Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

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Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby mstrk » Mon Feb 13, 2012 11:14 pm

I got a call at work and it was my wife crying saying our two pit bulls attacked our beautiful blonde shepard/lab/chow mix, Rosa, and that Rosa wasn't doing well.

Rosa died from her injuries. She suffered a horrible, violent and painful death in front of my Wife as the two pit bulls were literally tearing her apart. One pit bull ripped off Rosa's front arm.

Our two pit bulls are usually incredibly sweet and funny and silly and smart and amazing. I don't understand why this would happen. The dogs have been living together for almost 2 years.

Toby is the male pit bull and he attacked Rosa and then our other pit bill, Blu, joined right in. We have a 4th dog who is a mutt mix, who didn't join in the fight at all and barked and barked and even nipped at Toby's tail and back leg to try to stop the fight.

There was no pulling these 2 pit bulls apart from Rosa as they were dragging her, covered in blood, to the porch to kill her. My Wife came close to fainting from all the effort to stop the fight. She lifted the fighting dogs' legs, poured water on them and even broke furniture over them to stop the fight. Neighbors rushed into our house and they were unable to pull the dogs apart.

The dog that they killed was Rosa, and she was an amazingly intelligent and introspective thinking dog who was very sweet and sensitive and wise and also loving to me and my Wife. I don't understand it still.

My main question is: should we euthanize both pit bulls?
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby Curly_07 » Mon Feb 13, 2012 11:32 pm

No. The dogs were doing what dogs do. It's pretty normal for terrier dogs to be like this when not managed properly. The dogs shouldn't have to pay with their lives because of humans irresponsibility. No 2 dogs should ever be left together unsupervised, even for a moment. If only your wife was there, she should only have out what she can handle at a time. You should also invest in a breakstick and learn how to use it. Please read around the forum and educate yourself on terrier breeds, and dogs in general.

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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby AllisonPitbullLvr » Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:35 am

:goodpost:

RIP Rosa.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby jamielvsaustin » Tue Feb 14, 2012 8:28 am

Typically in a situation like that I would say no that the dogs should not be put down. But if you and your wife are going to resent them or be afraid of them, then keeping them may not be in your best interest....that doesn't necessarily mean put them down, but perhaps you should consider your options.

What is your set up at home with the three remaining dogs? When you guys leave the house what do you do with the dogs?

Unfortunately Pit Bulls were breed to fight, and for so long that they still have it in them to do so...granted any animal/dog can fight but with these guys you simply can not fault them for it. Would you fault a herding dog for herding? What about a retriever retrieving? Please know that just because they fought with another dog does not automatically make them a risk for being that way towards people. DA (dog aggression, sometimes AA-animal aggression) and HA (human aggression) are totally totally different things.

I'm sorry that your wife had to witness that, and I'm sorry that Rosa is gone. Good luck to you guys in your decision making process.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby Ilovethepits » Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:47 am

I hope you will read, read, read here about multiple dogs, crate and rotate, etc. and then after you have solid knowledge make a decision about what to do with Toby and Blu.

My deepest condolences to you and your wife on such a tragic loss of your dear Rosa. RIP Rosa.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby spammie » Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:17 am

I'm sorry for your loss. However, now is the time to get your dog ownership/managements skills up to par. Read all you can on multiple dog homes, crate and rotate, and breed traits. For right now, keep the dogs separated and safe. WHere are you located?
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby lilangel » Tue Feb 14, 2012 11:10 am

That is indeed a horrible and tragic turn of events. Not to rub salt into your wounds but as others have said, this happened because of human error. Why, may I ask, are you considering euthanasia? Is it because you are angry with the dogs involved? Because you are concerned for your, your wife's other people's safety? Because you are concerned about your other dog? If it is any of those reasons then they are either as yet unfounded (in the case of your dogs biting people,) or can be addressed relatively easily through proper management and focused education (to prevent your dogs from fighting with each other in the future.)

