|72 year old grandmother mauled by pit bull while gardening|
At just over 2 months into 2014, pit bull type dogs have committed 100 serious attacks on humans. 76 of the attacks resulted in disfigurement and 6 of the attacks were so horrific that the victims died.
At the bottom of this page is a chart which lists the 5 most dangerous types of dog, based on the number of serious attacks on humans recorded in North America since 1982. One can see at a glance that pit bulls are the worst offenders, but because this information covers several decades, what isn't obvious is how much worse the pit bull problem has gotten in recent years. Despite - or perhaps because of - the millions of dollars poured into marketing the pit bull as a family pet, the number of horrific, violent attacks continues to rise, and hapless pit bull owners claim to be shocked each and every time.
In a little over a year since the December 2012 data was published, pit bulls have attacked many hundreds of human victims, claiming 40 lives, while attacks from other breeds have been relatively rare. For instance, during the period that pit bull type dogs mauled 40 human victims to death, the next most deadly type of dog, the Rottweiler, claimed 2 lives. The quantitative difference between the number of disfiguring and fatal attacks committed by pit bulls and those committed by all other breeds is telling.
What's even worse, and something that is severely under-reported, is the level of pit bull violence against animals. Last year tens of thousands of innocent animals were cruelly killed by pit bulls. Dogs (including working seeing eye dogs and other service animals), cats, miniature ponies, goats, alpacas, baby seals and various types of birds were all slaughtered in the past year in numbers that shock most people. The adage "quantity has a quality all its own" takes on a certain ominous significance in this context.
But it's difficult to blame the pit bulls for doing precisely what hundreds of years of purposeful breeding has given them the drive, the instinct and the inclination to do. The blame lies with those who promote them as safe family pets, spreading dangerous misinformation such as the nanny dog myth, and insisting that pit bulls are "just like any other dog".
In 31 years there is not a single record of a fatal or disfiguring attack from an Irish Setter - good owner, bad owner, well trained, untrained, chained, not chained, it doesn't matter. Not a single fatal or disfiguring attack. Most dog breeds have a very low incidence of such attacks, such that they fall into the "once in a blue moon" or "freak accident" category. But an American is seriously injured by a pit bull every few hours on average.
This data illustrates the illogical nature of anti BSL activism. We find the recent stealth anti-BSL politicking going on to be highly unsettling. It's been calculated that one is 2500 times more likely to be killed by a pit bull than by a labrador retriever, but proposed anti-BSL legislation seeks to make it a crime to differentiate between the two.
|Top 5 offenders at a glance|
The full March 8th report compiled by the animal people can be viewed here