"Bully Breeds" and Dog Aggression...

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by sillysally, Jul 3, 2012.

  1. sillysally

    sillysally Obey the Toad.

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    I've read/heard conflicting things on this subject, so I thought I'd consult other Chazzers....

    Among the three main "bully breeds"-American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, and Staffordshire Bull Terrier, is there a difference in levels and intensities of dog aggression in general?
     
  2. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    Not really by breed as much as breeding styles and lines.

    My staffordshire was very hot tempered and a horribly intense little fighter when offered the chance.

    Rescue pit bulls can be found all the time with pretty cold game, not seeking a fight(no reflection on how well they fight), but you can also find some seriously DA APBT in rescue and with good breeding.

    Amstafs are *supposed* to be less aggressive but that too is not fool proof, ime.
     
  3. Oceana

    Oceana New Member

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    I have met some of the sweetest pittbulls and other bully breeds that people list as "dangerous". The very very few that I have met that were aggresive was only because they werent trained young or worked with at all till they grew up and became a problem.
     
  4. Bahamutt99

    Bahamutt99 Dafuq?

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    My APBTS have almost always had some level of dog aggression. I can only think of one that didn't and she was a street mix, so not really an APBT.
     
  5. Michiyo-Fir

    Michiyo-Fir New Member

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    I have nothing to contribute but I think this is immensely interesting. I absolutely LOVE APBTs but may not ever own one due to this problem and me wanting to own multiple dogs without C/R if possible. Same thing with cattle dogs..
     
  6. sillysally

    sillysally Obey the Toad.

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    See, Sally in the only one I've ever owned, and she is dog selective. I got her at about a year and know nothing about her history, but I suspect she is a street bred "pit bull." Her dog issues only extend to strange dogs though-she gets along very well with Jack. BUT, Jack is very socially laid back and never directly challenges her (instead of challenging her when she takes his Nylabone away, he waits until she turns to groom herself and takes it back-lol).

    Honestly, I've come to the conclusion that the "bully" breeds are awesome enough to make dealing with dog aggression worth it, but don't want to deal with DA in non-bully breeds.
     
  7. crazedACD

    crazedACD Active Member

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    98% of my dealings have been with APBTs and the street bred types. I definitely haven't seen much with the street bred type, or the 'American Bully' type (selected for heavier bone and whatnot). I haven't seen a lot of reactive APBTs but I do see when owners try to let them sniff other dogs on leash, they snark or snap.

    I have met some serious, serious Bull Terriers though. It is probably a combination of factors, but I've met some totally outrageous DA bull terriers.
     
  8. Kaydee

    Kaydee Guest

    From everything I've read and people we've consulted with Sophie is considered an American Staffordshire Terrier. Her dog reactivity is mixed. On leash she sounds like a total nut job when she sees another dog...although the times when she has gotten out of her collar and run towards another dog it was just to be barky, no attack even though she had the chance. Off leash she is wonderful with any dog, especially on trails, sniff sniff wag wag and she is happy to go on our merry way. In the car at night, nobody human or animal can approach the car...well nobody in their right mind...during the day, like at a drive through window she just smiles and wags.
     
  9. *blackrose

    *blackrose "I'm kupo for kupo nuts!"

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    We have quite a few Pit Bulls come from the boarding facility, and it seems to be mixed. I'd say about a third of them show signs of being truly DA (aka, not just selective or reactive). The other third are DR/selective (which, in the boarding environment, a LOT of dogs are) and then the last third is nonchalant and doesn't give a crap about other dogs.

    Honestly, most of the Pit Bulls I've interacted with have been no more or less DA/DR than "normal" breeds. I think I've met just as many DA Pitties as I have Labradors. But, the Pitties I typical interact with are your typical "pet bred" pit bulls, too, not your intense game Pits.
     
  10. Emily

    Emily Rollin' with my bitches

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    Well, I can say managing a daycare that (gladly) accepts bully breeds, I have had the "daycare just isn't the best place your dog" talk with a disproportionate amount of owners of pit bull type dogs. We have NEVER had a human aggressive or sketchy pit bull type, but we have had several pits who presented with some type of dog aggression that made daycare not an option. This does not surprise me; I'm a great fan of the breed/type and well aware of their tendencies. We still give the breed/type a fair shake at work, though.