The choice, in the end, is yours to make. You probably will not get support in favor of euthanasia here, not because we as a community are opposed to euthanasia, but because from what you have described, this happened as a result of human error. The fight could have been stopped once it started but you guys were simply not prepared. It could have been any powerful breed of dog in this situation and the outcome might have been different, it might have been the same. Unfortunately, Pit Bulls tend to be adept fighters and some have been selectively bred to excel at fighting each other for centuries. Aggression towards other dogs tends to be part of the trade off we accept in exchange for dogs being wonderful in pretty much all other respects. I would suggest that you keep your dogs all separated until you decide what to do and until you can work out a management plan. We will be happy to assist you in doing this if you have noone in your area who can help. It would be best if you contacted a knowledgeable behavior professional in your area who can come to your home and help you get through this.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby mstrk » Wed Feb 15, 2012 4:49 am

I only appreciate the comments posted that were sensitive, the comments that were intelligent opinions/advice and I really deeply appreciate the condolences for Rosa, who is the victim here and the real reality of this story. Thank you.

I do not appreciate the "human error" comments. My wife was home alone and came home with food and Toby didn't like the way Rosa growled and he pounced on her and didn't stop. As Toby was ripping at Rosa, Rosa was frightened to death and screaming out loud in pain and made a horrible sound as you can imagine. After a couple of minutes, our other pit bull, Blu unexpectedly joined in. Blu just decided to join in and assist Toby in ripping Rosa apart. Blu successfully killed Rosa's front arm. The arm was dead before Rosa was. We drove Rosa to two hospitals and the second hospital explained the many internal traumas and injuries Rosa had. (contusions in her lungs, internal bleeding, air under her skin, multiple deep neck cuts, parts of her face torn off) She looked horrible and was covered in blood and her front arm was dangling ready to fall off.

In addition, Rosa was a large sweet docile shepard/lab mix that didn't fight back at all as Toby was killing her. She was too much in shock to do anything. She was a very smart and docile soul that wouldn't fight like that. Plus, physically, she was big and slow moving, so she wasn't built to fight. She wasn't overweight, just a big dog.

So, what can my wife do by herself home alone as she is watching her babies murder their sister in front of her eyes? Own a break stick? Yes, too bad she didn't have one. But we have never had a problem with our dogs like that. My Wife is a Vet Tech and it is not fair to assume people who are posting on this board are inexperienced. My wife was also a former public advocate for pit bills and she even had a group that met up to overturn the unfair laws against pit bulls.

Now, not to say anything bad against pit bulls, I think the fact here is Toby has a mental problem. All of our dogs are rescue dogs and you don't know how many levels of inbreeding Toby possibly had to make his brain messed up like that.

I am very disturbed by the first poster "Curly_07" who basically blamed my Wife in a cold way and who stated "no two dogs should be left alone" Really? Um, they were not even left alone. All 4 dogs were in the kitchen waiting to be fed, just like every normal day. So you are wrong, Curly_07 and you are an insensitive pig head. Keep your deranged, warped and hurtful opinions to your own self where they can live comfortably because they don't belong out here in the open and they are not welcome by me or anyone that I love.

Just so you know what the professionals said, two separate veterinarians advised us to put Toby down after meeting him. This is the opinion of professionals that met him and told us that based on what Toby did to Rosa, Toby will kill another dog if he is put in any situation like that again. They also said in their years of experience this incident is at the top of the most violent and bizarre. Who are any of you to state your opinion so bluntly as if you know our situation, our dogs, or our lives? Shame on you. An innocent beautiful smart and loving dog died a very violent and traumatic and intensely painful death and some of you are talking out of your pompous behind to two people who are hurting dearly for their dogs and are going through a horrible emotional time. Shame on you.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby spammie » Wed Feb 15, 2012 6:18 am

Please learn all you can on dogs and breed traits.
mstrk wrote: All 4 dogs were in the kitchen waiting to be fed, just like every normal day.

This act would cause a fight at my house. While I fear Toby has already been euthanised, please stick around and learn from those with experience. I learned how to be a responsible owner here. Let me know if you'd like to stay.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby buckaroo » Wed Feb 15, 2012 7:07 am

It's an emotional time for you guys but at some point you have to realize the situation you put the 4 dogs in was not safe, otherwise you wouldn't have a dead dog on your hands. Rosa started the fight and Toby and Blu finished it- which is typical for Pit Bulls.

