I heard being beaten. As of now, Lacy has a compromised immune system and is allergic to being outside and has to live in the house. She still has to take Benedryl daily to keep the itching down and has cost me thousands of dollars to treat. I knew she would going into all of this. She has to eat special grain free food and is now at a very healthy 80 pounds. She has three buddies here as well. An american bulldog named Bella who as just left in a back yard with another dog and ignored. She was fed everyday, but hyper from no attention. She still is. We also have my cat Princess and our porch cat Bubby’s. Lacy will be 8 in august. She is doing very well considering what she went through the first year if her life. She is a very happy dog, and just a sweet mush of puppy. She literally is my heart. She doesn’t like me to be out of her sight when I am home. She sleeps on the bed with me every night snoring in my ear and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. God bless all that save and rescue dogs especially pitties. If you know of someone abusing an animal please report them to the police. Animal abusers breed serial killers. Try to rescue the animal if all else fails.

      Like

  9. 7 years ago coming up in august I was asked to watch a neighbor’s amstaff. The few times I had seen this dog prior to the day she came to stay with me she had been steadly been being treated pretty bad by her former owner. He was a 24 year old kid who thought he could make her into a fighter, but she wasn’t like that. He couldn’t beat the sweet out of her. He would beat her daily and then he stopped feeding her altogether. I used to hear a dog being just beat badly when I first moved there, but at the time I had no idea where it came from. It kind of echos where I live and it is hard to pin point although I did try. So he asked me if I will take care of his dog while he is out of town working and I jumped at the chance to get her away from him. Now Lacy Lou at that point was a year old and down from 75 pounds to 20 pounds and on her very last legs. I was shocked when I saw her when he brought her over to me. The last time I had seen her she was still at full weight. She had yeast all over her body and she was just one huge festering welt. Her eyes had no light in them like they had when I had seen her prior All she could do that first week or so is eat, poop, and sleep on my love seat. She was very sick, and just very tired. Around the second week I had her, she was showing signs of improvement and the light started to come back into her eyes. I could see hope in her again. I decided at that point that I was going to do what I had to do to see that she never went back to the old owner and that she would be with me forever and I would protect her. I changed her food and made an appointment for her to see the vet. I got some stuff to stop the itching from the infection she literally had all over her body and she started to blossom right in front of me. Other people in the complex noticed and they too wanted me to keep her. When this guy got back be asked me to hold on to her for a couple of more weeks and I told him no problem. I didn’t tell him she would be staying with me. Anyhow, to make a long story short, he owed me money and let me keep Lacy for the debt. I found out later, and this made me bawl my eyes out, that my sweet Lacy was the dog I heard being beaten. As of now, Lacy has a compromised immune system and is allergic to being outside and has to live in the house. She still has to take Benedryl daily to keep the itching down and has cost me thousands of dollars to treat. I knew she would going into all of this. She has to eat special grain free food and is now at a very healthy 80 pounds. She has three buddies here as well. An american bulldog named Bella who as just left in a back yard with another dog and ignored. She was fed everyday, but hyper from no attention. She still is. We also have my cat Princess and our porch cat Bubby’s. Lacy will be 8 in august. She is doing very well considering what she went through the first year if her life. She is a very happy dog, and just a sweet mush of puppy. She literally is my heart. She doesn’t like me to be out of her sight when I am home. She sleeps on the bed with me every night snoring on my ear and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

