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Postby magnum1984 » Sat Feb 19, 2005 9:44 pm

My name is Adam. I don't own a pit bull, but in the next couple weeks I am planning on getting a dog. I am sure I will have lots of questions about the pit bull breed. Thanks in advance. :)
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Postby sahara311 » Sat Feb 19, 2005 9:54 pm

Hi, Adam!! Are you planning on getting a Pit Bull? It'll change your life forever!!!! Ask away, I am sure between all of us, we can answer any q: that you have!
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Postby magnum1984 » Sat Feb 19, 2005 10:08 pm

Hi Sara. Thanks for responding! Yes, I am looking into adopting a pit bull. They look so cute, lol. I just want to make sure I know what I am getting into. I have had dogs in my family my whole life, and I have never met a breed of dog I did not like.
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Postby magnum1984 » Sat Feb 19, 2005 10:36 pm

I have been reading many of the posts here and I have some questions, maybe everyone here can help me get a better idea of what owning a pit bull is like.

First, while reading one of the FAQ's I saw the following: "Pit bulls make sucky guard dogs. True pit bulls have been bred to not to attack humans. A person who is educated about the pit bull can easily break in to someone's home and steal all the valuables including the pit bull! It has been known that pit bull breeders buy dogs of other breeds: German Shepherds, Rottweilers, and other naturally protective dogs to guard their pit bull kennels.". Is this right? I don't want a guard dog, but I would like a dog that will stand its ground if someone breaks in. Do pit bulls bark? Or are they quiet?

Second, I have new carpet in the house, and I was reading that pit bulls love to chew and dig. Is this something that is in all pit bulls, or would a good chew toy be sufficent to stop that behavior?

Third, and this kinda contridicts #1, but if I have a pit bull and want friends over, how can you teach the dog to leave guests alone. I don't want to worry about the dog if I step out of the room.

Last, I hike in the summer, and I hike often. Are pit bulls a breed that can take a 4 or 5 hour day hike in the summer heat? Also, where I live it gets very cold in the winter, so I don't go out very often. Can a pit bull be happy in both extremes, with lots of hiking and outdoor activities in the summer, and being mostly indoors in the winter?

Thanks to all who help!
magnum1984
 

Postby magnum1984 » Sat Feb 19, 2005 11:23 pm

One other question, I can't post in the other forums. How can new members post elsewhere?
magnum1984
 

Postby ShadowWolf » Sat Feb 19, 2005 11:31 pm

You'll be able to post soon on other forums. You've gotta wait for one of the moderators.

I hike also and our APBT goes with us when we do. She carries her own water in a pack and take lots of breaks for her. Your dog should be able to do this and you must get your pup's endurance up. I wouldn't suggest it for a while, though.

We've got a fully carpeted house and worked on the basics about not destroying the house. When we couldn't watch her, she was in her kennel or on a leash to make sure she stayed out of trouble.

And as for behaving with guests, that's all basic obedience which all dogs truly need - especially bully breeds.

Welcome to the board, by the way! Everyone here is very helpful and will be sure to steer you in the right direction.
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Postby Wednesday » Sun Feb 20, 2005 1:27 am

Welcome!!

It is true that pits are not great at being guard dogs. I have one that barks when someone knocks on the door, and the other that does when she feels like it. We had an incident a few years ago where someone came into our house after we had forgotten to lock the door. We were sleeping and Brandy just growled. The person walked through our livingroom, and tried to walk up the stairs. Brandy blocked him on the stairs and growled. She wouldn't budge. The guy ended up begging us to "call" our dog off. She is the biggest suck in the world so we were surprised that she acted this way. My other dog, Koya would have barked once or twice and then probably would have tried to get the guy to play with her. lol

As for climate, I live in Ontario (Canada) where it can be extermely hot in the summer, and extermely cold in the winter. Brandy does well in both. She will lay out in the sun all day, and would probably prefer to be outdoors all of the time (even in a blizzard). My last dog, Stella, was awful in the heat. She fainted once on a walk on a hot day so we had to limit her activities on summer days. She was fine with the cold though. My newest dog shivers like crazy if it is even mildly cold out. .We have yet to see how she will do in the summer because we just got her. Most dogs should be okay if you provide them with a very nice coat in the winter and booties, and lots of water and rest in the summer.

