Thursday, August 25, 2011

Introducing my Passion For Pibbles Partner


Wanted to take a moment to introduce a dear friend of mine.  Beth (also advocate and owner of Pibbles) will be contributing to this page.  I'm very excited about this partnership.  My mission is that together we can help spread our Passion For Pibbles.

Feel free to jump right in Beth.  Don't forget to introduce everyone to your lovely Pibbles.  

Readers, stay tuned...

*this post was originally posted in May - for some reason when I added the picture to it tonight it posted again but with today's date...

Socializing your Pit Bull


It’s important to note that all dogs are individuals and even if socialized they may later develop issues in social situations. This is a dog trait not necessarily a breed or type of dog characteristic. In other words it can happen with any dog regardless of breeding or training. However, early socialization does help lessen the chance that any issues will arise.

The key to keeping your dog social is starting young. Dogs benefit most between 12-18 weeks. During this time it’s crucial to provide the most socialization with other dogs, people, and animals.

Always be sure they are controlled, fun, and positive interactions. Also be sure your puppy Is protected with immunizations. It’s recommended that these sessions are in a safe environment such as your own yard. Many do not recommend dog parks.

Dogs are often more excited and aroused in these environments. The lack of attention from other owners may cause a free for all among the dogs. Some dogs may get pushed around by the more excitable ones. If owners aren’t watching their dogs every movement a fight could break out.. Humans are generally the reason it’s not a recommended place to have your dog. Some don’t manage or control their dogs. By letting this kind of situation happen not only are you setting up your dog to fail but it creates an uncontrolled and negative place for you and your dog to be.

The best type of interaction would be with friends. Find dogs that yours enjoy spending time with. Plan doggie play dates. In a controlled visit such as these you are more able to introduce your dogs slowly and keep things positive and peaceful for all involved.

Be sure you practice good dog etiquette. Never allow your dog to just run up and greet a dog, especially ones they do not know. Such a meeting cute have a negative reaction. After all in the canine world this is considered rude. If they are allowed this kind of interaction it could lead to altercations and negative experiences with dogs now and in the future. Always keep your dog distracted by having them focus on you versus the other dogs. Avoiding a stare down and leash reactivity is important.

Let the dogs get used to each other’s presence before they have any sort of interactions. The best way to achieve this is by walking them side by side. This allows the dogs to get acquainted in a non threatening situation. Make sure they greet side by side versus nose to nose. According to the canine world it’s also acceptable to meet nose to rear.

Basically to recap these are important things to remember:

  • Keep your dogs social throughout their life
  • Set up play dates with other dogs and owners that you can trust
  • Make sure you have regular play dates with their new friends
  • Avoid situations that could set your dog up to fail
  • Focus on good leash means so that they will always focus on you
  • Use distraction techniques when another dog is near
  • Puppy and dog training classes are recommended
  • Above all be sure to maintain the leadership (dogs prefer leaders)

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Moving Tango's Family Chip In Update











I have updated the chipin page, lowered the goal amount, and extended the time frame. Doubting anything will come of it but doesn't hurt to try anything and everything - especially for my dogs.





Sunday, July 31, 2011

Fighting Dogs



Pit Bull type dogs that are found near a fight bust are often inaccurately labeled as fighting dogs. Often times this does not accurately reveal the true history of such a dog. Sometimes the dog isn’t always the perpetrator but rather in many cases it’s the victim. Sometimes neither label is true and it was not used for fighting at all.

This misconception is a direct result of the media hype over pits. Many do not realize that the Pit Bull is not the only type of dog with a fighting background. Many “common” breeds also have fighting breeds in their lineage.  However, we don’t hear about those as much in the news. The sad truth is the misidentification and misunderstanding taints this amazing dog.

What needs to be realized is that just because a Pit Bull may have been fought in the past it doesn’t mean that it’s more dog reactive then one that has not. The Terrier generally has less toleration for other dogs.

This trait is exploited in the dog fighting world. Dogs of any breed and in any setting can be set up to react in a defensive manner. If an owner put them into a setting where they feel defensive they will react. If they are then rewarded for such a reaction they can and will become conditioned to do so. The dog is then trained to always react in a given manner.

However, dogs saved from this way of life may not be anymore dog on dog aggressive then those that have never fought. Much depends on how often that dog has been fought and reinforced for doing so. Also how much the Terrier trait displayed in that dog’s behavior. This is an individual thing. Each dog is different and should be treated accordingly. Good dog management and positive leadership combined with socialization and training are key for curbing negative behavior.

Throughout history dogs used in fighting rings have had close contact with humans. They were often accompanied in the ring by their handlers. During the fights they were routinely pulled from the fray. After the fights they would handle the dogs and even treat their wounds. Therefore if they redirected their attention in an aggressive manner toward the handler or were deemed too aggressive it was not tolerated. They would not be used in future breeding. This type of handling necessitated a very human responsive human friendly breed of dog.

Dog reactivity varies widely within this breed and various others. Therefore they must not be judged by breed but on individual temperament.

It’s common knowledge among the rescue world that there’s some dogs rescued from busts that have no reaction to other dogs.  While others in shelters from non bust backgrounds that have reactivity to other dogs. Some dogs have had such abusive pasts that they’re damaged beyond rehabilitation and are never suitable for adoption no matter the background. This is an important thing to remember. Whether that dog has been put into a fight ring or not it may or may not have issues with other dogs.

For example dogs that are left outside day after day (usually chained) and have had little to no socialization with other dogs or humans can be so damaged that they can and do react in a negative manner.  Dogs that come from these backgrounds or from a fight ring should be assessed properly. Not until they are fully evaluated should it be decided whether they are adoptable.

It has been said that dogs taken from fighting rings can never lead a normal life. This has been proven to be untrue. Pit Bulls are amazingly resilient dogs. Many have been saved from the fighting life and have gone onto live in homes with other dogs, animals, and even children. In fact it’s often said by those that rescue bust dogs that they are some of the best dogs. They are willing to please and love all types of people.

Dog aggression and human aggression behaviors are not related. These wonderful dogs can be loving and safe companions. They just need socialization, training, and responsible owners as does any dog. Pit Bulls respond extremely well to behavior modification. Since they truly want to please their people even dog reactivity can be manageable.

Whether the dog is a Pit Bull or any other kind of dog the same rules should apply.  Responsible ownership is key. All dogs should have supervised play sessions. They should never be left unattended. Dogs of any breed in a multi dog household should always be separated when left home alone.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sometimes the worse things must be faced



Passion For Pibbles originally started as a blog. What better way to share my love for these wonderful dogs then to write about them? A variety of pictures, stories, articles, links and videos are also showcased.

