Pitbulls and Children

Kelly - posted on 02/12/2009 ( 933 moms have responded )

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I just wanted to see what everyones opinions were on having a pitbull around children?

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Yvette - posted on 03/07/2009

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I am a professional trainer and happen to love Pit bulls but you have to keep in mind that no matter how well a dog is trained there are certain things that come natural to some breeds...... for herding breeds.... herding -they will herd even their people and are most comfortable when everyone is in one room.



Labradors were bred for Retrieving from the water, hunting... Well you can train a Lab to walk through a flock of geese without seeing them, walk by a lake full of fish and ducks without jumping in to get one- but can you pull that natural instinct out of them and completely trust that if you are not around they won't hunt them down? NO, not by any means.



While Pit bulls (like all dogs & people) are ALL individually different, (some Pits can even be more docile than dogs of a much more universally desirable breed) you should not discount the fact that there is a component to the breed that may or may not surface during the life of the dog (many times it comes out very unexpectedly). Dogs for the most part all breeds will protect or watch over  the household members,  but keep in mind that children are regarded as siblings or equals to dogs Dogs do not normally respect them as leaders, so any dog can turn around and warn a child the way he would warn a dog that was annoying him (the dog may not have any intent to hurt the child but the damage can be devastating) You need to ask yourself if that's a risk, you are willing to take with a Pit.



My advise to you is to choose a dog breed that you know does not have aggression attached to it's name (fairly or unfairly for that matter) this will NEVER guaranteed the safety of your children or that the dog won't be aggressive however it will lessen the percentage of risk you are putting your children in.



In addition, spay/neuter early this minimizes behavioral issues that may arise &, make certain that your dog is well trained & socialized. Unfortunately, there are probably at least half a million homeless cats & dogs in the US, many of them a result of impulse buys without clear education to what the specific breed or possible mix of breeds might need or require to live happy stable lives.



For example... the larger the dog, the more exercise he will require. Exercise is much more than running around in a yard, they need to run, exercise their minds with structured play and need structured walks as well. Can they live without all of this? Sure, they can, but are they living the best life for them? Absolutely NOT. With so many homeless dogs in the world, I am sure that you can find one that will be a perfect fit for your family and lifestyle. Remember when getting a dog- you need to get what you "need" which is not necessarily, what you might "like" but it's the right thing to do for the dog AND for your family.



A great place to look for a dog is



there countless puppies & dogs being needlessly put to death for lack of homes (some shelters gassing 2 times a week (often full breeds & litters of puppies- Puppies are usually the ones to be killed first because of the costs required to Vet them). Teaching our children compassion to animals and educating them on the importance of not supporting needless killing of innocent animals, breeding and puppy mills (the #1 suppliers to pet stores) can make a difference in the future of many animals as well as the compassion and responsibility of our children.



To research breeds and the characteristics and requirements of each breed, there is a great tool on animal.discovery.com called "the breed selector".  It will take you through a series of  questions about what you are looking for in a dog and what your family's lifestyle is like then give you the best breed selections for your situation. Remember that getting a full breed is not important; however researching the breeds it might be mixed with to determine if it might be a good fit is



Last but not least, dogs like humans are NOT perfect so be patient with you dog give it what it needs.... love it and train it well and I am sure that adding it to your family will be one of the most rewarding experiences you can offer your family.



I wish you well with whatever choice you make.



 



Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole. - Roger Caras





 





 





 



 



 

Jackie - posted on 02/13/2009

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All pittbull owners say the same thing..."they are the sweetest dogs ever"  What a joke.  I will NEVER allow my kids to be around those aggressive dogs, along with all the other breeds of aggressive dogs.  I am afraid of her being around ANY dogs.  They are animals with animal instincs.  Pittbull owners who defend incidents and say that their dog would never do that, are a joke to me. 



And for those who say lots of other breeds of dogs hurt children...look at the statistics...it's speaks for itself.  Hopefully one of your children wont become one of those statistics.





23 U.S. fatal dog attacks occurred in 2008. Pit bull type dogs were responsible for 65% (15). Pit bulls make up approximately 2-9% of the U.S. dog population.

In 2008, only one U.S. citizen over the age of 3 was killed by a breed other than a pit bull. 74-year old Lorraine May was fatally mauled by her two dogs: an Australian shepherd-mix and a golden retriever-mix.

70% of the attacks occurred to children (11 years and under) and 30% occurred to adults (21 years and older). Of the children, half (8) occurred to ages 1 and younger.

39% of fatal attacks in 2008 involved multiple dogs; 9% involved chained dogs.

