Thinking About Adopting a Dog?
Some things to consider in your decision-making process
What is a "Pit Bull Terrier" really?
Let’s clear up the misinformation about breed identification. This is not actually a breed, but a generic category of similar breeds, including the American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier (plus about 18 other breeds with some similar physical characteristics). This is why we always refer to these dogs as "Pit Bull Terrier Like" dogs—it's impossible to categorize any one breed-specific behavior or physical characteristic from this large of a collection of breeds and blends.
What will you tolerate?
Ask yourself that question. Make a list of things you won't stand for as a pet parent. Share it with anyone who is assisting you in finding the right match. This will help you determine what dogs may or may not meet your expectations.
Expect more responsibility—and expenses
- Depending on age and energy level, your dog may require a lot of exercise. Terriers are typically high-energy dogs, so you should be prepared to provide the daily exercise they require.
- Your dog will require your time, patience, love, and consistency. Bringing a dog into your home is a lifelong commitment, so consider what goals and plans you have in the next 10-15 years. Do you want to move? Vacation? Have children? These are all considerations as you choose a dog to adopt into your family. Pick a dog that matches your present and future lifestyle.
- Dogs love a routine, and can act out when they are not able to predict the day's events. You must be able to provide stability in your dog's life.
- They aren't cheap! Is a dog factored into your monthly budget?
- They require training, regardless of age, and positive reinforcement is EXTREMELY important when training any breed of dog. Do you have the training knowledge it takes?
- Dogs need a premium diet with high nutritional value.
- Dogs need to visit the vet at least once a year for a check-up.
- Terriers can often have seasonal and/or food allergies that can be expensive to treat.
- They need extra tough toys and chew treats, since these dogs are powerful chewers. They must also be watched with their toys and treats to ensure they don't ingest solid objects that must be removed surgically.
Be prepared for prejudice and work to change hearts and minds!
As a Pit Bull Terrier guardian, you will be constantly required to defend your choice of pet. You will have friends, family members, or co-workers who may fear your dog. Some people will cross to the other side of the street as you walk your dog. Some will refuse to let their children play at your house. Your only defense is a well-trained, well-socialized pet that demonstrates how wonderful these dogs can be.