Kaley Cuoco urges people to adopt pit bulls: ‘I’m obsessed with this kind of dog’

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I can, at times, be one of those people who prefers canine interaction over human interaction, so I have to give Kaley Cuoco some props for speaking out for a dog breed that is often unfairly branded with a bad name.

In an interview with the Los Angeles Times that was published on Monday, the 37-year-old Big Bang Theory star and well-known animal lover talked about her work with the LA-based non-profit pet rescue organization Paw Works. Kaley’s passion for pet rescue began around 10 years ago when she learned about the tarnished reputation and frequent mistreatment of pit bulls. She told the Times, “I was like, ‘Oh, my God. I’m obsessed with this kind of dog. I just found them to be so incredible. I realized what great dogs they were, and how horribly they were seen. And I just didn’t want that to happen anymore. So it became a passion.”

Kaley’s passion led to her first rescue adoption, a pit bull mix she named Norman, of whom she admitted, “I knew right away I wanted this dog to be in my life.” Norman has become a social media celebrity of sorts, thanks to Kaley’s Instagram account, which she named after him. After Norman, Kaley adopted two more dogs, another pit bull mix she named Shirley and a terrier mix named Ruby. Kaley’s seven show horses have also been known to make an appearance on Instagram. Even though the pooches got Kaley in a bit of hot water on the fourth of July last year, there’s still an unconditional love that will never die. As Kaley put it,

”I live by this saying,” she said, “I don’t know who quoted it, but it’s like: Who rescued who?”

She paused for a moment.

“And I just think it’s the sweetest thing,” she continued, “Because it’s true. It changes your life.”

[From The Los Angeles Times]

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Not only has Kaley been dishing about dogs, she also chatted about her human partner, equestrian Karl Cook earlier this week. During an event for Panera Bread on Wednesday, the actress was asked about her 26-year-old beau and she replied, “He’s great.” Fortunately, Karl is also a dog lover. Kaley declared to PEOPLE, “He’s got a big bulldog and many horses and luckily, I found a guy who likes dogs as much as me. That’s on my number one list — ‘Must love dogs!’”

As for talk that Karl might be “the one,” Kaley said, “Aw! I’m open to anything. I don’t know what the path is going to take, but I’m very happy right now.”

I wanted to be snarky, but I can’t. I love dogs so much and admire Kaley for adopting three pups and lending her support to a rescue organization. I have friends who own pit bulls and post a lot of images and articles on Facebook about how pitties are abused and treated terribly and it breaks my heart. I’m glad she’s using her voice to try and change opinions about this unfairly maligned breed. Now, if she could just move on from BBT…I just can’t with that show.

A fun shot from our backyard @latimes shoot ! 💦

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I miss you every single time @mrtankcook ✈️ 🐴 🎥 ❤️ 👄

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InStyle & Warner Bros. Golden Globe After Party 2017

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107 Responses to “Kaley Cuoco urges people to adopt pit bulls: ‘I’m obsessed with this kind of dog’”

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  1. Anna says:

    Good for her! Pitbulls are THE BEST and have proven time and again that they don’t deserve a bad reputation.

    Just read the stories about the Vicktory dogs! Horribly abused in Michael Vick’s fighting ring, they went on to show the world how loving and forgiving dogs can be. They became awesome family dogs!


    • V4Real says:

      I found a beautiful pit bull on the streets a couple of weeks ago. She was so sweet. I had her for about a week and she got along with my husky and cat. I wanted to keep her but fortunately I found her owners who missed her terribly. We still visit her. I’ve had two pit bulls in my life and they were very sweet dogs.

      I still can’t stand Vic for what he did. I donate to Pit Bulls and Paroles. It’s great what they do for those dogs.

    • Karen says:

      They get a bad rap. But in my area i think a lot of people dont get them because home insurance companies dont give policies or jack up prices on any of the bully breeds.

    • Lindsey says:

      It seems like she should encourage people to research pit bulls and say they have an un deserved reputation for violence. Not everyone is equipped to be a pit bull owner and it turns in to a bad situation for the dog and the people. Temper your comments, not everyone needs to adopt one, that’s a bad idea but people looking into to getting a dog maybe should look into pit bulls even if they would not have before.

      • Melly says:

        You are exactly right. Pits are the most amazing dogs for the RIGHT owners. They need lots of training and exercise.

        My blue nose pit is laying on my feet right now. He’s the best dog I’ve ever had, he literally saved my life last year. I slipped on some ice while we were out in the evening and cracked my head on the ground, knocking me unconscious. My boy leapt into action and got help. After getting one of my neighbors attention, he laid on me to keep me warm while my neighbor called an ambulance. I adopted him when he was a littler pupper and I’ve never had such a loyal companion. He’s the best boy.

      • Ange says:

        Melly that’s a wonderful story (except the part where you hurt yourself). Honestly sometimes I feel like we don’t deserve dogs – and I’m a cat person!

      • Rachel says:

        That applies to any breed. It’s important to educate yourself before you adopt any dog. Too many dogs end up in shelters or at animal control or dead because people didn’t adopt a dog that fits in with their lifestyle.

