Would you adopt a pit bull from the shelter? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Being that many of us have kids, would you adopt one?

What if the shelter/foster declared up and down what a sweet docile good-with-kids dog he/she was? Would you adopt one?

I said I wouldn't adopt one. But then I read about how many of the "wrong" sort of people want them, and how they sit in shelters because good families are too afraid to adopt them..now I dunno.

I wouldn't want a dominating one, definitely. I thought all of them were that way, but some of the different ones I am reading about in the shelters don't seem to be that way, according to their foster owners.

I plan to adopt a dog/ferret tomorrow or sunday. I am going to the shelter tomorrow. Just wondering.
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#2 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:16 AM
 
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no
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#3 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:17 AM
 
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I wouldn't have one period, but definitely not from a shelter.
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#4 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok...would you adopt any dog from a shelter?
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#5 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:19 AM
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Probably not. I would be hesitant to adopt an older dog regardless of breed until DD was older anyway. Bad experience with an adopted-for-less-than-24-hours dog.

Ferrets stink. A lot. You have to be really on top of cleaning their cage or your house will reek. This includes de-scented ones. (I got one for ex-DH, he had her until she died).

ETA: I would adopt from a shelter. That is the only way I would get a dog. Just not until DD is a little older.
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#6 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:20 AM
 
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I wouldn't own a pit bull, or several other breeds for that matter, under any circumstances with small children in the house no matter where it came from or who gave me reassurances about its demeanor. Not a risk I'd be remotely interested in taking.
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#7 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:21 AM
 
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Nope....and I'd bring home pretty much everything that has fur or a tail.

 

 

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#8 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:21 AM
 
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My family had a pitbull/boxer mix that my brother brought home as a stray. She was so sweet and it did kind of change my perception of that breed. We were all pretty much grown ups though and after I moved out, she became very protective of my parents, especially my mom. She was a good dog (and I'm not a dog person at all). However, I think for me, right now with 2 little kids, I'd be really wary.
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#9 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:23 AM
 
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Ok...would you adopt any dog from a shelter?
We have adopted from shelters before, both dogs and cats. I refuse to have a pit bull though.
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#10 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:24 AM
 
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Well....I did. And she's the bestest dog ever. But I wouldn't recommend it. We were very very lucky. We were very stupid, just going and picking up a random dog at 32 weeks pg with #1.

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#11 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I ask about shelter dogs in general because I have heard of people not wanting to adopt any shelter dog if they had a child.


Ok, so what if it was a pit bull mix with some other breed, like, say, a labrador?

I also have a list of "no" breeds. I won't have a German Shephard. Or a Jack Russell. To active for me. Looking for more on the mellow side...perhaps a more mature dog, as well.

I know that bull dogs are so gentle with children, and everything I look for a bull type dog (english, boxer, american) pits with are staring me in my face. And pit crosses. And owners swearing what sweet gentle dogs they are. And so forth. I want to scream!
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#12 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:43 AM
 
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No, but I'm not a dog person to start with.

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#13 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:44 AM
 
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Whenever you read about yet another pit that has mauled yet another child, the owner always says, ". . .but he was so gentle!" and the neighbors often seem to say, "I'm not surprised."

I would never own a pit, but especially from an unknown background.

We adopted an adult shih tzu from the shelter. He's work, and sometimes annoying like any animal; but he is TOTALLY WONDERFUL with the children and he's a good, loyal dog. Not yappy at all either. In fact, he's a lousy guard dog, he just loves to see anyone. LOL
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#14 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:46 AM
 
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I would and I have. One of my dogs now is a shelter Pit. He was there for 9 months and he has taken a while to settle in and trust that we're not going to hurt him. But he's not aggressive with people at all, and he is pretty good with other dogs. He can be kind of nervous - he has some neuroses that I believe came from being in the shelter so long. But he takes all of our 3-year-old's behavior in stride and doesn't snap at him. That kind of tolerance is typical of the breed.

We also adopted an American Bulldog, but she has dog aggressive tendencies which, while not unusual in the breed, caught us by surprise because it took a couple of months to show up. At first she was sooo mellow with other dogs. We adore her but she can't live with the Pit or the dogs next door, so she went down the street to stay with my brothers-in-law. Anyone thinking of getting a bully breed should understand that dog aggression is a real possibility.

I also have a Pit that I bought from a breeder 14 years ago. He has the best temperament of any dog I've ever known. Dog tolerant and loves people SO much. I would definitely say that he is the most stable, and that there is something to be said for buying from a good breeder. I do think that living in a shelter for a long period can mess with a dog's head.

I think that a fostered dog is usually more of a known quantity than a shelter dog... You'll have a lot more information on the way a dog interacts in a family, though of course there are no guarantees that it will be the same once you bring him home to YOUR family.

Good luck deciding. You are so right, there are many, many Pits out there who need homes.

