life lessons thanks to my dogs, Why Pit Bulls?

What They Should Have Told Me Before I Rescued my Pit Bull

They said, “He’s strong, about 67 lbs, and he’s a puller but with some training he’ll be great.”  Okay, I thought.  Easy enough.  But what they should have told me was something entirely different.  What they should have told me was this:

romelily

This is an adventure.

Welcome to the best years of your life.

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Where misconceptions, stereotypes and judgments are now personal attacks against not only someone you love dearly but you, yourself.  And how you will feel like it is your personal mission to show the world how his “kind” is completely misunderstood.

Then you will read up on all the facts and statistics about Pit Bulls and realize half of what people believe is completely false or terribly misconstrued.  Like pits having lock-jaw?  False.  Pits are born aggressive.  False.  Pits have stronger jaws than Rottweilers.  False.  Pits don’t make good family pets. FALSE.

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Also, in the midst of being accepted into his pack, you will learn what loyalty really means.  You will also know what it feels like to be scared half to death every single time your doorbell rings before explaining to your mailman, “He’s nice, I swear!  Sorry…thanks for the– sorry again.”  Then you both will laugh, well, you will and he will look at you proudly, expecting a treat.

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You will also walk with a little extra bounce in your step because this powerful, gentle giant stands beside you.  You will feel a kind of pride you’ve yet to experience because you know you’re not only doing your baby justice but you’re part of the millions who are pleading for the rest of the world to give these amazing creatures a chance.

But sadly, your heart will break every time you hear about a Pit Bull who has landed in the hands of a wrong person or found himself in an awful situation. Whether it was dog fighting or an abusive owner or left tied to a park bench with nothing but a blanket.  Your heart will break because you will come to understand the heart of a Pit Bull.  Your heart will break because you will experience the love they, without question, give and with every tear you cry from hearing these awful stories, you will wish you could end it all.

Then you will feel incredibly grateful.  Because this guy is yours and you are his and that’s something that can’t ever be taken away.  Even if you don’t believe in a God above, this bond will feel like it was magically planned many moons ago, where the stars aligned perfectly and placed you two exactly where you needed to be to find one another.  And you will be so blessed.

rescued a pit bull

You will learn the frustration you feel when he is destroying your kid’s toys or eating food he’s not supposed to or barking when you wish he wouldn’t, fades quickly.  That snuggling has now taken on a whole new meaning called: all over you, all the time, no matter what.  And now you make it a point to never appear to do ANYTHING that could look like you’d be hitting him because seeing him duck his head out of fear hurts.  You will also learn when he’s sticking his big head out your car window to expect 1 of 2 responses – a dirty look or a smile and nod.

You learn you’ll smile in both cases.

rescued a pit bull

Nobody tells you your heart will change.  But it does.  You judge less.  You care more.  You learn how to accept life a heck of a lot better than before.  You learn how to forgive and how to let go and how to live in the moment.

They should have told me I was going to learn how to love better.  That loving this Pit Bull was going to change my whole life.  And that he would make us so so happy!

But chances are I wouldn’t have believed them anyhow.  I guess it was something I had to learn on my own, with this guy.

rescued a pit bullWith my Romeo <3

160 Comments

  • Sophie Bowns

    January 6, 2015

    I love your second picture down. He looks a bit like Scooby Doo!
    I think Pitt Bulls get a bad name and that’s not fair. Any dog can be malicious if they are badly trained. It’s down to the owners to make sure that doesn’t happen.

    • LELAND MICHAEL LEE

      January 8, 2015

      JUST WANT TO SAY…I ONLY READ AFTER SEEING THE FACEBOOK POST AFRAID OF SOMETHING NEGATIVE..AND AS SOON AS I READ YOUR THOUGHTS OF RESCUING A PIT BULL…ALL I HAD TO DO WAS READ THE FIRST FEW LINES…GOING TO READ THE REST NOW…BUT LET ME SAY “I LOVE YOU” AND I MEAN THIS FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART..HOW BETTER TO SAY SOMETHING SO POSITIVE ABOUT SOMETHING THAT HAS OTHERS BRAINWASHED SO NEGATIVELY….

      • rebecca

        January 16, 2015

        i agree….”I LOVE YOU” for sharing that and can add “DITTO” but you said it sooo well….love this breed…will keep adopting until the end….

      • CA Nels

        May 15, 2016

        What a cutie pie! Have rescued dogs and cats over the years too. I could sure be wrong but yours don’t look like full bulls – maybe mixes…which are the best of any breed – they seem to have better attitudes when they’re mixed.
        Thanks for your rescues everyone!

    • Amanda

      May 16, 2016

      I rescued my out three years ago. It was the best decision my bf and I made. It help grew our bond. I can totally feel my heart relating to each and every one of your description. There’s nothing like a pit’s love and they are so misunderstood.

    • Lea Gerner

      September 15, 2016

      I KNOW TGE FEELING UOUR TALKING ABOUT ! YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT ME AND MY JAXSON AND GYPSY COMPLETELY! THIS GENTLE BOY AND GIRL MAY NOT HAVE HAD THE FIRST YEAR OF THEIR LIVES IN A GOOD WAY OR PLACE BUT WITH ALL MY HEART AND BREATH, THEY WILL NOW HAVE A FUREVER HOME . 💙❤️💙❤️💙❤️💙❤️💙❤️

  • Marilyn Miller

    January 6, 2015

    THANK YOU……for THIS. I decided to “foster” a Pitbull pup. . . . . female about 6 months old. I FAILED “fostering”. Something about my Jerrica. . . . that just hit my heart like an arrow. I understand everything you have written. I am in love. I am cautious as I have two smaller dogs: i.e. shih-Tzu and shih-Tzu/teacup poodle. Is it noisy at my house? Yes. . . . . . are there challenging days? Yes. Do I still have my guard up because of ALL I have been led to believe over the years about Pitbull animals. . . . oh YES. But we ALL sleep together at night. A bed full of Love, and my Husband is right there with us. We have grown children and 8 grandchildren from ages 17 to 2. My home is NOT the neatest, or the cleanest smelling. But my home is filled with love. And Jerrica, my year old Pitbull mix ball of energy, makes life just that more interesting.

    • diane brooks

      January 6, 2015

      I have worked with a female pit bull, for over a year now. She is totally loveable & gets along with our our other three dogs. So glad, she came into our lives!

    • julie van elslander

      January 7, 2015

      I too was going to “foster” a pittie to get over the loss of my 11yr old mutt. I became a foster failure less than 48 hrs after they dropped him off!!

    • Judy

      January 8, 2015

      We started by fostering this sweet piblle mix and ended up adopting him. Best decision ever!

      • judy

        January 11, 2015

        I found a 10 week old pit bull on line and had her shipped up by plane to Jersey from Macon, Georgia. She is absolutely the best retirement dog I could have adopted. We are together 8 wonderful years.

  • Myrtle Pursel

    January 6, 2015

    God bless you honey. I too love these wonderful and loving and caring dogs.My son has one and he is the best thing that ever came into his life. I pray one day soon that the tarnished name that these beautiful creatures we’re given will soon faid away and more will find the most loving home

  • Stephanie Corrales

    January 6, 2015

    Thank you for this! I plan on rescuing a pibble – or should I say be rescued by one – this is the most uplifting blog I’ve read in a while. You are an inspiration. Happy New Year!

  • MissfireJack

    January 6, 2015

    This makes me incredibly happy. Thank you so much.

  • Kristen

    January 6, 2015

    On point. Thank you! This was such a heartwarming read, and it is all so very true!

  • Cathy

    January 6, 2015

    this was beautiful but never mistake their power. Had my pit mix for 6 years she was a rescue and we loved her dearly, then one day for no reason she began aggressive behavior. Wrote off as excitement, then she attacked my cousin, wrote it off as her being protective, broke the skin and everything. Then a few months later she bite our sons arm. Not sure what made her change but she became a completely different dog over the course of a year. Love PIts but I will never be able to have one again.

    • Kathy Schmitt

      January 7, 2015

      this happened with my neighbor’s border collie, so it isn’t necessarily the breed. It can happen with any breed. The veterinarian said that the dog had undergone some brain change and it had to be put down.

