Your mother probably told you not to make assumptions, which make an a** out of you and me. Sadly, this sage advice isn’t always followed in the adult world, leading people to unfairly stereotype races, genders, religions, and–in the case of pit bulls–an entire dog breed.
This is a shame for multiple reasons, starting with the fact that pit bulls simply don’t deserve this bad rap. Pit bulls were considered so loving, protective, and loyal that housewives left their “nanny dogs” in charge of the babies while they ran to the store. Pit bulls were even declared “America’s Dogs” by a nation hoping to emulate the breed’s plucky, faithful, and hardworking spirit during the wars.
Sadly, the widespread myth that pit bulls are dangerous dogs — a misconception fueled by bad actors who used pit bulls in dog fighting — has led to tragic real-world applications. Now pit bulls are abandoned, abused, and euthanized more frequently than other dogs, while shelters remain overflowing with this misunderstood breed. When you hear stories about dogs who’ve been overlooked in shelters for years, that dog is probably a pit bull, because rampant breed discrimination — in addition to leaving shelters crowded with pit bulls — also leaves these shelter pups waiting three times longer than other breeds to get adopted.
Founded in 2007, National Pit Bull Awareness Day — which will be celebrated on Saturday, October 23, this year — is an opportunity to reset the narrative by spreading the word about all the ways pit bulls actually rock.
You can help by countering breed discrimination on social media, donating or volunteering at your local shelter (which is probably crowded with pit bulls), volunteering to foster or adopting a pit bull, or by posting about how your pit bull has changed your life. You can also get started right now, because the entire month of October is National Pit Bull Awareness Month.
In the meantime, check out our favorite pit bull stories from over the years, all of which prove that pit bulls are in fact loving, loyal, and often hilarious dogs. How are you celebrating National Pit Bull Awareness Day on October 23?
10 Reasons Why Pit Bulls Rock
1. Pit Bulls Are Loving
Check out this cute video of an affectionate pit bull, Pig, whining until her dog dad gives her some kisses
2. Pit Bulls Are Loyal
Pit bulls would do anything for their humans, as this pit bull demonstrated when he risked his life to save his 7-year-old human brother from a deadly snake.
3.Pit Bulls Are Friendly
These adorable pajamas were created by woman who hoped to end pit bull stigma by showing off the breed’s fun and playful side.
4. Pit Bulls Are Kind
When a pit bull learned a stray cat had given birth inside his doghouse, he not only gave up his lodgings — he stood guard outside to protect the cat family.
5. Pit Bulls Are Heroes
Did you know America’s WW1 hero and first military dog, Sargent Stubby, was a rescued pit bull?
5. Pit Bulls Pay It Forward
Check out this sweet story of a pit bull who loves helping his owner foster puppies in need.
6. Pit Bulls Are Great Parents
We love this sweet story about a stray mama pit bull who led rescuers to save her hungry pups.
7. Pit Bulls Are Brave
After being saved from a fire, this rescued pit bull become a fire dog trained to save other pets and people crisis.
8. Pit Bulls Make Excellent Babysitters
This stray pit bull aka nanny dog didn’t hesitate to keep this toddler safe when he found the child wandering outside all alone.
9. Pit Bulls Are Smart
Case in point: this quick-thinking Pit bull named Max saved a teenage girl from falling off a 60-foot cliff.
10. Pit Bulls Are Hilarious
We love this video of a pit bull named Ginger dramatically “fainting” each time her owner tries clipping her nails.