    Like

  10. I have 3 wonderful big dogs and I don’t care what anyone says, they are my kids! A month ago I had some neighbors ring my doorbell and asked me to come down to a vacant house down the block. I was horrified to find a pit mix dog in a small wire crate living in her own waste. She was barking and the other 4 adults around me were terrified of her. Took a short video of her condition and ran home to get her some food and water. The neighbors to that house told me the people had been evicted 2-3 weeks earlier, she had been left to die in that cage in her own waste without food, without water. A large stick lay nearby that it is believed neighborhood childeren likely poked at her with, since that was the reason the adults discovered her, because they kept seeing kids go in and out of the backyard of a vacant house. Neighbors further said that she had lived her whole life (under 2 yrs) in that cage, in the back yard, in all kind of weather, rain, snow, extreme heat and that the childeren had told their childeren they didn’t feed her because they couldn’t afford to, it was also said that the man there had hit her repeatedly. After everyone went home, I went back and sat by her crate speaking softly until she was no longer afraid of me. Then I slowly put my hand inside with a slip lead and after a few tries managed to get it over her head. She bucked like a wild bronco, but she didn’t bite. I had sent out a Facebook plea for help and the video went viral in minutes. It took me the rest of the night to get a plan in place for her and off we went to do a meet and greet with a foster and a foster dog. Everything went well. But then, next day I get a call saying they can’t get in her crate to take her for a bath and nail clip. They said she was being extremely aggressive. I head over (37 miles each way) and she had been placed in the back yard of a vacant house, with an open door crate which they had dumped several pounds of food in an attempt to put some weight on her. She had been starved previously, naturally she would guard her food! I reached in and pulled her out even though she was growling. They wanted her gone. A lady who worked at humane society said to bring her there, which I did because the other people who had said they would foster if it didn’t work out, backed out. I went over every week to work with her and both the employee and director said she was doing fine. A dog trainer had also gone over to assess her and informed me that she was “highly adoptable” and even had the right traits to be trained for the right veteran. I quickly set about asking every rescue I could find across the U.S. to take her in, as the humane society was only a temporary fix. In the mean time I took her to my vet and despite all the ticks and her deplorable living conditions, she checked out good, except for an isolated mast cell tumor that vet said he would remove when she was spayed. She received her vaccinations, next guard, heart worm preventative and we scheduled her spay a month out so she could gain some weight before surgery. This Tuesday 5/5 was to be her spay. I get a text this morning saying that they want her gone, they are afraid of her, said she’s being aggressive. Well she is coming into heat! No matter, they still want her gone. I can’t find anyone to take her and my spouse has drawn the limit at 3. So now, I am faced with the horrible fact that nobody wants her and instead of a spay on Tuesday, she will likely be euthanized. She never had a chance in this cruel world. Never got socialized. Never experienced love. The only kindness was from me. And now I have failed her. I have followed the Vick dogs and how wonderfully they have done. How can I get that for her? I am broken-hearted and have lost faith in the rescue community on the whole. I only have Sunday & Monday to find a miracle for her. If anybody bothers to read all this and thinks they can help, please reply as soon as possible. This is in Texas, but can be transported, she would be fully vetted. I should mention, she showed no aggression to my veterinarian or to the two guys who went with me on her initial foster meet, in fact she gave kisses to everyone!

    Like

      1. Spent the wee hours sending off emails to partner organizations with best friends society. So far the only responses say I should contact best friends society :/. I’m sure you are well aware that this dog cannot go to just anyone, she has to be properly trained and socialized. So I have read thru the partner organizations bios and only selected ones who offer help for the abandoned and abused.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Pam, can you share any contact info here (email?) so we might share your story with rescue networks and have a way to reach you other than through this story post? Thank you.

          Like

    1. Has this pit in your story been rescued or fostered yet? Does this one have a name? Any chance your husband would reconsider is he could meet the dog… Maybe as a foster while you continue to look for a good home??

      I’m in WV so can’t adopt. We already have 9 rescued dogs, but would be glad to post her story on my facebook.
      Bev King in WV.

      Like

      1. Been there, tried that, no dice! Her name is Gwynn, she was just spayed yesterday. She was shaking to even go through a door as I don’t think she’s ever been inside anywhere in her whole life 😢. She is at vets until Friday as she’s just been spayed and I paid for boarding until then, but they would not let her stay after that. She is going to a workplace shop yard and will be outside in a crate yet again until a better place is found for her. She has been very sweet to everyone she encountered while in my presence. Even giving kisses, but she does jump up on you wanting attention.