        Melly, my mom was watching my dog once when he started barking his head off out the window until she walked over to see what he was barking at. My elderly neighbor had fallen in her yard and broken her hip. He got help for her. He died two weeks ago. He was my hero dog.

  2. Darla says:

    I love the big bang theory. I know it’s cool to mock it on the internet, especially over at the AV Club, but it makes me laugh and feel good. So to each their own. Oh, and I hate pit bulls. Isn’t it great we don’t all have to be the same?

    • V4Real says:

      I don’t like people who hate pit bulls. Wow, you’re right , it is great that we all don’t have to be the same. 🙂

      • blogdis says:

        I am a dog lover and its not that I don’t like pit bulls its that I really do dislike some of thier owners. Owning a pit bull comes with some responsibility to engage in the services of a dog trainer and to understand the dogs temperament and learn how to manage control thier dog no (matter how sweet thier disposition they can snap ) .Also some people deliberately raise them to be cross for bragging purposes and then can’t control them

        I have seen and heard of way too many stories of little children and other dogs being mauled and killed whilst the owners stand aroun screaming can’t control them and all they have to say is but but he was so sweet I don’t know what happened .
        There is some amount of selfishness and entitlement about people who do not take understanding /managing thier pet versus the safety of other people and animals into account

      • Melly says:

        I’m with you, V4Real! I will rain down an un-Godly f’ing firestorm against anyone who talks shit about my boy. Don’t bully my bully!

    • Alix says:

      @Darla: Same here! I love BBT, except for the annoying fact that none of the actors even pretend to eat during meal scenes — they’ve all been stabbing their plates with their forks for 10 years and it makes me BATTY.

      I’m not a fan of pit bulls, though I’m sure in many cases their aggressiveness is due to past abuse, bad treatment, etc. But then I’ve never heard of, say, a golden retriever going rogue and biting off someone’s face. Not saying it couldn’t happen, Just sayin’.

      • Erika Mullins says:

        Funny enough in temperament test Pit Bull breed dogs (it’s really a set of physical characteristic that include around 50 different breed but I’m talking ones most commonly labeled as Pitbulls) do better than golden retrievers.

      • V4Real says:

        @Alix it has happen and many times. People have been attacked by Golden Retrivers. Someone downthread shared their story of being bit by one. I knew a lady was attacked by her friend’s retriver. But just go on YouTube and you will see videos of Golden Retrivers attacking people.

        Any breed of dog can attack or bite someone, not just pits.

      • Darla says:

        Haha, I know! I definitely notice that they never eat too.

      • Melly says:

        Retrievers actually bite more people than pit bulls do. And like Erika said, pit bulls have a better temperament. The American Temperament Testing society tested 870 Pit Bulls and of those 755 passed the test, while 115 did not. They had an 86% pass rate.They also tested 785 Golden Retrievers. Of those 669 passed and 116 failed leaving Golden Retrievers with an 85.2% pass rate. So you can see, according to their testing, Pit Bulls are slightly less likely to show aggression than one of America’s most beloved breeds, the Golden Retriever, when given the same conditions.

      • Alix says:

        Hmm, who knew? Not me, clearly. Celebitches know everything! 🙂

      • Heather says:

        The ATTS is not used to establish suitability of dogs in homes. It’s used for Schutzhund evercises for protection dogs. Bold dogs tend to do well while placid dogs, such as lap dogs that are very suitable pets, tend to fare less well.

      • kaiko says:

        someone correct me if i’m wrong, but i think i read somewhere that goldens have something called a ‘soft bite’, meaning that even if they may nip more, it’s not going to be a bite that could kill a small child. rotties and pits have a mastiff type jaw which exerts a LOT of force…so if they bite, they are going to do serious damage. that being said, i love pits and rotties, they have such sweet, smart personalities, but, as it is with children…you gotta commit to training them right.

    • Mango says:

      Yep, don’t like them either and I’m not afraid to admit I don’t understand the obsession with them. My roommate’s (very friendly and cute) pit bull mix jumped on me and bit my arm so hard I was bruised for a month. They simply just make me nervous. And I’m an animal lover who donates and adopted a rescue. To each her own indeed. 🙂

  3. BearcatLawyer says:

    Let me start by saying that I am very much a dog lover. I support animal welfare but not the animal rights agenda pushed by PETA, H$U$, and the A$PCA.

    BUT true pit bulls and pit bull mixes are NOT a good dog choice for the vast majority of people. Pit bull terriers are very often aggressive towards other dogs. Some are aggressive towards humans – and not just strangers. And while this may be a very unpopular opinion among animal rights types, not all dogs can be saved and rehabilitated. Not all can become awesome family pets with love and training. Some simply must be euthanized in order to protect the lives of humans and other animals.

    I am glad her rescue dogs have worked out well for her, but that does not mean everyone should immediately run out and adopt pit bulls. The first step in integrating an animal successfully into one’s home is to be a responsible owner. Do your research, determine what you can live with and what are dealbreakers, get good training and support, and be realistic.