If you didn't suspect 'mental problems' in Toby before this happened, it is very likely there is nothing psychologically wrong with him. The actions you're describing aren't that out of line with typical Pit Bull and even regular dog behavior. If you did suspect some sort of mental imbalance before this happened, then Toby definitely shouldn't have been out, free among the other dogs. Either way you look at it, the choices made by the humans in this situation could have been better and hopefully you will take this situation and learn from it instead of just blaming Toby (and maybe Blu as well) and his poor breeding.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby GoingPostal » Wed Feb 15, 2012 7:48 am

mstrk wrote:I do not appreciate the "human error" comments.


I'm sorry this happened and for your loss, I'm sure that was extremely difficult for your wife, but the reality is this was a preventable thing and had there been a breakstick and knowledge of how to use one, your wife likely could have broken up the fight. Stories like this are not exactly uncommon because people acquire dogs and don't do research into what they have. Pit bulls were bred to fight other dogs, even if they've never done it in the past, it usually starts with an avoidable trigger such as food or toys like in your case. Hindsight is 20/20 but what should have happened was putting the other two dogs away so they can't join in, and leashing the attacker to something so you can use a breakstick to get him off the other dog. Although most people just don't allow their multiple dogs around food like that for this reason. I haven't heard why you think Toby is mentally unstable, but dog aggression and wanting to fight is not unusual behavior for this breed and vets who aren't experienced with bully breeds probably don't grasp that, a lot of people don't, they think dog aggression =unstable or dog who will attack people and that's not the case, anymore than a squirrel or cat killing dog is going to attack people. They are just dogs, doing what humans created them to do.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby jamielvsaustin » Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:50 am

mstrk wrote:But we have never had a problem with our dogs like that.

This really stands out to me...this is how it always goes. It is our jobs as their owners to never put them in a situation where a problem could arise. Feeding four dogs at once....if every little aspect of that situation isn't under control you can have a very bad incident.



My Wife is a Vet Tech and it is not fair to assume people who are posting on this board are inexperienced. My wife was also a former public advocate for pit bills and she even had a group that met up to overturn the unfair laws against pit bulls.

Now, not to say anything bad against pit bulls, I think the fact here is Toby has a mental problem. All of our dogs are rescue dogs and you don't know how many levels of inbreeding Toby possibly had to make his brain messed up like that.

You're absolutely right, it isn't fair of us to assume the people that are (new to) posting here are inexperienced. But from my experience, and I'm sure others can attest to this, that's the most common thing that happens. People come here looking for help because they're inexperienced...there are a few that just want other PB people to talk to-but they're not the ones posting a thread called should we euth our dogs. I think it's unfair for you to be mad at us for judging you on the information you provided. If you wanted us to know you were more experienced with these dogs-you could have said so (in any number of ways).

I agree with the other poster who said it's unfair to suddenly think Toby has a mental problem...did you guys feel this way before? What were the other signs? Because attacking another dog (especially over a resource) isn't grounds for mental instability.


I am very disturbed by the first poster "Curly_07" who basically blamed my Wife in a cold way and who stated "no two dogs should be left alone" Really? Um, they were not even left alone. All 4 dogs were in the kitchen waiting to be fed, just like every normal day. So you are wrong, Curly_07 and you are an insensitive pig head.

I believe Curly also said that your wife should have only had out the number of dogs she could have handled. Calling Curly insensitive is one thing, but pig head is another...be careful with the name calling, that doesn't usually fly around here.

Personally for me I don't give a rat’s ass about break sticks. We don't own any in our house. I'm not going to have 50 break sticks laying around my house in the off chance my dogs get into it (and they have gotten into it). Because chances are if they do, the last thing I'm going to be looking for is a break stick to stop the fight. I know a lot of people here advocate for them but I think they just add fuel to the "locking jaw" fire . I think in the future if you or your wife are ever there when a dog fight happens the dogs that are not fighting should be separated from those that are. And then the fighting dogs should be separated. Some people advocate keeping collars on the dogs so that if they do fight the aggressor's collar can be used to choke the dog into stopping. You guys need to decide what works best for you.



