Not Dog Problems….People Problems


Has no one else noticed that the vast majority of “pit bull” attacks have been caused by dogs running at large?   News flash:  Responsible owners do not let their dogs roam at will.  Bad things can happen when a dog is out on his/her own.  And owners who care about their companions don’t take this chance.  The sheer fact that these dogs are unsupervised and uncontained should be the first clue that this is an owner issue.

Unlike the BSL fanatics, I don’t believe we have a breed problem.  I think that we may well have a people problem.  According to the study released a couple of years ago, the main causative reasons for serious and/or fatal dog attacks had little to do with breed…but much to do with human failings.

  • Dogs running at large
  • Dogs chained or kenneled in the yard with little or no human interaction
  • Dogs who are untrained
  • Dogs who are unsocialized
  • Dogs who are abused/neglected
  • Dogs who are not considered family members but who are guard, protection or yard dogs
  • Dogs who have never developed a positive relationship with humans

We fail dogs every day.  Many are abused, neglected, starved, chained, beaten and unsocialized.  But just as problematic are the owners who coddle, spoil and neglect to train their dogs.  Dogs are not people.  Dogs don’t speak human languages.  Dogs are amazing companions, but humans have to be willing to do the right thing for and by them.

Bad owners will be bad owners until they decide to change.  It doesn’t matter if pit bull type dogs are banned.  Bad owners will just get another dog.  A lab forced to live his life at the end of a chain, beaten and abused, is just as dangerous as any dog the haters want to ban.

We need safe communities.  We need to know our children aren’t in danger from vicious dogs.  So…instead of putting our money and efforts into breed bans, why don’t we work towards passing laws that will have lasting consequences for all dogs?

  • Pass abuse/neglect laws that have some teeth in them, and enforce them.  Abused/neglected dogs are much more likely to have behavioral problems.
  • Anti-chaining ordinances.  Some countries state that if a dog is chained outside for more than an hour, it is considered animal abuse.  But aside from that, we KNOW chained dogs are more deadly than ones who are not.
  • Free or low cost spay/neuter services.  Unneutered male dogs cause most dog attacks.  And although some people think that mandatory spay/neuter laws are the way to go….they can actually make the problem worse.  Dogs will not receive critical socialization, training or medical care if the owners can’t afford to neuter their animal.  Instead, they will keep the animal hidden away, causing some major behavioral issues.
  • Free or low cost puppy socialization classes.  Dogs do not have the ability to easily generalize.  By getting them out and exposing them to new things when they are young and impressionable, you are helping make sure they are emotionally healthy and safe to be around.
  • Free or low cost training classes.  Dogs who are well-trained know what is expected of them.  Rarely do you see aggression problems in dog who have been lovingly trained.
  • Dog safety classes in every grade school  We KNOW that these classes have a profound affect on bite statistics.  Communities which have classes in their schools have seen an 80% drop in reportable dog bites….after one 1/2 hour class.  Every single child should know the basics of dog interactions.
  • Pet food banks.  Starving dogs are more likely to be reactive, especially if food is involved.  A food bank can help make sure dogs receive enough to eat.

There will always be people who point at a breed of dog and claim that is the problem.  If X breed was removed from society, all of our problems would disappear.  They are not being rational, critically thinking individuals. Instead of wasting time arguing with them….let’s work together to make lasting change that is good for all of us.


11 thoughts on “Not Dog Problems….People Problems

  1. Irresponsible owners cause more of the dog mauling incidents than any one breed of dog. If I see one more person post a video of her 3 year old jumping up and down on top of their dog, I swear I’ll scream. NO the dog does NOT like it. But he loves you and tries hard to please you, even at the expense of pain to himself. Pull your heads out of your butts, people! If you can’t be responsible about your dogs, for DOG’s sake, get a fish!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. In my mind there’s no doubt that terrible owners are the problem regardless of the type of dog. It’s not unlike kids… without any supervision and without ever being disciplined for misbehavior, it often times leads to trouble down the road. I visit a local park daily with my pit mix and always have her leashed even though she’s very well behaved off leash. The park requires dogs be leashed but there have been occasions when other dogs are off leash and have charged my dog, one time resulting in a fight. No doubt if my dog had been off leash, even though she’s never aggressive, she would have been blamed because she was a Pittie. I believe if you are a true Pittie lover you owe it to all Pit Bull type dogs to be a responsible owner not only to show what great dogs they can be, but also to help combat the unfair discrimination they suffer from. If you can’t or won’t do that, than maybe you need to consider another type of dog.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Great work.
      Thank you.
      These dogs are fitted to a cookie cutter
      Stereotype rendering them social
      Scapegoats. I wish training classes
      Weren’t so expensive. That expense is unfortunate.


  3. This is an article that everyone should read. I am an owner of a rescue dog, a Jack Russel that is not a social dog. I do not take him around other dogs, do not let people pet him. Had I known the problems this dog would have, i probably would not have adopted him, HOWEVER I did adopt him. So, I fee it is my responsibilty to take the steps to have him under control, and he is on medication for his outbursts via the Vet (who wears Angel wings – I swear!) Ralph was brought into my life for a reason – so I deal with it, not dump him in the shelter. My brother, sadly is trying to have his over a years old, not trained pit bull given away. I cried when I read his post on face book. I cannot understand why a family cannot dedicate themselves to training a dog, socializing him. It breaks my heart to know what this poor dog may be sent to.

    Liked by 1 person

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