    • Darla says:

      It’s so true. As a very young child I lived next door to pitbull owners. Their backyard abutted ours, and they kept two pitbulls in a cage back there. Well, they escaped. They were on our front lawn and the first thing they did was try and kill my neighbor’s german shepard, a friendly dog who ran over, I suppose drawn by the pitbulls, I don’t know, I was so young, a child. But I vividly remember them attacking the german shepard. My mom and aunt opened the screen door and called out to the german shepard, and she ran into our house. The police came and I will never forget they told my mom and aunt “you shouldn’t have done that”. Why? Because what would you have done if the other dogs got in instead? But my mom couldn’t watch them tear apart the shepard.

      Anyway, my entire childhood I had one reoccurring nightmare. It was about those dogs. Escaping. Oftentimes I would dream they squeezed in under my bedroom door.

      I cannot stand when people tell me how I MUST feel about pit bulls.

      • Jillian says:


      • Maria says:

        @Darla I’m sorry you had to witness that as a young child. I have my own nightmare pitbull story, but I just can’t share it as it’s too early and writing it out will no doubt upset me, plus I don’t want to get attacked by pit apologists. But yeah, I have nightmares too.

        These dogs are not sweet precious angels that are just misunderstood. That’s my opinion and I’m allowed to have it.

      • Mrs. Darcy says:

        ANY animal that is mistreated and kept in a cage and never socialized with other animals can be dangerous. Blaming the breed is not the answer. If you don’t want pitbulls that’s fine, but tarnishing the whole breed because of one incident you witnessed is pretty unfair.

        Ironically, some of the most abused pitbulls are still the most inclined to seeking human care and affection. Here is a police sheriff discovering dozens of dogs tied up in the woods, who in theory should be “aggressive”.


        It’s fine to not want a breed in your life, but breed discrimination leads to more animal suffering all around.

      • V4Real says:

        That just goes to show that your neighbors were very bad dog owners. Can’t blame the dogs for the way they were handled. And you’re right not everyone should have a pit and not every pit can be saved . Though their are quite a few who can be saved. I applaud your mom for saving that pup

      • Annetommy says:

        That sounds awful for you, Darla, sympathy to you and Maria. I love dogs but I would not get a pitbull, especially a rescued one. I don’t really care if some people think that’s unfair to this breed.

      • Erika Mullins says:

        Shouldn’t you feel worse about people who keep their dogs caged in their back yard?

      • Naddie says:

        This story gave me chills. Sorry, I couldn’t understand, did the german shepard survive?

      • Hannah Lee says:

        Wow, what a awful story. Shame on those owners for keeping the dogs in cages like that.
        I’m all for giving dogs a chance, and that story definitely sounds like the bad owners were a huge part of the problem with those dogs.

        That being said, I am wary around pit bulls. I’ve seen times when an otherwise sweet pit bull has lashed out and it’s scary. For example, in a two dog house, where the dogs have gotten on fine, the previously sweet and loving pit bull suddenly lunged at the other because the owner happened to walk between them carrying a plate with food on it. The pit didn’t just bark, growl or snap…it lunged and sunk its teeth into the hound viciously. It took 3 adults to separate the dogs.
        Not all pit bulls, of course, and other dog breeds can bite as well. But I’ve never seen other dogs go as quickly and unpredictably from ‘calm’ to ‘ATTACK!’, or bite with such power and viciousness as pit bulls. For example, the one retriever bite I’ve seen involved someone sticking their hand in the dog’s dish and ignoring the growling, hackles up, and bared teeth the preceded the bite. It was a quick bite and release: bite marks, but no serious damage, compared with the pit bull bite I saw. (Food possessiveness shouldn’t be common in retrievers, but sadly with the breeds’ popularity there have been some less than careful breeders on the scene)

        Now, in both cases, there was no history of abuse or biting from either dog, and there were “handler errors” that lead to the bites. But the pit bull attack was much more sustained and serious.

        Sure, some folks can consider rescue dogs, and consider adopting pitbulls. But they are not for everyone, and not every owner can be a good owner to a pit bull. Just like not every owner should get a border collie or Australian shepard…because unless you’ve got the time and motivation to keep those high-energy, intelligent dogs moving and entertained, there will be problems.

    • BearcatLawyer says:

      It is true that any unsocialized, untrained, mistreated animal can become unmanageable and aggressive. But pit bulls were bred for aggression. It is not discrimination against the breed to say so; it is just fact.

      I should also point out that many rescues and shelters usually name any dog that resembles a pit bull terrier as a pit bull or bully mix. The less reputable ones will even come up with tragic backstories. The fact of the matter is that very few of these dogs come from anyone associated with dogfighting. They just are not all that many so-called “bait dogs” alive, much less in a shelter environment.

      • detritus says:

        I think of Pitbulls and other more aggressive or independent dogs as Expert level dogs. A Golden Retriever is harder to mess up that a Rotty or Pibble, and the consequences are greatly different.

    • Anna says:

      I take it you haven’t read about Vicks dogs then? At first they were not given a chance but almost all did get rehabilitated. Can’t get any worse than a former fighting dog, huh? No, not every dog can be adopted and rehabilitated. But these dogs absolutely proved they can go through hell and still be loyal, loving and obedient.

