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Discussion Starter #1
I'm so annoyed. I don't like watching the tv "news" on a normal day, but lately a big story has been a dog attack in Vancouver (near where I live currently). It was a Pit Bull - and now she (the one who was bit) is calling for a ban on ALL "dangerous breeds" - pit bulls, rottweilers, etc. This makes me so furious! It's like canine racism. Claiming that because SOME (or even just a couple!) dogs of a breed have a bad temperment, that no one should be allowed to have one??

Large breeds do more damage when they bite, so when they do bite, it's big news. The worst biters are the dogs like Pomeranians and Chow-Chows. My dad's a mailman - the big breeds are dolls, it's the little ones that are always biting him! But of course no one calls for a breed ban on the little ones. You never see on the news: Headline! Child bit by Chihuahua!

A dog's BREED only somewhat contributes to their personality. It's how their RAISED that counts. The people who WANT a "guard dog", of course they're going to get one of the "dangerous breeds" for the bad rep they have. They then proceed to chain their dog, mistreat it, and perpetuate the bad reputation. I go to a dog park nearly daily and I see many many breeds, including boxers and rottweilers and german shepherds and pit bulls, all playing with each other.

Where my boyfriend lives, pit bulls are very very popular. In the shelter where we adopted his dog, nearly half the dogs there were pit bulls or pit bull crosses. Big, sad eyes staring up at you. And most of them will be put to sleep for crimes they never committed, but simply because of their breed.

It's just so sad. :cry:

Sorry, I just had to get that out.....
 

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Sorry but after being attacked myself by a rotvieler I have every symapthy with this woman.
There is nothing more scarey than being 14 years old in a park and someone who cant control their dog looses control of it alltogether, it attacks a total of 7 children playing in the park, the owner ran home because he couldnt control it to get his dad, in the end the police came as the dad arrived.
If a dog bites I firmly beleive it should be put down, im sorry if this causes a problem with some people, but get attacked by a dog and then see how you feel.

The reason pitbulls are so feared when it comes to them biting someone is (I watched a docu on tv) that they have the strenght the rip a fully grown mans arm off.

Now I know it isnt always the dogs fault (there are cases where a dog turns, even little yappers) but if we cant control the owners, using the dogs as power, a threat, cant control them then what other option is there to do?

I would absolutly love to have my own dog, but I am terrified of dogs I dont know, and even more of one I dont see on a lead. If I see owners with thier dog off the lead I give them a lecture that it is the law to have your dog on a lead at all times in a public place (I usually get told to F*** off)

I know I prob sound completly dog hating harsh, but im afriad after being attacked by a dog it does that to you, and seeing what dogs can do on tv. Im not saying just these particular breeds, but any dog which bites should be put down. (I know sometimes playing can get carried away with an owner and accidents happen, which I beleive should be left to the owners discrettion)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I understand and I agree with you - a vicious dog needs to be dealt with. That dog that attacked you would sadly have to be put to sleep after that, it is just too dangerous.

But I think there is a leap between handling known specific vicious dogs to banning ALL dogs of a specific size/breed.

I also agree with dogs on-lead - my own dog is not very dog-friendly and we used to have a lot of problems with people with off-leash dogs in on-leash places who let their dogs run right up to mine, causing my dog to get very upset. And of course the owner couldn't control the dog.

I think training is key. Dogs need to be under control, they need to be trained - especially if the dog is large and has the potential for damage. I just don't like blanket statements and approaches like breed banning.
 

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I agree KittyEnvy, banning entire breeds is foolosh and ignores the real problem--bad owners. I have a good friend who has a pit bull. She is the sweetest dog ever and is even a certified children's therapy dog! Make owners liable for their dog's misdeeds and things would change quite fast.
 

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no no I dont mean ban entire breeds, these people would only move onto another dog to make nasty until there are not big dogs left. Altho when I re-read my post I think I gave that impression :|
 

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I am a doglover, and have never feared dogs(or any other animals :roll: )but dogs who attacks people, should be put down. It's sad, because i belive the saying that " Bad dogs doesn't exist, only bad owners" :evil:

And of course, when im walking my ferrets in the park, my biggest fear is that a dog will attack them! I have to have eyes in my neck all the time, so i think it's selfish of dogowners to walk their dogs without a leash.

They should think about all the people around them that either fear dogs, are scared for their children or are afraid that the dog will attack their pet!

