Loving, gentle, good with children. If you were asked to picture what breed of dog fits this description, you might imagine a smiling Golden Retriever, a tail-wagging Labrador, or a cuddly Poodle. But you may be surprised to learn that we are talking about the American Pit Bull Terrier, a breed once known as the "Nanny Dog" for their loyalty and affection for children.
This well-known breed has gained a less-than-favorable reputation over the past several years as Pit Bulls have become vilified in the media for their association with dog-fighting and other aggressive behaviors.
However, violence and aggression are not true to the nature of the Pit Bull. In general, Pit Bulls were raised to be very people friendly and form strong bonds with their families. Designed to have lots of energy and an athletic build, Pit Bulls require lots of exercise and usually excel at activities like agility and fly ball.
Tanya Mustard, a Pit Bull adopter and mother of three, wants everyone to know what wonderful companions Pit Bulls can make. "I couldn't imagine my life or my kids lives without our Pit Bull Terriers" she says. "They are the most loyal, devoted pets with so much heart!"
While American Pit Bull Terriers and their mixes are not the right fit for all families, if you are considering one of these dogs as a companion, we highly recommend the following resources for learning about the breed and determining if a Pit Bull is the right dog for you:
Bad Rap: BadRap.org
Pit Bull Rescue Central: PBRC.net
Animal Farm Foundation: animalfarmfoundation.org
Also, check out our Resource Library for training tips.