      • BearcatLawyer says:

        I have read all about Vick’s dogs, and a lot of them had mixed outcomes in the real world. A goodly number of them were never successfully adopted out and died in shelters/sanctuaries. Several others went through multiple foster homes and years of training and socialization before finding a forever family near the very end of their lives. Some succeeded in appropriate homes that could supervise them correctly, but it is a stretch to claim that almost all of them were rehabbed.

      • blogdis says:

        @ Anna
        So your one anecdote about Vicks dogs are supposed to wipe out all the other numerous documented cases of pit bull attacks ?
        Listen I love dogs but many of you pit bull apologists are being disengenous , yes any dog can bite , and any dog can have and Bad outcomes with abuse or irresponsible ownership , however the consequences of this can be more dire with pit bulls
        The reality is while chihuahuas maybe more aggressive and bite more what is the the likely hood of being mailed . Losing an eye arm or being killed by a chihuahu?? I mean seriously you people slay me
        As per documented statistics pit bulls account for 72 % of dog mauling FATALITIES despite being only 6% over dog population. We havent t gotten into the breakdown iof severe mauling injuries yet

        ALso a lot on here are blaming poor owners and rightly so but therein lies the problem when a random person encounters a pit bull how will they know if they have a bad owner or not?
        PIt bulls can make great pets for the RIGHT owner , my nephew has several and even though he is loving, patient gentle and playful with them they KNOW he is in charge and he also takes extra precautions with them around other dogs /people .
        Sadly a lot of people are more into profiling and virtue signaling how awesome they are cuz ” I rescued a pit bill “. And they DO. NOT have the time or skill set to understand, train or even manage thier dog .Not everyone should own a pit bull and telling people otherwise is very irresponsible

      • Luna says:

        The pitbull breed is a magnet for cruelty. Dog-fighting, yes as well as tortured to be extra aggressive for drug-dealers and for men that need to prove something. If there are still any dogs being euthanized because they don’t have homes, I hope the pitbulls get put down at a greater rate than, say, beagles. For their own good.

    • jc126 says:

      So very true, Bearcat Lawyer. I feel very bad for pit bulls (and of course any abused dogs), but they are not appropriate for everyone. And not all can be saved and safe.

  4. Merritt says:

    Once again, she shows that she is an idiot. Pit bulls are not a good choice of dog for many people. Pit bulls need someone who has time to spend with them and time to work on training them. They are not a good choice for busy people and busy families.

    • Amanduh says:

      …I feel like that should apply to all dogs. No time? Don’t get a dog.

      • milla says:

        Amen. I gave up on holidays cos i have a senior dog. I cannot just leave her.

        As for pit bulls, they can be lovely dogs but they need the right person. People turned them into beasts but dogs in general are capable of so much love. I trust them. But i would’t put them next.to kids. Cos kids can annoy any breed

      • Ems says:

        Very good point @Amanduh! I actually have accumulated seven rescues; two pit bulls, one pit mix, two chihuahuas, one lab mix and a weimaranar – all with horrific backstories. I work from home (on a big, secluded property next to a forest) so have a lot of interaction with my doggies during the day and there is a lot of supervision! All dogs require attention and consistent reaffirmation. All big, strong dogs, which pit bulls generally are, need constant socialisation, entertainment and rules. This is because having a badly behaved big dog has much more serious consequences than a badly behaved little one.

        My smallest dog is a 2.5 kg chihuahua and she has aggressive tendencies brought on by fear and insecurity. We’re working on it, but if she was a big dog then it’d be a lot more problematic.

        My point is, it isn’t how you raise them – this does a disservice to dogs in shelters – but character depends on the individual dog. With a big dog especially, you have to put the time in as an owner. With a small dog it’s the same. However, the consequences if you neglect your small dog are probably going to be less for other humans.

      • Merritt says:

        True to a point. But pit bulls are high maintenance. Other types of dogs don’t necessarily need the same focus, but still need your time.

  5. Maria says:

    I’m glad there are other people that don’t obsess over these dogs like she does. If you like them, fine, but don’t attack people who don’t, which I have gone through with pit bull owners. I don’t get offended and attack people who don’t like Yorkies. I mean, if you don’t like Yorkies or yappy dogs, it’s your perogitive just like it’s mine to not like pits.

    Also when you push for one dog to get adopted and make that dog out to be special, it’s unfair to all the other dogs out there that also need homes. All dogs are special in the eyes of their owners. And every person is different and should really research what breed would be most compatible with them and their lifestyle before adopting.

  6. L84Tea says:

    I have mixed feelings on this. I love dogs. Like I LOOOOVE dogs (more than a lot of humans) and I am 100% for adopting and giving dogs good homes. As for pitbulls specifically, I want so badly to be able to think, yes they’re sweet and gentle and misunderstood and everybody should have one. However…

    I have neighbors across the street from me who have one and he is a family dog–licks peoples’ feet, lapdog, hunts for lizards in the bushes, all the cutesy dog stuff. Real sweet dog. We were over at their house one night watching a game and my toddler son was sitting on the carpet next to my feet. The dog had been normal and friendly all night and my son was not touching him or bothering him in the slightest. But suddenly the dog stood in front of him and froze and lifted one paw (like he’d spotted a target) and he just lunged at him. He didn’t actually bite him, but he nipped at him. For NO reason at all. I still get a sick feeling every time I think about it because it happened so fast and that dog could’ve torn my little boy’s throat out right in front of me if he’d wanted to. Why he decided in that moment to look at my son like he was a pork chop, I will never know.

