Do you feel pitbulls are naturally aggressive or the owner/trainer makes them aggressive?

I grew up with pitbulls as pets, they are obedient dogs. In my opinion it's owner/trainer who make them aggressive. But I would like to know how you feel and your reasoning as to your answer.
Updates:
Owners/trainers can make them aggressive, but not knowing how to train your dog as well as play with your dog can also make them aggressive. Dogs like children watch you and how you act. Any type of violence within the home will make them think that violence is ok.
animalfarmfoundation.org/.../

These are pitbulls who have been trained with poilce, even as rescue dogs they can be rehabilitated.

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Most Helpful Girls

  • Pitbulls were historically used as nanny dogs like the Saint Bernard. They are incredibly intelligent and loyal, which makes them very trainable. That coupled with their strength made them a target choice for modern day dog fighting. They are not naturally aggressive as most believe, thanks to media. Pitbulls are actually my favorite breed, they're the most loving dogs I've ever been around. They live to be loved on, and will always be loyal to you. If you pick up an adult pitbull off the street, then I would rethink that decision since you dont know the dog's history and they could have been used for fighting. Pitbulls that haven't been used for fighting still make great pets, and they do well with children compared to some breeds.

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    • @Selena2418 After what I've seen and heard in my country, I wouldn't bet my life on that! I usually give them and their owners a wide berth!

    • You should be cautious with every dog since you're unfamiliar to them... this has been my experience with pitbulls, and after doing extensive research and working with dogs in shelters, I can tell you with complete confidence that pitbulls are not aggressive by nature. If however they were in an environment that nurtured an aggression, then I would expect them to be aggressive. There are many breeds that are naturally aggressive that dont have bans on them like the dalmatian, and chow chow to name a couple.

  • People need to teach their dogs from an early age that they are the alpha. People don’t do this, that’s the problem.

    You need to socialise them and obedience train them. When you don’t do this, you get an aggressive dog, a timid dog, an overstimulated dog when out in public, a dog that ignores you, etc.

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What Guys Said 51

  • Pit-bulls , in fact , ANY breed of dog , if badly brought up / abused , mistreated... any aggression is the fault of the owner. I'm a fan of Doberman's and Rottweilers , both had a bad rep , but in all aggression cases... it was later proven the owners mistreated them. Same applies to humans... kids treated with violence / aggression constantly , often turn into aggressive adults.

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    • Exactly! I have two Rottweilers and they’ve never ever so much as growled at me bc they’ve been treated well their whole life. Now, that doesn’t mean there’s no rules/ boundaries. Of course, they’re dogs and need clear right and wrong. But they’re also smart and have great dispositions so reprimands aren’t needed much even though one is still a puppy.

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    • That is a gorgeous dog! I want one now 😍 lol I currently have a pitbull/american bulldog mix. For the past few years I've have had little yappy dogs lol because in hawaii it's hard to find a place that allows bigger breeds, from my experience smaller dogs are more aggressive than bigger dogs. But because of their size people dont find them threatening.

  • This is like asking if a Ferrari's go too fast for the highway, or if it's just the driver. Well, typically it's both. A reckless driver + a Ferrari is going to go faster than reckless driver + a smartcar.

    Pitbulls are definitely a more aggressive breed than average (more so around other animals than people), and also have very strong jaws + a typical terrier tendency to shake when they get something (the original terrier breeds were bred for pest control).

    Whether they are significantly more aggressive than other breeds like german sheppards etc. is harder to say. But are they more naturally aggressive than say a Labrador retriever? Yes, definitely.

    Shockingly, dogs bred for fighting tend to be more aggressive than dogs bred to go retrieve shot birds and carefully carry them with a soft mouth.

    Any dog can be good. ANy dog can be poorly socialized. And any well socialized dog can still. … be badly socialized. And then it's on owners to actually recognize there is a problem before something happens.

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  • While it's wrong to say that they're "naturally aggressive", that's also not the whole story. Pitbulls have been bred to be extremely strong and powerful, as well as to fight. Their "fight or flight" instinct is far more tuned to "fight" rather than "flight" - and when you have the strength and speed of a pitbull, that's very dangerous.