    • Valerie Proctor Davis

      January 7, 2015

      A sudden change in behavior should always be checked out by a vet. Becoming aggressive is a major sign of illness–dogs can’t tell us, after all!

      Remember that whatever breed you get next. If he starts snapping, take him to the vet.

      • Gail

        January 8, 2015

        Thank you for posting this. Many people go into a panic when their beloved pets act “strangely” all of a sudden. More often than NOT, there is a medical issue involved in the behavior,and that pet needs to be seen by a vet immediately!

      • CT

        January 10, 2015

        So true and it can happen to cats as well. My older cat seemed to become scary aggressive almost overnight. He started attacking the other cats and attacking my pit bull female if she made eye contact with him and walked around snarling. Took him to the vet, turns out he had bad hypertension (high blood pressure), which causes severe headaches and aggression from pain. Got him on meds and the aggression calmed down within a week. I hope you took your 6-yr old pit to the vet, since she may have been starting to develop age-related health issues.

    • Lori

      January 7, 2015

      “Aggressive behavior” is never “for no reason”. Was she thoroughly examined by a vet for illness? And instead of ignoring it or writing it off, what did you do to address the behavior?

    • Sharon

      January 7, 2015

      “….one day for no reason”

      There is never “no reason”. Something – or someone – must have made your dog begin to exhibit aggression. Dogs are pack animals and react to their surroundings and other in the pack so something in her environment triggered her. At the very onset of such behavior a dog should be corrected and shown strong leadership. This applies to any dog, and saying that you’d never have a pit again because of that behavior just perpetuates the stereotype. It’s the owners that are at fault, not the dog.

      • Tracey

        January 8, 2015

        The dog should be checked for lyme disease – that is usually the trigger for such a change in behavior.

      • Mary

        January 10, 2015

        Thank-u Sharon for clarifying about the sterotype & it really does perpetuates what people say. At least some people not all.After a while u just believe the worst..

    • my4pitties

      January 7, 2015

      Dogs do not attack for no reason. You obviously didnt see or ignored the signs. As you yourself said you thought it was just “excitement”. Then YOU did nothing. Not only should you never have another pittie, you should educate yourself before you get any breed of dog again.

      • LCMom

        January 16, 2015

        Judge much? Geez.

        • Jennen

          January 16, 2015

          And noone has been judging the dogs…..

      • Ron

        January 20, 2015

        I love your response to “no reason”

    • debbie

      January 7, 2015

      Hi,
      I was just curious about your pittie that turned aggressive….did you ever had veterinary diagnostics done? The few times (and I mean FEW) that I’ve seen what you are talking about was due to serious medical conditions (usually brain tumors). Regardless, I’m sorry you went thru what you did, and the pittie pup, as well.

    • Kathy

      January 8, 2015

      I wonder if your pit bull had a thyroid condition. Our dog had hypothyroidism and in researching the condition I found out aggression was a symptom. Who would have thought? She developed hypothyroidism over the course of a year. I have come to know and love pit bulls while volunteering at my local animal shelter. They are great big bundles of love and so misunderstood!

    • JJohnson

      January 8, 2015

      One of the first thing you learn when you start studying animal behavior is that no behavior occurs in a vacuum. What that means is that behavior is ALWAYS cause and effect. The cause may well have been a medical issue as those above me have suggested. But let’s look at a few other causative factors for dog bites, and see if any of them fit your circumstances. More than 90% of all dog bites have one of these issues, most have multiple:
      1) was she spayed? Unfixed pets are much more likely to bite.
      2) did she spend a lot of time outside, either chained or kenneled? Dogs who are chained alone tend to develop deep psychological problems. Dogs are pack animals….being left alone is incredibly hard on them.
      3) Was she obedience trained and socialized? Dogs don’t know they are doing things wrong and it’s our responsibility to show them how to do them right. That’s called training. And dogs do not generalize well, so it is important that they are taken to new places and meet new people.
      4) Was she eating and/or sleeping and disturbed by your cousin and son? Neither is a good idea, no matter how sweet your dog is.
      5) What exactly was going on when the bite happened? It’s important to stop and look at the big picture. Your dog didn’t just all of a sudden think…you know what? I think I want to bite him for no good reason.
      6) After the 1st bite, what steps were taken to identify and change the behavior? You can’t just hope that bad behavior goes away.
      7) You say she was a rescue. Was she abused or neglected before you got her? Either of these can damage the trust a dog has in humans, making it easier for them to act out against us.

      I am very sorry for the situation you found yourself in with your dog. But if we are honest, we will admit that humans are often the cause of bad behavior in any dog.

    • Lois Dickinson

      January 8, 2015

      I can understand. Years ago my older sister raised a Chow puppy. He was the cutest, friendliest dog around; but when he was about 7 years old his personality changed completely and he turned agressive. She even took him to a dog “phychologist”, but all he could say was for some unknown reason this personality change can happen. His physical health was, and always had been, fine.

      • Valerie Morsette, Alberta, Canada

        January 9, 2015

        My roomate had a Chow years ago. It didn’t faze her when it attacked my dog, but it was put to sleep after she moved on the couch and it attacked her.

    • Tiffany

      January 8, 2015

      All of the replies are very correct there may have been something that went unnoticed, it can also happen to any dog, I know four people who had the same issue some worse than your situation and some a little more tame, but theywere four different breeds and none were pit bulls. I’m so sorry you had that experience, sometimes there are even stressors the dog encounters to cause the change in behavior that we would never expect. I have read articles and many books on behavior and training so that my pittie can be an ambassador for the breed and dogs are more sensitive than we think is what I have learned.

    • SJ

      January 9, 2015

      The problem is not the breed. In your case, the problem was that you wrote off the behavior change instead of consulting a professional. If you hadn’t written off the initial incident, you probably could have prevented the subsequent incidents. Keep this in mind when you have any dog of any breed – a change in behavior should not be ignored, and it’s not “for no reason.” Check with the vet first to make sure it’s not medical (pain can cause aggressive behavior, and in a dog 6+ years old I would immediately suspect arthritis.) If the vet doesn’t find anything to explain the change, then consult a trainer. Again, this applies regardless of breed.

    • Scott

      January 9, 2015

      Just recently a pitbull that this family had for 8yrs turned against its family and attacked their 3yr old son and ripped him to pieces. The family said they had no sign of such aggression before. This dog had always been so lovable until that day..

    • Joe

      January 9, 2015

      Hey – Just wanted to say, my girlfriend had a dog that sounded similar when he was younger. He got to be 7-8, and suddenly just started…snapping. Playful and happy one moment, total aggression the next. Then came motor skill impairments. Turned out he had a severe brain tumor, and that it had been the root of those problems. Just saying, stranger things have happened. This was a border collie.

    • Jane

      January 10, 2015

      Assuming that your dog was subjected to the same social routine and discipline for six years and had a sudden behavior change with no perceptible cause, there may have been an underlying medical issue. I have had rescues that have had diabetes, degenerative myelopathy and Cushings disease, and in each case an early symptom was a behavioral change.

    • Aleisha

      January 11, 2015

      A dog always displays obvious signs before attacking. A dog never just randomly turns on its owner or other people without reason. If they do happen to become uncharacteristically aggressive, and you cannot explain their behaviour as being protective, frightened, etc, see your vet immediately.

    • Abby

      January 14, 2015

      When I was a teenager, we had a beautiful brindle mastiff named Munky. He was such a sweet cuddly dog (though scary looking!) and then one day I brought some friends over and he snapped at a girl who was reaching to pet him. VERY unlike him. He then began being snappy with us some times and not others. We took him to the vet and it turned out he had a tumor that was pressing on his eyes and causing him to be very near blind. He was snapping because he couldn’t see anything coming until it was right in front of him and would startle him. He had to be put down due to the tumor being inoperable but my point is, sometimes when a dog changes suddenly there’s a good reason for it and it doesn’t mean every dog of that breed will suddenly change.

    • Dawn

      March 29, 2015

      Pit bulls like all animals including humans are susceptible to medical issues. Cronic pain brain tumor etc. Your issue is not a breed issue.

    • Sharon Givens

      May 16, 2016

      ANY breed can suddenly become aggressive-so you shouldn’t let that stop you. Remember: even a chihuahua (spelling?) can rip out your throat.