Just so you know what the professionals said, two separate veterinarians advised us to put Toby down after meeting him. This is the opinion of professionals that met him and told us that based on what Toby did to Rosa, Toby will kill another dog if he is put in any situation like that again. They also said in their years of experience this incident is at the top of the most violent and bizarre.

I'm curious to know how "professional" these people really are. Were they vets? Typically vets are versed in medicine, but not necessarily behavioral issues. Were they trainers? What were their qualifications? Where they behaviorists? Were they certified? Where did you find them? Not questions I'm asking you to answer here, but perhaps something to consider when relying so heavily on their suggestions. Why compound the issue by killing another dog?

Who are any of you to state your opinion so bluntly as if you know our situation, our dogs, or our lives?

Well...we're the people you asked on an internet forum (clearly of dog lovers) if you should euthanize your dog. I completely understand the emotional turmoil you're going through...okay maybe not completely because I haven't experienced it, but I can see how this would be emotionally effed up...but you asked for advice, it can only be given based on our personal experiences and the information you provide. I know a couple of people here can come off rude and a little rough around the edges-myself included...but a couple things come to mind 1) we're pretty passionate about these dogs and obviously feel very strongly about how they're handled and who handles them, 2) we see a lot of "owners" who don't know their ass from their elbow and it frightens us in regards to the future of this breed, and lastly 3) when owning one of these dogs you have to have thick skin. If you think someone saying Rosa's death is your fault (because it could have been prevented) is harsh, then maybe PB's aren't the right dog for you....I once had a lady tell me the only way she'd pet my dog was if she had a .38 in the other hand...and there was no reason for it, my dog wasn't misbehaving, I wasn't being rude to her, she just said it because of the way my dog looked.

Again, I'm really sorry Rosa is gone...and I can't imagine what your wife went through witnessing that, but even from bad situations can come knowledge. Please learn from this. Don't malign a breed because of it, or a specific dog (or two even). The dogs were just doing what dogs do. PBs were bred to fight, you as an owner have to eliminate all possibilities for that to happen.

As an a side, I will say that I agree with the professionals in regards to-if Toby is given the chance he could harm or kill another dog/animal. As I have said, and others, many times, you have to prevent that from happening. I'm not saying every encounter Toby has with another dog is going to end in death, but we always have to remember that they're animals.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby mypuppyJack » Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:43 pm

So sorry that you lost a beloved pet. You and your wife must be devastated! I'm sorry you feel the comments on here were harsh but unfortunately even if you and your wife have dog experience, managing a multi-dog, multi-bully home requires extra vigilance.
I've learned so much on here about being a more responsible dog owner. These wonderful people are passionate, knowledgeable and have a wealth of experience.
I have 2 pit mixes and they are fed dinner and treats separately. Every moment of play is carefully monitored because when they get amped up they can get snarky. 99.9999% of the time they co-exist without incidents. I'm so thankful for this forum so that I know how to prevent problems.

Only you can decide what's best for your family from here, but please stay and read and learn.
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby Imanis_mommi » Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:47 pm

jamielvsaustin wrote:
mstrk wrote:But we have never had a problem with our dogs like that.

This really stands out to me...this is how it always goes. It is our jobs as their owners to never put them in a situation where a problem could arise. Feeding four dogs at once....if every little aspect of that situation isn't under control you can have a very bad incident.



My Wife is a Vet Tech and it is not fair to assume people who are posting on this board are inexperienced. My wife was also a former public advocate for pit bills and she even had a group that met up to overturn the unfair laws against pit bulls.

Now, not to say anything bad against pit bulls, I think the fact here is Toby has a mental problem. All of our dogs are rescue dogs and you don't know how many levels of inbreeding Toby possibly had to make his brain messed up like that.

You're absolutely right, it isn't fair of us to assume the people that are (new to) posting here are inexperienced. But from my experience, and I'm sure others can attest to this, that's the most common thing that happens. People come here looking for help because they're inexperienced...there are a few that just want other PB people to talk to-but they're not the ones posting a thread called should we euth our dogs. I think it's unfair for you to be mad at us for judging you on the information you provided. If you wanted us to know you were more experienced with these dogs-you could have said so (in any number of ways).