        Like

    2. Try Bryan and Amanda bickell foundation. Bryan is a hokey player for the black hawks in Chicago and they are a rescue foundation for pits. They were willing to help me with my baby when we lost our home not to long ago. (773)599-3850
      info@bickellfoundation.org

      Like

  11. I have a Vizsla named Rocky. She is the sweetest thing ever! Because she has a red nose and a semi-boxy head, people often mistake her for a pittie. At the dog park people will shy away from her and keep their dogs on a short leash. When I walk her on the trail most people won’t even stop to pet her even though she wags her entire body! I’ve resorted to muzzling her just to make uninformed dumbasses feel safe! It makes me so sad that people are so afraid of pits that they can’t even tell which is what!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. She probably feels punished when you muzzle. Don’t let idiots make you feel like you need to make your dog uncomfortable to make THEM comfortable. They’re idiots.

      Like

  12. We LOVE Ray from Ibiza Spain. Thanks for sharing your experience. I try to teach people about this breed taking my 2 Staffys to work every day…and 90% of the people tell me “they’re so sweet…but they look like a pitbull” and I answer “they’re part of the pitbull and they’re sweet exactly like pitbulls” The only think bigger than a pitbull heart is the ignorance of a pitbull hater.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are 100% right with your quote “The only thing bigger than a pit bull heart is the ignorance of a pit bull hater” I absolutely love this and hope you don’t mind if I use it. They are the most gentle, loving, goofy, stubborn and sweetest souls. Would never have another breed!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. We are a proud Staffy family! I have 4 children ages 11 down to 3….and my Staffordshire thinks they are her children. She lives for us & we live for her!

      Like

  13. I love this, I have a genuine question though. Why are you saying “pit bull type dog”, he’s an American Pit Bull Terrier, sing it loud and sing it proud. The breed is something to be cherished and preserved. I’m not ashamed to say my dog is an APBT, and I never say “pit bull” when people ask me what breed my dog is.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. because Ray is not a true APBT…he is a mix of several different breeds. His sister Layla has some dalmation in her. Merle has some cocker spaniel. Oliver had Boston Terrier. That is the whole point in the absurdity of Breed Discrimination. Pill Bull is not a breed. It is a type of dog that can encompass up to 20 different breeds.

      Like

      1. I mean “pit bull” has only been used as a general term up until recently. How it’s turned into that I don’t know. I didn’t know Mike Vick faught mutts, but if that was determined by canine DNA tests, they’re notoriously scattered. I’m sure I could get one of those DNA tests on my papered APBT and get the same determinations. This is in no way confrontational, I just want the APBT breed seperated from this “pit bull” grouping, as they’re a specific breed with a definitive look, temperament, and spirit- quite exactly like the dog pictured and talked about above. And Iove that breed with all my heart and have dedicated my life to it, as you clearly have too.

        Like

      2. Most of them aren’t “true” pit bulls anymore, though. Ray, and the other muttly beautiful pitties, are the most profound examples of how these “bully” types bounce back. Especially in the face of sensationalist media “reporting” of pit bull maulings and attacks, it’s important that we shove in people’s faces the good of the breed – even just a sliver.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. I don`t know why you are having such a hard time with this.I have 2 Staffordshire Bull Terriers and that`s what it says on their KC papers.Whether this dog is an APBT or not is not the point.He was saved from the fighting pits,he was used to fight as a lot of other breeds are.Get over yourself!!

      Liked by 1 person

  14. I LOVE YOU RAY💋 YOUR BREED IS AWSOMTASTIC 💖 MY HEART, SOUL, AND VERY EXISTSANCE IS TO PROTECT YOU AND YOUR BROTHERS. IT BREAKS MY HEART THAT HUMANS ARE SO HATEFUL 😟 I HAVE 2 GROWN CHILDREN, AND THEY TOO, FIGHT FOR YOUR CAUSE. HUGS, KISSES AND MORE HUGS AND KISSES 💋 PEACE, LOVE & SERINITY 💞

    Liked by 1 person

  15. What a lovely, lovely story, this dog and many others like him are well loved pets and do not deserve the bad publicity this breed gets. Well done to anyone who rescues one!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I hav a pit named Baldor and he has never bn a fighting dog or anything but I teared up so much frm this story because baldor luvz ppl so much and everywhere we go ppl adore him like crazy and he luvz eva minute of it….he takes care of lil baby kittens and is so gentle and caring wit my baby nephew who only few months old…..I thot of how many pits will never hav the chance to b loved and show their love and grow old and happy….they need our help…im so greatful u put this story out there to help change their lives….my baldor has already changed so many minds just n my family….I hope he and ur pit can change many more

