Inspired by something a friend of mine Kat (@_t_y_s_o_n_) wrote on Instagram I wanted to write about putting down other breeds of dogs. As a Pit Bull owner times four, I am well aware of the discrimination my dogs face and how hard it can be for those of us who love the breed to hear the nasty and inaccurate things people can say. Stereotypes and myths about Pit Bulls are one of the reasons they are being killed at an accelerated rate in shelters. The assumption is that they are all assumed to be dangerous and if space is hard to come by, Pits are the easy choice to put to sleep so more room can be made for less murderous, more desirable dogs. We all despise the discrimination against the breed that is killing dogs in shelters and causing people to make assumptions about our pets. So the question is, if we hate this judgmental discrimination of Pit Bulls, why do we do this to other breeds that are not Pit Bulls?
I hate hearing terms like “if it ain’t Pit, it ain’t shit.” Pit Bulls are not the only dogs causing shelters to overflow. Since when does the breed of dog matter? We don’t like when people discount our dogs because of the breed they are, so why should we turn our backs on other breeds and pretend as if that type of inclusivity isn’t incredibly hypocritical? Everyone wants to act like an advocate, but advocacy isn’t very genuine while putting down other breeds of dogs like Chihuahuas, Dachshunds, Jack Russel Terriers, and Shih Tzus, knowing they too are being stereotyped as aggressive, vicious, stubborn, yappy, untrainable, and far from being “manly” or “cool.” I hear just as many myths and stereotypes about small dogs as I do about Pit Bulls, and I hear just as many people that have Pit Bulls say they “absolutely hate small dogs.” Well, that’s fine if you do not desire their looks or size, but consistent shit talking about a breed of dog only spreads the ideal that they are bad dogs and likely decreases their chances of being adopted from a shelter, same as Pit Bulls.
Small dogs, just like any other dog, are not born inherently vicious, yappy, mean, untrainable, and aggressive. They become that way because people are ignorant, negligent, and think getting a small dog means they don’t need to be trained, socialized or exercised. Many small breed dogs are working dogs, they require exercise that is both mentally and physically stimulating. Just like large breed dogs that have domineering personalities and high drives, without training, exercise and socialization large breed dogs become unmanageable. From there, unruly dogs, regardless of breed and size are surrendered to shelters where most are killed due to overcrowding or behavioral issues that shelter staff are unable to correct. Putting down any breed of dog, big or small, is helping no one and it is in fact killing animals who have been placed in a position in life that we humans have created. Be responsible, train and properly care for your dog and don’t forget that love transcends breeds of dogs and they all need our help.