Where were you planning on getting your dog? If you are worried about carpets, do not get a puppy. Even when they are a little older, they can chew through pretty much everything. I would look into getting an older dog (1-2 years of age) through a rescue. That way you know what you are getting, and you get the bonus of saving a dog's life :thumbsup:

Anyways, stick around and ask every question you can think of. I am sure people would be more than glad to help you out.
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Postby magnum1984 » Sun Feb 20, 2005 1:58 am

Thanks for all the wonderful responses!!

I had no idea that pit bulls are bad watch dogs. My last dog was a tiny thing, he lived to 15 years of age, and he would challenge anyone that tried to enter the back of the house. If you came in the front door, he had no issues, but try the back door and unless you were family he would bark and bark and bark. LOL.

I have wanted to get a second dog while my last one was alive, but he was very old and set in his ways and I did not think he would take a second dog too well. Which makes me ask a second question. Most websites say that pit bulls do best as the only dog in the house. Is that true? Looking at pictures people have posted, I noticed that many people have multiple dogs. Does it matter if the second breed is different?

Oh, I am planning on getting a dog that is at least a 2 years old. I don't want a puppy for many reasons, not the least of which is I would feel very guilty leaving it at home while I went to work. That is one of the reasons I was thinking about having 2 dogs, I figure they can keep each other company when I am not home. Or am I making the mistake of assigning human thinking to dogs??

One last question about pit bulls gaurding the house- Are you saying that a pit bull would let someone kick in a door and walk out with the TV?
magnum1984
 

Postby magnum1984 » Sun Feb 20, 2005 2:00 am

ShadowWolf wrote:I hike also and our APBT goes with us when we do. She carries her own water in a pack and take lots of breaks for her.


lol. I have never seen a water pack for a dog. I figured I would have to put a water dish in my backpack and when we stopped, fill it up with bottled water.
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Postby Wednesday » Sun Feb 20, 2005 2:48 am

I think most dogs would respond to someone kicking in the door. I think that most people would say that their pit would respond to that, but it is kind of hard to test. The good thing (and bad thing) about pits is they look intimidating. If someone is looking to break in to your house and see's your dog, they will probably chose another house. I know that when someone comes to my door at night (I will not answer it at night if I don't expect anyone and am alone) my one dog growls is such a way that it scares me!!

If you are looking to get more than one dog, you may get lucky and find a pair that have been raised together. If not, opposite sexes get along better than same-sex pairs. That being said, I have had two seperate pairs of females that were fine together, but I wouldn't suggest that to someone that isn't famiular with this breed. Dog aggressive is common and that is something that you have to be prepared for. Usually, that deals with strange dogs and not those in the same "family" but it can happen. Some people seperate their dogs when they are not around.

I would get one dog and bond with him/her before adding another. Two dogs (especially in the beginning can be a lot of work). I guess the best advice for adding another dog to one that you already have is don't expect them to get along right away, and if need be, be prepared to get keep them seperated at all times. I think that is less common, but you need to be ready for it just in case.

Where are you located? There are many rescue folks on this board, and I am sure they will all have a list of great dogs to pick from.
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Postby magnum1984 » Sun Feb 20, 2005 3:37 am

Hi Wednesday. I live in northern Illinois. I can say this much, after spending an hour looking at the pictures of pit bulls, I am in love. They look so cute and friendly. I have been giving alot of thought to how I would keep the dog at home while I worked. I see lots of people like the plastic or metal doggie crate. With all my other dogs I've ever had, if I had to leave the house I just blocked off the hallways and left him in the kitchen, figuring there is lots of space so the the dog won't feel confined, and the floor is easier to mop up if there is a mistake (it is the only room in the house that is not carpet). I normally put newspapes in one corner and there is not a problem. But if pit bulls are known for chewing threw stuff, and would try and escape from the room, then I guess a crate is a good idea.

How much does a pit bull eat? Are they pickey eaters? My last dog did not like dog food, he only ate it as a last resort. I made the dumb mistake of sharing whatever I was eating with him. Once I went and filled his bowl with dry dog food. I then went to McDonalds and came back with some food. He started begging, and I did not give him any. I pointed at his food dish. He went to the dog bowl, grabbed the side with his teeth and flipped it over, then came back to me and begged for my McDonalds. With my next dog, I am going to resist the urge to give them table food.
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Postby Boo439 » Sun Feb 20, 2005 9:17 am

Welcome to the board!
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Postby Wednesday » Sun Feb 20, 2005 11:18 am

Well, since you are so close to the Ontario border, you may want to consider adopting one of the Ontario pits who are all now facing death-row due to the pending BSL in our area. I know of a great pit named Casper who has been named "the perfect dog" by shelter staff and transport could be arranged. If not, I am sure there are a ton in your area that also need the help.