They all say that they have totally control of their dog, but are very surprised when their dog goes mad when they see my ferrets. That shows my point, you DON'T have control of your dog if something unexpected comes up!
 

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PS:

In Norway the amstaff was forbidden this year....I can understand it, cause it's impossible to see the different between them and the pit bull...

But I also find it a bit sad, cause it's thanks to some people the dog is feared by so many people.
 

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This is a tough topic. I do not think any breed should be banned. I do think that anyone who has an aggressive dog and cannot control it or contributes to its bad behavior should lose their pet. If a dog (or any animal) attacks maliciously, it should be put down.

I was attacked when I was 2 by my great-grandparents GS. It ripped open my lip and gashed open my face below my eye. Luckily, I lived and only have very minor scars to show. Nothing was done to the dog. This dog hated everyone but my great-grandparents. For years I was deathly afraid of any dog of decent size and scared of any I didn't know. When I was 12, my sister and I were chased down by a neighbor's great dane for no reason. Luckily, as I've gotten older, I've come out of the fear. I even love big dogs now. I feel that they are protectors. Though my little Yorkie might be the fiercest protector I've ever met! LOL

Our recent neighbors had a pit bull. When I first met the girl, she told me that the old lady next door kept coming into her yard, seeing the dog and calling animal control for no reason so the dog had to be muzzled and on a chain. I was so mad b/c I thought it was so unfair! Prejudice against a breed.

Turns out the old lady was right. Not 2 weeks later I was walking Penny. The neighbors were outside hanging out and drinking and their pit bull broke the massive chain and chased us down. Luckily it was muzzled.

Two weekends ago, my bf went to take our dog out into the yard and the pit bull was there. I called animal control. I felt bad when they picked him up, but they guy knew the dog and thought the people had been evicted. So what he was doing in our yard and neighborhood, I don't know. The guy said they'd find the owners.

I hope nothing happened to him. Those people deserved to lose their dog, but it isn't the dogs fault. We were scared, though.
 

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Large dogs dogs are scarey in my opinion.
If I saw a large dog, or any dog to be honest wondering around causing trouble I wouldnt hesitate to called the rspca.

One thing which will ALWAYS stick in my mind from when I went on my first aid course was the most important person in the world is ME.
If a dog attacks once it is more likely to do it again, altho the next person may not be so lucky.
 

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I have a large dog myself, a greyhound. I would not have any breed designed for protection or agression: pit bull, doberman, German Shepherd, Rottweiler, etc. However, that is me...I realized I needed a breed renowned for gentleness, which is why we decided to adopt a greyhound.

I don't believe any breed should be banned, but I would be in favor of stricter rules of ownership. The dog confined to the property at all times or on the lead of an adult; perhaps licensing which can only be received after a safe dog handling course, etc.

I do agree with what others have said, though. Many responsible owners love guardian breeds and do a wonderful job with them. But it's the mental defective macho morons who seek out breeds with an agressive reputation and do everything they can to encourage it.
 

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Yeah, I've been attacked, lunged at, snapped at, and generally disliked by a LOT of dogs...I seem to have an "aura" around me that most dogs dislike (I'm sure that by now, a big part of it is my own wariness and fear coming through loud and clear). People with the nicest, best-trained, mellowest dogs are shocked when loveable Fluffy lunges at me with teeth bared. I have spent a lot of time and energy trying to learn better body language in dealing with dogs (I've actually realized that I react to dogs as a cat and use a lot of the same body language as cats...big improvement since I've started to work on that)...but dogs still hate me (with the exception of sighthounds, who will often walk over, put their head in my lap, and fall asleep) :?

I'd say that about 90-95% of the dogs we have in the shelter are rottie, pitbull, or shepard crosses (mostly rotties and pitbulls, though), and most of them have ended up there because their owners couldn't handle them. I am nervous and on-guard every time I have to walk through the dog kennels. That doesn't make them a "bad breed," it makes them a breed which requires a certain type of owner to raise a canine good citizen...and when a breed like that gets popular, the pups end up in the hands of people who are not equipped to deal with them, and irresponsible breeders are perpetuating bad lines..and the breed pays the price in a bad reputation. When you are talking about a breed that has been specifically developed to be a dominant, territorial guardian, it's obvious that an owner will need to understand that and work with the dog accordingly.

I guess that, in short, I am in no way in favour of breed bans, but I am in favour of responsible breeding and ownership.
 