78% of the attacks occurred on owner property and 22% off owner property. All off property attacks (5) that resulted in death were attributed to pit bulls.

61% of the victims were male; 39% of the victims were female. Of the male victims, over half (8) were 3 years and younger.

In at least three fatal attacks, a grandmother was watching a child aged 2 and younger. Two of these attacks occurred in Las Vegas; both involved pet pit bulls.



 



Honestly...why take the risk?

Whitney - posted on 03/15/2009

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You know, a funny thing about pits...before they really got the bad rep from pit fighting and drug dealers, they were known as an extremely loyal, family-oriented dog. Anyone remember the Little Rascals series? That group of 5 to 8 year olds ran around with a beloved white dog named Petey, who routinely got them in, and out, of trouble. Anyone care to venture a guess as to what breed Petey was? Yup, Pit Bull. Betcha wouldn't see that on TV today. It's sad that they have such a bad rep. They're wonderful dogs. For reference, I wouldn't leave my four month old alone with ANY dog at this point regardless of breed. But I have two pits and they absolutely love her. They think she's a "puppy" too. =)

Emma - posted on 03/21/2009

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i have 3 kids, 7mths, almst 5yrs and 6.5yrs, i have always had pitbulls and i dont think that there is anything wrong with it. i have my dogs trained and adequately socialised and have never had a problem with them. they have all been protective and loyal to my kids, my kids have grown with them and will continue to do so.



pittys arent all bad, alot of people say they are dangerous, but you know what, all dogs are dangerous. it comes down to how you raise them. my dogs adore children and gosh, our pitty even plays with our rabbit lol

Becky - posted on 03/09/2009

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Quoting Melanie:



Quoting Zeida:

Futhermore, I would like to include this link. http://www.pitbullsontheweb.com/petbull/...
by the way, Boxer mix are not news worthy so its common for the breed to be mistaken to make it news worthy.





I took the test and picked it first time, its hard not to forget what the dog looked like that nearly killed your son.






I would seriously think about getting a pitbull. My son was attacked by the next door neighbours dog. He had played with this dog many times, it co-slept with its parents and went to obedience training, that didnt stop it from going into the "red zone" and ripping my sons face appart.  It took 3 grown men to get the dog off my son as when they bite they will not let go. Their jaws have 8 times the power of a germin shepards.






If you want i can find out the pics that the 3 plastic surgeons took before putting 300 stitches in his face if that will help you make up your mind.





You said it all. Your poor son and a lot are saying there the best dogs i just hope what happend to son does not happen to there children x

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Jocelyn - posted on 04/04/2011

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From www.dogbitelaw.com:

Studies indicate that pit bull-type dogs were involved in approximately a third of human DBRF (i.e., dog bite related fatalities) reported during the 12-year period from 1981 through1992, and Rottweilers were responsible for about half of human DBRF reported during the 4 years from 1993 through 1996....[T]he data indicate that Rottweilers and pit bull-type dogs accounted for 67% of human DBRF in the United States between 1997 and 1998. It is extremely unlikely that they accounted for anywhere near 60% of dogs in the United States during that same period and, thus, there appears to be a breed-specific problem with fatalities." (Sacks JJ, Sinclair L, Gilchrist J, Golab GC, Lockwood R. Breeds of dogs involved in fatal human attacks in the United States between 1979 and 1998. JAVMA 2000;217:836-840.) 

That being said, I think PBs are amazing dogs for the right people. Any dog can and will bite given the right circumstances. Every gun is a loaded gun, and every dog is a nip away from stitches or worse. Still not statistically dangerous as climbing in a car. I share my home with 3 intense border collies and one absolutely vicious jack Russell terrier. If it was between a border collie and a trained fighting Pitt bull, I'd take my chances with the Pitt. If you treat your dog with respect and love while providing them with a clear sense of their place in your pack, the breed doesn't matter. Vive les Dogs!

Nadine - posted on 03/07/2009

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I have to 2 pittbulls and they are both really great with my 4 months old son.

I was reading some of the posts on here and many of you have made a good point, dogs of any breed bahave the way they are raised.

Both my dogs are very overprotective of my son, and they would never hurt a child, or anyone for that matter

Lizzette - posted on 03/06/2009

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I used to have a pitbull mix and he was the sweetest, kindest, loving dog ever! I wish he was still with us. I have no problem with pitbulls and children. It really all depends on how you train it, if you train it to be aggressive then it will be aggressive. Pitbulls are not natural "killers" as everyone seems to protray them. They are only like that if they are trained to be that way. There are of course some dogs that are better with children and some dogs that are not. But it all comes down to how you train them.