I agree with the other poster who said it's unfair to suddenly think Toby has a mental problem...did you guys feel this way before? What were the other signs? Because attacking another dog (especially over a resource) isn't grounds for mental instability.


I am very disturbed by the first poster "Curly_07" who basically blamed my Wife in a cold way and who stated "no two dogs should be left alone" Really? Um, they were not even left alone. All 4 dogs were in the kitchen waiting to be fed, just like every normal day. So you are wrong, Curly_07 and you are an insensitive pig head.

I believe Curly also said that your wife should have only had out the number of dogs she could have handled. Calling Curly insensitive is one thing, but pig head is another...be careful with the name calling, that doesn't usually fly around here.

Personally for me I don't give a rat’s ass about break sticks. We don't own any in our house. I'm not going to have 50 break sticks laying around my house in the off chance my dogs get into it (and they have gotten into it). Because chances are if they do, the last thing I'm going to be looking for is a break stick to stop the fight. I know a lot of people here advocate for them but I think they just add fuel to the "locking jaw" fire . I think in the future if you or your wife are ever there when a dog fight happens the dogs that are not fighting should be separated from those that are. And then the fighting dogs should be separated. Some people advocate keeping collars on the dogs so that if they do fight the aggressor's collar can be used to choke the dog into stopping. You guys need to decide what works best for you.



Just so you know what the professionals said, two separate veterinarians advised us to put Toby down after meeting him. This is the opinion of professionals that met him and told us that based on what Toby did to Rosa, Toby will kill another dog if he is put in any situation like that again. They also said in their years of experience this incident is at the top of the most violent and bizarre.

I'm curious to know how "professional" these people really are. Were they vets? Typically vets are versed in medicine, but not necessarily behavioral issues. Were they trainers? What were their qualifications? Where they behaviorists? Were they certified? Where did you find them? Not questions I'm asking you to answer here, but perhaps something to consider when relying so heavily on their suggestions. Why compound the issue by killing another dog?

Who are any of you to state your opinion so bluntly as if you know our situation, our dogs, or our lives?

Well...we're the people you asked on an internet forum (clearly of dog lovers) if you should euthanize your dog. I completely understand the emotional turmoil you're going through...okay maybe not completely because I haven't experienced it, but I can see how this would be emotionally effed up...but you asked for advice, it can only be given based on our personal experiences and the information you provide. I know a couple of people here can come off rude and a little rough around the edges-myself included...but a couple things come to mind 1) we're pretty passionate about these dogs and obviously feel very strongly about how they're handled and who handles them, 2) we see a lot of "owners" who don't know their ass from their elbow and it frightens us in regards to the future of this breed, and lastly 3) when owning one of these dogs you have to have thick skin. If you think someone saying Rosa's death is your fault (because it could have been prevented) is harsh, then maybe PB's aren't the right dog for you....I once had a lady tell me the only way she'd pet my dog was if she had a .38 in the other hand...and there was no reason for it, my dog wasn't misbehaving, I wasn't being rude to her, she just said it because of the way my dog looked.

Again, I'm really sorry Rosa is gone...and I can't imagine what your wife went through witnessing that, but even from bad situations can come knowledge. Please learn from this. Don't malign a breed because of it, or a specific dog (or two even). The dogs were just doing what dogs do. PBs were bred to fight, you as an owner have to eliminate all possibilities for that to happen.

As an a side, I will say that I agree with the professionals in regards to-if Toby is given the chance he could harm or kill another dog/animal. As I have said, and others, many times, you have to prevent that from happening. I'm not saying every encounter Toby has with another dog is going to end in death, but we always have to remember that they're animals.

:goodpost:
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Re: Should we euthanize our pit bulls?

Postby Adrianne » Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:57 pm

mstrk wrote: Who are any of you to state your opinion so bluntly as if you know our situation, our dogs, or our lives? Shame on you.


I'm very sorry for your loss but in all fairness you came here and asked for the opinions of the forum. I am sorry they didn't match what you were looking for.

I do hope you stick around and gain some helpful information.

That really must be a dreadful experience to go though, I hope whatever you do you find some peace in time.
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