Blame owners, not breeds

I would like to reply to the letter from Heather Dean entitled “Why choose a pit bull?” (The Free Press, February 7)

I would like to reply to the letter from Heather Dean entitled “Why choose a pit bull?” (The Free Press, February 7)

I want to start by saying that I too was once against pit bulls, thinking that they were all “unpredictable dogs” who’s only purpose in life was to fight. Then I started seeing a woman who had a pit bull, and my opinion of them totally changed.

Emma the pit bull was five when I met her, at the physical prime of her life, and right up until she passed away last summer of cancer, I never saw her display signs of unprovoked aggression to either another dog or person. In fact, our biggest problem when walking Emma was other dogs approaching her, exactly like what happened to Heather Dean, and instigating an encounter with her. Ms Dean might be surprised to learn that Emma was exactly like her Portuguese water dog, she would do anything to avoid a fight.

What I would really like Ms. Dean to consider is that the reason she had that unpleasant  encounter in Elkford was not that she encountered a pit bull, but that she encountered an irresponsible dog owner. We have to negotiate irresponsible drivers every time we’re on the roads, and unfortunately irresponsible dog owners are also a part of our world.

The reason Ms Dean knows what to expect from her dog is not that it is a Portuguese water dog, but rather that she is a responsible dog owner. If she had been fortunate enough to have met Emma she would have known a friendly, intelligent and obedient dog, who just happened to be a pit bull.

 

Steve Thornton

Fernie