Jillian - posted on 03/06/2009

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It's all about how you raise your dog.

I wouldn't go out and get a two year old pit.

[deleted account]

We have a 8 yr old Pittbull that we've had since he was a baby, and I must tell you that they are the most LOYAL, SWEET animals. They get such a BAD rap it's not even funny. Yes they can have some animal vs. animal agression towards other dogs or animals but not with humans. As always it depends on how it was raised. Our dog has never once hurt or done anything to my two children, the worst would be his tail "wips around" when he gets real excited and if you are a little kid and get whipped with that tail, THAT CAN HURT! lol but they learn real quick to stay away from his tail and we can't help if he gets excited, he's not doing it on purpose.



I wouldn't recommend leaving the Pitbull (or any dog) alone with your children but if it's your family pet, the I see nothing wrong with having it in the house and around the kids when you're home. I'VE HAD MORE PROBLEMS WITH LITTLE DOGS trying to come attack our dog and my MIL little Yorkie actually bit my daughter once.

Sara - posted on 03/06/2009

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Quoting Kelly:

Pitbulls and Children

I just wanted to see what everyones opinions were on having a pitbull around children?


It all depends on how its raised and his temperment.  they can be sweet as pie....or total opposite

Alice - posted on 03/06/2009

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i have two a boy and girl and we have had them since they were 7 days old. I also have a son who is 22 months old and they do really good with him. I think its in all how you raise them. They are verry laid back the girl i think she thinks she is human she is a lap pitbull.The boy he is play full to a point.he knows his bounderies he loves when the baby gives him his food.But i trust mine.Like i said its in all how you raise them.and im glade we got them so little becouse they grew up with the baby.

Rhonda - posted on 03/06/2009

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I have a red nose pit who is a bigger baby than all my kids were growing up....she pouts for attention. I do agree we hear an awful lot about attacks on the news concerning pits. But checking into it further you will see those have been trained to fight or have been treated cruel. They have been trained to be that way. The German Sheperd, a dog many people think is a good pet choice for their families, has also been labeled an attack dog but you rarely hear of them on the news because people do not train them to fight.....It's all in the raising, I truly believe that!

[deleted account]

Pit Bulls are wonderful typically very active pets.ce level with your child However they are one of the "gladiator" type dogs that require a firm hand. Proper training and supervision.

To let a baby pull and tug on any animal is neglectful and foolish. Your testing that dogs

tolerance level with your child...........why? For one thing respect for all living things should be taught from the earliest age. Common sense is something i guess some people need to start taking classes for. Like parenting, driving, and gun safety. If Michael Vicks pitty's can be rescued and rehabilitated with the right handlers I don't see why the local shelter dog can't be. Here is a link to people that really know what they are talking about.



http://www.badrap.org

Michelle - posted on 03/06/2009

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Quoting Melissa:



I wouldnt trust them around my kids. If your looking for a good dog for kids I would go with a lab. I have a yellow, chocolate, and black lab and they are so great with the kids. If their is a doupt dont do it.





Labs are also great dogs, but since they are retrievers, they are mouthy and more likely to bite.  All breeds can be good or bad depending on how they are brought up and trained.  Check the stats on dog bites by breed and you might be suprised.

Michelle - posted on 03/06/2009

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We had a pit bull durring my pregnancy and she was very protective of me and the baby after she arrived, but not in a bad way.  The dog and baby absolutely loved each other and played alomst everyday for years until the dog passed.  We currently have two pitbulls and a rat terrier.  My daughter is 13 now and the pitbulls sleep in bed with us and snuggle on the couch.  We call them love puppies.   We never have a problem with them in the least with kids, visitors, or other animals. 



One time a friend brought her toddler over and she was "petting" (acctually more like hitting) one of the pitbulls.  The Dog just say there and squinted her eyes and looked at me like "could you please do something about this, but if not oh well."  If raised with love, they turn into love puppies.

Shea - posted on 03/06/2009

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Hi! Well In my opinion and experience pitbulls can be just as loving as any other dog. I believe it is how they are raised. A good friend of mine raises/breeds them and let me say gentle creatures! It's all in the handling and blood lines. If we teach our children to love and respect our animals a lot less bad treatment "innocent" or not wouldn't occur.

Jenna - posted on 03/06/2009

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I have an 11 year old pitbull and raised 3 girls up with him in the house.My 4 year old plays wth him like he is her horse and lays on him and pets him without problems. He is very docile and I am a firm believer it is al in how you raise the dog and where he was before you got him. If he has been trained around other pits who are hostile there is a chance he will be too. But if you got him from a responsible breeder and they do not have hostile or cage only dogs you should be ok. Remember it is for your family- you have to make the choice,

Melanie - posted on 03/06/2009

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And FYI all my son did was hold a baloon on a string that he got that day. He was not ner the dog, the dog ran up to him.

