Responding in the appropriate forum, so as to avoid continuing a MPSIMS thread hijack:
Okay, lovely. First, some follow-up questions:
-What do you define as “tendencies for aggression toward other animals”?
-What breeds carry these tendencies? A handful of examples, or a general type is fine, I’m not necessarily asking for an encyclopedic listing, though the more specific you are the more helpful that will be in understanding your thoughts on the topic.
When I posed the question it was in response to an insinuation that a pit dog’s propensity for violence extends to any living thing, cat, dog, human, ponies, whatever. You said “if a dog is both large and prone to attack” but it seems you’re not quite willing to tell us exactly what that means. Is a 30lb pit dog “large”? Do the traits which make a dog prone to attack another dog have any connection to the traits which make a dog prone to attack a wolf, a fox, a hog, a rabbit, a rat, or a human being? What does “prone to attack” mean?
Do you know anything about the traits that make a dog prone to attack another dog? There are several of them, and they all function a little differently. Do you know what causes most of these traits?
Hint: it’s not genetics.
To answer your question, of course I don’t dispute that pit dogs have historically, and in some cases are currently, bred for dog-aggression, and for pit fighting. That’s… what “pit dog” means. To elaborate on what I assume you’re getting at: this of course means that dog-aggression is a significant concern in the care and handling of pit-type dogs, and that such traits must be addressed with specific and extensive socialization and continuous “proof-training” throughout the dog’s life, starting at birth. Does that answer your question?
Yes, it does very much matter. This is the whole basis for the urban legend, the mythology which drives breed-specific legislation efforts, and to which some not-insignificant percentage of the hundreds of thousands of dog bites perpetrated by non-bull-type breeds are in many ways directly attributable.
Dog aggression may be what you “came in [to that thread] about”, but you’re certainly happy to continue conflating dog-aggressive traits with human-aggressive traits. Would you now have us believe that you’re changing your tone, and that you no longer wish to assert that pit dogs are more potentially dangerous to human beings than any other breed?
Along the same lines, in the other thread you mention two other breeds which you refuse to board your dogs in the company of: Rottweilers and German Shepherd Dogs. What leads you to believe these two breeds are more particularly dangerous to your pets than any other breed? Above you (rightfully) assert that a pit dog’s fighting background raises concerns. Neither of these two breeds are dogs with pit-fighting histories. What makes them more inherently dangerous in a boarding situation where your expressed concern is dog-aggression?
As a small aside, how do you feel about Dobies? They’re the only one of the “four dogs of the apocalypse” which you missed. That you lump these three breeds together as “aggressive” without distinction suggests to me that you fall into the category of folks who “just know these dogs are dangerous… everyone says so, duh” without much further thought than that.
This is the idea I’m trying like hell to get you to explore: what makes you think a GSD is a bigger threat to your pet than, say, a Shar-Pei? Or a mutt of indeterminate phenotype? It’s the flip side of the pit/human aggression question.
Did you actually miss the multiple times I asserted (and linked to AVMA and CDC reports justifying) that no breed of dog is more potentially dangerous than any other? And that the only consistent factor in severe dog attacks is not breed or type, but mishandling?
If not, if you read and comprehended those posts, then… where did you get the idea I was arguing that one breed is more dangerous than another, and that these other “more dangerous” breeds lessened the potential risks with dogs of pit-blood background?
The question I posed comes in response to the repeated assertion (not just by you, but several other folks in the thread) that pits are “OMG SRSLY the most dangerous dogs EVAR”. That “there has never been a dog like a pit”, and so on.
If pit bulls are alleged to be the OMG WORST DOGS EVER, then I’d really, really love to know: what do people suppose makes them so? A game-type pit dog, with a serious, concentrated lineal history for pit fighting is a 35-45lb dog bred to fight other dogs… what makes this animal so absolutely demonic, way over and above a host of other breeds? Why do some people point to pit dogs as murder-minded hellspawn, savagely bent on destruction and willing to rend their owners limb-from-limb with no warning and no provocation whatsoever?
The reason I bring up various guardian breeds is not to suggest that these dogs are more dangerous [thus you shouldn’t worry about pit dogs], it’s to highlight the ill-logic of drawing a parallel between pit-fighting dogs and people-biting dogs.
As it appears you’re now backing out of this characterization, I’m posing the question as a general one, to any poster who wants to seriously contend that pit bulls truly are inherently human-aggressive dogs. You appear to be hinting toward that in the other thread, but I understand now that you’re backing down from that characterization.
That’s not actually enough. Your posts waffle all over the place, though I see upon further review that you’re very careful to never quite come out and say it. You refer to pit dogs as responsible for “carnage” and as having a “terrible rep [for attacking humans]”, you refer to those of us citing reliable research showing no breed to be inherently more dangerous than any other as “apologists”, and you conflate dog-aggression with human-aggression by casually “mentioning” such things side-by-side. You don’t quite get so far as to come right out and say that pit dogs are more likely to harm a human than another breed of dog. You sure as hell tippity-toe all around it, though.
So, direct answer time: do you believe pit dogs to be inherently more dangerous to human beings, or not? Do you conflate a history of breeding for dog-aggression with an increased potential for violence toward other species of animals, including human beings?
You’ll need to help me out here. Why is it silly?
And lastly, though I’ve said this… many times, many ways…
…the main factor in dog attacks (whether it’s violence against another dog, a cat, a human, a pony, or any other living thing) is not genetic, but owner-error.