    Very often, unfortunately, the dogs appear to be totally dog friendly to their owners, because their owners only see them play with 1 or 2 dogs. And with 1-2 dogs, they're fine. But the thing about bully breeds, IME, is that their arousal threshold is low, and they go from playing to fighting quickly. For many of them, daycare was just way too stimulating, and they went from "let's play" to "let's brawl!" far too easily. And then it can be really to hard to get them to come down from "let's brawl!" For these types of dogs, half the time, fighting IS good times, so it's definitely shades of gray vs. black and white. Which, again, can make them difficult in a daycare setting.

    That said, most of these dogs are not leash reactive and probably very capable of playing with a few dog friends (supervised). Just not good for daycare, which is a very specific environment.

    We've never had one that was human aggressive, however. Most are absolute joys when it comes to body handling, etc, and you can get them out of a scrap quickly knowing they won't bite you. Even the pet bull, street bred types have been pretty dependable with people IME.

    ETA: We did have one dog that I sent home permanently because I suspected he was about to get very serious with other dogs. He was a petite (35 lbs) solid black little dog who looked very much like a classic APBT that had come up here from "a shelter down south". Gorgeous dog and in absolutely amazing physical condition... and totally ready to rumble with the other dogs in that unique APBT way where you never doubt they're having fun, LOL. Too bad, he was a gem with people and sooo cute.
     
  11. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    IMO its unfair to expect 100 years of breeding for aggression counts for nothing. No one here has said this but its a common thought. Give every pit bull a chance but regarding aggression in the breed as "it's how you raise them" is both offensive to the owners and setting the dogs up for failure. Unfortunately it's not exactly how much they want to fight but how they fight.

    I have several pit bull clients at our work and I play a few but to say I don't keep a closer eye on their play style would be a lie, I know first hand how much more damaging a pit bull fight can be over a lab fight.

    Arnold plays well with a select few. It's cute and I love it. He also can destroy a dog, I'm not bragging, in a very short time and has cost me a lot of money and strife. I'll be very honest, I'm pretty happy most of his teeth are broken now.

    Luckily most rescue or pet bred dogs are slightly watered down from game dogs giving the average owner a better chance at managing.

    Mostly you won't see as much DA in staffies unless you go for a "terrier" type.

    Amstafs all depend on bloodlines and people like Stafinois and bamamutt would be best suited for that answer.
     
  12. Emily

    Emily Rollin' with my bitches

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    I agree entirely, and I absolutely keep a close eye on those pit bull type clients, eps those that are new or that I'm unfamiliar with.

    Unfortunately, it's really difficult to talk about this with most clients without them hearing, "YOU HAVE A VICIOUS PIT BULL AND WE HATE PIT BULLS HERE, SO WHY DON'T YOU JUST GO." Especially when the dog appears to be dog friendly based on what they've seen of it. The owners of these dogs (that are average people and not "dog people") absolutely suffer from the "it's all in how you raise them!" mentality.

    I sincerely think that some of the dogs we've sent home have owners that think we just don't like the breed/type and are making it up, when in fact almost everybody at our facility loves the type - we just know their tendencies.

    Yeah, we give them a chance, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't keep a close eye on them and have a dog walker's card on hand, which is what we give most people whose dogs can't do daycare. *shrug* It's reality. I just wishI found it easier to talk about with the average, well-meaning pit bull owner.
     
  13. Red Chrome

    Red Chrome New Member

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    I think it depends on the dog and lines behind them.

    LoLa was getting attacked a lot...she wanted to play. Well... she does want to play mostly but she also wants to dominate the other dog. I finally realized exactly what was going on. She jumped Judge over nothing. Literally walked up to him and jumped him. She is a naughty brat who is maturing. I think as she matures..she may be become a lot more dog selective.
     
  14. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    That was exactly my experience with APBTs (and quite a few APBT mixes) in daycare for years. We did eventually stop taking them. And yeah, it's very hard to tell people that without them thinking that your business is "pit bull haters". I think we settled on saying our insurance wouldn't allow them at daycare and we've yet to find another that would but they were welcome at classes or something (this is OH with statewide BSL, so...). We never had a APBT or very APBT-y mix who ended up being suitable for daycare long term. And at the time, we had 20-30 dogs a day, mixed sizes and all ran together all day with no separation.