Melanie - posted on 03/06/2009

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And FYI all my son did was hold a baloon on a string that he got that day. He was not ner the dog, the dog ran up to him.

Melanie - posted on 03/06/2009

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Quoting Zeida:

Futhermore, I would like to include this link. http://www.pitbullsontheweb.com/petbull/...
by the way, Boxer mix are not news worthy so its common for the breed to be mistaken to make it news worthy.


I took the test and picked it first time, its hard not to forget what the dog looked like that nearly killed your son.



I would seriously think about getting a pitbull. My son was attacked by the next door neighbours dog. He had played with this dog many times, it co-slept with its parents and went to obedience training, that didnt stop it from going into the "red zone" and ripping my sons face appart.  It took 3 grown men to get the dog off my son as when they bite they will not let go. Their jaws have 8 times the power of a germin shepards.



If you want i can find out the pics that the 3 plastic surgeons took before putting 300 stitches in his face if that will help you make up your mind.

Melissa - posted on 03/05/2009

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I wouldnt trust them around my kids. If your looking for a good dog for kids I would go with a lab. I have a yellow, chocolate, and black lab and they are so great with the kids. If their is a doupt dont do it.

Shantel - posted on 03/05/2009

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I have 2 kids...11 and 20mos.  I also have 2 pits 1 1/2yrs old!! My youngest climbs all over them!! Feeds them treats!! kisses and hugs them.. I have to believe it is in how any animal is raised as far as temperment goes!!

[deleted account]

I would love to get a pit bull but most places they are allegal because of the way people think of them. It is all in the way you train them. The ones go through windows, fences probable have never been around other people and animals and that is why they act the way the do, they are just protecting their property. Any dog you get you need to train to be around your kids and family and they also need to be taught to be around other dogs, people, kids. We have a 50 lb. border collie that was 5 yrs old when my daughter was born, even tho he thinks he is a lap dog I never left him with our daughter until she learned that she couldn't pull on his tail, ears, hair or she could get hurt. we now have a 2 yr old Husky/border collie mix that is the best with her but I still won't let them alone together because she is still in her puppy stages.. you just need to make sure you train and socialize your dog no matter what the breed.

Heather - posted on 03/05/2009

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Plus, I grew up with pits - there is a lot of negative info out there though.

Heather - posted on 03/05/2009

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All I have to say is watch Ceasar Milan on the "Dog Whisperer" on Nat.Geo. channel!

Theresa - posted on 03/05/2009

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great dog that is if you treat them well. i have 2 and half year old pitt and my daughter is 3 and they grew up together. she is very protective of my daughter. and she is a great friend to her.

Erica - posted on 03/05/2009

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I work in the Veterinary world...There are breeds that were "USED" to be bred for fighting and aggresion and there still are some breeds that you should research before getting and become educated on. Pitbulls are one of the sweetest breeds, But just like any "bully" breed or Terrier breed you have to work with them, train them. They are a very powerful breed and can do damage if prevoked, but so can any breed for that matter. Puppies are always easier when brought into the home AFTER your child is born. And if you have a toddler same thing. Puppies are easier to train and work with and will better tolerate your children later on in life. Not saying an older dog wouldnt learn but it is harder to train and older dog who is already set in their ways. Good luck but dont listen to the hype of "pitbulls are a dangerous breed". they are who you make them and I will tell you personally working with all animals....Chihuahua's seem to be one of the worst breeds for biting and being over protective. Ironic right? we at my clinic call them Land Sharks...LOL

Amy - posted on 03/05/2009

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Quoting Kelly:

Pitbulls and Children

I just wanted to see what everyones opinions were on having a pitbull around children?



I have three children and a pitbull that live in the house. They are great together. It all depends on how they are raised (the kids and the dogs)





 

Amy - posted on 03/05/2009

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I personally do not think pits should be around anyone especially children. They turn so fast one minute they are loving and the nxt they kill your child or really injure someone

Rachael - posted on 03/05/2009

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Just a little information for you regarding the "Pit Bull".



The American Pit Bull Terrier was the most popular family dog during the first part of the 20th century. According to the American Canine Temperament Testing Association, 82.5%of the American Pit Bull Terriers that took the temperament test passed, compared to a 77% passing rate for all breeds on average. In the test a dog is placed in a series of confrontational situations. The first sign of aggression or panic is a failure of the test. Pit Bulls have achieved the fourth highest passing rate of all 122 breeds tested.