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I work in a pet store, and we allow people to bring their pets in. The other day, a guy walked in with a pit bull. He bought senior food for it, so I'm assuming it was at least 8 or 9 years old. The dog wasn't neutered. This in itself really bothered me. Everyone knows that by neutering, it helps to reduce aggressivness towards other male dogs, yet this man decided not to get his dog neutered. I asked if he was a breeder, and he said no. I find this really irresponsible, and he's just asking for problems. The man himself looked like kind of a bully, and the dog had a spike collar on, with a chain leash. I have worked around dogs for years, but I honestly have to say I was nervous.
 

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Frankly, the case with many of these male owners, the dog is an extension of their masculinity. This isn't always true, but for many it is (kind of like a big car). Neutering the dog is "taking away their manhood".
 

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Zalensia said:
Large dogs dogs are scarey in my opinion.
I'm by no means a dog hater - but I can actually shake my head yes to this statement. PLet me point out before I start that any dog that is familiar to me - and a larger breed - does not bother me in the slightest! I've had friends with bigger dogs... I could have done without the jumping... ouch! But other than that - I was comfortable around them.

Anyways... back to the story in progress!

One of my cats was destroyed by a rot - then a few weeks later - while I was playing outside with Tigger - the rot returns once more! I had to grab Tiggy up and hide in the fenced in play yard - holding my cat for God only knows how long! When he finally went away - I waited for a while - I made a mad dash for the house - he was right around the corner I think! I know I could hear him barking in any case! *scarey!*

A pit took up one of my friend's chis and shook it like a ragdoll until all the bones were broken.

I've had to deal with dogs in their yards that were not fenced in - or dogs of friends that bark at me for no reason. I've also been through the park with morons of said "potintial banning breeds" with their dogs off the lead... and... surprise surprise! They couldn't control them! Too much to see! Too much to do! No time to run back to master. I can understand if they took them off lead to throw a frisbee (sp?) or play catch... but once the walking starts... the lead should be snapped right back on!

After a while it started taking it's toll on me... and I have become very cautious around larger breeds of dogs. I do not know them - therefore anything is possible. I try to make sure I control my emotions though - calming down is the key! :D

While I do not think a ban on these breeds is going to fix anything - they still scare me a little. I especially hate it when I see any (and I mean ANY dog great or small off a lead). It's irrisponsible for the people with larger dogs to let their dogs off the lead because even the nicest dogs get a little mean if provoked (no matter how small the problem) and people with smaller dogs should keep their dogs on the lead for their own safty. Who needs a Chi that runs away from you into the street? Or into another dogs mouth?

The only larger dog that I have even thought of owning was a Sheepdog. As large breeds without any background info make me extremely nervious... if I do get this breed... I have to get it as a puppy, no ifs ands or buts. In order for me to feel comfortable - any dog that will grow up anywhere close to my body weight has to be a puppy... it's just scarey to me otherwise!
 

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Large dogs make me nervous, simply by virtue of the fact that I know they can overpower me. A smaller dog, I may be able to control, but a large dog is intimidating because they are sooo strong, and I am a small person. I try not to show my fear, but when a dog easily outweighs you, it's hard not to be a little scared.
 

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Yes, there are irresponsible owners, but as Gudewife said, there are also irresponsible breeders and natural tendencies. After generations of breeding for a certain quality, whether it's gentleness or viciousness, the dogs with a bit of that tendency will become gentle or vicious.

I understand the nature/nurture debate, but even psychologists are finally admitting that people are born with tendencies. Both nature and nurture play an important part. That has been obvious to mothers since there were mothers! When I was a child I was bitten by a chow. The breed is still on the list of dogs that inflict the most bites. It''s one of the few dogs I still fear. It will take many generations to breed gentleness into the breeds with the bad reputations.
 

