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Every time a pitbull-type dog kills or injures a human or another dog, there are always those who immediately blame the owners in the dog’s defense. These kind of people usually go on to say that there is nothing wrong with pitbulls and that they are sweet dogs. Pitbull defenders will tell you that the dog must have been abused, sick, or neglected. What I find interesting is that there are plenty of labs and german shepherds who are abused, neglected, or sick and never kill or maul a human.

The same people will talk about Pitbull’s strength. This argument is really stupid because dogs like german shepherds have been shown to have a stronger bite than pitbull dogs. According to one test conducted by NatGeo, the pitbull bit at 235lb per square inch while the german shepherd bit at 238lb per square inch. Even rottweilers don’t kill or maul humans all the time. Rottweilers bite harder than both shepherds and pitbulls. So the idea that pitbulls kill or maim people more often simply because they’re stronger than other dogs is an incorrect one.

Pitbulls make up a relatively low percentage of dogs in the America. Pitbull-type dogs account for less than 5% of dogs in America. Here is an excerpt from Dogbites.org:

Of the 88 fatal dog attacks recorded by DogsBite.org, pit bull type dogs were responsible for 59% (52). This is equivalent to a pit bull killing a U.S. citizen every 21 days during this 3-year period.

This stat is not including the non-fatal attacks that pitbulls were responsible for. Also, this study was from 2006 to 2008.

According to multiple sources, since 1982 to 2012, pitbulls have killed 233 people and the second highest was rottweilers at 81 deaths. In that same study, pitbulls had maimed 1268 people while rottweilers (2nd highest) maimed 277 in U.S. & Canada.

Just this year, there have been 18 fatal dog attacks reported. Of these, 15 of them were caused by pitbulls.

The statistics speak for themselves. If it were the owners fault, why aren’t there more golden retrievers or german shepherds killing and maiming people?  The simple truth is that pitbulls, as a breed,  are dangerous dogs. Even insurance companies understand this.

Before I get a ton hate mail, I want to say that I do not want to see pitbulls banned. Banning things that make us scared is an ineffective way to deal with issues. I think the reason we see such a large number of pitbulls attacking humans and other dogs is, at least in part, due to the fact that pitbulls, like many terriers, are hard to train. And lets not forget that they were bred with fighting traits. Those two things combined with owner ignorance, or inability to train a dog, can make for a disaster.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.dogsbite.org/dog-bite-statistics-study-dog-attacks-and-maimings-merritt-clifton.php

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fatal_dog_attacks_in_the_United_States#Fatalities_reported_in_2013

 

 

 

Image: melgupta