A MUST READ....PIT BULLS



1.) Since 1998, the breed most involved in fatal attacks has been the **********(don't want to put any other breeds on the spot), not the Pit Bull.



2.) Although there are no accurate or even near accurate census records for dogs in the U.S., in some populations pit bulls are estimated to comprise some 30-40% of the dog population, making it by FAR the most popular breed. Considering that there are an estimated 53,000,000 dogs in the U.S., and assuming that pit bulls make up 20% of that population, there would be approximately 10,600,000 pit bulls in our society. In 1998, five pit bulls were involved in 2 fatal attacks.

That is roughly ONE dog out of 2,120,000 - or .00004716 percent of the pit bull Population.



3.) Over the 32-year period from 1965-2001, Pit Bulls have been blamed for/accused of an average of 2.48 human fatalities per year.



4.) About 40 people (children) per year die by drowning in 5-gallon water pails. A person, during their lifetime, is 16 times more likely to drown in a 5-gallon water pail than to be killed by a Pit Bull.



5.) Approximately 50 children in the US are killed every year by their cribs - 25 times the number of children and adults killed by Pit Bulls.



6.) Approximately 150 people are killed every year by falling coconuts. Therefore, you are more than 60 TIMES MORE LIKELY to be killed by a PALM TREE than a Pit Bull.



7.) Each year, 350 people drown in their bathtubs. You are 151 times more likely to be killed by your bathtub than you are by a Pit Bull.



8) Every year, more than 2,000 children in the U.S. are killed by their parents or guardians either through abuse or neglect. A child is more than 800 times more likely to be killed by their caretaker than by a Pit Bull.



9) It is estimated that 5,000,000 dogs per year are killed in shelters. Since in many places pit bulls make up 30-50% of the shelter population, and are less likely to be considered for placement than any other breed, guessing that 25% of those dogs killed are pit bulls is a very conservative estimate. Therefore, it can be assumed that roughly 1,250,000 pit bulls are killed per year. Therefore - it is at least a HALF MILLION TIMES MORE LIKELY that a Pit Bull will be killed by a HUMAN than the other way around.



10) The average Number of people killed by a Pit Bull each year is 3.



11) It can be estimated that for every Pit Bull who kills, there are 10.5 MILLION that DON'T!



This country wants to ban/destroy 10.5 million innocent dogs for the actions of 0.94% of its category?



By the way yes, I own 2 Pitbulls, Bailey my male is 2yrs old and Tiva my female is 1 1/2 years old. Both of my dogs have been around childern of all ages. My children are 9 and 6, however my next door neighbor has 3 kids that are 5, 18months, and 6months. These kids have taken food right of the dogs mouths while they are eating and the dogs don't react in anyway. The dogs are very protective of all the children and have even gone to lenghts of standing in between the children and some one the dog has not seen before.



I think that you need to do your own research before you decide what kind of dog you are going to get for a family pet, I personally don't view my dogs as pets, but rather another family member. I wish you all the best.

Michelle - posted on 03/05/2009

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Quoting Kelly:

Pitbulls and Children

I just wanted to see what everyones opinions were on having a pitbull around children?


I was always a firm believer that pitbulls and children do not go hand in hand.  I think mostly because of all the horror stories that we see in the news or read in the paper.   I recently had family come to stay with us, they brough their pit with them.  To say that I was a little apprehensive is an understatement.  I soon realized that they can be loveable, affectionate dogs.  I must say though that I do still believe that pits and children do not go hand in hand. They are quick to defend themselves and are not trusting of new people,( from what I've seen)  They are definitely a one family dog and do not do well with the introduction to new  people.   Although most times their bark is worse than their bite, some times their bite is worse than their bark.  As a mother I do not recommend it.  I think they do make great pets, for adults only. 

Kristy - posted on 03/05/2009

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I have a 10mth old pitty/bull mastiff named jersey. she loves my 15mth old daughter marley. they r great mates. jersey is so gentle around bub. runs a-muck in the back yard but when marley is out there she slows down, its like she knows 2 b careful.it all depends on how u bring the dog up. teach ur kids 2 b gentle so they dont hurt the dog & i dont think u'll have a problem having that breed around.

Medusapain69 - posted on 03/04/2009

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I gew up with Staffy's, which is a breed of pit bull, and of course never had a problem. These types of dogs do have a bad reputation, but i fully believe that any dog can be dangerous if not brought up properly and not fully trained. Also dogs who have not grown up with children in the house, should not be exposed to children at all, you never know how they will react to a child. Its so sad the amount of stories you hear of grandparent dogs mauling a baby simply becuase they took this new small, noisy, smelly thing into his territory.



