When’s the last time you saw a pit bull? How did you react? The average person might shrink back from an encounter with a pit bull, scooping up their kids or crossing to the other side of the street.
Pit bulls have the reputation of being vicious fighters, liable to snap and attack without a moment’s notice. You might be surprised that this reputation has been forced onto pit bulls by human misinformation, rather than earned through behavior. As Rebecca O’Connor writes for National Geographic, pit bulls used to be America’s darling breed.
“An American favorite, the pit bull was featured in army recruitment posters during World War I and there were several famous pit bulls that served in the American military. They were a dog that was seen as a protector, a friend and an athlete, the sort of dog Americans aspired to have by their side…Pit bulls were also seen as a child’s best friend. On the silver screen the pit bull was a constant companion to the adorable kids in the Our Gang comedies, as well as with Buster Brown.”
How times have changed. Now pit bulls are villainized, abused, and shunned. Owning a pit bull is prohibited by many homeowners’ associations and apartment complexes. Perhaps you yourself have feared or suspected the pit bull, but how much do you really know about this controversial breed?
In the infographic below are a wealth of facts about the pit bull, as a breed, pet, and companion. When facts are separated from fiction, we see a misunderstood animal that deserves love and protection just like any other.
Image via Thinkstock