Pit Bulls get a bad rap these days, but it wasn’t always this way. In fact, these dogs used to be considered such powerful symbols of bravery and loyalty that they were featured on World War One recruiting posters! They were also beloved family pets: Famous figures including President Theodore Roosevelt, Helen Keller and Fred Astaire shared their homes with Pit Bulls.
Today, these intelligent, affectionate dogs suffer from widespread discrimination. They are banned from some housing and even forbidden in entire cities and counties, a strategy which has proven costly and ineffective at making communities safer.
National Pit Bull Awareness Day, which takes place on October 26, was created to bring positive attention to the Pit Bull Terrier. By combating myths about the breed, we have the power to restore its good reputation. Here’s how you can help:
Become a myth-buster and breed advocate. You’ve probably heard that Pit Bulls have “locking jaws” and are naturally aggressive—neither of which are true. In reality, Pit Bulls’ jaws are no different from those of any other dogs. Spaying or neutering is the best way to eliminate aggressive behavior, as the vast majority of dog bites come from unaltered dogs. Read more facts about Pit Bull behavior here.
Combat dog fighting and breed-specific legislation. Become a voice for dogs who have been victimized by animal fighters and harmful laws. Join the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade to learn how you can get involved.
Considering adopting or fostering. Thousands of Pit Bulls end up in shelters every year due to abuse, over-breeding and abandonment. Rescuing a Pit could provide a lifetime of joy for your family. Consult our 10 tips for adopting a Pit Bull and find out if this breed is right for you!
Make your Pit Bull an ambassador. The best way to combat negative stereotypes is for you and your Pit to set a positive example! Take your well-trained dog with you to the park, store, and for long walks to show people the peaceful, gentle side of Pits. Additionally, consider having your dog earn an AKC Canine Good Citizen certificate, which may come in handy when facing breed bias from people who don’t understand the good that Pits truly can do.
Join the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade!
By joining the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade, you will receive important alerts from us when we need your help to fight for laws against animal cruelty.