    This is why I have mixed feelings. 🙁

    • Jillian says:

      Just reading that story made me nervous. I get nervous about dogs around kids. No matter what breed

      • PrincessMe says:

        Same here. Reading that I was so nervous. I feel the same way about dogs around my children. Some more than others. A little yappy dog is less likely to do extreme damage in a second than larger breeds.

      • Odesa says:

        Me too, Jillian. I’m very uncomfortable around them and am very sweaty and nervous during every family function with my inlaws. They actually bring their own dogs to family events, and in a small house, it makes me very uneasy to have them around my son. Dogs are not babysitters. They are animals. I have had family members bring their pets over to our house, even though we have specifically said we are pet free because of my husband’s allergies.

    • Odesa says:

      I hear you! A similar thing happened to me and I am very wary among pit bulls. I was told “it’s just a friendly nip”, but I have scar from the incident. There is no way I would let my son play with one, or ever be alone with one. The chances are just too great.

    • Kitten says:

      I’ve had this exact same thing happen to me with my brother’s bull terrier. And at age 11 I was chased down on my bike and bit on my calf by a golden retriever as I was delivering a neighbor’s newspaper.

      Animals are unpredictable. This is not specific to pit bulls–ANY dog has the capacity to flip on a switch. True, many of them never do but that doesn’t change the fact that they are capable of it–even the sweetest breed.

      • Originaltessa says:

        I think the difference for a lot of people is the damage a Pit-bull can incur. They have razor sharp teeth and very strong jaws and bodies. They were bread to do that. Just physiologically, your chances of survival are better if you’re fighting off a Golden Retriever than a Pit-Bull.

      • mayamae says:

        They don’t have “razor sharp teeth”. LOL. Sounds like you’re describing a shark. I’ve had a pit bull, and I would have another one now that she’s died, except I’m currently fostering. It’s a breed that I will probably stick with the rest of my life. And what exactly are pit bulls “bread” to do?

  7. Electric Tuba says:

    If I found myself using the word obsessed as much as this chick does I’d seek therapy AND a thesaurus.

  8. Georgie says:

    20 years in the veterinary field and I would take working with a pittie over a german shepard, min pin, chow…ANY DAY. ANY dog can bite – these just happen to be really powerful dogs so when they bite it is a BIG deal. They are not the right dog for everyone but they have been SO unfairly demonized and that often times is what people are raising awareness about. Last I heard dachshunds were the breed with the most bite incidents…I once heard about a dachshund that dragged a baby out of it’s crib…no joke.

    • Renee says:

      My vet says the same thing. I have a pit and a dachshund. My dachshund has bitten everyone and hates most other dogs while my pit is the sweetest, goofiest thing.

      • Ksenia says:

        There is a perfect dog for everyone inclined to like dogs, and a person’s personality, schedule, energy level, etc. must all be considered; no one should just be told, “Oh, THIS is MY favorite dog; now YOU SHOULD adopt the same kind!” I get that Kaley is simply trying to give a dog with a troublesome reputation a fair chance at adoption, but she really ought to point out that this breed takes a large amount of time, discipline, training and exercise that another breed of dog might not need, and thus is NOT the ideal dog for everyone. (There’s no such thing, of course.) In the interest of fewer dogs winding up in pounds/shelters, everyone should know as much as possible what to expect about the dog they adopt, including the overall temperament of the breed.

    • Elo says:

      Thank you so much! I work in rescue and I too have herd Dachsunds are the most likely to bite. They tend to be very dominant. My weenie mix rules my home and my pit bull. In my time in rescue the worst damage we have had by a dog to a person was by a small terrier type dog. The dog had some food issues and its foster (who knew this) bent down to correct him when he was eating and he turned around and attacked biting all up her arm, neck, and face. This dog weighed less than 20 lbs. No Pitbulls aren’t for everyone but they score very well on temperament test, better than labs, and goldens, and are still the most euthanized breed across America largely due to misinformation.

    • mayamae says:

      Cesar Milan once did an episode where he was called to a house with at least six pit bulls. He’s like – ok, got this. Then he learns it’s the Chihuahua that’s the problem. He almost fell over laughing. The pitties are all sitting calmly in the living room, then the Chihuahua struts in like he runs the show. All the pits immediately looked down and away because they were terrified of the little Napoleon. And I will also add that Cesar always maintained that it was much easier to correct an aggressive dog, than it was to work with a hyper or fearful dog.

      • Betsy says:

        What’s the relative bite strength of them all?

      • blogdis says:

        Sigh these folks slay me its not about which breed may bite/ attack more but the likelihood of the severity of the attack based on the nature of the dog and how they attack
        I mean i am still waiting on someone to provide the stats of all the fatalities , faces torn off. eyes lost and other maiming and mauling caused by Chihuahuas…Eye roll

  9. I don’t like Pitt bulls, Rottweilers, or Dobermens. Interestingly enough they are usually considered in the vicious dog breeds and most apartments that have a limit on breed rules always include these. I know the whole, “it’s not the dog, it’s the owner” theory is true (we had a vicious German Shepard growing up thanks to my dad), but they just scare me. When I was about 10 years old a Rottweiler charged at me and ever since then dogs like that and pits (due to their reps) have caused me to not like them. I guess you could say I’m a little racist against those types of dogs lol.

