Are Pit Bulls Getting A Bad Rap?

December 7, 2012 Updated Oct 11, 2013 at 6:23 PM EDT

By WKBW News

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December 7, 2012 Updated Oct 11, 2013 at 6:23 PM EDT

TONAWANDA, NY (WKBW-TV) - Dog fights, unprovoked attacks and just how pit bulls look, can give the dogs a bad name. But some say that reputation is definitely not well deserved.

A round-up of pit bulls in the eastern Missouri town or Sikeston is putting the focus on the perception of many that pit bulls are fighting dog and therefore dangerous.
The ASPCA says false reporting is a problem and the truth is most are fun-loving animals that need a home.

"When I was a child this was the family pet," said Barbara Carr, Executive Director of the Erie County SPCA. This was my dog Ty she lives in my shoe from Buster Brown, this was the dog on Little Rascals, this was the American family dog."

The Town of Sikeston is now enforcing tough legislation. They have been seizing pit bulls for immediate euthanasia. The law there requires that pit bulls must be kept not only on a leash but muzzled when outside of an enclosure, signs must be posted on owners property that state there is a dangerous dog on premises and it goes on and on. Carr calls this legislation absurd.

"These bans are ridiculous that all dogs of a typical look are banned from ownership because a dog or two dogs have been involved in an incident where someone has been hurt." Carr said.

In fact Carr says the number one biting dog in the United States is the Labrador retriever. She thinks the pit bull is the real victim.

"Dogs will die because of this ridiculous legislation," said Carr. "Dogs... Dogs will die not pit bulls, dogs these dogs, these pets."

Carr says ironically, one of the reasons dog fighters use the pit bull is because its nature is to obey its master.

In Erie County, Carr says the average dog is up for adoption for roughly four days. However, that number is eight times higher for pit bulls. It takes 32 days for the SPCA to find a loving home for them.