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I have a formerly abused Pitt mix, she has no aggression toward anybody or any animal. She tucks her tail in fear until I tell her it’s OK, and to go say hi, she has her issues, if you raise your hand fast, she will flinch, she does not beg, is housebroken, I am not a dog person, but have had Bella for 6 years since I rescued her, she was being beat to death by the boyfriend of her owner, he was hurting her through Bella. I also rescued a Pitt mix, Roxy. My best friend adopted her, Roxy is now 16 years old, Another friend of mine has 6 Pitts, they are all fixed and part of the family, I also fostered a Pitt a few years ago. I will own another Pitt with no problem, they are good dogs and smart dogs, Really pitt haters, a Chihuahua will turn mean if you mistreat it enough, and animal will.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. I have a challenge for the Pit Bull haters. Get out from behind your keyboard and volunteer at an open admission shelter. Leave you preconceived ideas behind and just go and help some dogs. After six months make a list of the dogs you liked the best. I did, and all but one of the dogs on my list is a Pittie.
    One of the 28 dogs we received from a hoarding seizure was a ten years old Pit Bull who had been born into the hoarding situation, had lived his whole life in a small cage, and was terrified of people. This dog taught our other dog, who could not live with any other animal, that having a canine companion is a good thing. This dog has been paying it forward ever since because he made it possible for us to foster and save 7 other dogs beginning with a dog aggressive Brittany.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. The day I met Ray (and you) I was camped out in our rental car in front of the Village knowing it was your routine to go there around lunch. I felt like a groupie waiting for a rock star at the stage door. What I actually found and met, was better than a rock star-I met a sweet little dog. That’s it. Not an abused former fighting dog, but someone’s loving companion; a label buster; a sweet quiet dog who loves car rides and simply loves life and his mama.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. I read a story about the Vick dogs and how PETA and several other so called experts recommended that they be put down because they were beyond rehabilitation. I am greatful for those who stopped that and for people like you who aren’t afraid to accept these rehabbed dogs into your family. My dog was attacked by a pittie, but I do not hat him, I sympathize with him for having bad owners. Thanks for sharing your story. ❤ 🐶

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Don’t forget folks, part of the reason so many Pit Bulls are in shelters is do to the law being enforced declaring pits as dangerous and banning them from cities and towns around the country. I use to own both Dobermans and German Shepherds and people would warn me not to get either breed because of their aggressive nature. I can say they were the most loyal and protective dogs I ever had. I would own a Pit Bull in a heart beat if Denver were to get rid of the law restricting Pits from living in the city.
    Please tell Ray, The Victory Dog’s, family that I admire their courage, love, and compassion for their sweet baby Ray, and for the breed in general. I truly loved reading Ray’s story! Peace be with you and Ray.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amen Nancy! I have worked in two different animal shelters here in Sioux Falls, SD & the law here is not against owning Pits, but adopting them out is prohibited! Okay to sell them but not adoptable from a shelter? How crazy is that?! So, until a Pit Rescue Organization came to town, we had to put these beautiful animals to sleep! The reality is there is no such thing as a ‘No Kill’ Shelter! Myth. I also had a Doberman when I owned my home & my homeowner’s insurance was going to raise my premium! I invited the agent out to meet ‘Daisy’ & she nearly licked him to death! Problem solved. Perhaps ironically, while working in the stray dog & Biter area of the Humane Society, I came in one morning to find a little rat terrier {smaller than one of my cats!} in the biter area. I thought it was a practical joke. Until I saw the photos of what this dog had done to a man’s face! Several hundred stitches were needed to repair his face! I had to use a security gate to transfer him to a clean kennel!
      I agree, I love the story about Ray, the Victory Dog!

      Like

      1. Sioux Empire Pit Rescue is an amazing group doing great work in SF. I didn’t realize the SF shelter wouldn’t adopt out pitties. That surprises me, as I always liked working with them. I adopted one of my birds there.