  • Lindsley

    January 6, 2015

    You hit the nail on the head with this one-Our first pit bull made my heart grow more than I thought possible-and turned our house into a home for my Step kids….we now have 3 rescues…And I wouldn’t change a thing :)

  • Julie Neff

    January 7, 2015

    That was so awesome, you couldn’t of said it any better, all so true. I have two and have had them most of my life. I cry every time I see the aweful news and cry at the good ones to. Thank you for publishing that for all to read. Most awesome.

  • Crystal

    January 7, 2015

    I absolutely ❤️this!!!

  • Jennen

    January 7, 2015

    I went into foster a black lab, I came out fostering a white “pit bull” who now lays next to me 2 years later with my heart. I had no idea what I was getting into at that time, but I wouldn’t change it for the world now. It’s been rough and i will admit there were many times in that first year (and still times now but I’m growing tougher) that I called my mom in tears because of the way people treated my girl or the things they said about her because of her breed. But again, I wouldn’t change it for the world. She lays now with my second pit bull as well because even though no one told me what to expect, with everything I have learned, I can’t imagine my life without a bully breed now.

  • LaTonya

    January 7, 2015

    Ashley, I could not have said that any better! I lost my red Pit, Rebel, about 3 years ago 2 cancer but the love & connection that we had will never b matched! She loved everyone she met especially babies whether they were human babies, new born pups, (although she never had pups) & even New born kittens. She was the most amazing dog ever & will forever b in my heart!

  • Brian Tozer

    January 7, 2015

    Very well written ,that about sums up my Pitt Bull as well ,right on the button ,had many different breeds of dogs from hounds ,Shepard’s ,Labs ,Boxers Rotties ,but never a more loving dog than this Staffordshire Terrier …the way he looks at you is enough to break your heart , thinking about all the others being misunderstood or mistreated .Thanks

  • Lisa Gonzales

    January 7, 2015

    Thank you so much for this. You read my heart and my mind. A beautiful article.

  • angie

    January 7, 2015

    i am so tired of all the negative things i hear about rotties, dobes and pits. i had rotties and dobes they were wonderful. i rescued a pit yrs ago from the streets almost dead and kept her til the end. i actually disliked them because of how ppl made them look. when i rescued that girl i found her to be loyal, loving, stubborn, protective and sensitive. i have to hear from ignorance …OHHHH YOU HAVE PITS…THERE GOES ANOTHER KIDS FACE! i hear all the bs about their jaws locking, being mean, sneaky, and basically not capable of being trusted. the negatives are all wrong!! i have friends that had the more FAMILY TYPE DOGS that bit ppl and that were mean.. i got a pit puppy for my mom when she turned 82 and they are together always. when my mom is sick bella is right there. she eats, sleeps and sits with my mom. my mothers words are…THIS IS THE BEST HUMAN DOG I COULD EVER HAVE! it’s true too, because she is truly in love with my mom and understands her feelings. bella bleeds love from her eyes when u look at her. any dog will bite, be mean, it’s on all u when u train them.

    • Katrina

      January 8, 2015

      Not sneaky? Mine will sneak their way right to your steak dinner if you give them half a second, lol. And when you catch them, they sit there and give you those puppy dog eyes. We have two bullies, a mastiff mix, and a Great Dane. Never a dull moment!

  • Danielle

    January 7, 2015

    This is so true! Thanks for your sweet words and for saving another wonderful life his ears make me giggle :)

  • Jessica K.

    January 7, 2015

    I felt like I wrote this!!! We adopted our pittie mix and she has been the best dog I’ve ever owned. Everything you wrote was so true and I got teary eyed because the love my dog shows me and my family. Thank you for this…

  • Danya Herbermann

    January 7, 2015

    Beautiful article beautifully written!

  • Carmelita

    January 7, 2015

    This just melted my heart. I rescued my shadow 2 years ago and he’s changed my whole world. I cant imagine my life without him!

  • Sarah J

    January 7, 2015

    OMG, I have tears in my eyes. Every word is so true regardless of the dog that rescues you. I lost my pup in november 2014 and my heart aches daily. A grey pit caught my eye in Petsmart the other day and I wanted him. But I’m not ready AND he belonged to someone ;)

  • Courtney

    January 7, 2015

    Thank you for writing this it is oh so true!!!
    In September 2010 I had to put my puppy down due to a Vets Error broke my heart as it was my first dog of my own, he was not a Pit. October 2010 a friend of mind asked if I could take care of his new dog(Jake) which was a rescue and that for doing so he would pay for me to rescue a dog of my own, and that he had family coming to stay that where afraid of dogs in general I hesitated because I missed my puppy so much, but said yes….He brought over his crate and food and everything he needed as he had his due claws removed in the front as they where getting caught on everything hurting him. The next day I walked him and left for work he barked until my friend in the afternoon came over to walk him and once he left he started barking again it happened for a few days when I was told I can’t keep the dog at my place because he barks all day long. I informed my friend that I have to take him out of the crate that he doesn’t like it and he barks all day long, my friend said I was told by the rescue he was ok with crates (come to find they had a zap collar on him for barking) my friend said I have to take him back to the rescue I have to have a dog that is crate trained as he had a baby and apartment and didn’t want the dog having free rang of the apartment.

    That Sunday afternoon his owner came to walk him and take him back to the rescue, but when they were walking down my street I seen Jake trying come back to me pulling on the leash and he just kept looking at my like why is this person walking me and not you! That was the point that I said this is my dog and that he trust me I have taken care of him cleaned his paws which somehow got infected after surgery, he cuddles with my everyday, I ended up walking down to the park my friend was at and said I just transferred you $200.00 you can leave Jake here he is my dog now.

    What I wasn’t told was that my dog was abused and scared of everything, Rain, construction signs, men, cars, fences etc….. This October in 2015 will be 5 years that I have had him and working on his issues but he has helped me so much just as your dog, Pits are the best and I wouldn’t have it another way!!!!

    He wants hugs and kisses every time I walk in the door or he won’t leave me alone I was told from the people downstairs that they know that I will be home in about 30mins because he walks around my house waiting to see me walking home, he help me so much not go into a depression after my mother passed away in 2012, he is the best thing that has came into my life.

    He loves women and children he still has to warm up to men but is getting better every day and his great with other dogs, which came in time as he was a little aggressive, but as I have been working on that issue he is now great with all. :)

  • Tracy Cotter

    January 7, 2015

    This is all so incredibly true. I have my own crazy, sweet, snuggley pitty named Bella and help run a pit bull rescue organization (Rescue-a-Bull.org) that has brought 20 pit bull foster pups into and out of my home. They are a wonderful breed with a lot of baggage that is not their fault. I am PROUD to be a pitty owner. And thrilled to share in others pride of their pits as well!

  • Lisa Westervelt

    January 7, 2015

    I always say that I didn’t rescue my pit bulls, they rescued me. I have 3 and I wouldn’t change it for nothing in the world. They are so gentle and loving, I was scared to get one a first because of what I had heard about them but I am glad that I got one and thank you for sharing your story. It is the dog that is mean, it is the way that people raise them.

  • Mandi

    January 7, 2015

    Straight from the heart. What a great article!

  • dwayne

    January 7, 2015

    Thank you for sharing what loving pitt owners try to convince people. Our first five dogs were a mostly crew of rescues we loved and that settled into our life. Four months ago our world went upside down when my roommate found Luna wandering in the desert near our home. It wasnt a question of what we would do with her when she wasnt chipped and flyers failed…she became part of our pack but the crazy part. A month ago my world went upside down again when my roommate of 28 years was killed in a car accudent. Our dogs are grieving differently. Junior may never get over the loss of daddy vic but Luna has a different approach…as you said Pitts are a family dog and no matter how big she is she always has to be glued to your heal. At first she didn’t know were to sleep without vic and Blanca controlled my bed…but pitts have to cuddle and now that a month has passed she has worked her way into one side of my bed, and Blanca has come to accept that. The biggest thing for me is that Vic brought Luna into my life before he left me so there was still someone to make me crazy yet love me unconditionally…thats what pitts do best and for that im thankful…

  • Julie

    January 7, 2015

    Your words are perfectly written of how a pit bull can change your life-if just given the chance. As I read your article, I feel like you are writing about exactly what our family is living with our two sweet pits. If only everyone knew the love and loyalty of this special breed. God bless, and let’s all continue to spread the word about Pit Bulls. I’m thankful that our first one was described as a “Boston terrier mix” at the shelter.