    It's kind of like keeping a lion or tiger as a pet. Even if they are socialized with humans, and even if they know you, they occasionally have an off day or get startled or whatever, and they can maim or kill easily.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1HHPo3qxomQ

    Frankly, most people who own pitbulls don't have the training or time that is really needed to manage them properly, and without proper management, they are a potentially deadly threat.

    Growing up, I personally knew 5 different kids who were badly bitten by pit bulls (2 of them by the same dog, and the second kid needed extensive reconstructive surgery on his face). Compare that to the zero kids seriously bitten by any other breed, and it's obvious that pitbulls are different.

    Just last year, a local 4-year-old boy was killed by the family pitbull that he grew up with, who was "good with kids" and who often slept with the little boy. It doesn't appear that the boy was hurting or antagonizing the dog or anything, or that the attack was in any way provoked - the dog just suddenly attacked him and got him by the neck and shook until the boy was dead.

    I don't recall a lab, shepherd, doberman, or even rottweiler killing a child in my area in my lifetime, but this is one of several pitbull deaths.

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  • I think they are horrible animals and should not be kept as pets..
    I can see from what you wrote you're a responsible person and would take a different view..
    I don't think you should have the right to walk around with an animal that terrifies most people even if you say it doesn't bite.
    I can't walk around the streets with a gun in my hand and say it's ok because it's not loaded.. Owners know they are dangerous and seem to like having a pet that scares people

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    • But any dog can be aggressive from chihuahua to mastiffs. Can you tell the difference between a mastiff and a pitbull?

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    • @tigerlily808 this dog had the features characteristic of a pit bull.

    • Ok and I will ask again at first glance would you be able to tell the difference between a pitbull and a dogo argentino? Or a boxer?

  • It's in their nature. They can grow in a caring, loving family and it'll work well, but there's a huge chance that a time will come when they do something they were bred to do - attack. Every dog has a chance of biting someone, but with dogs like pitbulls those chances are sky-high when compared to labradors or pugs. And just because someone had to deal with one dog doesn't mean every dog is like that. How many times have I heard that "pinky didn't ever bite someone before" (25 stitches), "chloe never even growled on people!" (skin transplant required), bitten children scarred for life and so on. And that's especially about the owners who don't use muzzles and have no control over the dog whatsoever, even when they're holding the leash.

    So, in short - they are naturally aggressive. One dog will bite off your fingers if he has a bad day, the other one will not even bark at you. But the median of amount of attacks in case of pitbulls (and similar types of dogs) is way above the mean for the whole species. Owner has the ability to alter the behaviour of the pupil, sure. But only to some extent. A man can have difficulties to turn a mascot into a killer but it's even harder to turn a killer into something harmless. And those dogs are born as killers, whether you like it or not.

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  • I have read too many stories about pitbulls who were supposedly tame and docile suddenly becoming violent and killing their owners, attacking children, etc.

    I just don't believe all of them are obedient dogs. And the problem is that when they turn vicious that ability to lock their jaws ends up causing massive trauma to whomever they are attacking.

    Being mauled by a pitbull has to be a horrible way to die.

    www.miamiherald.com/.../article212188759.html

    Baby girl, 9 months old, killed by pit bull while she sat in a bouncy chair

    When Brenda Villasin dropped her 9-month-old daughter at her grandmother's house for the day early Wednesday morning, she kissed the sleeping baby's feet and said goodbye.

    It was the last time she'd see little Liana alive.

    Several hours later, Villasin got a call from a relative telling her something horrible had happened to her daughter. Panicked, she sped down I-95 "at 100 miles an hour," from her job in Pompano Beach to the home of her baby's paternal grandmother in Miramar.

    "snip"

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  • I think they're naturally aggressive. I think they may be trained to be obedient, though. I think in order to get the answer, you have to compare an untrained pitbull with another breed that is also untrained. I think without training, pitbull are more aggressive, and that's why I think so. I haven't looked at any research, though.

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  • I agree with you. Pitbulls are sweet if you raise them the right way, but if you're aggressive or play too rough with them it can make them think that it's ok to act rough 24/7

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  • They are Not more aggressive than other dogs, but if they are Not socialized they can be realy dangerous dogs ((*like any other dogs too)) . The Danger in this dogs is that they are so powerfull dogs and thats why they realy needed to be trained and socialized as young pups. ...
    Don't forget what they where breeded for...

