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Salzypat  (Level: 154.5 - Posts: 5295)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 10:55 AM


I have in foster care a sweet 8-month-old chocolate Lab and most likely a cross with pit bull (the shape of the head indicates that).

Authorities are trying to get her into a rescue. In the meantime I would like some information.

I've always had a negative opinion of pit bulls but I would like to hear from some of you who have had or now have pit bulls and especially another breed mixed with pit bull. What was their temperment, their socialization, etc.?

So far all I have seen is an extremely bright dog, alert, constantly wanting to please and very obedient. She was removed from a home where she was burned quite severely in several places (accident? abuse?).

Your input will be very helpful and appreciated.

Eesusbejesus  (Level: 75.0 - Posts: 3645)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 11:16 AM

My brother always had pit bulls. They were part of our family, not abused, happy go lucky dogs. One day, I came home and this nice pit bull who had been raised around me would not let me in the house. Scared the crap out of me and I don't know what her problem was other than she somehow thought I was an intruder. I tried talking nice to her, I tried talking mean to her. She stood her ground. It was quite frightening. I don't trust them after that.

Erin0620  (Level: 77.2 - Posts: 737)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 11:31 AM

Every pitbull I have ever encountered has been very sweet tempered. Supposedly it's all in the way the animal is raised. They are fiercely loyal. I have heard of a pitbull owner walking in on her 3 year old daughter taking pins from a pin cushion and sticking them into the dog's skin. The dog was wimpering a tiny bit, but sitting submissively and taking it. I think they are more reactive to what they consider "threats" than other breeds, and much stronger, so you have to make sure you are the alpha, and practice discipline a bit more strictly than with other breeds. Try to socialize him at a dog park, making sure he/she is leashed and you are in control the whole time, to test his temperment. Of course, as with every dog (and person for that matter), there are no absolutes, as Lodi encountered with her brother's dog.

Good luck, and good for you, helping out one of God's misunderstood creatures!

Diva305  (Level: 145.8 - Posts: 1641)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 11:32 AM

Pit bulls are outlawed in Miami-Dade County; not in Broward (Fort Lauderdale) tho.

NEVER trust a pitbull (or even one with a mix)

They WILL turn on you, especially an abused one.

Zeedee  (Level: 222.2 - Posts: 1088)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 11:51 AM

We had a pit bull mix for just a short time. Unfortunately, he was in an accident and was killed. We were just crushed because he was the sweetest, brightest, most affectionate-without-being-a-pest kind of dog I'd ever been aquainted with. I was afraid of the breed before my son brought this pup into our lives. Now, I am considering getting another one.

Acofish  (Level: 59.9 - Posts: 98)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 11:55 AM

The fact that there is suspicion of abuse is a scary thing in a pit. The way they are raised has alot to do with how they act, but there is just something that will always remain unpredictable with a pit. I have seen great pits turn on their owners with devastating results. If there is a question of abuse, make certain it is disclosed so the potential new owner can make a truly informed decision! Not a dog I would want to have around...

Papermanbill  (Level: 41.3 - Posts: 1313)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 1:41 PM

If you are old enough or lucky enough to have seen "Our Gang" comedy movies, Pete the dog was a full blown pitbull. He loved everyone, especially the kids. When I used to deliver on Chicago's southside, I had a customer who had five full size pitt bulls and I played with them like if they were kittens. All dogs are good, if given the chance.
I have two labs, and we love them like our own kids.

Salzypat  (Level: 154.5 - Posts: 5295)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 6:17 PM

thanks for all of your input. I wish it had been 100 percent positive but I wanted the truth and I appreciate all of you sharing your experiences.

The abuse part is pretty evident yet with patches of hair gone and most of the sores are healing over with only 1 still open.

I agree with whichever one of you recommended that the new owners be aware of the abuse. It seems like that would be most prudent in any instance, but especially this one.

I've taken Cheyenne several places where she's around people (my office for one) and she thrives on the attention everyone gives her. When she first came to my house my little Australian shepherd mix was behind my chair and Cheyenne came over for a friendly sniff and Chance nipped her on the nose. Surprisingly, Cheyenne just backed away. She plays with the cats and gets along well with the other dogs.

I'm going to sign up for private obedience classes for my dogs and if I still have Cheyenne, I'll enroll her. Your suggestion of making sure sure she knows who is boss is a good one.

Anyway, thanks for you insights. I really have appreciated your help. Let's hope the chocolate Lab is the dominant part of her make-up.

Greyghost  (Level: 68.4 - Posts: 640)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 7:08 PM

They are great dogs if raised right,a loose cannon if not.No doubt you love animals so i know it will be ok with you,wish i was closer.I would adopt.

Eesusbejesus  (Level: 75.0 - Posts: 3645)
Tue, 26th Feb '08 7:45 PM

My brother's dog was raised very lovingly, in a home with small children. There was no abuse so the whole "they act how they are treated" adage certainly did not apply. I do think pit bulls are very protective and territorial and for some reason, ours decided that a member of her own family (with whom she was raised since a pup) was a threat. (I was 18 at the time and size-wise, not a very intimidating or threatening figure). I have NEVER had another family dog of any other breed do that to me. Ever.

I'm not saying pit bulls can't be sweet and integrated into families. But they *can* and *have* the capacity for being unpredictable with no provocation.

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