Studies have shown us that children who have parents who do not raise them well have challenges in life. If parents don’t guide, educate and supervise them, they grow up not knowing how to behave in society. If parents beat them they grow up thinking aggression is an appropriate response when someone angers you. If the parents do not provide adequate nutrition, it can have long lasting physical and mental effects. If parents don’t give them a curfew or care where they are, children can easily find themselves on the wrong side of the law. If parents are too doting or permissive, children do not develop empathy and can suffer from self-absorption issues. It has absolutely nothing to do with the race or ethnicity of the family and everything to do with the actions of the parents. We know that, we believe that, and we place the blame where it belongs….on the parents.
Why then, don’t we understand that the exact same thing holds true with dogs? The people who have the most influence on a dog are the ones who feed and care for him. If they are violent towards the dog, he can develop aggression issues. If they allow him to run at large, he can get himself into a lot of trouble. If they do not train or socialize him properly he can become a danger to other people or animals. If they do not provide adequate food or medical care the dog can develop major health and behavioral issues. If they chain him in the yard, he has no way to develop positive human relationships, and he becomes a dangerous dog. It has nothing to do with the breed of dog and everything to do with the actions of the humans.
Bad parents can cause children to become a liability to society. Bad owners can cause dogs to become a liability to society. Unfortunately….it is often the same people causing both issues. Until we can understand that, there will continue to be problems with both children and dogs. We need to put the blame squarely on the shoulders of the adults in charge. Stop blaming the innocent, and start holding the people causing the problems responsible for their actions.