    So i think it is in the hands of the owner/Trainer...

    I personally like them, my First dog was a pitbull, but now i have an American Bulldog

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    • I have a pitbull/american bulldog mix

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    • I live in Nord Rhein Westfalen ((Germany)) . They are on a list for dangerous dogs here to, so you have to Do a test called "sachkunde Nachweis" and ask for a license to hold a dog from this list. ... But They aren't dangerous only because the goverment says that they are...

    • @ACAB909 In Trinidad and Tobago they are one of the three banned dog breeds.

  • Most dogs are relatively the same in everything except appearance. My dog is part pit bull and while she can get rough it's only because I let her, because it can be fun wrestling with her (not to mention she's only like 70 pounds, so she's not that much of a threat lmao) but nah, they're not naturally aggressive, not more than other dogs

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  • Dogs emulate the teaching and attitude of their owners. They are not more inherently aggressive than other dogs. They are simply more physically capable than other dogs. If trained poorly, they act poorly. Kinda like people.

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  • I had a pitbull-labrador mix. He was only aggressive towards other dogs. He was gentle towards people.

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    • Which is still aggression. But I've had a pit/lab mix and he was a big teddy bear. He thought he was a lapdog and would try to climb into anyone's lap who showed him any type of love. He was also abused as a pup, but never seen him get aggressive towards people or other dogs. When he came to use we had 3 dogs already and he made friends with the smallest one which was a chihuahua/dachshund mix.

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    • ) so my chihuahua/dachshund mix went up to the dogs and they snapped at her. The next thing I knew my sister was yelling Harley (which was the pit/lab) and he had one dog by the back of his and the other was hanging from just above Harley's tail (the dog bit him and wouldn't let go). They lady just stood there yelling at me to get my dog, when she was doing nothing about her dog. I got Harley off the dog easily but the dog biting him, I had to hit the dog on the head to get him off which that dog snapped at me.

    • The lady tried to say it was my chihuahua/dachshund, but that dog never barked or growled. I rescued her, she was that way when I got her.

  • Pitbulls are aggressive by blood.
    But yes owner is also responsible to keep dog's aggressiveness in control.

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    • This is simply untrue

  • I think the the issue with pitbulls is not so much the aggression, or lack thereof, but the sheer power that they possess. It is about potential rather than actual threat at any given time. The question is whether they can be controlled if they did indeed go rogue.

    We use the same criteria with various animals that are not aggressive by nature and we don't allow them to be kept as pets on that basis. I'm not making a judgement on pitbulls, I'm just putting forward a view of why opinion is divided.

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  • That's nature AND nurture. Highly dangerous dogs. Don't recommend them as pets. Killed too many people in my country in unprovoked attacks. Banned in my country, too.

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    • Do you know if any of those dogs had a DNA test done at the time of the attack? Can you tell the different between a mastiff and a pitbull, at first glance?

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    • Your avoiding my questions. So I'm going to assume that DNA tests were not done and that people assumed they were pitbulls. And I'm guessing you can't tell the difference in the breeds.

    • Do you know how many breeds get mistaken for pitbulls because people THINK they know what a pitbull looks like? Even people who work with canines sometimes guess dog breeds wrong.

  • I think it's on the trainer/owner. Anyone can train a dog to be the meanest dog in the neighborhood. Also fun fact pitbulls used to be used to watch babies when parents weren't home because of their protective and pack oriented nature.

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  • Pitbulls are chill as shit if raised right. One of my friends has 2 and they play with his daughter, and they eaten her yet. So I definitely think it how their raised.

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  • Unless the dog has a mental disability, it's pretty much a reflection of how the owner treats the dog. I've had Rottweilers my whole life and I couldn't ask for a more loyal companion.

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  • They are naturally aggressive. Yes some other dogs are as well but they aren't as powerful as a pitbull. The whole "muh nanny dog wazza good boy" before ripping the jugular out of a child's neck doesn't cut it for me

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  • I don't know enough to say.