So in short, i believe any dog would be a good family dog, as long as its trained properly, and be carefull of any dog you dont know around your children, no matter the breed!

Maegan - posted on 03/04/2009

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I think the pitbull has a bad name because what the use to be used for! My best friend has a pitbull and she is awsome around kids. I agree with everyone that says it's the way you trian them. You train them to be mean and they will be mean. You teach them love and family and are kind to your dog any kind. If you did get a dog i would get a puppie so they can be raised with your children:)

Melanie - posted on 03/04/2009

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Some things, to me, are not worth the risk.  I would never have a pit around my kids no matter how well trained it was.  As well as most of other people's dogs.  We have a lab who is fantastic and very mellow, but we have to remember that dogs are animals. No matter how well trained they are, they don't have the reason or knowledge of consequince like we do.

Katrina - posted on 03/04/2009

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my partner and i breed pit bulls we have children i believe it is has nothing to do with the breed its how you raise them as long as they are full blood you well find that most of the dogs that have attacked children ARE NOT full blood pit bulls. i had no problems at all with our dogs they were well trained . we moved to a farm we had cattle and never once did they touch a cow . so i strongly argue that it doesnt matter what breed its how you raise them but do make sure that it is pure and like any dog dont leave them allow with children. iam sure that if you be a reponsible dog owner you wont have a problem.



My inlaws disagreed on us breeding pitbull however they had a fox terrier that bite our daughter on the face she required stitcher she was just running in th yard totally unprovoked she they were qiuck to change their turn.

Lucy - posted on 03/04/2009

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if you do really love pits the best thing to do is reserch the breeder, make sure that the parents are not being inter bred, in other breeds its almost standard to breed generation a with generation c.... this process ensures proper breed standards will be atained without the draw backs of genetic mutaion due to incest. but in pitbulls interbreeding of anykind causes a "short circut" in their thought process. which is why so many Pits that seem simply wonderful turn and attack. the best bet is to get a mixed breed We have a Pitbull/ australian shepard mix. He retained the features of a pit and the personality of a herding dog. very playfull and very loyal.

Lucy - posted on 03/04/2009

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if you do really love pits the best thing to do is reserch the breeder, make sure that the parents are not being inter bred, in other breeds its almost standard to breed generation a with generation c.... this process ensures proper breed standards will be atained without the draw backs of genetic mutaion due to incest. but in pitbulls interbreeding of anykind causes a "short circut" in their thought process. which is why so many Pits that seem simply wonderful turn and attack. the best bet is to get a mixed breed We have a Pitbull/ australian shepard mix. He retained the features of a pit and the personality of a herding dog. very playfull and very loyal.

Lucy - posted on 03/04/2009

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if you do really love pits the best thing to do is reserch the breeder, make sure that the parents are not being inter bred, in other breeds its almost standard to breed generation a with generation c.... this process ensures proper breed standards will be atained without the draw backs of genetic mutaion due to incest. but in pitbulls interbreeding of anykind causes a "short circut" in their thought process. which is why so many Pits that seem simply wonderful turn and attack. the best bet is to get a mixed breed We have a Pitbull/ australian shepard mix. He retained the features of a pit and the personality of a herding dog. very playfull and very loyal.

Lucy - posted on 03/04/2009

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if you do really love pits the best thing to do is reserch the breeder, make sure that the parents are not being inter bred, in other breeds its almost standard to breed generation a with generation c.... this process ensures proper breed standards will be atained without the draw backs of genetic mutaion due to incest. but in pitbulls interbreeding of anykind causes a "short circut" in their thought process. which is why so many Pits that seem simply wonderful turn and attack. the best bet is to get a mixed breed We have a Pitbull/ australian shepard mix. He retained the features of a pit and the personality of a herding dog. very playfull and very loyal.

Lucy - posted on 03/04/2009

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if you do really love pits the best thing to do is reserch the breeder, make sure that the parents are not being inter bred, in other breeds its almost standard to breed generation a with generation c.... this process ensures proper breed standards will be atained without the draw backs of genetic mutaion due to incest. but in pitbulls interbreeding of anykind causes a "short circut" in their thought process. which is why so many Pits that seem simply wonderful turn and attack. the best bet is to get a mixed breed We have a Pitbull/ australian shepard mix. He retained the features of a pit and the personality of a herding dog. very playfull and very loyal.