    Honestly though, after seeing so many come through daycare or rather attempt daycare I developed the opinion that it's not really an appropriate situation to put them in. I think being in an overstimulating environment with other dogs is actually what triggered the DA tendencies in a lot of those dogs. A few were mature adult dogs with no previous history of DA, owners who've taken them all over and never had them show any inclination towards fighting. Then a few months at daycare and they were dogs who could very easily be considered dangerous to other dogs.

    I like APBTs, I just wish more owners of them had a realistic idea about the breed.
     
  15. Kaydee

    Kaydee Guest

    This is very well written. Group situations can be inappropriate for any breed, it depends on the dog certainly. But Bullies, Rotties, German Shepards, redirecting a cocker spaniel in daycare is one thing, a muscular powerful dog having issues is quite another. I also agree with the idea that many rescues come to us discarded because they DON'T have "game".
     
  16. sillysally

    sillysally Obey the Toad.

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    Both of the local daycares here take pit types. One of them males it clear that while they will accept them they do keep an extra close eye one their interactions (something I totally understand encourage), but the other was way more casual about it--too casual, IMHO. It's an indoor dog park as well, do I took Jack there to check it out. One of the employees asked me if I had other dogs, and I responded that I had a pit mix who was dog selective and didn't like most strange dogs. The employee then encouraged me to bring Sally anyway to "try it out." >_<
     
  17. sillysally

    sillysally Obey the Toad.

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    Kind of OT, but are there many GSDs in daycare? I only ask because I see many at the dog park and it never seems to end well. I don't know if it's the breed in general it just our area.
     
  18. Emily

    Emily Rollin' with my bitches

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    Not many around our place and it usually doesn't work out for a variety of reasons. Also, IME, GSDs have a very strong tendency towards predatory drift. We have separate areas, so it's not a huge problem for us, but it can be depending on you're set up. We have one that comes and is good in daycare, but most IME don't appreciate being separated from their owners and tossed in with a bunch of strange dogs.

    I asked my roommate, who also works at my kennel/daycare, if we had a pit bull type clients that attended regularly, without issue, that were not obviously mixed with some other breed, and honestly, we can't think of any.

    ETA: And I agree that daycare is generally not a good situation for most APBTs and pit bull types.

    Also, Aleron's observation about pit bull types that may not be dog aggressive in average circumstances becoming DA after attending daycare is accurate IME. I have told that to several clients, using the explanation, "My concern is that he/she is learning and practicing aggressive behavior that he/she will begin to present outside of daycare, and I don't want to see that and I'm sure you don't either."
     
  19. crazedACD

    crazedACD Active Member

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    When I worked in boarding/daycare, there were never any GSDs in daycare. Roughly half in boarding were reactive/DA and some had issues with people. There were some awesome ones though...it really depends on the dog. Casey is reactive and not happy at a dog park. Other GSDs I've seen at dog parks were very concerned about patrolling their owners and caused many problems.
     
  20. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    We have 1 really, really good gsd at my work. He's a 4 year old, over weight, rescue male and he can play with anyone. He's a doll! Of course his neighbor, a 2 year old doberman, was in with another trainer and they fought. Supposedly the dobe started it but the GSD ended it.

    We also have two schutzhund line, working mentality, screaming, nipping female puppies. I hate playing them most of the time. The younger was good the first couple times but she's getting as rough and ballsy as the older of the two. They both scream and chase and side swipe and bite hard. They're not great with wrestling or just chasing without going in for the bite. I really, really like them and they're a total blast to train with but as far as playing with other dogs I cringe and eye my roll sheet to find the most tolerant dogs I have that day. I found with the younger she did very well one day with a mal puppy and a border collie puppy. She didn't relent when the mal didn't want to play, which usually I wouldn't like, but the mal needed to be pulled out of her shell.

    I'll see if I have any videos of her playing style. She's awesome but yeah, for both of them, I don't think group play is ideal.
     

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