    However, the point remains that they are clearly equipped to do horrendous damage to human beings, and that's what I find troubling about them.

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What Girls Said 15

  • Owners. For instance, Staffy dogs used to be used in nurseries because they were so sweet. Owners are the ones who create the monsters. Both those who don't know what they are doing and those that train them to do so on purpose.

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    • I was reading the other day that ownership of staffies will be debated by MPs. They are considering adding them to the banned dogs list in the UK.

      Next will be poodles and then squirrels.

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    • @GetzRekt I know bloody ridiculous.

    • @GetzRekt As long as it is not raisins and donuts, we will be OK! LOL!

  • Every breed can be agressive, it's just how you treat them and with some good training there's no need to worry. Pitbulls just have a bit more overpowered jaws, nothing much... they can be so kind and sweet! <3

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  • Owner trains them. Weren’t they nanny dogs before the world started to see them as hostile? Because they were so good with children they’d let them watch the kids for a short period of time when the parents couldn’t.

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  • I’ve heard it depends on how they’re brough up and trained. I know they can be super sweet dogs though😍

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  • definitely depends on the owner in my opinion, although different dogs also have different personalities. one of the most naturally aggressive dogs is actually the chihuahua, amd i believe daschunds as well

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  • I have four of them. Best dogs ever. They love my kids also. However, Our neighbors pitbull got out yesterday and bit my boyfriend and he almost killed this damn dog. I know our neighbors dont abuse their dog. None of us had any idea why he ran up and bit him but they're lucky my kids werent walking with their dad or that damn dog would be dead.

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    • Like I said in my opinion, they can turn for NO REASON at all. Everyone says that if they are trained correctly, they are no trouble. Try asking owners that have had pitbulls turn on them, or otherpeople including kids! You can NEVER be sure they are 100%safe.

    • Every dog can snap. Pitbull or not

    • @juicyjessie Any dog can attack for no at all. And yes if they are trained correctly they are very obedient dogs. Just because someone does not abuse them does not mean that the dog was trained. Most people take in dogs like pitbulls and are loving owners but like any other dogs they can still show aggression, if not trained. My dog growing up was 100% safe, she was the sweetest dog but would growl if she felt anyone was getting aggressive with us. Even playing with us kids she was gentle. she knew not to bite hard, so she would nibble. And studies have shown that pitbulls are not more aggressive than and other dog. All dogs can be aggressive no matter the breed.

  • I don't think they're naturally aggressive. I think a traumatic past or irresponsible owner is the cause of an aggressive pit.

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  • pitt bulls have a lot of power in them, treat them right, theyre great, treat them wrong, uh oh

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  • Pitbull's technically are more aggressive than other dogs by nature but, so are Chihuahuas. At the end of the day, it always comes back to not only teaching your dog properly but, to keep them on a leash at all times. My dog is the sweetest, he would never attack a human but, another dog... It's natural instinct for them, it's best to be safe than sorry.

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  • We had an incident a few days ago, on our seafront prom. A Staffie turned on some other small dog for no reason. It also attacked the little dog's owner, who was hospitalised. The Staffie's jaws were so strong, no one could get it to let go. It was eventually put down.

    Any sort of terrier like a Pitbull or Staffie can be as gentle as they come, until one day, for no reason, they turn. After all, they were originally bred for aggression and fighting. Hence the "Pit" in Pitbull!

    It is not the owner's fault either way. No matter how well a dog is trained, it will always be unpredictable, and can turn on any other animal, person, including children, for no reason.

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  • It's the owner

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  • People make them aggressive

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  • No they aren't aggressive

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  • Same as yours. My dad has 2 pitbulls and one of them died of old age. (He turned 19 in this year ) and the other one is 13 years old. The one who was older took care of me when I was a baby , he slept near me and growled if some stranger wanted to touch me. He was a good pet and I loved him dearly.

    Nobody. Not animals. Nor humans are bad because they are born like that. They become bad because of something.

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  • The owner makes them aggressive. When I was younger I had a pretty close friend who had a pit bull named Sugar, and this friend had younger siblings who would constantly climb on, pull on, and actually ride on the dog. She just didn't care. She never harmed a person in any way, and she was a really sweet dog.

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