Recently I took this concept a step further and created a face book group by the same name.  I wanted to give other pro pittie fans a safe place to share their passions. We share pictures, stories, links, videos, articles, advice. I have found it to be an amazing experience.

However, I was recently thrown a little when someone made this comment on the group’s page.  “man this site is more sad and depressing! I thought it celebrated the breed not showcase a lot of ignorant humans!”

Without a moment’s hesitation I replied.


“I apologize for you feeling that way... The sad reality is it is sad and depressing and there are ignorant humans... With good comes bad that's why we must take notice of it all... I don't post things that are anti pit and I try not post any anti pit news... However, when I see something I feel is important then I share it... As always people have the option of not looking or reading the posts... I try to get a variety... Everyone is welcome to share and I have encouraged that... I've also said anyone can share their own pits and pix and stories... It's a place for us to be together and share the ups and downs seek advice and learn the good and bad about society's views on our beloved dog... I am sorry if I upset people but my motto is if they don't like it they don't have to look sadly tho it doesn't make it go away... Sometimes the worse things and the toughest things must be faced in order to make it all turn out well... Hope that makes sense... Also hope no one leaves over such posts... That was not my intentions... I wanted a place where we can post things that perhaps our other fb friends on our pages don't wanna see or read or deal with... I have been asked before why I post all the pit bulls... My honest true to the point instant reply was --- Because I'm passionate about pits... Hence how the name for both the group and the blog evolved…”

Even though I replied with the first thoughts that came to mind it still bothered me a little. It reminded me that perhaps we need to remind everyone the importance of educating everyone of the real horrors and tragedies that our beloved Pit Bulls endure. I guess you could that’s why I have been inspired to tackle this topic further.

Stay tuned…

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Operation Pit


Looking for a Few Good Dogs

Operation Pit is a Free Spay/Neuter program for Pits and Pit Mixes. Since this ASPCA program was launched on July 15th, 2010 there’s been 583 surgeries. At this time the program is based in New York. Pit Bull owners around the country need to work together to see these type of programs are open for all Pit Bulls no matter where they live.

Requirements:
Appointment
Pit Bulls/ Pit Mixes
Ages 3 months - 6 Years
Good Health

Operation Pit Offers:
Free Exam, spay/neuter or vasectomy
Free Distemper/Parvo Vacations (optional)
Free Microchip (optional)
Free Pain Meds (three day supply)
K9 Camo Gear [bandana/shirt]
Honorable discharge and aftercare instructions.

Details:
Procedures are completed the same day.
Dogs are dropped in the morning.
After the exam they are given a pick up time.
No income or place of residence requirements.

For more information or to schedule an appointment contact::

Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital 
424 East 92nd Street (between 1st Ave. and York St.)
New York, NY
877-900-PITS (7487)
Tuesday/Thursday


ASPCA Spay/Neuter Clinic
70-25 83rd Street
Glendale, Queens 11385
877-SPAY-NYC (7729-692)
Sundays

FAQs 
Why should my female Pit Bull get spayed?
prevents ovarian and uterine cancer
decreases risk of breast cancer
eliminates risk of an infected uterus (common in Pit Bulls)
healthier, possibly longer life
never have unwanted pregnancy.
pregnancy and newborn puppies is very expensive.
Pit Bulls have large litters


Why should my male Pit Bull get neutered?
prevents testicular cancer
prevents enlargement and infection of the prostate
less likely to run away or injured by other dogs

What is a vasectomy?
males get “tubes tied”
testicles are left in place
option for those not comfortable neutering
dog’s appearance and behavior do not change
does not prevent testicular, enlarged prostate
only a method of preventing pregnancy

aspca.org/pet-care/spayneuter
aspca.orgsr/spay-neuter-top-ten
aspca.org/aspca-nyc/mobileclinic
aspca.org/News/National
maine-programs-for-pit-bull-spaying-and-neutering
maine-s-low-cost-spay-and-neuter-program 
me/discount-spay-and-neuter-packages-for-pit-bulls
taming-the-pit-bull

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Leash reactivity.


Dogs instinctually greet one another in a “C” shape or side by side. It gives them the ability to smell each other’s behinds. This is accepted behavior in the k9 world. It is considered rude and offensive to meet face to face or stare at one another. In the modern doggie world leashes hinder their natural greeting instincts. This can lead to frustration in many dogs.

For example - a dog will see another from a distance. Perhaps it’s across the street while out on their walk. They will look over to see who that “intruder” is. Unfortunately the dog isn’t able to interact with the newcomer. They can only see the other dog. Their natural instinct to be able to go over and smell the other and have a more close contact has been restricted. The “intruder” may look over at the dog. In some cases this can lead to a “stare down”.

The inability to have a more close and personal greeting may make your dog begin to feel insecure. Being “stared” at may kick in their instinctual dislike for such behavior. Your dog finds the staring rude and offensive and pulls forward on it’s leash. Feeling the restriction of the leash brings on frustration. The dog may attempt a couple more tugs but quickly realizes that it’s not accomplishing anything. After some time this frustration begins to build up in your dog any time they see other dogs while on their leash. This is known as conditioned frustration or leash reactivity.

It’s important to remember that just because your dog reacts this way it doesn’t mean they have a dog aggression issue. If your dog is able to play off leash then this is on leash behavior. It is a direct result to the frustration of not having freedom to introduce themselves in a manner more natural to them. Another important thing to point out - this is a dog issue not a breed issue. Any dog Pit Bull or not may react this way.


This can be prevented.
The key is to reinforce a different behavior. This means that your dog is taught to focus on something else instead of the “intruder”. This can be accomplished a few different ways. Commands such as “sit” or “watch me” can be used. If it’s easier to have them perform an action while directing their complete attention on you then a “down-stay“ could be used. Another successful technique is to continue walking while having your dog’s attention focused solely on you. Doing this avoids a possible stare down with another dog.


Timing is crucial.
Avoid stare downs completely. By distracting your dog it eliminates the frustration and anxiety. If you wait until the dog is already showing signs of frustration, lunging, pulling or any other reactive behavior it’s likely your dog will not hear you. Even “look” or “watch me” would likely be ignored at this point.


Good leash manners are key.
Classes designed to teach both dog and owner how to prevent these frustrating situations in the future can be helpful. You will find that the various techniques taught serve very helpful within every day routines. Be sure you have established leadership with your dog. This is an important building block. When your dog feels that you’re in charge it gives them a sense of security in uncomfortable situations. Teaching your dog to listen and react to only you will help keep them calm and focused, even if the other dog is showing signs of reaction. Not only does this better bond the dog owner relationship It’s an impressive example of a dog ambassador in public.

