Fatal attacks by dogs seem to be increasing, and usually the news claims the dog was a generic ‘pitbull.’ Since there is no breed known as pitbull, any dog with a flat head and stocky body with short hair might make the “look.” And as has been known, mixed breed dogs do not necessarily look like the parents, assuming one actually knows the parent dog/bitch.
So, if we read an article by J. Bradley, here , they cite from Karen Delise, that dogs who have opportunities for frequent, positive interactions with people – are much less likely to be involved in dog bite-related fatalities than those who are merely resident on the property.
If this was true, meaning a dog more socialized
is better than unsocialized–
then clearly rehomed, shelter and rescued dogs
would be likely the absolute WORST bet for any choice—
since unless it is guaranteed the surrendering party
told the exact truth about such dog,
it is impossible to know the dog’s background at all.
And since temperament testing is never guaranteed, it is not surprising that many shelter/rehomed dogs end up being returned. Not for killing anyone, but just because the owner doesn’t like its behavior for most part. More biting, barking, destruction,soiling. These are facts, not fiction. We have done years of research on the subject.
What WE believe is that rehomed, rescued and shelter dogs represent a highly disproportionate percentage of those animals which kill people. And Ms. Delise does not publicize that. We can see why.
Yet, we own/have owned rescued dogs and shelter dogs. One simply cannot tell how good or bad a dog is without knowing something about dogs. That is why novice owners and ARs who know nothing about animals in reality– get harmed by “rescued” dog, or by having 3, 4, 5 large breed “rescued” dogs in same room. And it is those types of dogs that could cause harm to others, BECAUSE one does not know its background.
Then if we move on to which dogs could create the most harm, it is obvious that a larger dog, a dog used for guarding, a dog used for fighting, a dog used to keep animals at bay (like a wild animal) and any dog that exhibits aggression or extra territorial guarding, food guarding, displays whale eye a lot, growls at nothing– all of these traits are not good, and we would not have kids around dogs that had traits like this.
Conversely, the video of a small child feeding 4-5 bully dogs widely shown online, without dogs making any physical moves at all was not only bone chilling, it was outright stupidity. If we need to explain it, then you do not know dog behavior.
======= Excerpt from white paper:
3.1.2 Genetics and Aggression: Mixed-Breed Dogs With mixed-breed dogs, it is not possible to make predictions about the likelihood of traits related to the parent breeds with regard to (a) physical appearance, (b) behavior or any attributes of an individual animal, cumulatively called the phenotype.
Any aspect of either parent’s genome may find expression in the offspring, even if that characteristic was not actually expressed in the parent. The canine genome is now well enough studied to explain why this is so, but the reality has been demonstrated for decades, going back to the foundation work on canine genetics in the 1960s, which found that even in matings of two purebred dogs of different breeds, the puppies consistently bore no significant resemblance to either breed, even in physical appearance.
“In sum, modern purebreds are not diligently selected for behavioral traits.” PD note: We completely disagree with this nonsense–it should be that mixed breeds may not be selected for behavioral traits since it’s not possible to do so. We are not sure if that was a typo. Of course specific dog/bitch of same breed can be selected for their temperament, even if not guaranteed to show later in offspring.
…article clip continued:
Many environmental factors affect the expression of behavior traits, and mixed-breed dogs cannot be expected to exhibit the traits of their parents in any predictable ways.
Thus all the scientifically credible evidence argues against any physiological or behavioral traits making the group of largely mixed-breed dogs that might be designated as “pit bulls,” or any specific breed of dog,
“Careless and inhumane husbandry practices, ranging from overt cruelty and neglect to keeping dogs isolated from normal positive interactions with people to failure to supervise dogs and children, are much more likely to affect behavior in relevant, predictable ways.”
PD: So in the end, the killer dogs were almost never raised by the same family that owned it or watched it, when it killed; in fact, killer dogs are almost NEVER the owned family dog obtained as a puppy 5 years ago. In only very, very few incidents has the original owner dog, bought as a puppy, killed anyone.
Our best guess would be an avoidance approach rather than scientific:
1) Do not buy a rescued large dog where you cannot determine its background and how it was handled. Doesn’t matter that it is or is not in shelter.
2) Do not obtain any guarding or fighting or known aggressive type breed dog from someone you do not know, you don’t know where they live, and you don’t have their personal information (like a driver’s license) and you did not view their housing arrangements.
3) If you are a novice owner do not buy a shelter dog for your kids.
4) If you are a novice owner seek out help from others who know local breeders, or have bought from another breeder, and that dog has exhibited good temperament; or, possibly only buy a small breed less than 25lbs. Many smaller breeds are not that good with kids, do the research.
5) Do not buy or take for free, any bully dog, fighting dog, guard type dog (even GSD) where you do not know the background of the dog exactly, if you have children; the potential damage could be extreme,and you will never forgive yourself. If you have no children of course, you are caveat emptor…
6) Do not buy a known biting dog. Breed or size is not relevant.