    • BearcatLawyer says:

      Unfortunately, sometimes it IS the dog. I have known some owners that moved heaven and earth to try to rehabilitate unstable dogs, and they eventually had to give up and euthanize them. It was better than letting them live in kennels with little contact for the rest of their lives.

  10. Barbcat says:

    One of the main issues with pits is their giant jaws. Any dog can bite. But if a pit bites you they tightly hold you in their powerful jaws and do serious damage. They kill people!

    I love dogs, but if pits were banned and went extinct I would be fine with it. Why risk it when there are so many other adorable mutts out there that need homes?

    • mayamae says:

      I’m glad you don’t have the power to ban all pit bulls in the world, and destroy the breed to extinction. Good Lord, get a grip. I “risked” it, and so do thousands of others who are incredibly happy and fulfilled by their pit bull. And by the way, most pit lover adopt them, not buy them. In breeding and buying from breeders is one of the biggest issues out there. Maybe you could wish extinction on Puppy Mills? Ok, thanks!

    • Anna says:

      Actually, this is NOT true. Pitbulls do not have a jaw that “locks”. It’s an urban myth.

      • Betsy says:

        She didn’t say their jaws locked, she said they hold you tightly and don’t let go. That’s a fact.

    • jc126 says:

      One time at a dog park, a pit bull pushed me down to the ground and held me there. He didn’t bite me or (ugh) hump or do anything, but he held me down, and I could barely speak to ask the moron owner to get him off me. I couldn’t move a millimeter against the strength of that dog and fortunately my dog didn’t attack him (I don’t want him getting hurt). It was a terrifying experience.
      Pit bulls and pit-types – American bulldogs, bull terriers, and other molosser type dogs like Cane Corsos, Dogue de Bordeaux, other mastiffs, etc. ARE different fundamentally than poodle types, or spitzes, etc. They just are – their overwhelming strength and guardian instincts or aggressive traits are just different. I think sometimes people simultaneously like having the status of having a big scary looking dog and saying at the same time “oh it’s all how you raise them, my pit bull is so sweet”. As I said upthread I do feel terrible for the things that happen to pits, but they’re not all safe and appropriate for everyone.

  11. KBeth says:

    I agree with most of what has been written here. I am a dog lover but pit bulls are definitely not for everyone/every family.

  12. Cinderella says:

    It’s always heart-warming to hear about successful pit bull adoptions, but I don’t agree with blanket declarations that everyone should adopt one. Thanks to many irresponsible humans that have damaged this breed, pit bulls are not for everyone.

  13. skyblue says:

    A woman was mauled to death recently in Bozeman by two dogs, a pit bull and a pit bull cross. The dogs belonged to her tenant and it sounds like she knew them well enough. I have to say I’m very cautious with pit bulls, German shepherds, chows, Akitas, Chesapeake bay retrievers and Rottweilers. I worked at an animal shelter for several years full time before attending nursing school and really encourage people to research dog breeds before adopting.

    • mayamae says:

      I agree people should research a breed before purchasing or adopting. They should also get a breed that works best with their situation. As an aside, I’ve worked in a shelter filled exclusively with dogs from “death row” shelters. Many bully breeds. I’ve been attacked once, and it was a long-haired Chihuahua. I’m actually extremely nervous around ankle biters because I find them high-strung and unpredictable.

  14. JoJo says:

    When adopting, I think people need to assess each dog as an individual first and foremost. There are lots of pit bulls that are great dogs. That said, I think it makes sense to take breed traits into account too.

    Tia Torres (Pit Bulls and Parolees) wrote a great Facebook post on pit bulls and the prevalence of dog aggression in the breed. I LOVE her honesty and think it’s so important – even more so if you love the breed:


  15. Betsy says:

    I think they’re very fairly maligned. Their maltreatment (and I am thinking specifically of those who abuse these dogs and use them for dogfighting) is, of course, terrible, but this dog has been bred to be aggressive outside their family sphere, they have been bred for strength, and they have been bred for tenacity. When they account for a hugely disproportionate amount of attacks and fatal attacks, and when so many have stories of calm, unbothered pit bulls suddenly becoming aggressive, and when so many of us have read stories of pit bulls suddenly snapping and killing a toddler… nope. The malignment is sensible. I don’t advocate for their destruction or anything, but I sure don’t like seeing them in my neighborhood.

  16. Sam the pink says:

    She doesn’t come off here as very bright. Pitts can be sweet dogs, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have their issues. Even many advocates for them admit this – they tend to have naturally high prey drives, which means they tend to go after smaller animals. They also tend to be very strong and can hurt vulnerable people without any intention to do so. What I hate are the apologists who can never admit that the breed has a mixed track record and maybe should be limited to experienced owners. And I do not believe they should be in homes with cats or small children. One of my co-workers has 3 Pitts and a toddler, and she openly admits the dogs nip her son, but says that they only do it when he grabs them and it helps him learn. I think that is ridiculous.

