The great debate over laws concerning pitbull bites

A vast number of cities and states in recent months have adopted laws and ordinances geared towards significantly decreasing or eliminating pitbull bites, either by banning ownership of the breed itself, or by some form of muzzling.

Incidents of pitbull bites have certainly been on the rise, but is it really the fault of the dogs themselves? Consider the case against NFL quarterback Michael Vick and his conviction for sponsoring illegal dog fighting. Of the 51 dogs that were rescued from Vick’s property, many of them pitbulls, 47 of them not only survived, but a vast majority of them have been rehabilitated and adopted by loving families.

Pitbull bites have been on the rise because humans have specifically bred the species to be fighting dogs. Originally, pitbulls were bred to be family farm dogs, and were considered very loving, especially around children. Incidents of pitbull bites were rare then, because the breed had not yet been subjected to the whims of trainers intent on turning them into vicious predators.

The laws that have been enacted in several states concerning pitbull bites are now being challenged on the federal level, as arguments being made that breed-specific legislation is considered unlawful and unconstitutional.

A recent study was conducted by National Geographic, in which pitbull bites was the focus. It tested the theory, or myth, that pitbulls were considered to have the most bite pressure. According to the study, conducted by Dr. Brady Barr, the pitbull had the least amount of bite pressure when compared to German Shepherds and Rottweilers.

While pitbull bites have certainly been in the news, the real news should concern the humans who control them. The thoughtless custody and need to breed the pitbull as an aggressive dog is where the focus should be, and not on the pitbull itself.


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