As for eating, a 50-60lbs pit will eat 2-3 cups a day of good food, and 3-4 cups of grocery store food. I would definatly lean towards the better food as they last longer (don't have to feed as much) and if you plan on hiking with your dog, it will need the extra protein and nutrition. You should look into pet food stores in your area to see if any carry Canidae, Wellness or Timberwolf Elk. These foods seem expensive until you realize that they last twice as long as the grocery store brands so you actually end up saving a little money.

The dog you get may not be a chewer at all and may be fine with being left in the kitchen if it has a nice bed and some toys to play with. Unfortunatley, there is only one way to find out. Both of my dogs are fine in the house and have had no chewing incidents. Investing in a large crate is a good idea anyways as it gives the dog it's own space, and many dogs prefer to go in there with their treats and toys.

I hope some of this helps. I would post in the rescue section stating what you are looking for. You will have a ton of dogs to choose from.
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Postby Motodiva » Sun Feb 20, 2005 11:44 am

It is very hard to answer these questions because you can be sure there are exceptions to the rule. Pitbulls are not good gaurd dogs, but every once in a while, one is. They are largely happier indoors, but soem like it outside. Most enjoy chewing and digging, but at our house, they are resricted to toys and that seems to work. This doesn't mean that nothing has been destroyed. It's just quite rare.

I guess my point is that you seem to have a list a things that are very important to you. THat is great. Now you can start searching some rescues. The best thing about rescues is the dogs are in foster homes and can answer these questions about every dog.

Sounds like you want a dog that is 1-2 years old, sex doesn't matter, has some training or will train easily, doesn't destroy and dig, doesn't have major seperation anxiety, is very active and handles different weather well, is potty trained, and is not a picky eater. Cool! I'm not being sarcastic. It is much easier to help you find a dog when you know what you want. There are many rescues who can help you find the perfect dog!!!!!!!

My adult pit, who's about 45 pounds, eats 2 1/2 cups of high quality food every day. My dog, who loves people, would likely not like it if a door was kicked in, but someone walking in would just find someone to play with. Oh well.

As to getting two dogs, well... I have two. In some ways it's great, but they are NOT allowed to keep each other company when I'm not home. They must be seperated when not supervised. They are best buds, but you never know when one is grouchy and the other won't quit trying to get them to play. It can turn ugly fast. Same goes with feeding time. We are not talking about a torn up ear, so fight prevention is key. You can never be sure that they will do well you are not there. I was a little bummed, because now that we have two, they can't play with squeaky toys, which they both love. My female made it very clear she would kill my pup over it. I took it away immediately. Now she can't have a toy she loves very much. Unless he's not home, she will never see it again.

I love them both, but it has has some interesteing effects. First, my adult that was very tightly bonded with my husband and me, is now less attatched to us and more to the pup (they really are best buds). Second, we used to be able to throw the dog in the truck and go, but they can't both be left alone in the car, so now we can't take them unless they can get out with us everywhere on our list. Third, dealing with feeding time is a lot more work. I have not had any issues, but I'm sure it's because we have VERY strict rules about who eats where and what and in what order. Fourth, I ahve had to learn to read them both, because soemtimes, for no apparent reason, they don't wanna play and that has to be enforced. Fifth, someone has to be crated at night and when we're gone. For us it's easy, the pup is a pain so he goes in the crate. As they get older, I think rooms on the opposite end of the house will work. Neither likes to be confined, so I'm gonna have to figure something out to make them both happy.

I am so excited that you are looking for a pitbull to keep you warm at night and play with you and hike and all that cool stuff. Sounds like you are on the road to being a very responsible owner with all of the informed questions and research you are doing. Thank you for being so diligent about understanding what you are getting into! These are great dogs, but very high energy and sometimes (pretty common) prone to dog aggression. If you are prepared for this, you will do great.

If the list above sounds right, I will join you in the search for the perfect dog. If there's anything that's wrong or you want to add, let us know so we can helpyou find the perfect match. The more picky you are now, the happier you will be later! You are in a great position to find the perfect dog for you!

I didn't mean for this to be so long. Oops. I'm just so glad that you are doing your research I want to make sure you get the most info you can.

Welcome to the board!

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Postby magnum1984 » Sun Feb 20, 2005 3:26 pm

Hi Wednesday :)

Ontario would be a long drive for me, but I have always wanted to see Canada, toronto and montreal. LOL. I wonder if there would be any problem comming back in the USA with my new best friend? :)) Are there any pictures of Casper?
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