Pit Bull Terriers have probably been one of the most maligned breeds of dog. Best Friends Animal Society is doing something to change the mistaken image of this dog.
Best Friends has launched a program called Shelter Partners for Pit Bulls. The project encourages responsible pet ownership, works to increase adoptions, reduces euthanasia and improves the public perception of Pit Bulls and other so-called dangerous breeds.
Once a loved family dog, the Pit Bull has been outlawed in some communities. Shelter Partners for Pit Bulls is trying to change that. There is a misconception in part perpetuated by the media, that Pit Bulls are vicious. The result is that many of these dogs wind up in shelters and although healthy with excellent dispositions, are euthanized.
PetSmart Charities has given a $240,000 grant to support Shelter Partners for Pit Bulls. There are 5 shelters across the country – Rancho Cucamonga and San Diego, California; Tampa, Florida; Baltimore, Maryland and Washington, D.C.
Jamie Healy, manager of Shelter Partners for Pit Bulls tells us, “In addition to this program helping to save lives of adoptable animals, I would really like for people to realize that Pit Bull Terriers are just dogs, like any other dog. They’re fun-loving, loyal goofballs that have the same basic needs and require the same responsible ownership as other dogs do.”
I can attest to that, having adopted a Pit Bull mix from a shelter. Sadly, one look by people passing this loving dog and they steer clear. The truth is, Murphy (her name), has never met a 2-legged or 4-legged being she hasn’t showered with kisses and love.