- More information

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Passion For Pibbles On Facebook



In honor of this blog I have decided to make a facebook group.  This was an idea that had kind of been in the back of my mind.  Knowing that I have many friends that love Pibbles this was a perfect place for us all to get together.  I welcome anyone and everyone that shares the love we have for the breed.  This is a safe place where we can share stories, info, articles, pix, etc.

http://www.facebook.com/home.php?sk=group_214656018576395&ap=1

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Perception



Just read a very interesting article.  Really makes you think.  Ironically how the article ends tho.  Read and you'll see just what I mean.

http://stubbydog.org/2011/06/getting-hit-by-a-car-to-avoid-a-dog/

Friday, June 10, 2011

What is a 'pitbull'?

The actual origins of the APBT are still disputed. Therefore the answer is not so simple. What is often agreed upon though is there are three specific dog breeds that are often being referred to when using the general term “Pit Bull”. (Some may even argue there’s more then three.)



However, it’s important to remember that each of these is considered their own type of breed.  Owners of these beautiful breeds will be the first to tell you there are specific differences with each.  There’s the obvious differences such as appearance, coloring, weight.  It should also be pointed out there’s other differences as well.  Like any breed they have their own behaviors, temperaments, and quirks.  
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American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT)

Brick like heads that are broader between the cheek area. Thick muscled defined neck sets on a well sprung chest.  They are agile despite their stocky muscular build. This sturdy dog’s good looks are topped off with a tail that tapers to a point. Don’t forget those soulful round eyes. Sadly many sport docked ears. Their shiny coats come in all colors. (Both the UKC and ADBA do not accept docked tails, blue eyes, or merle colored coats.) 

When the general term “pit bull” is used it’s typically referring to this breed.  Most sources suggest that the APBT was a product of interbreeding between Terriers and a breed of Bulldogs.  This pairing produced dogs that had the gameness of Terriers with the strength and athleticism of the Bulldog.  

They were originally bred in England, Ireland, and Scotland. Immigrants from these countries brought them to the United States.  Here they were used as catch dogs for semi wild cattle and hogs, to hunt, and drive livestock.  Like today the APBT was also a family companion.  Unfortunately because they were such a smart, strong, and overall great dog many began being selectively bred for fighting. 

Today many APBT are used in a variety of fields. Some work closely with the military, search and rescue and police. While others are more suited for service and therapy work. Since they continue to be a loving and loyal breed many of them are still family dogs.

APBT are often bred for function. Hunting, weight pulling, agility, service are just some examples. Function bred dogs result in a variety of colors, body styles, and sizes.

This breed evokes more human reactions then any other breed. Whether it be emotional, rational, or even irrational. One thing is for certain the APBT can’t be missed. Perhaps it’s because though they may sometimes  have a natural dislike for other animals they love humans. This good natured, amusing, and affectionate dog is extremely loyal. 

APBT are full of vitality, extremely courageous, and protective towards their family and home. They are very friendly and absolutely love and adore humans of all ages. These dogs seem to have an uncanny sense of when they’re truly needed. If provoked to protect their loved ones they can and will fight their enemy to the death. Sadly in some cases even to their own death.

Since these highly intelligent dogs are eager to please they are not too difficult to train. They do need a firm, calm, confident leader that is always consistent. Another important step towards a well behaved and obedient dog is socialization. This key component of a well balanced personality needs to start at an early age and continue throughout the dog’s life.

As wonderful as these dogs can be they aren’t for everyone. If you’re not a firm leader with an understanding of how dog’s think this can pose a problem. These high energy dogs need structure, guidance, and exercise. They have to be reminded that they are not the boss. Training is very important to not only establish rules but to help curb any aggressive or behavioral issues. In fact if properly socialized and trained they can happily coexist with other animals including other dogs. 

APBT are typically healthy. Some may be prone to hip dysphasia, hereditary cataracts, congenital heart disease, or even allergies to grass.

Sadly there’s often a misconception that all “pit bulls” are muscle bound vicious beasts that tip the scales at 85lbs or more. Originally these dogs were bred small for fighting and were only 20-40lbs. Generally the standard male weighs 35-60lbs. Females tend to be a slightly smaller 30-50lbs. However, APBT can weigh anywhere from 22lbs to 110lbs. To achieve the larger sizes APBT are crossed with other breeds. 

*Interesting little tidbit of information - The United Kennel Club (UKC) was the first registry to recognize the APBT. In 1898 the UKC’s founder assigned his own dog the registration number 1.
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American Staffordshire Terrier (AmStaff/AST)

Muscular stocky build makes them extremely strong for their size. They have medium length muzzles that round on the upper side abruptly falling below their dark and round eyes set far apart and low in the skull.  The AKC considers pink eyelids a fault. All these beautiful traits are combined into a large powerful head.  

Their strong jaw consists of close even lips. Ears are set high on the head.  They can be cropped but not cropped is preferred. They are either held rose or half prick.  

Their thick, stiff, and glossy coat comes in all colors. Solids, parti, or patches are all permissible by the AKC standard. However, anymore then 80 percent white is not encouraged. Their undocked tail tapers to a point and is short compared their size. 

Many sources suggest this breed evolved by an interbreeding of the Bulldogs and Terriers. The dogs from this pairing were often referred to as “Half and Half”, “Pit Dog” or “Pit Bull Terrier”. Eventually they were named the Staffordshire Bull Terrier in England. The Bulldog in that time differed from the modern Bulldog we know today. The had a full muzzle and a long tapering tail. There’s also a debate if the White English Terrier, Black and Tan Terrier, Fox Terrier or some combo of these were used.

This breed began to show up in America in the early 1870s. They became known as Pit Dog, Pit Bull Terrier, American Bull Terrier, and then the Yankee Terrier. Sadly they were primarily imported for pit fighting. 

AST are: intelligent, happy, outgoing, stable, confident, gentle, loving towards humans, good natured, amusing, affectionate, and courageous, people pleasers, obedient, full of life, friendly, trustworthy, very good with and for kids, great family dog, 

With all that said they can be a persistent fighter if provoked. They’re very protective of their family and home. They will fight to the death even if it’s their own because they are just that loyal. 

Much like their cousins they can be animal and dog aggressive. The key to helping to curb this is early socializing. Some have a hard time getting housetrained. This awesome breed is definitely not for the passive person.  AST must have consistent, confident, and firm leaders.   

Today the AST are considered the show version of the APBT and usually bred for appearance and confirmation. Typically breeders of the AST and APBT deny that these two are anything alike these days. Generally the AST has a larger bone structure, head size, and weight then the APBT. They weigh anywhere from 57-67lbs.

AST can be prone to: heart murmurs, hip dysphasia, hereditary cataracts, thyroid problems, congenital heart disease, tumors, and skin allergies.  