        Like

  22. I’d like to own a pit bull (or pit bull type) someday too. Too bad we have a type of BSL here too in Germany (except for one rational state, that I unfortunately don’t live in), that requires a special license and extra taxes to own one.

    I do have a question about Ray and other Vick dogs though. I know they’re super good with people, especially kids, but what about other dogs? Are they still ok with seeing other dogs? You only mention people. I’ve heard of a lot of former fighting dogs that are great with people but sadly can’t handle seeing other dogs anymore.

    Like

    1. When every dog you’ve ever met is intent on killing you, it makes you frightened and defensive of other dogs. So that is something that has to be worked on. One of the items on the CGC test is to walk up to another person with a strange dog. Ray was able to pass that item because his dad spent hours parallel walking him with other dogs. Ray is fine with other dogs just feet away from him IF they don’t react to him negatively. Ray lives with another rescued fighting dog, and when we brought him home we had 3 other dogs. Cherry lives with another dog and cat. Handsome Dan lives with kids, cats, and dogs, although he can be selective. Little Red lives with a whole pack of smaller dogs and Oscar is best buddies with an itty bitty dog. So yes, with patience and care, fighting dogs can learn to at least tolerate other dogs. Ray’s biggest problem is he has zero dog social skills.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Daniela, I can’t speak about Ray specifically, because I’m fairly new to “his” blog, but I do know that other “Vicktory” dogs have had a mixed response. Two former fighting dogs from that heinous place – Wallace and Hector – were both integrated happily into a multi-dog household, and did amazingly well. In fact, Hector went on to become a certified therapy dog, and was happy around both humans and dogs. On the other hand, Handsome Dan does have some dog-to-dog issues, and his amazing guardians have to work hard to ensure that every dog in their household is safe and secure while still receiving plenty of love. In short, it depends on each individual dog’s background – much as it would for any rescue dog, regardless of whether they were a fighting dog or not!

      Sadly, neither Wallace or Hector are still with us, having both succumbed to cancer. You can still like their FB pages, however, and learn about their past achievements post-rescue. Handsome Dan also has his own FB page, and this may well answer many of your concerns as his guardians are very honest about the challenges they face with a former fighting dog in their household.

      In short, my answer is to never write off any dog based on their history. Every dog is different, and your attitude to that dog may be what makes the difference, not their past 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  23. Ray is a “Patron Saint of Forgiveness” like the survivors of dog fighting we are guardians to here in Cebu, Philippines. We will never forget Ray and the love and forgiveness he has for our species that have abused him in the past. Kidney disease is also common to the dogs that have passed under our care and I believe it has to do with the treatment they got under the dog fighters. Your article touched my heart as I understand your love for Ray and empathize what you are going through. What I have learned in caring for dogs like Ray is that when it’s time for them to cross the rainbow bridge, what is so significant is that there are people like you who have shown him love, respect, and honor, unlike his “brothers and sisters” who did not while under the dog fighting world. Big hugs to Ray from a “pit bull mama” and all his “brothers and sisters in spirit” here in the Philippines.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Firstly I want to say I admire you for taking Ray in and giving him the love he deserves.

    I too have a misunderstood breed. My gorgeous Marley is an amstaff. We took him in after his former owner decided he couldn’t keep him. I was a bit reluctant at first, not because of his breed but because I wasn’t sure I could give a dog what it needed. But I sit here with his heavy head snoring on my lap and I know I wouldn’t be without him now.

    It breaks my heart every day when I am walking him and I see people cross the street to get away from him just because he looks at them. He loves people and he thinks all people are as loving towards him as his family. He just wants to say hello, and maybe see if you have a ball to play with. You don’t have to flinch when he goes near you.

    My son was terrified of dogs before we got Marley. He had a bad incident with an over excited and not well controlled Highland Terrier at the park when he was younger. But Marley was so patient but persistent in making my son play with him that they are now the best of friends. It’s done wonders for my son’s confidence. Marley has been such good therapy for all of us.

