What is the difference between human-aggression
You may hear that pit bulls are born mean and will "turn on you" or attack people. This is not true. Pit Bulls are by nature very good with people. In fact, they have been referred to as the “nanny dog” in England for many years because they are so good with children. (The picture below shows Petey of “The Little Rascals” with the children from the show.)
It is true that Pit bulls may be aggressive towards other dogs. People often think because a dog attacks another dog (dog-aggression), it will likely attack a person (human aggression). Aggression towards humans is a completely separate behavior than aggression towards other dogs; just because a dog doesn’t like other dogs does not mean it won’t like people.
Why do Pit Bulls sometimes become aggressive towards other dogs? Many dogs were bred with a specific purpose. For example, herding breeds like cattle dogs tend to display nipping behaviors to keep the herd in line. Bloodhounds are scent hounds and follow their noses, while Labradors retrieve. Pit bulls were originally bred for work that included bull baiting and dog fighting. Pit Bulls do not "hate" other dogs. What drives some to fight is an
"urge" that has been bred into them. This does not make them bad dogs, but, it is not something that can be trained out of them. With good training it is possible to control your dog around other dogs, but it is your responsibility to keep your dog and other dogs safe. This means taking precautions such as not letting your pit bull run loose and separating pit bulls from other animals when not able to supervise them.
Why do you hear that Pit Bulls might attack a person? Some pit bulls are very poorly bred, while others are treated badly by people. Dogs of any breed or mix that are mistreated or poorly bred may be very shy or aggressive (lunge, growl, snap their teeth) towards people because they are "genetically” unstable. Sometimes people use cruel methods to train pit bulls (as well as other breeds of dogs like Rottweilers, German Shepherds and Dobermans) to attack humans. This type of treatment may cause dogs to display aggression towards people.
Other things can also contribute to a pit bull, or any other breed of dog, becoming aggressive or hurting a person.
Chaining a dog outside.
Not having your dog spayed or neutered.
Leaving children alone with a dog.
Not t eaching your dog basic manners.
Hitting or mistreating your dog.
Teasing or allowing your dog to be teased by others.
Pit bulls were bred to be very gentle with people and to obey their owners. They lived in the house with their families. Today they remain gentle with people and should be treated as a member of the family.
Any dog is capable of biting you. Please visit our dog safety section and learn how to be safe with dogs.