*Interesting little tidbit of information - American Kennel Club (AKC) accepted this breed in 1938 as the Staffordshire Terrier. Later the name was revised to American Staffordshire Terrier in January of 1972. The name was changed to distinguish them as a separate breed. The U.S. had begun developing a type which was heavier in weight then the Staffordshire Bull Terrier of England. 
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Staffordshire Bull Terrier (Staffie)

Strong for their size due to their muscular build. Their broad skulls adorn a short and deep head with short foreface that comes to a distinct stop. Their strong jaw consists of tight lips. They have somewhat small ears either rose or half pricked. Their noses are black. They have straight front legs.  Dewclaws are sometimes removed.  Medium sized paws are well padded. Thicker at the base the tail tapers to a point. It’s carried low and shouldn’t curl too much. The tail can be compared to an old fashioned pump handle. 

Last but not least they have beautiful clean dark round eyes. Their eye color is in relation to the coloring of their short coats. Beautiful colors such as red, fawn, white, black, blue. Any of these colors can have white. Shades of brindle with or without white markings can also compliment the smooth texture of their coats.   

This breed can be traced to the Elizabethan Era. Bulldogs and Mastiffs were used for the sports of bull and bear baiting. Breeders produced large dogs for these sports. Eventually the typically 100-120 lb dog changed to a smaller 90lbs.    

Dog fighting gained popularity in England in the early 19th century. The smaller and faster dog was developed. It was known as the Bulldog Terrier or the Bull and Terrier. The Bulldog during this time was larger then English Bulldogs we know today. The 60 lb dog was crossed with the Native Terrier (related to the Manchester Terrier of today.) The result of this pairing was the 30-45 lb Staffordshire Bull Terrier.

In 1860 this breed was crossed with the old Pit Bull Terrier (now known as the Staffordshire Bull) This breed pairing resulted in what was called the all white English Bull Terrier.

Staffies are intelligent dogs that seem have a full throttle personality. Whether it’s playing, working, or just loving their family it’s with everything they have. 

These dogs are friendly, affectionate, persistent, and obedient. They seem to almost have a sense of humor to top off their attractive personality. Being a extremely courageous  human loving spirit can be a drawback. Staffies tend to not be wary of strangers. Of course there’s exceptions with some people the dog encounters. 

Staffies love their humans especially the children. They can usually co exist with other animals that live in their household. Of course to maintain balance within the pecking order they need a stern leader. Someone that is able to give corrections when needed. However, they may not be accepting of dogs out of their family. To curb the combative tendencies the key is always socializing.

It’s not recommended to allow them off leash or leave them unattended. Their curious nature can get them into a lot of trouble. Some are poor swimmers so great caution needs to be taken when near water. Their zest for life and curious nature can temp them to jump off somewhere they shouldn’t or walk into a dangerous area. These fearless Staffies should be watched closely to prevent a possible tragic result.  

Staffie puppies tend to chew a lot. It’s recommended that only strong toys are used. It takes no time at all for a determined puppy to break through a soft toy and rip out the insides. That can be very dangerous if they were to eat the material used to stuff it, plastic, squeakers or other noise makers. Be sure not to encourage their fondness for chewing by allowing them to chew hands. 

A great way to burn excessive energy is training them for completive sports and agility. In fact in the UK this breed often competes at the highest levels. They love a challenge and it’s a great safe way to challenge them. Obedience classes are also a great idea. This will help bond dog to owner, socialize, and teach them how to be the best dog they can be. 

Sometimes these dog can be stubborn and hard to housetrain. Be sure they have a firm, confident, consistent pack leader to enforce the rules. Place limits on what can and can’t be done. Without structure dogs of any breed have a hard time knowing what’s expected.  If this essential part of training and owning a dog can’t be established then Staffies are not the right breed for your family. 

Staffie males weigh 25-38lbs and the females come in a little smaller at 23-35lbs.

Staffie are prone to cataracts. Screening of both parents can help avoid passing it on. When the puppies are a few weeks old it’s recommended that they be tested as well.  Staffie puppies are sometimes prone to being born with an elongated soft palate. Like the APBT and AST they can also develop hip dysphasia or tumors. As with all the “bully breeds” they can also have gas problems. 

*Interesting little tidbit of information - The Kennel Club in Great Britain recognized the Bull Terrier by the end of the 19th century.  However, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier’s reputation as a fighting dog prevented The Kennel Club from recognizing it as a breed until 1935. (A century after dog fighting became illegal in Great Britain.) 

Finally the AKC registered the Staffordshire Bull Terrier in the early 70s. By the mid 70s they were a regular show classification in the Terrier Group. 
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Now back to the original question: What is a “pit bull”?

As you can see there’s no single agreed upon definition of what a “pit bull" really is.  Much like not everyone can agree that whatever they are called these dogs are a wonderful loving breed.  A breed that needs to be understood, respected, and above all appreciated for the awesome dog they are. 

Technically “pit bull” is not a breed.  This is simply a type of dog.  For example the Retriever, Terrier, and Shepherd all describe a certain type of dog. However they are not a specific breed. There is no single scientific definition what exactly is considered a “pit bull”. In other words everyone has their own idea of what it is.

Unfortunately the media, and anti “pit bull” people, and even many lawmakers tend to lump many breeds together. If the dog looks like a “pit bull” or is deemed dangerous in any way for any reason they get tagged as one.

Sadly since they do have a high tendency towards dog aggression this flaw is often exploited. These amazing dogs have fallen into the wrong hands. The sad reality is a majority of these dogs are forced into the illegal world of dog fighting.  With this lifestyle comes other illegal activities. They are trained to guard illegal narcotics operations. Some are even forced to go against their human loving nature and are used as weapons against law enforcement. This only adds more fuel to those opposed to “pit bulls”.

To add to the “bully breed“ madness there are several breeds that have bulldog or bull in their breed name. The APBT and the Staffie are just two of many.  Some other bully breeds are: the English, American, and French Bull Dog, Bull Mastiff, Bull Terrier, Olde Bulldogge, American Pit Bull Dog (not Terrier)  These breeds are not all the same, nor should they be considered “pit bulls”.  Each is a breed that has different temperaments, and appearances.  Also as with any breed they have different histories on how they came to be.  Suffice it to say it’s not fair to lump all these unique breeds into one generalized statement such as “bully breeds” or “pit bulls”. However, this slang has become accepted in our society.   

On the whole “Pit Bulls” are generally affectionate, intelligent, and love humans. It often comes as a surprise when people learn that the APBT as well as their close cousins the AmStaffie and the Staffie ranks high as stable and human friendly breeds. In temperament testing they have passed higher then many other “family dog” breeds. The Golden Retriever, Collie, Cocker Spaniel, and even the Labrador Retriever are just a few examples. 