  • April

    January 7, 2015

    This was one of the most spot on descriptions I have ever read….from one pittie owner to another…thank you

  • Jen

    January 7, 2015

    Beautiful and I “understood” every word. I lost my beloved Koko 3/3/14 and he was everything you describe and more. Thank you.

  • Mandarin MacLeod

    January 7, 2015

    I have recently had this kind of experience with a Pitbull, who unfortunately I can not keep, but who has most certainly changed me with his entrance and presence in my life. So I relate. I desperately wish I could keep Zeus, but for his sake, and my cats (yep, kitties be not something he like lol) I am finding him the best home possible. Fortunately I have plenty of experience in rescue.

    Due to my experiences with Zeus, your words were very powerful, and I dare say I felt the prickle of tears.

    Well done, and well met good heart :)

  • Pam

    January 7, 2015

    I had a beautiful brindle pit Callie who was the joy of our lives. She was rescued from being a fighting dog. She would wait every night for me to come home from work so we could go sit out on my porch swing for about a half hour. Just sitting there with her would make the rest of the world seem not so bad. Every night after supper we would go to the local Dairy Queen where she got her kids vanilla ice cream cone (and she always knew when it was time to go). She went multiple places with me. It was a very horrible day when we had no choice but to have to put her to sleep. When we looked for another child after Callie I went with a lab but wish every day I would of went with another pit but was afraid I wouldn’t be able to find another as wonderful as her as the new one would of had big shoes to fill. I have been looking lately and it wouldn’t surprise me that if in the next year we once again have another pit. Love the breed.

  • Kim Farnsworth

    January 7, 2015

    Never before have I read something that so clearly mirrors my life and love for my big Akita’s. I think you hit the nail on the head about Pit’s (along with other large breeds) – it is how you treat them and raise them but most of all, how you love them Your Romeo is one lucky baby. You are very blessed!

  • Arlette Earley

    January 8, 2015

    I’m still in tears reading this. I loved and felt every word. Rigby pulled a plated of homemade chocolate fudge to the floor. That booger ate almost two pounds. I laid on the floor with him all night, crying. I just knew I would lose him. Well, he was fine. I truly love my Pit babies. I don’t think I will ever have a different breed. Thank you for this.

    • Kattie

      January 8, 2015

      Hey just wanted to let you know that peroxide will pump a dogs stomach. I caught my puppy chewing on pennies. (new pennies are highly toxic to dogs and will kill them) I didn’t know if he had swallowed any. I remembered that my sister’s dog had gotten into rat poison in a barn. She called the vet and they told her to force feed him peroxide to make him vomit and get him to the vet ASAP. It saved his life. Anyway, although the peroxide did cause my puppy to vomit the contents of his stomach, I didn’t find any pennies. Better safe than sorry, though. Just wanted to get this out their for future reference.

      • Sherry

        January 20, 2015

        You don’t have to force feed the peroxide. A smear of peanut butter in the bottom of a cereal bowl with 3 Tbsp (no more needed. Don’t want to hurt the poor pup) hydrogen peroxide (the medical kind, NOT hair peroxide). The effect is immediate.
        Thought my pup had gotten some rat poison. She tossed everything but her toenails.

  • Ted Koran

    January 8, 2015

    Pittie Love. Nothing more loyal for a beautiful young lady, her children and kitties. Wish I could put a smiley face and a heart :-)

  • Sophie

    January 8, 2015

    I am generally weary of all dogs – regardless of what breed they are. I grew up on a farm where we learnt that the moment a dog attacks an animal there is a huge chance that it will attack again and this time it could be a person – the biggest fear being me, my brothers or our cousins. I have a healthy respect to these animals as a result. This has carried on with my job (I work as a Nanny) and I teach the kids I look after that it’s ok to look, but if you want to touch it’s always best to ask their owner because they know best.

    I always feel bad when I hear those stories of dogs having to be put down because they’ve been mistreated and react badly as a result. There are some breeds that even I am guilty of being slightly worried about when I see them out and about because of these stories, but after reading this post I now want to change how I look at these animals and instead look at how they’re treated.

    Your Romeo is so lucky to find such a loving home and I have to admit I’ve kind of fallen in love with his face :)

    Sophie xxx

  • patrice mfoster

    January 8, 2015

    Great story. One thing about dogs they love you regardless.

  • April

    January 8, 2015

    Great article!

  • Brenda J

    January 8, 2015

    As a pitbill mom, and a shelter volunteer, this could have been written by me, word for word. They are amazing creatures.

  • Michele Marotta

    January 8, 2015

    I am a failed foster of one of the most loving dogs you could ever met – my pitbull ! She was dumped in the desert, and I was to have foster for a week. That was three years ago. I come home every night to a dog that can’t wait to see me, sleeps at the foot of my bed,and loss everyone she meets.

    People have forgotten that pits were once America’s “nanny” dog.

    Thanks for your article – definitely a plus in educating people :)

  • Avery

    January 8, 2015

    Somehow you have been able to say exactly what my heart has been feeling since adopting my sweet Gracie. Love this so much! Thank you for sharing!

    “They should have told me I was going to learn how to love better. “

  • Deb

    January 8, 2015

    I have 4 male pit mixes and a pointer mix at my house. I call the pointer “devil dog”. :) That’s for the great article. I love my boys :)

  • Linda Vines

    January 8, 2015

    Thanks for putting in words the feeling of being owned and loved by a pitbull. They are truly unique and you don’t realize until you live with one, how totally devoted and loving they are. All the negative publicity has made some people view them as “monsters” They won’t give a pitpull a chance because of all the myths that surround them. Once you are owned and loved by a pitbull (yes, they own you) you look at other pitbull owners and smile because you finally know the truth. Pitbulls are awesome!

  • JJohnson

    January 8, 2015

    I call mine my “heart dog”. Although I have had dogs my entire life, this is my first pittie. And yes, the stars aligned (as you said above) to bring us together. I think we complete each other, and we have changed each other for the better. Because I am lucky enough to be able to bring him to work, we are together all day, every day. He is a part of my soul…..and I am better for having loved him. Thank you for your powerful words.

  • Jodie Ostroski

    January 8, 2015

    awesome! I never rescued a pit Bull, but I have two gran doggies that were rescued. I am on my 3rd Pit. I have never met one that wasn’t nice. I don’t think I will ever be with out one in my life. They are the most loyal and loving dog I ever met.

  • Diane Kopeykin

    January 8, 2015

    Well written and beautiful sentiment. I volunteer at a county shelter, pitbulls are our main clients. I have known hundreds, loved dozens. One very special guy, he was recently adopted by his forever family. STILL makes my heart jump when I see his pictures, it still makes me teary thinking of his adoption ‘goodbye’ cuddles. I know he is in a good spot, that helps, but I feel like he is ‘the one that got away’ Good thing is that the shelter is always full of pits willing to walk, cuddle and kiss those tears away. ADOPT a shelter pittie, they are forever grateful.

  • Christine Blotzer

    January 8, 2015

    WARNING! Your heart will be stolen!!! They are the most amazing dogs in the world. Thank you for the beautiful article Ashley.

  • Chelsea

    January 8, 2015

    There are so many things about this I love. So many things that are inherently pit bull that makes my heart ache with love.

    “That snuggling has now taken on a whole new meaning called: all over you, all the time, no matter what.”

    This whole thing is so perfect. I told someone the other day, if Kobi could stay in my lap 24/7, I think he would. Just this morning we had our normal cuddle session before I got out of bed and it always involves me calling him sweetly to wake up and him climbing from between my legs under the covers to drop his big head all over my face, before he tucks it under my chin and curls over me.

    I love getting looks when he sticks his head out the window, yes, he’s a pit bull, yes he’s gorgeous, yes he’s my baby. Would you like to pet him? He’ll love it.