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#15 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:50 AM
 
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No. I don't trust them at all.

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#16 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:54 AM
 
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I wouldn't--to me it is just too big of a risk.

One other issue you may not have thought about is having other kids to your house. We have a neighbor with a pit bull that the owner swears is a sweetheart and totally gentle, but I have seen her act aggresive with other dogs and some of the small kids in the neighborhood. My child will never be able to go play at their house because of this--even to let her in their front yard scares me to death. We live in a really safe cul-de-sac and the kids all play out front together, and now we are all so nervous about this new dog that has moved in. My daughter loves their daughter (and their daughter is very sweet) but it just makes things so darn complicated.

So think about that issue too.
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#17 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 02:56 AM
 
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nope, wouldn't do it ever

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#18 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 03:00 AM
 
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No way.
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#19 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 03:12 AM
 
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No. I am pro adopting from shelters but never a pit bull.

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#20 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 03:18 AM
 
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There are definitely breeds that I wouldn't have, like a PP it is due to activity level or other such things. I had a roommate who had two pitbulls when I had three littles- my son was one year old. It was my house, I let a friend move in with me. One of her dogs was from the shelter.

So I guess my answer would be yes. Of course it depends on the dog, just like any breed.

Incidentally, I was bitten badly by a beagle and by a miniature poodle as a child. I had a friend who had two shih tzus who jointly attacked her 2 week old baby badly enough that the baby required something like 30 stitches in her face.

I would definitely get a dog from a shelter while I had young children, I have before.
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#21 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 03:19 AM
 
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Pit bull, no. I used to think, before I had my son, tht all dogs could be good dogs, and that how they were raised turned them. Now....I'm sorry, but some dogs just scared the crap outa me.

But, I would, and have, adopted a dog from a shelter, and he is the BEST dog. My son hangs on him pulls his hair, just loves this dog to death, and buckeye (the dog) just lays there.

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#22 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 04:08 AM
 
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I wouldn't feel comfortable with it. Not because I'd be particularly afraid that the dog would go postal on people (to be honest, I think a pit bull, unless trained otherwise, has far more inbred tendancy to NOT attach humans than most other dog breeds). But because I am not an experienced dog owner, and a pit is a very *strong* animal and I'm not sure I could control it adequately.

I think there are certain animals that you really should know what the hell you're doing and be experienced before you take on. A pit is one of those animals, in my book. Not because they're "bad". But because they need and deserve owners who are going to be able to give them the care, training and attention they need to stay safe and be safe.

Do NOT adopt one because of sympathy pangs. There's plenty of dogs that get killed every day at shelters, so feel sorry for any dog that's not in a minimal kill shelter.

Think about what you are capable of handling, and willing to handle. Think about your enviornment (do you live near or have other dogs?). Can you afford the increase in your homeowner's/rental insurance that you're likely to get or will you get kicked out of your rental? Are you willing to erect a good fence? They're not cheap.

I think people only thinking with their heart is responsible for a LOT of innocent dogs getting killed. As well as dogs and people getting mauled.

I wouldn't own a wolf-hybrid, even if I knew I was its last chance at avoiding euthanization--because I know that my inexperience and inability to properly care for one would mean that it probably would have to be put down or live a miserable life anyway. I don't own a rescue horse because we don't have a barn (and can't afford one) even though we have a nice big piece of property. I don't have a beautiful salt-water aquarium that I always dreamed of when I was a kid because I don't have the time or money to devote to its upkeep and the beautiful creatures I would put in it would suffer and die because of it.

There's lots of animals that I appreciate. There's lots of animals that I feel sympathy for. Just because my heart melts doesn't mean I should follow it. Especially when and if something about me or my environment would make it worse for the animal. Then it's no mercy to take on an animal that's endangered by my experience or that I might have to boot out because I didn't think things through with my brain first.
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#23 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 04:24 AM
 
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No. While I don't believe that "pit bulls" (often mislabeled) are necessarily naturally dangerous, many of the shelter ones probably are. If I were childless, sure, I would consider it. But with a baby around and plans for more, no way. There's just no way I'd take that risk, even if it's supposedly a small risk.
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#24 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 04:28 AM
 
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I think there are certain animals that you really should know what the hell you're doing and be experienced before you take on. A pit is one of those animals, in my book. Not because they're "bad". But because they need and deserve owners who are going to be able to give them the care, training and attention they need to stay safe and be safe.
:

I would definately prior to having children; with hesitation now (as with any dog; but I will always adopt and love mixed breeds most) - my husband would not since we've had children. (we’ve discussed this lately since I saw a PB I wanted to bring home.)

