When is a Frenchie not a Frenchie?
According to the author of this newspaper article about an Arkansas “Pit Bull” attack, a Frenchie is not a Frenchie when it’s actually a Pit Bull. Ditto Bostons and (English) Bulldogs, by the way.
The American Pit Bull Terrier was bred first to bait bulls and bears. When baiting bulls was deemed inhumane, dog fighting became more popular, and the pit bull was used in the sport. The term pit bull today is used to refer to the specific breed as well as the Boxer, English Bulldog, Olde English Bulldogge, American Bulldog, French Bulldog, Alapaha Blue Blood Bulldog, Valley Bulldog, Boston Terrier and Bull Mastiff.
Note this sentence: “The term pit bull today is used to refer”.
Funny enough, that’s actually sort of accurate – after all, moronic politicians across the world have been referring to Boxers, Bulldogs, Frenchies, Pugs, Dogues De Bordeux, Bullmastiffs and just about any other dog breed you care to imagine as “Pit Bulls”.
In fact, the ‘term’ Pit Bull is pretty much just that – a ‘term’, used as a catch all to encompass just about any short haired, slightly blocky headed dog breed or mixed breed dog, anywhere in size from 15 pounds to 200 pounds. It no longer means anything – and it certainly no longer means the singular dog that the term was originally meant to designate, the breed now known as the American Pit Bull Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier.
Consider Animal Control in Sarnia, Ontario. They, like so many other ACs in so many other cities, put the onus on the owners of dogs deemed to be ‘substantially like’ a Pit Bull to prove that their dog is NOT one. For Sarnia AC, paperwork proving parentage is not proof of the breed of the dog itself (don’t try to think about this too hard, as it will only cause your head to hurt).
So, if I was to walk Pickle, for example, through Sarnia – on a leash, law abiding and minding our own business – Sarnia AC could still pick Pickle up, impound her, and sentence her to euthanasia. And, since I have not yet registered her litter, the fact that I can prove that her mother is a French Bulldog and her father is a French Bulldog would not be enough for me to prove that she is a French Bulldog.
Of course, in some cities it would not matter if I could prove that she is a French Bulldog, since French Bulldog = Pit Bull = Banned = Dead.
Also, let me point out that a few cities out there have banned Pugs.
This is like banning marshmallows for having too many hard corners. It’s like banning kittens for being not fluffy enough. It’s like listening to idiot politicians who have zero clue about dog breeds, and ignoring the actual experts with concrete knowledge of dog bite issues.
It’s like living in Ontario, where Michael Bryant can drag a cyclist to his death, and come out of it as the injured party who was in fear for his life.
“So, if I was to walk Pickle, for example, through Sarnia – on a leash, law abiding and minding our own business – Sarnia AC could still pick Pickle up, impound her, and sentence her to euthanasia.”
Putting a dog to death for simply looking the ‘wrong way’ is not euthanasia, it’s simply killing. Euthaniasia is putting an animal out of physical or mental misery — BSL killing of innocent, healthy dogs based purely on appearance is not anywhere -near- that.
You’re very right, Pai. My mistake for using spin-speak, instead of the more accurate term.
It’s insidious how the kill-shelter culture has made it almost automatic for most of us to ‘sanitize’ the concept of pet-killing. I admit that even I have to make the effort to call it what it is sometimes. It helps to think of ‘euthanize’ in it’s literal definition: ‘a good death’. That cuts out most shelter killing and all BSL killing, which is not ‘good’ by any stretch of the imagination.
How about voting with our feet and under no circumstances go to any municipality that enforces a stupid piece of c**p legislation in an even stupider way.I have a rescued Boston who is a big boy at 30 pounds, with no paper of course, except for the rescue organisation adoption contract. Sarnia, my dog and I are not contributing one red cent into your local economy. Ever.
Oh, and make sure the Mayor’s office and the local chamber of commerce know about it. Let’s keep a log of such places, people, and circulate it a widely as possible.
Of course, this is scant comfort for the poor souls who actually have to live there.
I’m quite far away — Washington DC — but I also have a big boy rescue Boston. Idiots sometimes ask me whether he’s a pit, and I give them the withering look they deserve. Not that I have anything against Pits, but they’re NOT interchangeable! But I’m staying the HELL away from Sarnia.
Oh, as to his parentage, I’ve got nuthin. I guess I would have to carry around a book about Boston Terriers that had lots of pictures, maybe?
From the sound of it, we may have to hire expert(s)on our dime to prove the obvious, and even this may prove not enough, as some municipalities lump Bostons, Frenchies, Pitties and what have you all together in the same bag, to be thrown into the nearest pit I suppose…
I try and do good PR every time I take my boy out, repeatedly explaining that, yes, he is a bully breed which doesn’t mean he eats babies from breakfast, in the hope to educate people.
And I stay the Hell out of Sarnia!
And, Susan, if you happen to have hunting friends in Michigan, pray, tell them where NOT to cross the border.
Sure hope you run into less stupidity in DC…
Give your big boy a pat for me, will you
i’m just disgusted by the whole thing. It’s hard to keep faith in humankind…
the breed banners/regulators, like terrierman for example, believe that 1) there is no such thing as a pit bull breed and therefore 2) any dog that someone thinks looks like what he imagines a pit bull to be, IS a pit bull.
Interestingly enough, in the list of pit bull breeds you quote above, only the Boston terrier has any close relationship to the American Pit Bull Terrier (a relationship many boston people deny which among other things once resulted in an AKC BT club holding a show in a location in which the AmStaff was banned, with no show exemption). The bulldog/mastiff/boxer breeds listed have very little relationship to the bull and terrier breeds.
Bans are never about reality.
Hm, is that why they bred them from their original ‘pit-bull muzzle’ into the flat-faced bulldog-style that the modern type has?