  • Jackie Knott

    January 8, 2015

    This is so great.. the entire thing! I can relate to it all. My two pits are the most aggressive snugglers I know. They LOVE children – all of them. I get so mad when I come home and they have chewed something up, but I am never mad for more than a few minutes. You can’t stay mad at those faces! Once you understand the heart, loyalty and love of a pit, you don’t care what anyone thinks. I can totally relate to the smiles or dirty looks I get when they are in the car, but I don’t care. I am used to talking about my dogs, people asking what kind I have, then saying “Oh you don’t look like the kind of person that owns pit bulls.” It doesn’t bother me, because I know how amazing my dogs are, and how kind and gentle all the pits I ever met are! Thanks again for this, we need to change the minds of all those with misconceptions!

  • Nanea Ayoubi

    January 8, 2015

    This is absolutely the best written article I’ve ever read and explains completely what it’s like to be a Pitbull owner.

    I wouldn’t trade mine for any other breed of dog in this world.

    I’ve never felt more loyalty and love from an anminal than I do my Pits.

    Instead of anger I pity those who don’t understand the breed and make the assumptions. They have no idea what a blessing they are missing out on because of ignorance.

  • Chip

    January 8, 2015

    Thanks for posting this article. My two Pitties, Alex (www.facebook.com/TherapyDogAlex/) and Bella (www.facebook.com/TheapyDogBella) are perfect examples of everything in this article. Alex found us 3 years ago. Beforehand, I would have never dreamed of having a Pit. Boy, this article is spot-on!!! Now, I would not have any other dog!!!

  • Rachel

    January 8, 2015

    I could not agree more! My Iri is the best girl I could have hoped for and every time she does anything that breaks the pit stereotype my heart swells and I fill with the mom pride. Pitts are such gentle sweet loving creatures, as loving as any other breed can be :)

  • cmunn

    January 8, 2015

    I can tell you one of the most loving dogs I had was an American Staffordshire Terrier ( aka Pitbull) she was so sweet and loving to my children. I never knew a dog that had a coat so slick. She was everything you want in a dog and nothing that you hear about from non Pit owners.

  • Linda

    January 8, 2015

    I feel the same way about my rescue. Thanks for sharing your story so people hopefully one day will understand that the only monsters are the terrible owners that abuse these living souls!

  • Melina

    January 8, 2015

    DUDE I was tearing up through that entire thing. You put being a pit bull owner into words that could not be more perfect. way to go, seriously way to go. <3

  • Andria

    January 8, 2015

    I have a red nose pit terrier that my husband got for me. She is actually a drug dog that works on our boat and others. She is just a big baby, loves too cuddle, give kisses, goes for rides in the truck when she is not working. When I am in the truck alone nobody comes up too the truck when I pick my husband up at 3am. They are wonderful dogs and I am proud too own one. They get a bad name because of some owners. I love the pictures

  • Tina

    January 8, 2015

    I got my first pit when I was 16, I am 49 now and have been blessed to have raised 3 before the 2 I have now. I treat them like my kids, well because they are family to me. If there was ever a moment in my life when I had no food to eat for dinner I always made sure my furkids ate. They eat before I do! :) I will always have this breed of dog. They are wonderful and they have changed a lot of minds when the people in my town meet them. Then they want one!!!

  • Sparky

    January 8, 2015

    I brought home my first dog when I was 17, much to my mother’s dismay! I am now on dog numbers 8 and 9, they have all been mixes of various breeds, German Shepherd, Labrador, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Boxer, Mastiff and other unknown bits! Four years ago I rescued a very sad Pittie from the pound after a beloved dog died and I wanted a companion for both me and the dog left behind. Like you, I didn’t know what I was getting into, she had been on a chain in a back yard with an aggressive male Pittie (I blame the owners of course), she had been churning out puppies, and had obvious fight scars, had never been in a car, to the park or the beach and was so fearful that any raised voices, even in fun, would send her scuttling off to her crate and cowering at the back. She very quickly bonded with me, my teenage sons and her new doggie sister and her love which was so unconditional after everything she had been through was a revelation to me as an experienced dog owner. I’ve had some hard work to do to bring the best out in her and to instill her with confidence but it has been so rewarding. I have never been so loved and I am so thankful for the alignment of the stars that bought us together. It is an absolute privileged to own a Pit Bull!

  • Kate

    January 8, 2015

    I’ve never read something so well explained before in all my life. It actually made me cry a little because this is EXACTLY how I feel about my relationship with my pit. No one else ever seemed to get it. I shared it of course! Damn good writing girl!!!

  • Yvonne

    January 8, 2015

    Hey Ashley, what a wonderful article! I rescued my Pit 4 years ago. I was in school to become a trainer and I had to have a dog to work with, so Woodbridge Animal Shelter in NJ set me up with Gladys, a 60 lb stubby legged, cuddly, lovable, and awesome girl. I agree with everything you wrote. She has changed my life for the better. Honestly I was nervous about owning a Pit, but now she’s a big part of my world… and here on out I will be working with and standing up for Pit Bulls. They are such a wonderful breed. I absolutely love them.

  • Emma Johnson

    January 9, 2015

    Hey Ashley this absolutely made my heart sing! I am owned by a Rottie male who has completely changed my life in the most wonderful way including all the perceived negatives you mention here. I’m so happy for you that you got the chance to love a beautiful animal such as this and he is incredibly handsome too, may you have many happy years together. Much love x

  • Susan Kent

    January 9, 2015

    I Just wanted to say that I know how you feel My first love with a pit bull was Jake. We found him eating out of trash cans and running loose . Vet said he was around 2 years old. He was my son’s and mine. My son was killed 2 yrs after we got him. Well he grieved as much as we did.He became the one that would come to me when I was crying. We formed a bond that was so great and he loved every one. He passed in 2011 at the age of 16 yrs. I know he’s in heaven with my son and having a ball together. Now I have 2 Brindle pits and they are wonderful. They have a different temperament than Jake. They are more cautious toward anyone. But they have been trained. They love to snuggle and love to run and play and just love you. They are in my heart when I said I would never Love another dog. Jake has a special place in my heart today but I’ve managed to find room in my heart for my 2 boys. Rebel & L’il Devil. People don’t know that these dogs can be great family dogs and they love you unconditionally. They have a heart and when you look in their eyes you can see the love they have for you. People just don’t give them the chance.

  • Crystal Bissonnette

    January 9, 2015

    Beautifully written. I too am a happy pit bull mommy. I rescued mine 8 years ago. She can be the biggest pain in my butt yet she is my 4 year old BEST friend! They are inseparable. The bond they share is magical.

  • Nicole

    January 9, 2015

    You don’t really realize how much adopting a dog changes your entire life. The bond that is created is something that you are lucky to be able to experience. It’s so hard to not be angry at the people who make poor decisions regarding their animals. I spent so much time working with our rescue lab and to see the rewards is something that makes my heart sing with joy. I’m thrilled she came into my life, but my heart hurts from the damage her former owner did to her. I just posted a letter to her former owner (http://theruralsuburbanite.blogspot.com/2015/01/an-open-letter-to-my-dogs-former-owner.html) trying to explain how much damage neglect does. I doubt she’ll ever read it, but it’s nice to see that other people feel the same love for their animals.

  • Kristen Welch

    January 9, 2015

    I just want to say, the relationship you have with your Romeo reminds me of the relationship I have with my Havoc. I never thought that getting a pitbull would change my life, but it has. My life revolves around him. I came home from Hawaii and my boyfriend had the greatest surprise… Havoc. I admit, after a sleepless 15 hour flight, the last thing I wanted to deal with was a puppy and my cats pissed at me for bringing home a puppy! But after I got through day one, we’ve been inseparable. The only people who understand are other pitbull owners. Thank you!

  • Diana Larson

    January 9, 2015

    Thank you for this article. I cried. But I do a lot of that since my American Staffordshire Terrier, Shea, died a year ago at 9 1/2. Nothing can prepare you for the devastation you feel when your best friend and companion leaves you and there isn’t anything you can do about it.

    I have been lost this last year without her.

    I started out one of “those people” you talk about who have misconceptions about pit bulls. I went through everything you mention in your article. I even started fostering and adopted another pit.
    But the bond I shared with my Shea was beyond any I have had with any other dog in all my 55 years. She was that one special one for me.

    It’s articles like this that I love to see promote her breed. Best dog ever.