Nancy - posted on 03/04/2009

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Quoting Sylvia:



Let me preface my comments with my qualifications:  my husband and I have been raising Pits and pit mixes for about 15 years.  Before that my husband grew up around Pits.  We have done extensive research around the history and breeding of Pits.  We also have 2 small children, one of which was raised in a house with a Pit and Pit mix until they passed away.  That said:






1) People are afraid of Pits because they have very strong jaws and are a good sized dog which means that when they do attack (whether a flaw in breeding line or because they were trained to be aggressive towards people - I will admit that most are inherently aggressive towards other dogs) they do more damage than another breed.  They are also tenacious (part of their nature) so once they set a motion forward (ie the attack) they will hold on for dear life ergo their ferocious reputation






2) A well bred Pit (and by this I mean bloodlines, not training) who has been bred by an experienced trainer should be bred specifically with no people aggression.  Old-Pit-Breeders would deliberately weed out people aggressive dogs specifically because they needed to be able to handle their dogs in the fighting arena without fear of injury to themselves or spectators. (leave the pit-bull-fighting-is-evil comments out of this - I'm just mentioning for historical and breeding reasons).  Unfortunately because Pits were raised to be people-pleasers, they *can* and have been trained by more unscrupulous backyard breeders to be people aggressive to be guard dogs or just to give their owners "street cred".  The popularity of the breed also caused a huge upsurge in unskilled breeders who were just looking to make money and could care less about the long-term quality of the breed.






3.  When our dogs were involved in an altercation with another dog, I had NO fear of MY dog biting me when I tried to separate them.  Many times I have had to snatch my hand away from the jaws of the other (non_Pit) breed.






4.  That said, if you are considering getting a Pit Bull for your family - consider this:  Pits are very tenacious and intellegent animals.  Be very careful where you get the dog and know its background (if older) and bloodlines (if a puppy).  You should be knowledgable on dog training and always make sure the dog knows its rank in the household.  If you are unsure of your ability to handle this breed - I would recommend against getting a Pit as much as I would love to see a Pit get a loving home.  Getting a Pit if you are at all fearful or unsure of how to handle one is a little like buying a handgun for your home without knowing knowing how to or ever handling one.  If you can't own your Pit, your Pit will own you.






5.  Regardless of the breed of the dog, you should never leave a dog unattended with a child.






Hope this is helpful.





I, for one, am very grateful to have such an informed individual post to this topic. I truly hope everyone thouroughly reads you post & educates themself more about this breed of dog & all dogs for that matter, especially in a family situation!

Sylvia - posted on 03/04/2009

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Let me preface my comments with my qualifications:  my husband and I have been raising Pits and pit mixes for about 15 years.  Before that my husband grew up around Pits.  We have done extensive research around the history and breeding of Pits.  We also have 2 small children, one of which was raised in a house with a Pit and Pit mix until they passed away.  That said:



1) People are afraid of Pits because they have very strong jaws and are a good sized dog which means that when they do attack (whether a flaw in breeding line or because they were trained to be aggressive towards people - I will admit that most are inherently aggressive towards other dogs) they do more damage than another breed.  They are also tenacious (part of their nature) so once they set a motion forward (ie the attack) they will hold on for dear life ergo their ferocious reputation



2) A well bred Pit (and by this I mean bloodlines, not training) who has been bred by an experienced trainer should be bred specifically with no people aggression.  Old-Pit-Breeders would deliberately weed out people aggressive dogs specifically because they needed to be able to handle their dogs in the fighting arena without fear of injury to themselves or spectators. (leave the pit-bull-fighting-is-evil comments out of this - I'm just mentioning for historical and breeding reasons).  Unfortunately because Pits were raised to be people-pleasers, they *can* and have been trained by more unscrupulous backyard breeders to be people aggressive to be guard dogs or just to give their owners "street cred".  The popularity of the breed also caused a huge upsurge in unskilled breeders who were just looking to make money and could care less about the long-term quality of the breed.



3.  When our dogs were involved in an altercation with another dog, I had NO fear of MY dog biting me when I tried to separate them.  Many times I have had to snatch my hand away from the jaws of the other (non_Pit) breed.



4.  That said, if you are considering getting a Pit Bull for your family - consider this:  Pits are very tenacious and intellegent animals.  Be very careful where you get the dog and know its background (if older) and bloodlines (if a puppy).  You should be knowledgable on dog training and always make sure the dog knows its rank in the household.  If you are unsure of your ability to handle this breed - I would recommend against getting a Pit as much as I would love to see a Pit get a loving home.  Getting a Pit if you are at all fearful or unsure of how to handle one is a little like buying a handgun for your home without knowing knowing how to or ever handling one.  If you can't own your Pit, your Pit will own you.



5.  Regardless of the breed of the dog, you should never leave a dog unattended with a child.



Hope this is helpful.

