Pit bulls are a family of very aggressive breeds of dog. They are very strong dogs with an innate tendency to attack, and although some individuals in the breed can be good house pets, the majority of pit bulls are used for guarding (and unfortunately, fighting) purposes. In 2008, there were almost 16,000 medical incidents involving people being harmed by pit bulls, at a cost of over $387 million.
The pit bull’s reputation comes from both fact and paranoia. Insurance companies rarely offer coverage to pit bull owners without supplemental insurance. It is true that pit bulls are much more dangerous than other breeds, especially when untrained. But they are not the only dog that is prone to attacking humans, nor are all pit bull-related incidents purely the fault of an aggressive dog.
Pit bulls get a bad reputation because of people that have abused and trained them for fighting. Unfortunately people use pit bulls for fighting because they are strong, athletic, and intelligent dogs. One common myth that has been associated with pit bulls is that they have a locking jaw, this is of course false. Any dog can be trained to fight, not just pit bulls, and in reality pit bulls are actually very loyal and loving companions. The Chako Rescue Association uses pit bulls as therapy dogs in Utah, California, and Texas. The National Canine Temperament Testing Association tested the temperament of 122 breeds of dogs and pit bulls received 4th place.
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