  • Janice

    January 9, 2015

    Exactly! That’s it exactly. Thank you, Ashley. Sign me Janice, a 55 yr old who only wishes she’d have understood 30 years ago what it’s like to have such a magnificent creature as my pb Ripley in her life.

  • Julie Habib

    January 9, 2015

    SO TRUE!!! We drove all the way from DC to NYACC to save our pittie Charlie. We have two other dogs, but HE has taught us so much about love!!! Thank you for writing this!! We love it!!!!

  • Valerie Dillard

    January 9, 2015

    Oh my! I could have written this myself! All so true! The part about researching Pitt myths… I did that for months while we were deciding to keep our Hercules. We “rescued” him from a terrible situation at just 3 months old and I kept asking myself how something so little and cut and sweet could grow up to turn into a killer monster. I got my answer. He never did! Now he is huge and cute and sweet!

  • Margaret

    January 9, 2015

    Everything you wrote is true, and I would never have believed it before I met my Barney BigHead. The sweetest, most loving dog I’ve ever met.

  • Lisa Yakaitis

    January 9, 2015

    EXCELLENT!!! You couldn’t have said this any better if you tried. My first Pit was a Blue. She was AMAZING. I had to put her down last year. One of the hardest things I have ever had to do. I was lucky to be chosen as the new mommy for my rescue boy right before I lost her. It is like she passed on so many soul qualities to him. I couldn’t EVER imagine my life without this AWESOME breed as part of my family.

  • Tomi

    January 9, 2015

    Our journey with pit bulls began back in 1996. We’ve always adopted dogs from local shelters for the past 33 years, along with strays I brought home, etc. We were planning to adopt a shepherd mix but someone else got him before us. It must have been date; something told me to go back and look at the section where the puppies were caged. I saw a brindle pup way in the back, who made an eye contact with me. I saw that she was listed as ‘pit bull mix,’ and I knew she wouldn’t have a half a chance to get adopted. I felt her fate would be sealed unless we adopted her. For the next 13 years, she remained a very loyal and well behaved dog. We still miss her. Needless to say, we adopted another pit from our local shelter after she passed away. The pit we have now is the most affectionate, lovable and well behaved dog. Our friends are all amazed how gentle she is. Her best friend is a 6-lb chihuahua we have. I hope people stop judging dogs by breed. There are plenty of other breeds that are aggressive. It’s not the breed but it’s how much time you spend with your dog in training, nurturing, and setting boundaries.

  • Andy Wooten

    January 9, 2015

    This is such a beautiful written message about pit bulls. Just beautiful. You get it. I loved how you included how your heart breaks every time you read or hear about a pit bull somewhere in dire straights. It definitely gets to you. Thank you for such a wonderful testament to the breed.

  • David

    January 9, 2015

    thank you….as a proud daddy of a 1 and a half year old pitbull rescue I can say with all certainty that you are 100% correct. I love my boy and he gives me the unwavering devotion and love I’ve come to expect. I Actually love him more than most people right now haha

  • Crisa

    January 9, 2015

    Thank you! That is exactly it!

  • Kearston`

    January 9, 2015

    Thank you for this. I write this as my beautiful pit mix pup is snuggled up right beside me. I rescued her 2 months ago. I was on the list to adopt a little 9 lb terrier mix at a local shelter, but then I locked eyes with this beautiful 50lb black pit with the silliest bat ears (we think she is mixed with shepherd) and I was done for. She is about a year old, had no previous training, and has had at least two litters of puppies (according the vet). She was wild the first few days home, and I doubted that she would ever listen to me. I sobbed on the phone to my parents worried and wracked with guilt that I might have to take her back to the shelter. I took it day by day, enrolled us in obedience training, and learned that bones are worth their weight in gold. Every day is different. Some are hard, a few less she is a perfect angel. But every day ends the same with snuggles and love. I adopted a dog because I wanted the companionship, a jogging buddy, and to feel safer in my apartment. I didn’t realize how she would challenge me to be a kinder, more patient and loving person. Thank you for sharing your special relationship with the world and shedding some positive light on our bully love bugs :)

  • Janet

    January 9, 2015

    Thank you Ashley. I am so happy to belong to this world you describe so well. I cringed when the shelter volunteer lady suggested the sad looking pit bull. “Just give her a chance” the volunteer told me… I did, and I was rescued.

  • Walter

    January 9, 2015

    I feel exactly the same, Ashley! My wife and I currently have 5 pitties, 7 dogs total, and they are the best part of our days! We love being able to advocate for a breed that is so misunderstood and to see people “get it” and adopt one themselves! At the FB page we have (@Auggie& Company) my wife loves to show how pit bulls can steal your heart and make you wet your pants from laughing, almost always at the same time! Thank you so much for writing this article!

  • Patty Rose

    January 10, 2015

    We have a 6 year old pit bull/boxer mix. When my daughter wanted to start showing him in 4H there were a lot of comments about fears and doubts. Needless to say, our 10 year old and her pit bull took 1st place overall out of 75 kids in our county fair and have now started competing in AKC events. We still have the only pit bull at every event, but he is happy to love on everyone and break down stereo types.

  • Amy Skelton

    January 10, 2015

    A friend posted this on my Facebook wall and I absolutely loved it! How sweet and true! One more thing I could think of to add to your list is: after owning one, you will want another! I got my first pitbull in 2000 and sadly he died in 2012. I got my second one a couple months later. I think I will ALWAYS have a pitbull in my life from now on. :) Thanks for being such a wonderful advocate for these beautiful beings…………..

  • Jamie

    January 10, 2015

    I have worked for the pittbull rescue for about 9 years and can absolutely confirm that when you own a pittbull cuddling is a full contact sport. I own two and they are the sweetest boys ever. The younger one is even a service dog.

  • Wendy

    January 10, 2015

    Thank you! You nail it! My first pit bull taught me unconditional love. That was 17 years ago and now our house is filled with 5 pitties! They always make me laugh out loud!

  • Alyssa O'Mealy

    January 10, 2015

    Love, Love, LOVE this article!! Pits are amazing dogs with great personalities that are heavily misjudged and it needs to be corrected. I absolutely love everyone that fights for their stereotype to be erased and everyone’s idea of them to be corrected! Every pit I have met has been the sweetest and most gentle dog, regardless of the abuse that has been directed towards them. They just want to nuzzle up to your face, supply you with loads of kisses and earn your unconditional love for the rest of their lives.

  • Paul

    January 10, 2015

    Well put!! It’s sad how truly misunderstood this breed is. With rare exceptions all I have ever had are AmStaffs, PitBull Terriers, or Staffordshires. They are the most loving, bull headed, big ole’ teddy bears, I have ever met. Thanks for the great story and welcome to the family. :)

  • Jeanne Melanson

    January 10, 2015

    Beautiful post! I’m glad it went viral for you. Keep it going with sequels! Peace.

  • Nicole Kostelnik

    January 10, 2015

    Ha, I guess you were right, Ashley….I should have added to “he’s strong, about 67 lbs, and he’s a puller but with some training he’ll be great.” when I talked to you about him. It’s hard because there are so many negative people out there but I should have told you how you will lose your heart to him…glad you saved that hunk of love! <3

  • Ashley

    January 10, 2015

    I don’t usually comment on story’s I read but I had to on this one. I have honestly never read something that describes my life with my pitbull so well. This short story brought tears to my eyes it’s perfect and I loved it. My pitbull is my world. I never even thought about how difficult it would be to raise one and I mean all the crap you get from close minded people and your absolutely right. Once you own a pit you just want to show the world how great they are. Thanks for sharing:-)

  • Thea

    January 10, 2015

    I’m glad that other people have happy experiences with the breed. But I was attacked by my family’s pit as a child. My experience and recovery was excruciating. Needless to say, I remain terrified of them as an adult. And I would not feel comfortable with them around my children.

  • Claudia

    January 10, 2015

    I LOVE this! You came here to get your guy & I found mine up there. Crazy, our two boys are safe & forever changed our lives! <3

  • NiniD

    January 11, 2015

    I truly believe there is no such thing as a pit bull rescue but rather it becomes “pit bull to the rescue”. They bring so much much into a home and your heart that they become the one doing the good deed. I just lost my 7 year old pit to cancer this summer and I can’t describe the deep hole losing him left in my heart. I have adopted 3 more since but still feel the loneliness of his absence. As with anything else, you can’t judge something until you’ve tried it. Everyone should the love and loyalty of a pittie. The world would be a better place.

