First things first, since there is a lot of confusion about the term “pit bull.” The label of pit bull refers to the American Pit Bull Terrier and the American Staffordshire Terrier, however, most people use the term to describe any dog that even remotely resembles one of these two breeds (blocky head and muscular build). Lets get one thing straight, "Pit Bull" is not a breed, it's a term. Centuries ago, butchers used “bulldogs” to kill bulls by latching onto their nose and not letting go until the bull was subdued. This practice eventually led to the sport of bull baiting, where dogs were put in a pit with an intentionally riled-up bull and spectators would place bets on which dog would hold on the longest, thus creating the name “pit bull” (cesarsway.com). When these bull dogs were then bred with terriers, what we refer to today as the pit bull, was born. They possessed the strength and athleticism of the bulldog and the tenacity of the terrier breed. The disgusting sport of bull baiting was outlawed in the 1800’s, and dog fighting took it's place. The breed's popularity rose in America as farm dogs because of their work ethic and good nature. In fact, America used the image of the pit bull on their WWI recruitment posters, and I’m sure you know that the famous dog Petey from The Little Rascals movie was a pit bull. Check it out:
Just a few facts for ya:
-Pit Bulls are among the most tolerant dogs tested by the American Temperment Test Society. They rank second only to those loveable labs :) This test is designed to measure different aspects of a dog’s temperament such as stability, shyness, aggressiveness, and friendliness (atts.org).
- President Theodore Roosevelt, President Woodrow Wilson, Helen Keller, and Thomas Edison all owned pit bulls
-Pit bulls were the target of 77% of all animal abuse cases in 2012 (aspca.org).