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Information compiled from various sources. 
Pictures are courtesy of wikipedia online. No copyright infringement intended. 
No monetary gain was received.  Original was created May 22nd, 2011 by Carrie McCormick.
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Friday, June 3, 2011

Dogumentary of Tia Torres and Shorty Rossi

Found this DOGumentary of Tia Maria Torres and Shorty Rossi
It was one of Brandon Bond's youtube channels
Some old school footage of Shorty lol



Videos about Brandon Bond's rescue

No copyright infringement intended.
You can check out his channels on youtube
All or nothing tattoo, All or nothing rescue, and others...





Brandon Bond talks about his pitbull Cain

Such an awesome guy and I can't even imagine the loss he endured when Cain passed...
Cain is who inspired him to do what he does... Much like Geisha and Shorty...






Tia Torres and Brandon Bond

Also another favorite of mine is Animal Planet's "Pitbulls and Parolees" Tia is an inspiration to us Pibble rescuers and lovers. Recently I also found another awesome Pibble advoctate, Brandon Bond.  He even put on a charity benefit for Tia's rescue. Here's a couple clips that I found on youtube. If you haven't checked these two awesome Pibble advocates and rescuers out yet definitely do so.  I can't wait to see another season.  Also hoping to get Brandon's movie.  It's the one I posted recently.  The one about the Vick dogs.  So c'mon all you Pibble fans here's some inspiring people and stories to check out...

  

Pit Boss



Animal Planet's "Pit Boss" starring Shorty Rossi, his Pibbles, and his employees will be back on for another season July 16th.  As a fan I'm excited and hope that you all tune in.  The show is on Saturday nights at 10pm est.  Be sure to check your local listings for details.





Wednesday, June 1, 2011

VICKTORY TO THE UNDERDOG HELL AND BACK

VICKTORY TO THE UNDERDOG HELL AND BACK 
"Vicktory: To The Underdog" takes an in depth look at world renowned tattoo artist "Brandon Bond" and his dog rescue efforts - particularly rescuing the infamous Michael Vick fighting dogs.

Rather than focusing on the dog fighting problem, the movie sheds light on solutions leading to "Vicktory" for all the underdogs in the movie - tattooed people, pitbulls, parolees and all the other people in this world that society has turned their back on through ignorance and racism.

The movie also examines the life of Brandon Bond and his struggle with balancing fame, fortune and the Rock-N-Roll tattoo lifestyle with a more fulfilling life that focuses on the betterment of both animals and society as a whole.

Featuring celebrities like Debbie and Danny Trejo, Michael Berryman, Pixie Aciae movie takes you on an incredible journey you will never forget!



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Books to read

Books that I'd like to read sometime in the near future...


Oogy: The Dog Only a Family Could Love
By Laurence M. Levin
In the bestselling tradition of Rescuing Sprite comes the story of a puppy brought back from the brink of death, and the family he adopted. In 2002, Larry Levin and his twin sons, Dan and Noah, took their terminally ill cat to the Ardmore Animal Hospital outside Philadelphia to have the beloved pet put to sleep. What would begin as a terrible day suddenly got brighter as the ugliest dog they had ever seen--one who was missing an ear and had half his face covered in scar tissue--ran up to them and captured their hearts. The dog had been used as bait for fighting dogs when he was just a few months old. He had been thrown in a cage and left to die until the police rescued him and the staff at Ardmore Animal Hospital saved his life. The Levins, whose sons are themselves adopted, were unable to resist Oogy's charms, and decided to take him home. Heartwarming and redemptive, OOGY is the story of the people who were determined to rescue this dog against all odds, and of the family who took him home, named "Oogy" (an affectionate derivative of ugly), and made him one of their own.


The Lost Dogs: Michael Vick's Dogs and Their Tale of Rescue and Redemption
By Jim Gorant
Expanding on his Sports Illustrated cover story, Gorant (Fanatic) offers a chilling investigation into Michael Vick' s dog-fighting operation and the men and women who brought him to justice and rehabilitated the rescued dogs. Gorant outlines the rise of Bad Newz Kennels, describing in sometimes painful detail the abuse, torture, and execution of the animals--particularly disturbing is an episode in which Vick and a friend swing a failed fighting dog over their heads like a jump rope and kill it by repeatedly slamming it into the ground--and tracing the rescue of dozens of pit bulls seized from Vick' s property. Gorant outlines the efforts to save these animals from euthanasia, challenging the negative public perceptions of pit bulls and reporting back on the status of dogs like Sox (now a certified therapy dog), Zippy (adopted by a family of five), and Iggy (still shy but growing comfortable with his adopted circle of friends). At a time when Vick has returned to professional football and much of the public outcry about Bad Newz Kennels has been forgotten, this book provides a stark reminder about the horror and prevalence of dog fighting.


Lost Souls: FOUND! Inspiring Stories about Pit Bulls
By Kyla Duffy & Lowrey Mumford
Are Pit Bulls the vicious people-eaters the media portrays them to be? The stories submitted by loving families who have adopted and rehabilitated Pit Bulls in Lost Souls: FOUND! Inspiring Stories about Pit Bulls will tell you they are a product of their environment. And, like any other dog, when treated with love and respect Pit Bulls are the most loyal, loving companions out there. This thought-provoking compilation,with introduction by acclaimed actress and animal advocate Linda Blair, shares the discrimination that Pit Bull owners face and the joy these dogs provide which makes it all worthwhile. A must-read for Pit Bull lovers and open-minded people who want to learn more about the breed. A SIGNIFICANT PORTION OF PROCEEDS FROM EVERY SALE IS DONATED BACK TO PIT BULL RESCUE GROUPS.


Pit Bulls: Villains or Victims?
By Blair Boucher
Exposes crippling ignorance and the roots of sadistic human behavior behind pit bull driven hysteria. The violence, cruelty, and overall bizarre mythical guesswork aimed at these dogs have done nothing to foster safety in our communities. In fact, the results have been quite the opposite. Careful study shows the undeniable correlation between animal abuse and violence against humans, including child abuse, domestic violence, homicide, and violent sexual crimes. Yet, this criminal behavior is continuously eclipsed by the overzealous persecution of what is nothing more than a dog. Even though animal abuse is known to be a precursor of violence against humans, and despite the inherent injustice of animal abuse, as a society we continue wasting valuable time and putting lives in jeopardy by targeting breeds of dogs for annihilation rather than proactively focusing on the abusers of these animals. Undesired canine behavior can generally be predicted by examining an animal s environment and care (or lack thereof). This book demonstrates that, more often than not, so-called aggression or misbehavior attributed to any breed of dog can be traced back to either an innocent misunderstanding of canine behavior or the deliberate and nefarious misdeeds of their human handlers.