  17. Mrs. Darcy says:

    ANY dog can bite or be unpredictable, I understand people’s fear of pits. The media is great at sharing every negative pitbull story there is. We have to make an effort to find the positive stories, but once you do they are everywhere, and I defy anyone not to fall in love when they watch videos of this former bait dog Calista the pitbull


    I am actually really sad I can never adopt one in the U.K., they banned them, and hey guess what, people started abusing and stigmatizing the next best thing, the staffordshire bull terrier. The problem is PEOPLE not dogs.

    • Sam the pink says:

      All due respect, you’re promoting a partial truth. Of course any breed of dog can bite. But if you dig a little deeper, you would notice that if you look at FATAL dog attacks, Pitt bulls are implicated in the vast majority of fatal attacks (there’s no hard number, but the estimates are between 80 to 90 percent of fatal attacks involve pitts in the United states). It’s denialism to pretend that the breed is just like any other. They are very strong, very powerful and have largely been bred for aggressive action, sadly. Can individual dogs be sweethearts if raised right? Sure, but that doesn’t negate the stuff I cited above. I don’t believe in banning them, simply because I do not think it will work. But I think too many people are in denial about them as well.

    • Ann says:

      “The media is great at sharing every negative pitbull story there is”

      That’s the understatement of the year. The “media” shares this stores because they occur frequently and it is mostly pit bulls causing human fatalities.

    • Ange says:

      Staffies are everywhere in Australia as well. They are a high number of dog bites but it’s because EVERYONE has a staffy or a staffy mix and yes, unfortunately they are the dog of choice for the horrible bogan set. I would love to see the percentages worked out to show exactly how many people have that breed of dog vs how much they bite because I’m sure the numbers don’t take that into account.

  18. Hikaru says:

    I was attacked by my aunt & uncle’s pit when I was less than two years old. Luckily I don’t remember anything but I still have scars on one side of my face because the dog went straight for my head. I was too young to walk and didn’t do anything to provoke it either. After it was put down they got a pair of dobermans and gifted us the female one. And I have to say that she was the most gentle and patient creature ever despite the dangerous breed label.

  19. Annetommy says:

    2016 stats.
    31 U.S. dog bite-related fatalities occurred in 2016. Despite being regulated in Military Housing areas and over 900 U.S. cities, pit bulls contributed to 71% (22) of these deaths. Pit bulls make up about 6% of the total U.S. dog population.

    • Kitten says:

      My friend has a pit bull and he is a love but my god this dog is energetic and STRONG af.
      Now, my friend is VERY good with Pit Bulls–volunteered at a shelter for years and rehabilitated them through consistent training to get them adopted. Many times the dogs were returned due to bites, unfortunately. When that happened, the Pit would be considered “unadoptable” and have to be put down sadly.

      Anyway, I got the dog a rope toy for xmas and it was…really intimidating to see him playing with it. He has a really large cranium–the biggest I’ve ever seen on a Pit–and a super-strong jaw. I honestly didn’t know how to handle him and I’m usually a pro with animals. He was just so freaking strong– pure muscle. My friend is really great with him though-she knows exactly how to handle him, to calm how down, to dominate him, etc. She’s also a bigger person and I think that her larger stature also helps.

      I don’t fault people for being fearful of Pits, but I do feel terribly for these dogs who often ARE victims of irresponsible breeding and most often end up languishing for months in shelters. As it is, our shelters here are overrun with Pits. Just sad…

    • CynicalAnn says:

      Thank you for the facts instead of anecdotal stories of people’s lovely pits.

  20. Michel says:

    I think people grossly underestimated the time commitment required for a dog then bad things happen. I have a very active Doberman Hound mix that needs to be run EVERY DAY regardless of weather. I am a runner so that isn’t a problem because I needed a running g partner. But he would be a nightmare for a less active family. You need to match your personality and activity level to the right dog and be realistic.

    • detritus says:

      I agree 100% for this. So many people get a dog based on looks and not personality.

    • Arlene says:

      I’ve a GSD and agree, we run or hike every single day, he’s 5 now and fit as a fiddle. But he needs that exercise in the morning to set him up mentally and physically for the day ( me too, now that I think about it) I’ve often said a tired dog is a good dog 🙂

  21. Ann says:

    Pit bull ownership should be made illegal in the US. They are involved in a majority of fatal attacks on humans and other dogs and no, it’s not “the way they are raised”.

    • Elo says:

      Ann, that is simply not true.

      When dogs do attack many times they are labeled incorrectly as pit bulls. The term “Pit Bull” is really a blanket term that covers around 40 different breeds of dogs. Think if we called all retreviers of any sort Labs. Please look into this dangerously incorrect statement before you spread it around, sentiments like this have led to the Euthanasia of thousands of innocent dogs in my home state of Texas alone.

      • Ann says:

        Elo, that simply is true. Pit bulls & pit bull mixes are responsible for a majority of fatal attacks on humans and pets. What is “dangerous” are people who are pitbull apologists like you who refuse to acknowledge statistical facts.