I volunteer with a rescue group. We will not place a PB in a family with children. (Mostly because we were afraid the children would do something to the PB that could result in the PB being re-homed or put down.) Actually, most of the PB's we've taken in were not placed at all because it was so difficult finding homes we felt were 'perfect'. So, those PB's ended up staying with our seasoned volunteers - two of which have young children and there have been no problems. Maybe we have been lucky to have 'rescued' good natured PB's and definitely lucky to have great volunteers who understand rescued dogs. We have turned away PB’s because of lack of room and the fact that we have a difficult time finding them homes. In effect, we’ve allowed these PB’s to be put down since they were probably taken to the county shelter. In our area, unfortunately the county shelter doesn’t even give PB’s a chance to be adopted.
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#25 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 04:32 AM
 
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Ok, so what if it was a pit bull mix with some other breed, like, say, a labrador?
My neighbors hapen to have a pitbull/black lab mix. While he is a freindly dog he is also huge and powerful dog. He is extremly energetic and they obviously use all their strength to control him. He has never done anything threatening like growl at me, but he has given me friendly greatings that nearly knocked me over. My neighbors children are all adults now, so he is fine in there household, but I would never have a dog this large and hard to control in a house with small children.

Quote:
I also have a list of "no" breeds. I won't have a German Shephard. Or a Jack Russell. To active for me. Looking for more on the mellow side...perhaps a more mature dog, as well.

I know that bull dogs are so gentle with children, and everything I look for a bull type dog (english, boxer, american) pits with are staring me in my face. And pit crosses. And owners swearing what sweet gentle dogs they are. And so forth. I want to scream!
I'd like to recomend for a yes list of breeds the basset hound. When I was a kid my mom had a freind who had a basset hound. When ever my mom went and visited her friend my sisters and I would play with the basset hound. As long as we gave him an occasional treat he would put up with anything. They are very docile dogs with a low maintanance coat.

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#26 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 04:41 AM
 
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why risk it? There are so many other breeds known to be more gentle, and I am sure they are looking for a home too.

Growing up, we loved our Samantha, then our Max, both terrier mixes and both shelter dogs

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#27 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 04:45 AM
 
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No. I am pro adopting from shelters but never a pit bull.
Ditto to this.
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#28 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 10:13 AM
 
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No.

I've never met a pit bull that wasn't as sweet and syrupy as can be. BUT that's what everyone says about the p.b.s that maul someone to death. I'd never be willing to live with the unknown triggers.

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#29 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 10:25 AM
 
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Well, I don't really like pit bulls, so I'm already biased.

But I would not adopt any medium sized dog or larger from a shelter, unless it was being fostered in a home with a children, and for a long period of time.

Has this dog been fostered in a home with kids, or is it just the shelter employee giving you this information?
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#30 of 131 Old 03-01-2008, 10:40 AM
 
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Just my .02...

Any dog can be a bad choice from a shelter...you just never know. Regardless of how much info the shelter people 'try' to get, people lie all the time and you don't really know how the animal may have been treated. You don't want to find out after you get home that your new dog doesn't like men, brooms, leashes, etc (this happened to me and it was very scarey to watch a dog I did not know much about try to go after my roommates/boyfriend)

To answer your question...no. I would not. FWIW though, many years ago I did adopt a pit from a shelter.

I did this pre-kids. The only reason the shelter allowed me to adopt him was because I had worked with dogs and was comfortable training him. He most likely came from an abusive situation..and he was only a year old when I got him. He was a great dog, though dumb as a bag of rocks. He was great with my son when he was a baby. I will say that although my dog was 10yo by the time my son was born, I STILL did not leave him in the room alone with the baby.

No matter HOW good you *think* your dog is, regardless of the breed, there could be a problem. I think mutts are a safer choice, personally, as they are les likely to be inbred. Pits are much more popular now and are more likely to be suffering some of the 'inbred brain' things that start to happen. That being said, I would not adopt a Golden Retriever or a Shephard either. SOme of the nastiest dogs I dealt with (in the past) were Goldens!

Pits are very powerful dogs, and their jaws are very strong. They are also very loyal and trainable, but that takes ALOT of time and commitment on the woners part. Not a dog suitable for a family with young kids, imo.

We adopted a Greyhound/Shephard cross last year. Best.Dog.In.The.World. We really lucked out. She has a few quirks and I don't think her previous owner was totally honest with us but she is a fantastic dog. My kids are 6.5, 5, and 3 and can be part of the dog-owning experience now so everything doesn't fall to me, lol.

Good luck with your decision!

Oh, and ftr I would NEVER get a ferret. They smell, and burrow in your furniture...amongst other things, from what I've heard ~ EEK!

ETA: I just read your post again. Don't confuse docile with submissive. My dog was submissive because he was abused. Submissive dogs can be just as dangerous as aggressive dogs as they will do what is called 'fear-aggressive' behaviors...like biting. My dog was fear aggressive and would react when scared. That is VERY difficult to break in a dog. It can be triggered by something as simple as startling the dog. Ask the shelter about that. See if they can startle the dog and watch what happens. Not that every submissive dog will be fear-aggressive, but just something to be aware of. Good luck!
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