- Information and pictures taken off Amazon.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Pit Bulls Don't Cry

Rescue groups

There’s several different types of rescue groups right here in Maine.  Some specialize in one breed.  Others accept all breeds and mixes.  These rescues are a small group of dedicated dog lovers.  They rely on a network of foster homes where the dogs live.  Therefore, there’s no specific location where the dogs can be seen.  Many rescue groups do participate in adoption events where you can see some of the adoptable dogs.  Some have you make an appointment with either a rescue group volunteer or the dog’s foster.

Foster homes are very important.  The families are able to evaluate the dogs in a home setting.  By having this precious “hands on” approach they are able to work on any health, behavior, training or social needs.  Working with a dog in this setting helps prepare it for it’s new home.

The rescue has usually covered all the dog’s health needs including any medications, vaccinations, and treatments.  Also the rescue dogs are spayed and neutered before they’re adopted out.  Unfortunately this often puts a strain on a rescue.  Their adoption fees are often higher then humane societies and shelters for this reason.

Sometimes a downside to working with a rescue group is time.  If you’re in a rush for that perfect dog that may frustrate you.  Sometimes there’s waiting lists.  Many places don’t believe in a “first come first serve“ policy.  They want to take the time to make the right match.  Their goal after all is to find the dog a forever home.

If you’re a private person their process may be uncomfortable.  Lengthy applications, interviews, home visits, and reference checks.  Some rescues have a lot of strict policies and regulations.  Often it’s much like the process of adopting a child.  The thing to remember is this is for the best interest of all parties.

The best way to know if going through a rescue is for you is research.   Ask around and get recommendations.  Inquire and ask questions.  If a rescue isn’t open to answering your questions that may raise a red flag.  You can do searches online for rescues in your area.  A very good source to use when looking to adopt a dog is Petfinder.

Good luck in your search for your new family member.  Remember every Pit Bull that is rescued and given a new homes saves another.  You have helped free up valuable space for another to be pulled into a foster home.  



Pit Bull friendly rentals


Often times it’s hard to find a dog friendly rental. It’s even more difficult when that dog is a Pit Bull. Sometimes the reason given is insurance issues. Then there’s those that are just flat out against any “bully breed” in general.

After some extensive research online the results were not very helpful. It was suggested that anyone in Maine looking for dog friendly housing check out  www.homeproperties.com. Another frequent suggestion was craigslist where you’d have the option of finding homes or apartments that are privately owned. Places like complexes or condos are more likely to have restrictions.

Good Tip - When inquiring about a place don’t automatically mention the breed.  In other words don’t say, “Do you allow Pit Bulls?” You can imagine what the answer would probably be each time. Instead word it something like this, “What is your pet policy?” You should be able to get a sense of how to proceed by the way they answer. If asked about your dog’s breed be honest.

It won’t be easy. However, if you’re persistent and don’t give up you may find that one landlord that is willing to give you both a chance. That’s all you need to prove yourselves. Be proactive and positive. Don’t be negative and defensive.

Show the perspective landlord why you (and your dog) would be good tenants. Make a point to have the landlord meet the dog. Be prepared for any reaction. Remember no matter what the reaction is you have to be polite, professional and show a positive attitude. You don’t want to give the anti bully people anymore fuel for their fire. Assure the landlord that they have nothing to worry about.  Ask them if they have any questions or concerns. Explain to them what you’re willing to do to prove that this arrangement can work for all parties.


Suggestions for helping your argument:

  • Spay/Neuter
  • Vaccinations are UTD.
  • Obedience Training
  • Good Citizen Program.  
  • Be sure your Pit Bull is housetrained.
  • Offer to pay an additional pet deposit.
  • Always clean up after your dog. 
  • Curb excessive barking. 
  • Never let them free roam. 
  • Prove to everyone (neighbors included) you’re a responsible Pit Bull owner.

If you’re still not having luck convincing a landlord don’t give up. Try placing Rental Wanted ads. Be upfront and honest about what you’re looking for. You never know someone may just see your ad and be understanding of your situation.

Whatever you do don’t give up. Please don’t back down and decide to get rid of your beloved dog. It may take time but with research and patience you should be able to find that perfect place for the both of you.


HELPFUL RESOURCES:
www.peoplewithpets.com
www.pets911.com
www.petswelcome.com
www.petapartments.net
www.mynewplace.com.
www.apartmentguide.com
www.apartments.com
www.aptsforrent.com

Dog parks



Something to think about: 

There’s mixed views on dog parks in general. Many find these places as a great way to socialize and exercise your dog. However, others see these environments as a potentially dangerous place. Remember dog parks can be a breeding ground for issues that could otherwise be avoided. Not all dogs like to play well with others. There’s also a higher risk of dog bites, fights and even sickness.

Another reason dog parks are often shunned by experts and Pit Bull owners is the sad reality - not everyone is Pit Bull friendly. There are people who don’t want a “bully breed” around them, their dogs, kids, or families in general.

You must be prepared to deal with a possible negative response if you do bring your Pit Bull in a public place. Remember to always be professional and polite. Don’t allow their lack of understanding put you in a defensive mood. If you handle it with a calm cool manner some may actually be receptive to it. Who knows you may even change a few minds. However, there’s always going to be others that won’t be bothered with giving you or your dog a chance. No matter the reaction remember you have to be an ambassador of the breed.

These are just words of caution and reminders. Don’t let this scare you off from trying public places such as dog parks. Just be cautious, responsible, and smart about the situation. Only you know what you and your dog can tolerate.

Note - It’s recommended that your dog has their vaccinations up to date. Also it may even be a good idea to carry proof with you wherever you go.  It’s always best to be prepared.

Is your dog micro chipped?


You may want to consider it. Thousands of lost and abandoned dogs are taken in by shelters and humane societies across the country each year. The sad reality is many of these animals never make it home because they couldn’t be identified. Pit Bulls are a large portion of those displaced dogs.

A simple device the size of a grain of rice could help prevent your dog from being a homeless statistic. Instead they could be one of the dogs that finds their way home safely.

Each microchip is safely implanted by injection under your dog’s skin. The process is quick and often painless. It’s described as being much like your dogs getting their vaccinations.

The chip has a unique identification number. When vets or shelters use special scanners they are able to detect if a dog has one. They can then track down a dog’s owner using a recovery service. (It’s very important to keep these files updated.)

Why Microchip?

  • Permanent form of identifying your dog.
  • Best way to improve the chances of your dog’s safe return.
  • Tags and Collars can become unreliable (lost, stolen, broken, illegible)
  • Tattoos can also become hard to read.

If you want to know where to go, the cost, or other information you can contact your vet, local shelters, or go to a local clinic event. Don’t forget the internet is also a good source for learning more.

