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A Look Back at the Pit Bull

This October, we are excited to celebrate National Pit Bull Awareness Month! Along with the month long focus on awareness, the 28th of October is also National Pit Bull Awareness Day! To help shine a light on these incredible dogs, we want to share a handful of facts and history with you about these loving fur friends.

Defining the term "Pit Bull"

The term “Pit Bull” is a generic term used to describe all dogs with similar characteristics and often indicates a cross breed. There are 5 different breed combinations that are typically labeled as pit bulls. They are:

  • Staffordshire bull terrier

  • English bull terrier

  • American bulldogs

  • American Staffordshire terrier

  • American pit bull terrier

The American Temperament Test Society provides testing around the country for breeds and provides a score for the breed, based on the percentage of passed over failed within total number of that particular breed. As of December 2017, the American pit bull terrier has a passing rate of 87.4%.

Pit Bulls value to Early Immigrants

While immigrants made their way to America on ships man's best friend was right by their side. The pit bulls traveled the vast sea on their own search for a new life. Because of their protectiveness they were considered an immense value. Without those early pit bulls some communities could have struggled for food and protection.

  • They defended livestock from predators

  • They protected their owners from harm

  • Thirdly they provided companionship to youth

A Family's Best Friend

Pit bulls have been bred to be gentle with humans. At one point, the pit bull was even called the “nanny dog,” tasked with watching the children while parents were working the field. (Note: You should never leave small children unsupervised with any breed of dog) Throughout history, a vast amount of pit bulls have been man's best friend to numerous celebrities and historical figures. Such as: Theodore Roosevelt, Helen Keller, Thomas Edison, Fred Astaire, & Channing Tatum. Pit bulls have been ranked as the second most tolerant dogs in a test by the American Temperament Test Society.

Those results also showed that a majority of cases when a pit bull was a part of an attack on humans or animals, the dog had been abused or neglected. If a dog is not trained for socialization and was instead trained to be aggressive, they will be seen in a negative light. However, a pit bull is as good as the breeder. Through love, compassion, and training to behave socially, pit bulls can and will be loyal pets.


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