Monday, February 24, 2014

Not a Service Breed

This post was first published on the Canine Game Changer blog on February 24, 2014.  It has been updated and modified here since.
"Mum-of-four Emma Bennett, 27, was found unconscious at her home in Leeds with horrendous injuries to her head and face...
"Witnesses spoke of “crazy” scenes as up to 30 police officers, including an armed team, descended on the street in Leeds.
"Another shocked neighbor, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “I saw Emma in the back of the ambulance as paramedics were pounding on her heart. She was just floppy.”
" wanted to go for her whenever she was having a fit [epilepsy]."
She is younger than I am, with two more children than I have. A fourth (or is it fifth?) person to be mauled during an epileptic seizure. This is why pit bull bans make sense. This is why pitbulls are grossly inappropriate for use as service dogs. They are too unstable to handle even a life of gentle love and care at home with the people who cherish and feed them. The last thing a community needs is to have such volatile animals roaming the community at large, forcing their way into venues as "service" dogs to interact with strangers and all sorts of stimuli they are not accustomed to. 

If they are unsafe at home, under good care, where they feel safe, know a routine, have no fears, have no worries, no unmet needs... where on earth can they be a safe companion?

This is why safety advocates protested bringing pitbulls into a school full of small children for more propaganda fluff, ostensibly under the guise of 'literacy'. And what makes these canine critters such excellent tools that aid literacy? What amazing quality is it that somehow is deeply transformative of a child's reading skills?
They "listen".
That's all.

Any other smaller, safer breed could "listen". Fanatics trumpet "any dog can bite" as if it were a legitimate and powerful counterpoint to gruesome and grievous pitbull attacks....* well, then, "any dog can listen". Something that does not pose great risk of dismembering children without provocation. Any animal incapable of tearing children apart could be a substitute. Why not a "literacy hamster"? They can "listen". Even a pet rock made of dung would be more appropriate.

(in itself a fallacy; yes, any dog can bite, but the end result is NOT the same. hell, even plants can 'bite'--venus flytrap--ergo, the ability to bite does NOT define equality or similarity with a specific animal or breed)
Many pitbull fanatics brag about how they skirt bans and ordinances by obfuscating their dog's breed or arbitrarily registered it as a service dog, in hopes of using the legal system to impose their will, and their dogs on the public. Some are deluded enough to genuinely believe these animals are great service dogs, on par with any other service animal.

A bloody and escalating history of violence would beg to differ. Even discounting all attacks on humans and non-canine animals, the fact remains that these dogs have an undeniable neurosis for 'going game' on other dogs. It's what they were bred for, excel at, and succumb to most frequently. 

REAL guide dogs, of time-tested temperament to excel in this line of work are frequently attacked by pitbulls. Many do not survive. These are animals that spent hundreds of hours being trained and earning experience in what they do. Their testing was complex and lengthy--a hard-won prize, and they have no parallel.

By contrast, pitbull 'service dogs' are of the Cracker Jack variety; a person sends a paltry amount of money to register their dog as a service dog--with no training, no testing, no verification--slap a vest on their animal, mislead and falsely advertise the breed. The result is in epileptics being caught unawares and grossly mauled--a few even unto death--because of the pitbull service dog farce.

A TRUE service/guide dog must be able to accompany their charge anywhere and everywhere--which means they will be out and about in the community, exposed to all sorts of environs, people, and animals. It makes no sense to task a breed that cannot stand to be around other dogs/with a psychotic compulsion to kill other dogs with such circumstances that set them up to fail--and inflict a lot of collateral damage.

Dog breeds are tailor made for their tasks, their tasks are an element of conduct, and ergo, their behaviors are a product of their breeding.

Pitbulls were bred to spontaneously and unrelentingly tear other animals apart, and the rising death toll issues that they perceive humans to be in that category. Their aggression is neurotic and generalized (NOT animal/dog specific). If someone TRULY loved the breed/their pitbull, they would realistically manage their expectations for the dog and operate with a 'big picture' perspective allowing for the breed-specific tendencies of their animal. 

Pitbulls are a horrific mismatch with the task of being a service dog, as poor a pairing as expecting a teacup chihuahua to herd sheep, a pug to retrieve water fowl, a dachshund to race, a greyhound to pull arctic sled teams, or a Pomeranian to take down wild boars. These are simple facts of reason, common sense, and biology. 

Time and again, they (and their owners) proved to be an awful service dog candidate;

Repeatedly aggressive with other dogs, un-certified but misleading others by presenting a simple dog license as something more, lying about certification.