Note - Our Pit Bull got his 24petwatch microchip in the shelter. Our Lab got her AVID microchip implanted by our vet during her spay. Many of the local clinics that do microchips use home again.  Some companies such as 24petwatch let you register your chip whether it’s their brand or not. For more details check out their websites.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Gating

Using baby gates may be very beneficial for your multi Pibble family, There’s a variety of places these easy to install and durable gates can be found. A cheap alternative getting them second hand or though garage sales.

Step 1 - Each dog will need to be individually trained. They will need to learn that they must respect the gate. Therefore do not allow them to push, chew, or jump over the gate. Also do not allow them to put their paws on it.

Step 2 - The dogs must learn that they are to stop and wait at the gate. This concept can be taught by using treats or food. Also incorporate a signal of some kind. When the dog has done this you can open the gate. This will be the reward for waiting. Each time they’re at the gate make sure they ask permission to enter. Make sure they know that if they nudge or push at the gate they will be forced to go back onto the other side again. Once they are back in a sit/stay position or have acknowledged the signal they may go through the gate again.  Never allow them to bark or whine to get their way. They must be quiet and obey you before they are rewarded with entry.

Step 3 - Make sure the gates are in place before the dogs are allowed into their “free range” areas.

Step 4 - Always make sure any “trigger” items aren’t around that may cause issues. It won’t matter if there’s a gate if a dog covets an item on the other side. Items such as food, toys, and especially bones can be too tempting and cause issues.

Adding the gate concept to your crate and rotateschedule allows dogs some “free range” time. However, remember to never use gates as a means of separating dogs when you can’t supervise. Don’t put it past them to find a way to jump over or knock the gate down. It won’t matter how durable a gate is if you have a persistent Pibble intent on chewing their way to the other side.

Crate Anecdotes


This page is dedicated to Pibbles. However, I wanted to share this since we are on the top of crates.

Labrador Retriever “Jenna” absolutely loves her crate. As a puppy it didn't take very long for her to get the whole concept. At first it was used mostly as a place she went if and when she wasn't going with us somewhere. It was also her bed at night. We did try to encourage her to sleep with us but she refused. She much prefers her doggie den. As she got older she’d spend more and more time in it. This was her choice. If she wanted to go have a nap or just have alone time that’s where she went. We try to make a point of keeping everyone out her crate. For the most part the cats and dogs respect the concept. However, she has allowed the occasional visit . The only dog that can almost always go in with or without her is our Chihuahua. For some reason it seems she has given him his very own guest pass. She wasn't too fond of her former foster brother. When she was tired of dealing with him she’d spend a lot of time in her special hideaway. The most unique thing about “Jenna” and her crate is how she literally puts herself to bed. No I’m not referring to the nap times in the day. This is completely different. Somehow she has set her internal clock to a certain time. Whether it’s daylight savings or not she is very retentive about what time she must be in that crate. She will track us down and give us “the look”. When you ask her if it’s time for bed she will lead you down the hall. This has become a ritual with her daddy. This dog won’t settle down comfortably for the night unless you put her to bed at the precise time. You must also close the crate door and lock it so that intruders do not disturb her slumber. Funny thing is we didn't train her on the crate she trained us.

Chihuahua “Pepe” isn't really fond of the crate. We attempted the whole sleep in it at night thing. That didn’t go over well. I’ll admit we didn’t help the process. His father took pity on him and allowed him to break that golden rule that many trainers frown upon. Yes he shares our bed at night. Rather he shares my pillow. He’s almost as obsessive about that sleeping spot as his sister is with the crate. He has however gone in his crate on the rare occasions we have had to leave him home. Also he’s wandered in it from time to time. He is completely obsessed with a crate. However, it’s not his crate that he loves. His brother’s crate is always open and it’s in the kitchen. They take turns napping in it. Sometimes they’ve even napped together. The cats are known to use it from time to time as well. Apparently the whole one dog only in the crate concept does not apply to this particular crate. We figure why break  the pattern now. It helps them get comfortable with crating and learn that there’s some benefits to having your own little hideout.

Pit Bull puppy “Tango” has spent some time in his crate. Mostly this time is spent napping or hanging out with his friends. We have left him in it a couple times when we weren’t able to take him with us. He doesn’t sleep in it at night. Seems daddy has allowed another doggie into the bed at night. His ritual is usually sleeping at the end of the bed. I guess neither of the dogs has been taught by their sister that a crate has many uses. However, all three dogs have been exposed to the crate. They understand it’s not a punishment and that they are safe and can rest comfortably in it.

Crate and Rotate: The Setup



How to set up a crate and rotate routine - 
Review your household schedule and routines. Then come up with a schedule and system that works best for everyone. Make sure all the family (including the dogs] know what this new routine is. You may have to tweak things until you find a system that works best for everyone. Be sure once you find what works best you stick to it. Consistency is the most important key here.

Decide on the who, what, where, and when to get yourself started. Who goes in which crate? What they will have to entertain them? Where will the crates be? When will they be using their crates? When will the bathroom breaks be? When will they eat?

Another thing to take into consideration is whether you need to separate the dogs. Yes you’ve separated them into crates. However, it doesn’t quite end there. Can they be crated in the same room? If any are possessive of their domain they’ll need separate rooms. 

If you’re a multiple dog home there’s some other things to consider. Can any of the dogs be out of their crates together? You may be lucky and have some dogs that can “share” these activities with each other.      

Perhaps none of them are able to share time with each other outside their crates don’t panic. Although it may feel like more work there are solutions. You will just have to rotate them all separately. This would be for all their activities - feeding, walking, bathroom time, exercise, training, and of course one on one time with the family.

Exercise is probably one of the most essential parts. Making sure your dogs are getting an adequate amount is important. This helps them mentally as well as physically. It gives them an outlet to burn excess energy. Remember the old saying, “a tired dog is a good dog.” Anxiety and tension can also be reduced, resulting in a more positive and relaxing crate experience. 

Remember not all Pit Bulls have dog on dog issues. However, part of being a responsible Pit Bull (or any breed) owner is being prepared. It’s important to be proactive instead of reactive. Always monitor your dogs and watch for any signs of a change in their normal behavior. Be ready to separate if it’s needed. Don’t forget - NEVER allow your dogs together without supervision. It only takes that one time for something to happen

Crate and Rotate: The Crate



Crate and Rotate -
You may have heard this phrase before. Pit Bull owners often refer to this method of training. Many find it a valuable and effective tool. This process is not as complicated as you may think.

Remember it’s sometimes in a Pit Bull’s nature to decide they want to be the lone dog. Whether you’re just adding another Pit Bull (or any breed) to your home, or you suddenly have some dog on dog issues get familiar with this technique.