    • Crumpet says:

      I got your back here Ann. They were bred for a specific purpose, and bred very well. To be absolutely lethal to other dogs. Since that time, irresponsible breeding has turned that aggression into something else entirely. When they attack human beings, they are lethal, plain and simple. It’s not their fault, they are a product of man’s twisted desire to fight dogs, and man’s laziness when it comes to making certain that human aggressive dogs are never allowed to breed.

  22. Elle says:

    I’ve had four pits at different times in my life; at their core, they are just big slobbery lovers, but they come from working lines of dogs and require daily exercise to get out all the wiggles and help them focus on training. They have a strong prey drive which gets them in trouble with small animals and little people and they play hard but they can be trained.

    You need to give them a job, teach them how to do it and be consistent.

    Tl;dr: pits are wonderful if you have the time, space, and dedication to train and play with them. They are high maintenance in that regard and not suitable for most peoples’ lifestyle.

  23. Melissa says:

    I found my pit on the streets one night coming home from the movies. I had just recently lost my two golden retrievers and I was devastated, I always stop when I see stray dogs to see if I can help and she jumped right into my car; she was in such bad shape we didn’t think she was going to make it, I was going to take her to a shelter the next day but as injured as she was and being a pitbull I didn’t think they would even give her a chance and just put her down, got in touch with a non-kill shelter and they took her in but asked us to foster her because they were full, first month was awful she was so sick and also because of my recent loss I didn’t want to get attached, fast foward to three years later and she’s one of the best dogs ever! Obviously I failed as a foster parent lol I have never seen her being agressive, not even once. She loves everyone (except squirrels, they are THE enemy! She’s on window squirrel patrol as I type this) she thinks is her duty to say hello to everyone she encounters and being a pit some people are wary but she usually wins them over! I am so lucky to have her in my life.

  24. CynicalAnn says:

    We have a lab mix mutt who was a rescue from the streets. I had a dog growing up-but this puppy has turned me into the biggest dog lover. Seeing the pictures of the dogs in Hurricane Harvey being rescued just make me cry.

  25. Julaho says:

    Not everyone should own dogs, especially breeds that can not only be aggressive (like any animal) but can cause damage with that aggression. An owner should be prepared and experienced.
    Side note, the most aggressive dogs I’ve ever encountered were chihuahuas. They were evil and had they not been 17 ounces I would be dead.

  26. Mildred Fierce says:

    As a journalist, the term pit bull always drives me nuts. It’s just this blanket term that can mean about five or six different breeds of dog or mixed breed dogs. Whenever, I see headlines with the latest “pit bull” statistics it just always feels so inaccurate and dishonest to me because the AKC doesn’t recognize “pit bull” as a breed, which means there’s no definable standard for what a pit bull actually is.

  27. Dizzy says:

    I was chased by a pit bull while I was riding my bicycle. I remember looking down and and it was nipping at my feet, just missing them. The owners were calling it but the dog didn’t listen. Nightmare!

  28. PoliteTeaSipper says:

    After treating kids in a pediatric hospital who were there because they were attacked by pit bulls (yes, it was more than one child and yes, they were ALL pit attacks) I will never allow one near my family or my dogs. Ever. Period. The risk is simply not worth it.

  29. Tinkerbell says:

    My niece was bit by a Pitbull recently. Not a fan.

  30. aenflex says:

    I don’t agree that the breed has been unfairly maligned. Pit bull terriers were bread for a reason. After bull-baiting fell out of favor, rats were used in the pits. And the bulldogs were too slow to catch and mangle them, so they were bred with the more agile, and smaller, terrier breeds in order to be a more effective killing doggie-machine.
    They may not be the breed that bites the most often, but statistically I believe they’re the breed whose attacks result in fatalities the most often.
    I’m an animal lover and we dontate to multiple reputable animal rescue organizations. I’m against animal abuse right down to even insects. However, I wouldn’t have a pit bull in my home, and I don’t even like my son to be around them. Better safe than sorry.

  31. donna says:

    I had to wait to comment, because I’m angry. I’m now afraid of dogs because of a ‘pit bull.’ We all know what they look like, big heads and jaws, let’s not pretend. I was walking, and a loose pit decided I was a threat and ran at me and bit my leg. You pit apologists say, oh, they are sweeties. Maybe, until you show weakness. Yeah, any dog can bite, but I’m not terrified by ankle biters. And how are we supposed to know the good owners from the bad?

  32. Zondie says:

    I always wonder why we have so many pit bulls in shelters. Who are breeding all these unadoptable pit bulls? Since all dogs require work, commitment and love, it seems better if you can adopt a breed that you fancy. But then you feel guilty about the pit bulls. It is like the average person has to clean up the irresponsible person’s mess.

  33. Cdoggy says:

    You lost me at “an event for Panera Bread”.. what exactly would such an “event” entail?

  34. Wolfie says:

    I run a mail route with several lovely, gentle pit bulls in it. I was mauled almost to death and my leg is permanently scarred because of owners that did not secure their pack of MIXED BREED dogs. While I am not able anymore to care for a pit bull, my family has owned many over the years and every single one was a gentle loyal loving soul. There are good and bad dogs unfortunately in ANY breed.