Pit Bulls may be one of the most misunderstood dog breeds. Did you know that “Pit Bull” is actually a catchall term that refers to multiple breeds? This includes the American Pit Bull terrier, American bulldog, American Staffordshire terrier, Staffordshire bull terrier and the English bull terrier. Then there are mixed breed dogs with similar characteristics that are labeled as such.
The Pit Bull is a popular breed, particularly in the Central Valley. They are often overbred, trained to protect, or even trained for dog fighting. Over time, they have garnered a bad reputation with misconceptions about their demeanor: including naturally aggressive behavior, viciousness, and alpha personality. Sure, almost every dog breed can inherently have these same traits: so it’s more about how Pit Bulls are raised. Just like with German Shepherds or Golden Retrievers, there are Pit Bulls that are lap dogs, therapy dogs (Helen Keller owned one), even bomb-sniffing dogs. They can be docile, child friendly, and easily trained.
Let’s take a look at some fun Pit Bull facts that might just change your mind about this misunderstood breed:
Pit Bull Facts
- Both President Teddy Roosevelt and President Woodrow Wilson owned Pit Bull terriers.
- Pit Bulls have served as wartime soldiers and mascots, including Stubby, who went to war in France for 18 months during WWI. His service and acts of bravery — including saving his regiment from mustard gas attacks — earned him the rank of Sergeant, and he returned home to a hero’s parade.
- Famous Pit Bulls include the RCA dog named Nipper, the Buster Brown shoe mascot, and Petey, the canine companion of the adorable Little Rascals.
- Pit Bulls have an athletic build and are very agile, which allows many to climb fences with ease.
- Pit Bulls can be musically inclined. In fact, there was a Pit Bull grindcore band — named Caninus — which was fronted by two Pit Bull lead singers, who barked their lyrics.
- At one point in history, Pit Bulls were considered trustworthy enough with children to be called nurse maids or nanny dogs.
- Many puppies that are identified as Pit Bulls begin life with a very wrinkled forehead, which they outgrow as they age.
- A test conducted by National Geographic in 2008 on three popular dog breeds showed that the bite force of Pit Bulls came in last, behind both German Shepherds and Rottweilers. Note: ( Pit Bulls have lock jaws) This is a myth that has been spread for years.
- According to the American Temperament Test Society, Pit Bulls pass their temperment test—conducted by a trained handler—87% of the time. That ranks them as 4th best of 122 breeds tested, meaning they are one of the most affectionate and least aggressive dogs.
- Michael Vick owned 51 Pit Bulls at the time of his arrest for dog fighting. Thirty of those dogs have been re-trained and are in loving homes, while four more have gone on to become therapy dogs.
- VetStreet.com has ranked the American Pit Bull terrier as one of the top three favorite dog breeds in 28 U.S….Pit Bulls are the most euthanized breed.
Given this last fact, it’s a sad commentary that Pit Bulls are the most euthanized breed in the United States. In fact it’s disheartening and something we hope to change by enlightening you about this popular type of dogs.
We hope that having read a bit more factual information about Pit Bulls, and now knowing that they can make very good pets, that your outlook has changed to a more favorable one. We certainly hope so!
Should you be interested in adopting a Pit Bull, we always have Pitties in our Adoption Center waiting for their forever homes. Check out our website or visit us today!