The Crate -
If you’re not familiar with crating this is a good time to learn. Many dog owners swear by this concept. Don’t worry it’s not a bad thing to crate your dog. Rather it shouldn’t be a bad thing. Make the crate a rewarding place to be. You’d be surprised how fast some dogs take to crates. Others may take a little longer. For tips, advice, and answers to questions you may have check out the various articles online. Also talk with other dog owners (Pit Bulls or any breed).

The concept of the crate is simple. Basically a crate gives your dog(s) their own domain. A dog’s instinct for a “den” seems to be ingrained in their make up. Respect your dog’s need for quiet time away from the rest of the family and world. Many like to keep their most treasured toys inside along with perhaps a favorite blanket. Many dog owners feed their dogs inside the crate. By feeding your dog or allowing them their most coveted toys or treats inside their “den” this helps establish it as their own. Another important thing to keep in mind is - it’s their home. In other words do not allow children, other animals, or dogs to invade the sanctuary. This should include you as well.

First and foremost make sure all your crates are durable and tough. For larger dogs or ones that tend to chew a lot it’s probably not a good idea to invest in the hard plastic type. The tough metal ones with a plastic pull out tray work wonders. [We have four heavy duty metal crates. Two of those are made by Midwest. These are my personal favorite not only because of their durability but they also “grow” with your dog. The large cages have a divider and multiple doors. This way as your dog grows you can expand it without having to keep buying crates. The little extra expense upfront is worth it in long run.]

Be sure that your dog will be entertained inside his “den” when he’s not napping. Provide their favorite toys. The best type of toys for crates are durable ones that keep your dog busy. A big favorite are tough chew toys, rawhides, even Kongs filled with their favorite stuff. This will keep your dog entertained and keep the crate concept a positive thing in their eyes. Many owners take this opportunity to allow them things that they may be more apt to fight another for outside the crate.

Don’t worry about the dog using their crate as a place to relieve themselves. Normally dogs will not use their bedrooms in this way. Another way to prevent this is let them do their business before and after. Starting this type of ritual enforces the concept. They will train themselves to hold it. Sometimes there’s an occasional mess up. This is especially true with potty training puppies, elderly dogs, or ones that may be feeling ill for whatever reason. If you find this happens more then it should it could be your crate is too big for the dog. There’s various tips on how to cure this problem online. Many suggest blocking off a section of crate until they grow. [This is why “life stages” crates are such a great idea.]

Keep the amount of time in the crate to a minimum. Remember you want them to see this as a good thing. Too many hours in a crate may have an opposite effect. They need exercise and to be able to burn off energy. If they feel stifled because of the lengthy crate visits this may have an adverse effect on the crating concept.

Adding another Pit Bull to your family


Some things to consider before you decide if this is the right decision for all involved.  Not all Pit Bulls can live with other dogs especially of the same breed. Some may prefer being the lone dog while others are more accepting.

Your current Pit Bull should be well behaved. In other words they should already have a good grasp on simple commands and behavior that you approve of. He or she should already display dog friendly traits, good temperament, and overall good behavior. If this is not the case a new arrival may follow in their misbehaving footsteps. If you think it’s hard now to keep one high energy dog under control you haven’t seen anything yet. Consider it a kind of doggie see doggie do. Of course this is great if your current dog is a model example of what a Pit Bull should be.

Take into consideration the dogs and their ages. Are they puppies, adults, or somewhere in between? With most dogs it may be recommended to have them close in age. Many feel that this will encourage them to be friends and playmates. However, some Pit Bull experts say this is not the case here. It’s suggested that the greater the age difference the better chance of reducing dog on dog conflicts. Of course it depends on the dogs involved.

Do you have your mind set on a specific gender? Take into consideration that not all Pit Bulls of the same sex get along. Often opposite sex pairings work out better. Don’t forget whatever pairing you decide they both need to be spayed or neutered. Not only does it obviously prevent unwanted results but it can help reduce other issues. Also it’s suggested that litter mates not be paired up. Often times they can become very competitive. Yes sibling rivalry can even exist in the dog world.  

Refresh yourself on your dog’s body language. Can you tell if your dog is only playing? How does she or he sound and act? Are you aware that not all dogs will share the same traits? If dogs are involved in an intense match against each other, do you know whether it’s fun or bullying? Dogs vary when it comes to how they react when playing. Some are very loud and rambunctious while others are less excitable. The riled up ones can be too intense for the more mellow ones. Be sure to always supervise these interactions. Break them up If things seem to be getting out of control or could quickly head that way. Do whatever it takes whether it’s a phrase, command, or noise. Teach your dogs a specific “time out” code. This simple gesture could prove to be invaluable. Whatever you do don’t attempt to physically break up the situation yourself. Even dogs that know better get into what is sometimes called “the zone.” They may end up turning on you without realizing what they are doing. To prevent any accidents always break up intense interactions in a way that protects you from this possibility.

Once you’ve become a multiple dog family you’ll need to split up your time. It’s important to have individual one on one time. Use this time for walking, exercise, and training. Of course don’t forget to take the opportunity to spoil each with some extra love and attention.  

Are you prepared financially? Beyond any adoption or purchase fees there’s also the long term to consider. When stocking up on the flea, tick, and heartworm preventatives and even food you’ll have to consider the extra costs. Also don’t forget the regular vet exams, vaccinations, and any other medical issues.

Sometimes dogs end up showing hostility towards their new friend later down the road. If a conflict does arise are you prepared? Are you familiar with a valuable tool known as “crate and rotate”? [Be on the watch for a future article about this topic.]

For more thoughts on multi Pit Bull homes I suggest you check out the article two pit bulls is a bad idea. It came from an outstanding website. The author has two females. (That’s often considered the worse combo.] He goes on to explain why he tells others not to get more then one. His reasons make a lot of sense. Some were covered here but he also brings up a few other points. It’d be very beneficial to check out what he and others - that have traveled down this road already - have to say.

One final note…

As a Pit Bull lover you’re already aware of the mixed views towards our beloved breed.  Sadly your own family and friends may not agree or approve of your choosing to add yet another “vicious beast” to your family.  Acquaintances and neighbors may also share in the disapproval.  It’s possible that you’ll hear horror stories, misconception, and myths. Though already being a pittie owner this reaction should be something you’re used to. Sadly it doesn’t get any easier.

The only way to combat this is being proactive. Prove that you’re a responsible Pit Bull owner and ambassador of the breed. Make sure your dogs are trained and socialized. Teach them to be confident and affection in every situation. This could go a long way to prove they are great dogs. No matter the reactions you get be calm and do try your best to educate. Teach the anti pit bull people why many of their preconceived notions don’t have any merit. Remind everyone why these beautiful, loving, and loyal dogs have the reputations that they do.  Explain what we pibble lovers mean when we say “blame the deed not the breed”

Whether you have one Pibble or many one thing is for certain you’ll have a best friend like no other.