Carrie - posted on 03/04/2009

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It is really sad, the bad rep pits get. The are one of the sweetest dogs. The fact is that they actually bite less than many other dogs.

Marianne - posted on 03/04/2009

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I've had two rottweilers for the past thirteen years, I couldn't be happier with the way they have LOVED my children over the years.  My male rottie has been a therapy dog for the past four years and I love the surprise on people's faces when they see him.  He does such a good job at making people happy, especially kids, it's really too bad this breed and others like him have gotten a bad rap. My opinion is breeders need to be responsible and check-out the people they sell to and the buyers need to follow through and socialize and train properly.  Breeders that KNOW what they are doing will tell you the temperment of each dog, and then advise you accordingly to which dog is the best for your situation.  

Marianne - posted on 03/04/2009

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I've had two rottweilers for the past thirteen years, I couldn't be happier with the way they have LOVED my children over the years.  My male rottie has been a therapy dog for the past four years and I love the surprise on people's faces when they see him.  He does such a good job at making people happy, especially kids, it's really too bad this breed and others like him have gotten a bad rap. My opinion is breeders need to be responsible and check-out the people they sell to and the buyers need to follow through and socialize and train properly.  Breeders that KNOW what they are doing will tell you the temperment of each dog, and then advise you accordingly to which dog is the best for your situation.  

Blake - posted on 03/04/2009

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A nearby family's pitbull broke free from it's chain and mauled their five year old daughter too death...just after Christmas. Family pet. Child had played around it before. And without provocation the dog attacked. My question to anyone considering having a pitbull...if the worst case scenario happens, would it be worth it?

Shane - posted on 03/04/2009

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The think about locking jaws is an urban legend.  How could they possibly eat if it was true?  Ask your vet if you want independent confirmation.

Allison - posted on 03/04/2009

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It's not necessarily the breed, but isn't the problem with a pitbull that there jaws can lock; so if they do bite, the only way they can release is to tear away ?



Every do dog has the potential to nip, or growl.  This is how they communicate their pain.  My children were born into a house of basset hound and beagles.  They are our babies too, but they are dogs - if my daughter climbed on or hurt/pulled at any, its their natural instinct to let them know that they are being hurt.  I help bassert rescues in US and Can.



Bottom line in my opinion and the rescue's opinion (and I am a dog lover/owner as are my children); if you don't have a dog now, don't get one until your children are 5.  We all know who is going to be rehomed if something happens.   Call a rescue and find out how many dogs are there or put down because of a 'misunderstanding' between it and a child.

[deleted account]

While all breeds may be capable of anything, Unless you know the breeder and history of the animal, many pitbulls are breed to be more aggressive so even if this is a dormant trait it is there. Personally I have experienced a young pitbull who unprovoked attacked my Pemboke Welsh Corgi. This dog ran staight across the park to where my dog was doing her business and grabbed her in the hind quarters. It took 3 grown men to pry the dog off. Luckily my dog was ok and the pits owners paid for all medical treatment. So even if you are willing to chance having this breed around your own children, be sure that you have enough insurance because of the unpredictable nature of this breed. My suggestion would be get a boxer, they have a similar look and are perfect as family dogs.

Patty - posted on 03/04/2009

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Quoting Kelly:

Pitbulls and Children

I just wanted to see what everyones opinions were on having a pitbull around children?



I have had two pitt bulls, the first one Princess was wonderful with children, my granddaughter took her first steps with her, somebody poisened her and she died. But before that happened she gave birth to some puppies, some of my grown children took some pups, they were also very good with children. But even though I would never leave a pittbull, german sheppard, or even as small as a poodle alone with children, cause children unintentionally, are mean or too rough with animals, and the only way a dog of any kind can protect itself is with its mouth, since obviously they can't use there paws.

Stephanie - posted on 03/04/2009

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We used to have pittbulls and raised them with our children until my 12 yr old daughter and her best friend were riding bikes down a resident street and her friend was brutally attacked and my daughter watched and was almost the next victim until a man stopped to pull the dog off. So I guess my answer is NO, I wouldn't trust another pitt around my children.

Maura - posted on 03/04/2009

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According to pitbull breed information are one of the best breeds around children b/c of their patience and "paternal" type instinct.  I have a 15 month old and I have a pitbull mix and a shiba inu...both from shelters and got them when they were puppies.  The pitbull is the sweetest dog with my child.  It is all on how you raise them and of course their background if you are getting them from a shelter.  All dogs whether a chihuahua or a akita are prone to bit if provoked, pitbulls just get the worse of it b/c of their fighting abilities due to their strong jaws

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