  • Barbara Berkeybile

    January 11, 2015

    My husband has always wanted a dog. I on the other hand was never a dog lover and vowed never to have a dog in our house,

    We went to a wedding one Saturday and passed our local Harley Davidson dealer on our way. My husband wanted to stop in to look around, since he ownes a Harley motorcycle, On their sign they were advertising a pet adoption for that day. I told them that I was going to look at the dogs since I did not care to go into the store,

    Needless to say I walked around the parking lot and came across a very well trained pit bull. When she looked up into my eves I knew that we had to have her. That look sucked me right in. My husband never made it into the store,

    We told our friends and relatives about our upcoming adoption, The looks and bad comments regarding our new dog was very disturbing, That did not prevent us from adopting our “Harley girl”.

    Our son had a three month old baby and told us that he could never come to our house and subject his son to our Pit Bull ,He would never take the chance of our dog biting or attacking his son. Needless to say, we go to their house to visit our grandson even though the only problem would be that our grandson would be licked to death!

    Harley is a very loving dog. I tell everyone that she could not love you enough. All she wants to do is to please you in every way. I also feel that she has brought my husband and I closer together,

    I have never once regretted adopting her. The only regret that I have is knowing that our grandson will never experience all the love that she has to give,

  • Samantha Kia

    January 12, 2015

    I have always helped our local animal rescue, bringing in large breeds; mastiffs, cane corso, etc. I recently had a pit bull land in my lap and we haven’t let him go. I have a 17 yr old and a 3 yr old & Kaine is a gentle giant with the baby and is full of energy with my son. He came house broken and knowing over 20 commands. His family couldn’t keep him so he became a free ad on Craigslist. I gave the family $ out of fear that he would end up some where fighting for his life. He is about 7 months and 60 lbs, very muscular. The only problem we have is waiting for him to decide whose bed he is going to sleep on. ♡ He has also made best friends with my 14 yr old chihuahua.

  • Andrea Minella

    January 12, 2015

    THANK YOU for this beautiful article. I have so often found it difficult to put into words for those who have not had the fortune of being loved but a Pit Bull the kind of love you receive from them, a kind of love I didn’t even know was possible until I rescued our beautiful Gemma. In addition to being a Pit Bull parent I am also a veterinarian and I can say with tears in my eyes that we need more people like you in this world- more people who get it, who get these dogs and their love and their undeniable right to a good life like any other dog (as a vet I have met many Pit Bulls and have yet to meet one that was any less than a perfect patient- even those who have been abused). As a veterinarian I have the misfortune of seeing the atrocious ways humanity can treat animals, but reading articles like this helps keep my faith in humanity alive for I can see that there are still good people willing to fight for animals, especially our beloved misunderstood Pit Bulls.

  • Maddie

    January 12, 2015

    Sweet and loveable until they aren’t. Believe what you want but this breed is dangerous. It is proven that they do not show signs of going ballistic, it just happens. I know from experience that it doesn’t matter how much your dog is loved, trained or taken care of, it can go off in a split second. My son will carry the scars on his face and body for the rest of his life. Our pit that was raised in our loving home, was spoiled beyond spoiled just suddenly snapped for no reason. We were all sitting watching TV, Bodie was laying at my husbands feet, my 13 year old son was on the floor doing homework. Suddenly Bodie jumped up and ran over to my son and literally pounced on him, going for his face. We both tried to pull him off of Will and it seemed to make him even more aggressive. He latched on to Wills upper arm, and started shaking it. My husband resorted to getting his 9mm gun, that is the only way we could get him off of our son. It took 3 shots before he dropped. My son lost most of the muscles and tendons in his left arm, his right ear was gone, his nose and upper lip were ripped and hanging off . He endured over 10 hours of facial reconstruction and they tried to repair his arm but he has no use of it now. So all of you continue to sit back and think “It could never happen to me because it’s all in how they are raised”, you might, like us be eating those words. Yes, you might have one that will never snap, then again you might not. We had Bodie for 6 years, he had never shown an ounce of aggression, he slept with my son from the day we got him as a puppy. I will never look at pits the same way again. I will pray for each one of you that you never go through what we did.

    • Annie

      January 12, 2015

      Cathy, Maddie and others – thank you for noting a truth that will get someone else severely injured if not heeded.

      Not all dogs are the same, and dogs bred for centuries to fight will inflict a massive injury.

      So very disturbed by the pibbles pushers.

      • Maddie

        January 16, 2015

        Sad thing is, they won’t listen and they always think it will never happen to them. I cringe every time I see comments defending them. I cringe even more seeing pictures of these dogs with children laying or hanging all over them. I think about how quickly our lives were changed all because we were the same way, too complacent and comfortable with our “loving baby”, and never dreamed in a million years that our dog would ever do more than lick someone to death. Instead he almost mauled my son to death. My son was the one he followed every where, slept with, ran and played with. My heart breaks for him and what happened and we take full responsibility for bringing that dog into our lives. Watching your child being ripped apart really opens your eyes, or at least it did ours. I do know there are some people that would still defend their pit no matter what they did. I just can’t imagine anyone putting the life of their pit over the life of their loved one or any human being.

        • Ashley

          January 16, 2015

          That sounds like a terrible situation. I’m so sorry you went through that. I’m happy to hear your son is alive. Education is key. Understanding warning signs is a must and being responsible is priority. The truth is, there’s stories on both sides of the fence. Having a blanketed belief of a breed based on only ONE side of the fence is unfair and does a huge disservice to everyone. Thanks for sharing your story.

      • Karen

        January 16, 2015

        I got my son a red nosed pit pup to trained for his SD. She is sweet, loving and kind. They have been partnered four a little over 4 yrs. BUT, yes, I absolutely adore this breed, I am not blindly so. I know ANY dog can turn quickly. One of my grandsons had another family member ChowChow rip into his face, the baby was only 1-2 yrs old. I am constantly on guard but with her we have to watch more in public. She is also trained to protect her master. If he can’t speak (heart attack +/or seizure) she recognizes EMT’s and goes absolutely gaga with relief and happiness. Also, certain clerks in stores we shop at a lot. She also loves the Sheriff’s Dept. ACO. I trust and love her beyond words, but….you never know. I am more watchful of my 5lb. Pomeranian! She is sneaky. So, all I am trying to say (with too many words) just be careful. I have A pit/mastiff for my service dog. They are everything you are all saying about their loving hearts is true, let experience guided by intelligence. Don’t wear blinders!

  • Ken in CO

    January 14, 2015

    So well written. I cant imagine being without my Gracie (pit bull / lab mix). She is so gentle and goofy and snuggly and the list goes on. It breaks my heart when she sinks her head because she knows we are going out and not taking her with us. Although we do not have children, she seems magically good with them. When she met our friend’s baby for the first time a couple weeks ago, she laid right down next to her and just had the most caring look on her face.
    Your line about the match being planned is true. I am an atheist. However, I often look at Gracie and feel like my Rottie that passed a couple years ago sent Gracie to me. I know its probably just me thinking and being nostalgic, but I cant help it. Gracie just loves to be part of the family.

  • Angela Iacono

    January 14, 2015

    I am so happy you and Romeo rescued each other. I don’t have a pit bull, but I have 3 rescues and I love feeling the love they give every minute of every day. They have taught me so much. They have really changed my life. I look at things differently since they came into my life. I am in love with them also!! Thanks for sharing your story. And best of luck accomplishing your dreams!

  • Jim Izzo

    January 14, 2015

    I was reading your story as I reached over to rub my sleeping beauty, as she stretches out with a yawn and looks up at me. I stroke her neck and tell her to go back to sleep. My baby has to have body contact when ever she sits or sleeps next to me.

    My wife wanted this beautiful Pit puppy and I was against it. Already having two dogs, I finally relented. Thank god, because this dog is so beautiful, loyal and loving its unreal. She has my heart and has changed my perception about Pit Bulls.

  • Mariaan Ueckermann

    January 15, 2015

    God bless you. That is exactly how I feel. I would gladly give my life for the three pits that own me.