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the entire concept of breed specific legislation is in itself ridiculous - you aren't answering any of the problems, and there are many people up at arms.

what i hear a lot on this forum - is people who aren't comfortable around dogs, specifically large dogs, and who can't control them. working in a vet clinic, i have been attacked, lunged at, and threatened by many more small breed dogs than large breeds.

every dog should be under control - and maybe stricter enforcing of ownership that requires licensure, etc. not being able to control your dog, and finding the right dog for your lifestyle. yes, people get status symbols to own - but that shouldn't ruin a breed just because there is a certain group of idiots that flock to it. for isntance, gabriella, i am really not sure a large breed dog is good for your lifestyle - EVEN if its a puppy. a large breed puppy is tiny for oh...about....8 weeks. after that, they are raumbunctious, HUGE, and more trouble for their size than a small puppy. Your hesitation about large breeds in general would make me hesitate to bring one into the household.

but, i am an owner of a 100 lb doberman with a bite history. i adopted him as an adult, and i am a large breed type of person. my dog is safe and stable, i know what his triggers are. just this past weekend he attended a pet festival with my rescue and was dressed up to enter in our parade, and hung out for 9 hours with all of us there and was happy as a clam and gentle as can be. he spent an hour laying with a girl who is absolutely terrified of dogs, but whispered to me before she left that Bowie was the nicest dog she had ever met and she wants a doberman now.

Owning a dog requires responsibilty - owning a large breed dog means even more responsibility. I own a working breed with a workign temperament, and it should not be expected that they will have the temperament of labs and goldens - its simply not what they were bred to be.
 

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oh and for the intact male pit at the pet store - again, falling into appearances.

playing devils advocate -t he dog showed no aggression, correct? so why should it be neutered for that sake? in male dogs at least, there is NOT as clear cut a case for neutering and many people simply do not want to alter their dogs - while i may not agree with it, i can see where they come from. a well behaved intact male dog under control though, shouldnt bother anyone.

and so what if it wears a spike collar? :) Bowie has 2 of them, and we also have a heavy duty leather agitation harness that he uses for daily work. its cute when a chihuahua wears them, but inappropriate for a large dog? i just see a lot of people who seem to be buying into stereotypes about dogs, and then further increasing their unease by not being comfortable or understanding large breed dogs, either. many dog clubs offer educational classes on how to act around dogs, and if you are interested there are many opportunities to go out and meet the breeds and feel more comfortable.

heaven for me is the DRU picnic - 100+ RESCUED dobermans (read, unknown histories many times, adopted as adults) in one park, playing nicely with each other and being the wonderful dogs they were meant to be - surrounded by people that understand and love them. vicious, i think not :)

i grew up with large german working breeds - GSDs, great danes, and now bowie, my first doberman. Bowie chose me in the shelter, and as a responsible owner i work each day to ensure he is safe and does not have the opportunity to bite again. he has obtained his CGC, is currently training in novice, and is a lover. as long as you don't cross us :)
 

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Discussion Starter #20
The problem with many *reputations* of large breeds is that they are not always correct. Rottweilers were actually originally bred as cart-dogs I do believe - and they have not been bred for protection for a long time. Not to say that it doesn't happen - many large breeds are irresponsibly bred. But the *good* breeder, just as with cat breeders, are breeding for other things, especially temperment. And the question becomes, how do you know the breeding of the dog, the temperment of the dog? It is not from breed profiling so much as it is from individual assessments.

Also, where do you factor in mixed breeds? My brother owns a very sweet rottweiler/lab cross puppy from rescue. Does she count as a dangerous breed? Or does the lab part of her outweigh that? And what about mixed breeds you don't even know what their origin is? Will you then start classifying dogs based on if they "look" like a certain breed? Will they be exempt? If a dog is purebred but not registered, what if the owner said it was a mix? You often can't really tell.

I am sorry so many people here are nervous around large breeds. I can certainly understand why - my boyfriend's german shepherd surely intimidates me sometimes, but then again I'm faced with the chore of training him. I wish everyone could feel how I do, but that's kind of a silly thing to think. :) I have a medium-sized breed - a border collie. She's kind of grumpy around strangers, she doesn't like other dogs. If a stranger saw her interacting with anther dog you might think she was a very aggressive dog based on how she acts - she growls and bares her teeth a lot to other dogs. However I (and most dog owners) see it as communcation - it's just how she tells other dogs to back off. And with me and my immediate family, we would trust Oreo with our lives. I could do ANYTHING to that dog - I could hang her upside down, I can kiss her all over, I can taunt her into playfighting and "biting" me - and I know she would never, ever hurt me.

I think the key is in education, and policing of irresponsible owners. I agree about the nature/nurture issue - there are many aspects of Oreo that are just how she is, but I as an owner know what they are and it is my responsibility to handle it appropriately. I must protect my dog.

I know this is kind of a strange forum for this kind of discussion, as I get the feeling many people here are more cat people than dog people (and there is often quite a line drawn in the sand!). I happen to be one of those who straddle that line, I love both. :)
 
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