    I’ve learnt so much about the bully breeds since I got him and I love them all. We must stand up for these dogs and take a stand against those who hurt and abuse them. Like humans, dogs are the product of their upbringing.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. I have rescued and saved many pits and rotties.. they are the most loving dogs, i can’t even call them dogs.. they are my furbabies.. they are gentle and kind.. loyal and full of love and wonder… i will defend and fight for them.. so they don’t have to… any dog can be aggressive if treated badly.. any dog can have a bad day .. i have raised my children and grandchildren with these loving creatures.. and can’t think of anything better than the love of these gentle animals..

    Liked by 1 person

  26. I would love to own pit bull! Unfortunately BSL is rampant in rural Iowa! It is highly unlikely that this prejudicial legislation will be rescinded anytime soon. I hope that attitudes will change and that these beautiful dogs will someday be welcome in our homes!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Thank you for such a beautiful, touching tribute to Ray. Thank you for sharing how he has changed your life. Thank you for loving him, it’s what he needed most and I know he is grateful to you and your family.

    I have never met a pitbull that I didn’t like. All of them were gentle, sweet, and so silly wanting attention. How anyone who breathes can harm them or any living creature is something I will never be able to comprehend. It sickens me to read and hear of the stories. I agree, Vick should still be in prison along with all others like him.

    There so many wonderful people working to educate the public on pitbulls. As we all work together, change will come.

    My God bless all of us in those efforts!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. “I have never met a pitbull that I didn’t like. All of them were gentle, sweet, and so silly wanting attention. How anyone who breathes can harm them or any living creature is something I will never be able to comprehend. It sickens me to read and hear of the stories.” You captured the feelings of every pittie owner and every advocate out there with that paragraph. I really feel the reason we can’t comprehend it because what these pit bull haters, and fighters, and abusers is so wrong. I know I have a problem wrapping my head around it. I am so glad Ray has had his chance to show the world what a great dog he is. This is a very sweet and touching story and just the kind of thing that makes me just want to advocate and rescue more.

      Like

  28. Such a great article. I’ll openly admit I was anti- pit bull for along time. Not because of the articles or rep but because any I met I wasn’t impressed by.

    But then I got a call one day to see if I’d take a 3.5 month old pit/lab mix being used as an anger release to surprise surprise a 19 year old (not all are irresponsible but this was your typical). The pup would do something wrong he’d be thrown into the wall so hard he’d break drywall. The girlfriend knew I’d know how to help.

    I picked him up every intent to turn him over to the no kill shelter I volunteer at. Knowing the shelter manager does beyond amazing with screening homes so he’d be safe. I had no intent of owning one. Well he went in the house like puppies do. When I walked over to clean it he sat next to it and shook uncontrollably just waiting to get beat. I picked him up and bawled. 3.5 months and terrified. That was over a year ago needless to say he never made it to any shelter. He’s by far the best dog we’ve ever had. He loves people and life. He actually lives with my parents who he bonded too. We had to lie to my dad on his breed at first and now its my dad pride and joy. I bought a house with a fenced in yard and had to have one of my own. Lucy is my pit/boxer mix who I never had a dog to read me like she does. Shes such a great dog and was crated her first 7 months of life. Now shes so spoiled.

    I wish more people gave the breed a chance and more of the positive of the breed would be seen. People really are missing out on a loyal dog.

    Rays just as lucky to have you.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I should add. We live with 5 cats and one other dog. The cats rule both dogs and I have many pics of the dogs sleeping on the ground and cats on the dog beds. I never picture either of them just “snapping”.

      I am the pitty advocate I said I’d never be.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. I too am a former – not hater, but not a fan – until I met one. My daughter adopted an 8 week old little pup who immediately won our hearts. We’re a Lab family and here came this little (she was the runt) fun loving bulldozer… Fast forward 7 years, our daughter rents and she couldn’t have her dog. Mona has been with us for several years and she is hands down the smartest, sweetest, most amusing dog we’ve ever known. At 7 years old she still thinks she’s a puppy. She doesn’t run – she romps. She has the greatest personality quirks: when she gets excited, she MUST find cardboard to rip up; she loudly protests the “roll over” trick but loves doing the army crawl; when scolded she puts herself to bed and looks at us with the most hurt expression in her eyes … She’s an awesome ambassador for her “breed” – even the most die hard anti-pit people who’ve met her end up wanting to take her home. But what many just cannot accept, and the media feeds this stereotype, is that Mona is NOT the exception. Rather, she is what pit bulls are.

