My pets are overlooked in my BlogWorld; the joy they bring just isn’t as humorous as the humans currently occupying the house. But I think they are due their 15 minutes of fame. I also thought this would be the perfect chance to speak up for one who cannot speak for herself….
We are the proud owners of a rescued pitbull, LulaBelle. Right along with snakes and reptiles, these may possibly be the most misunderstood and misrepresented of creatures. We’re intelligent people, we knew what to expect when adopting her; but I am shocked the way she is consistantly treated as if she’s Al Pacino’s Tony Montana ["You want to play rough?"] I can’t help but want to shout from the rooftops from time to time: “She’s REAAAALLY NOT going to EAT anyone!!!!”
My last dog, Chase, was a golden retriever (or as I referred to him “Love of my life”). He ate up the adoration. Long before he was fully grown, it became clear he did not realize he was a dog, and I wasn’t going to break it to him…considering I was the one feeding him off my plate and baby-talking to my “Chaser-doodle-puppy-wuppy”. This quintessential family pet was the constant sidekick everyone gathered around at each soccer game to pet and spoil.
This is not something you can do with our Lula. I baby talk to “Lula-Petula-Spunky-Chunk” (she’s abit pleasantly plump) and people gawk as if I’m petting one of the Hounds of Hell from a Vincent Price movie.
Crowds part like the Red Sea and glare as if the other end of the leash holds an escaped Orc from Middle Earth instead of a loving family member.
We do not want to cause panic (though it’s sometimes tempting) so poor Lula stays home more often than not. It would not be responsible for me to suggest these are the perfect dogs for everyone; especially if considering a rescued animal that may have been abused. It is important to remember dogs are naturally pack animals, and when dealing with any larger breed owners need to train the dog well. If you do not assert yourself as the “alpha”, they will.
We know by scars and the heartless manner her ears were cut that Lula suffered abuse. The first few months were spent diligently monitoring every move and reaction, trying to assess her personality. We divided the house using baby gates to separate Lula and my eight pound cat any time we left - the kitty seemed genuinely terrified. We saw Tempest swat at Lula many times and assumed the aggression she was only reacting to something the dog did. I’m sure there is an animal translation of “I’m telling” or “She’s looking at me !”…..Until one night we came home from dinner to find the cat had jumped a gate into Dog Territory and they were lying next to each other when we walked in the door.
Yea, the cats a big faker. Animal translation: “Liar, liar pants on fire”.
And now we’ve reached the “Did you know” portion of the program:
The term “Pitbull” is actually a generalization, usually referring to any of the Bull Terrier breeds (or mixes of). Ours is actually a Staffordshire Bull Terrier.
German shepherds and Rottweilers have a bite of more force per inch than a pitbull.
Pitbull jaws do not “lock”, they are the same as any other dog.
They make terrible guard dogs. Unless their initial appearance scares an intruder, they are usually more eager to make a new friend. This makes them easily stolen, usually by the morons who fight them.
These dogs are rated very well as family dogs when raised in that environment; they are not “natural fighters”. And seeing how gentle ours is despite being abused, I shutter to think the level of violence it would take to turn one of these animals into a killer. Dog fighters are the very reason I would like to see Guantanamo Bay remain open.Sidenote: This is not Lula. I spent all afternoon trying to get her to frolic and smile at the same time so we had to call in a stunt dog.
I leave you with this last thought: When the American Temperament Testing evaluated dog breeds of all sorts; the most common pitbull breeds were rated in the same category as Bassett Hounds. Pitbulls were rated LESS aggressive than Chihuahuas, Schnauzer, and Collies. Yes, I realize the teeth are bigger, but face it… a bad attitude is a bad attitude!