Posted on May 17, 2010
Love A Bull
To announce that I love dogs would be stating the obvious, so let me begin by saying that my love of dogs doesn’t discriminate. While I’m often wary of people, there isn’t a dog I won’t approach for cuddles and kisses. So when I heard that my friends Rebecca and Josh adopted a three-year-old pit bull from Hug A Bull rescue, I couldn’t wait to meet him. This past weekend I got my chance.
What surprised me most about Jake first was his size. He isn’t the beastly, muscular menace most come to expect with pit bulls. Jake is a 50-pound pure-bred American Staffordshire terrier that was built for play. He instantly took to me and was quick to show off. Rebecca and I took Jake for a walk in the woods where he displayed his expertly perfected stick-fetching skills, all the while being entirely cute. Yes, cute. His mannerisms and facial expressions were almost puppy-like and it was impossible not to fall for Jake’s charms and huge heart.
When the walk was done and Jake had expended all his energy in the woods, he climbed up on the couch beside me, flopped onto my lap and rested his head on my knee. The boy loves to cuddle when not showering his “mommy” with appreciative kisses.
The stigmas attached to this breed of dog have become unavoidable, but I can’t help but wonder if such stigmas would exist if not for the media. Fear sells headlines, so it’s not unusual for news outlets to resort to fear mongering. No doubt a pit bull’s bite would be stronger than that of, say, a golden retriever. However, if a golden retriever barked at and nipped someone at the local park, it’s highly unlikely that the story would make the 6 o’clock news.
My personal experiences with pit bulls have only ever been positive ones. One of my closest friends is a Special Constable with the BC-SPCA and, over her career, has only ever encountered a single aggressive pit bull. Breaking through stigmas surrounding animals is, in my opinion, equally important as breaking through the stigmas we have regarding people. That said, what have been your experiences with this breed? Do you love them? Fear them? Why or why not?