      Liked by 3 people

    3. My sweet Rosie’s first “family” crated her almost all the time for years – gave her no enrichment or love. Her second “family” used her for breeding and never let her inside their house – no love there either. Now, she’s my 80-pound “Baby Huey” and loves lounging on the couch watching television with us. When I read the vitriol from pit bull haters who call for the destruction of all bully breeds, including, of course, my sweet Rosie, it makes me want to weep. What is wrong with these people that they cannot understand the root causes of dog attacks and not just “pit bull” attacks, but ALL dog attacks? Their mindsets are just incomprehensible. Meanwhile, Rosie and my other pit and a half just keep on truckin’. Thanx, everyone, for your beautiful stories. Keep loving your babies.

      Liked by 2 people

  29. Some wise words to Pit Bull haters about judging. Why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own. How can you think of saying, to your friend Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye, when you can’t see past the log in your own eye. Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye, then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye. It doesn’t matter if I am talking about an animal instead of a human being. Do not judge by what you hear in the news as they often make matters worse just so they can sell a paper…a paper full of half truths or none at all.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Very well said, I love the breed! My little pittie girls health is failing and her time is limited (brain cancer). Enjoy everyday to the fullest, extra love, and cuddles. Give Ray some kisses from me as well!

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Well said, I don’t own a pit bull, but I would in a heart beat, I love them!! I’m ashamed to admit that I used to believe they could be dangerous, but then I got smart and did my research, spent time with the breed and fell in love! I know a lot of pit bull owners and their dogs are amazing, wonderful and lovable family members, regardless of their background, all rescue dogs too!

    I’m glad Ray was saved from that awful situation and has had a chance to live his life with people who love him! I wouldn’t hesitate to kneel down to his level and give him a big hug!!
    It’s very sad to see how many pit bull type dogs are in shelters, it breaks my heart! I adopted a dog who is dog reactive, he doesn’t not like any other dogs, I couldn’t own a second…or third..like I would like. I wanted a pit bull, I had my mind set on adopting, but I went to the shelter and oddly, there weren’t many there, one was on hold an the other…well, he very aggressive when he saw my child..my guess is he wasn’t kid friendly nor was he raised properly..poor guy..but I saw him very calm with adults..a work in progress no doubt, hopefully he got his forever home with people who were able to give him proper training too.
    I ended up with a fluffy med sized mutt, his eyes were sad and scared, he looked at me begging to be saved and that was it for me!

    I hope Ray stays healthy live to be a very very old age..we all know that he is happy now. Vick on the other hand, should be prison!

    Liked by 1 person

  32. So well written. As I have always said, it isn’t the dog that’s the problem it’s the owner. Don’t hate pitbulls, hate the people who abuse them, starve them and send them into fighting rings. They are who needs to be ban!

    Liked by 2 people

  33. Beautiful story, and so true. I have seen so many pits and pit mixes in the shelter where I worked, and now volunteer. Almost everyone of them is playful, energetic, and so full of love. And yet the shelter is full of them because of irresponsible owners. I could understand completely if they didn’t want to be with a human, and yet they do.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Very beautifully worded, I have a rednose pit I found by the side o the road he was only 3 weeks old and very very sick at that time. I brought him home kept him warm, had to force feed him goats milk till the coming up Monday so I could get him to the vet. The doctor said he didn’t see how I kept him alive over the weekend because he was so sick and we found out he had hook worms Bad, we battled those nasty things for 3 months but he made it. Now my baby boy Levi is a year old and full of life and love and he doesn’t ever meet a stranger he loves everyone! He’s the best dog I have ever owned and I wouldn’t give him up for the world! Thank you God for giving me Levi! He’s my world and my one and only! I’d love to have more just like him!
      Lee & Levi
      Thank you!

      Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s