  • David Long

    January 16, 2015

    I couldnt have said it better. My pit bull loves everyone, slightly aloof with big men but loves women and children and chickens. His name is chevy cause of his blg block head.

  • Ashlie

    January 17, 2015

    Thank you for posting this. Truly. I’m a loud advocate, especially at my work where I have pissed more than a few doctors off by saying “for such an intelligent person, you’re awfully closed minded” and even to a homosexual one “for a book who spent his life being judged by its cover, you’re pretty quick to assume”.

    I tell the stories. The heroism. The fate of the Bad Newz Kennels dogs (read The Lost Dogs). But my favorite storyhas quickly become ours.

    A friend had an unplanned litter. I brought Kaiju home in October. Not my first dog, and not my first experience with pitbulls but the first one that was MINE. At 4 months old, it was obvious he needed a friend, or Doggie Daycare.

    While at Petsmart, we walked into the Everyday Adoption Center. In one of the kennels was Kaiju’s twin. His brindle was a little darker, but they were almost identical. And his bark!

    After barking a few times, he wouldn’t stop staring at us. So, we decided to meet him. And we met the sweetest most wonderful old man.

    At 7 years old, Tonto has spent 4 years in a shelter, the last year of which was simply borded in a kennel at a small town vets. He had been in Spokane 5 days when we found him. The center staff knew next to nothing about him.

    We brought the puppy, who had wanted nothing to do with the other potential additions we had introduced him to. Love at first sight! We brought the kids. He was in heaven!

    So now I get to look at the nay sayers and tell them that my vicious pitbull who was kenneled for 4 years is hands down the best dog I have ever met. I get to tell the story and tell them how he puts me to bed at night and lays with me until I fall asleep. Then he goes and lays with each of the kids for a while, then he does a lap on the main floor before either joining my husband watching tv, or come back up to start his rounds again. All night.

    All I can figure is that damn bark scared potential adopters off. And I am so glad they did. Tonto is home and I’m going to spend the rest of his life making sure he knows.

  • Janis Jackson

    January 17, 2015

    Very well written!

    A Pitbull rescue paired with the right owner makes all the difference in the world.

    I hate it when I see someone walking a pit with a huge chain around it neck with a lock so they can lock and chain the dog back up! Bad owners! I know that dog isn’t raised right! So macho, so unnecessary… Please tech your dogs right!

    Pits are people dogs, they absolutely love people!

    thanks for your beautiful, heartfelt story.

  • Shadow

    January 17, 2015

    Written so perfectly it made me ball like a little baby. Thank you.

  • Crystal

    January 18, 2015

    Absolutely awesome! ! Loved it and have 2 pits and feel the same! I’m a huge advocate to stop BS! Again love this story. . You couldn’t of said it better. . thank u!

  • Brant Honeycutt

    January 19, 2015

    I am a retired police officer. The majority of my career was spthatin narcotic interdictissignments in a inner city environment. Unfortunately, this was the ” pet ” of choice for the criminal element. Numerous encounters during exigent circumstances while conducting search warrants. I would tell you that in my wildest dreams would I have EVER envisioned bringing a Pit Bull into my home. On your post, you mention whether one believes in God. With ALL my heart. And it is forged in that belief that the reason ” General Smiley ” is an honored, adored, respected, and loved beyond measure, member of our family. Your post eloquently describes with 100% accuracy the traits and characteristics of our boy. Our family is Blessed beyond my measure and extremely thankful that God picked us to be RESCUED by General Smiley!

  • Quest Bars

    February 10, 2015

    It’s impressive that you are getting ideas from this article as well as from our argument made at this time.

  • kenneth dotsey

    February 15, 2015

    wow I had tears in my eyes throughout the whole article you are so accurate and so perfect in your comments and evaluations of this wonderful breed of dog. I have exactly the same emotions about my dog and wish I had the capability to express it like you did Thank You for a pleasant experience

  • Faith Rojas

    February 24, 2015

    Thank you so much for Sharing your story – I know how you feel – this breed is my Family pet breed growing up and now have 2 of my own! They are my boys, my love and life along with my human family – Many Blessings to you and look forward to reading more of these awesome stories….

  • Tina

    March 31, 2015

    I was born and raised in Cleveland, OH and moved to NC in 1993. I have rescued 4 pit bulls and currently have two of them and as much as they drive me crazy, I can’t seem to not fall in love with them when I look into their eyes. Everything you said about them is so true. the judging stares and comments about “aren’t you scared they will hurt the children?” I am more afraid of people hurting my children then any of my dogs. Thanks for the article. I LOVE MY PITS!

  • Cathy Lape

    April 3, 2015

    I loved your writing almost (sorry!) as much as I love animals-INCLUDING PIT BULLS. You conveyed your feelings so well, and you’re right, the misconception IS heartbreaking. Keep fighting the good fight and I just know people will come around to loving pit bulls…..give a pit a minute and you’re hooked.

  • Sanyta Saunders

    April 15, 2015

    A PIT BULL SAVED MY LIFE
    I used to be terrified of pit bulls until one morning I opened my kitchen curtain and there was my angel (a pit bull) sitting there looking up at me with a side headed eye. I really did not know what to do, I called my daughter and she was just as dumbfounded as I… I hadn’t had my first cup of coffee.. As the day went on, we gave him some water and food. I had know Idea what to do, so I asked the mailman if he had seen him around. He had not even realized he just walked past the pit in my driveway. Every one was afraid of him because of his size, even me, although he had not shown any aggression, towards anyone, even as the kids kept flying pass on their bikes. He made my home his…I was told that if I call animal control that they would put him to sleep, so I called a pit bull rescue. After waiting three days for them to show up, we had already fallen in love with him. Named him Mike, after the “Hump-day” commercial (he came on Wednesday). He has been with us for 2yrs now and I could not see living without him.

    • Ashley

      April 15, 2015

      <3 <3 <3 awwwww!

  • Nicole

    June 14, 2015

    From one Pit Mom to another….this was beautiful!

  • Jesse

    July 18, 2015

    Everything you said is so true. Our pitbull showed up on our doorstep October of 2014, she stayed there for an entire weekend. We decided to adopt her, she was fixed but had no chip, there were no lost pet flyers posted anywhere. She’s been the best pet/ friend we could ever have! She’s our little princess

    • Ashley

      July 19, 2015

      Awww… glad to see she ended up with a good family!!! They are amazing! :)

  • tracey maron-anthony

    January 6, 2016

    I love, love LOOOOOOOVE pitbulls. My daughter and I are looking forward to joining the VCAS (ventura county animal shelter’s) Pitcrew. They are such gentle, loving, sweet four legged furbabies. My dream is to win the lottery, buy a ranch, and fill it with Pits, because they are The Best Dogs Ever. well, so are Labs. And Corgies.

    Darn it, I’m going to need a bigger ranch.

    • Ashley

      January 6, 2016

      Haha, I’d love to do the same thing! Pits are sooooo affectionate and loving, Romeo is my first and he’s amazing. Good luck with the Pitcrew, that sounds interesting!!

    • Ashley

      January 6, 2016

      They are amazing!! Romeo is my first (and only) Pit Bull so far and he is so affectionate and loving!! Good luck with the Pitcrew, that sounds interesting!!

  • Karen Buckingham

    January 7, 2016

    We had a pitbull for almost 15 years. He was our family pet – the respect and love we felt for him was out of this world as was the love he gave back to us. I feel honoured to have been the proud owner of a beautiful pitbull. He passed 3 years ago and that was the saddest day of our lives. i still cry for him today. what an honour to have been the proud owner of a perfect beautiful pitbull. Your sentiments were perfectly put Ashley. And yes we smelt his feet often. Well done – keep loving that pitbull of yours lol. xx

    • Ashley

      January 9, 2016

      Awww, I’m sorry to hear about him passing away. But you’re right, it is such an honor to be their dog mom’s and share our lives with them! And, HA! Glad you enjoyed his frito feet too :) :)

  • Debra Post

    August 24, 2016

    We also have two pit bulls both rescues. Not that you don’t love every dog that became your family but there is something more with the pit bull. It feels like a bond I have had with no other dog. With proper training for the pit bull and the owner it is a rewarding experience.

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