Dog attack left Richmond 9-year-old on crutches with 37 stitches

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) --Sabia Gentry is scarred for life, and not all the damage is physical.

She has 37 stitches on her legs that didn't result from a fall on the playground.

"It was just a whole lot of blood just dripping out of my leg," recalled Gentry.

The 9-year-old says a pit bull attacked her inside of a Richmond public housing unit.

"It didn't sniff me, it started attacking me and biting me on my leg," said Gentry.

She said she regularly goes to her next door neighbor’s apartment in Mosby court afterschool, and the dog is normally kept in a cage.

But on Monday, Sabia says a 16-year-old who lives in that apartment decided to let the animal loose.

"They said don't tell nobody just be quiet…be quiet. And I said my mother's going to find out that I got bit by a dog. And my Grandmother's going to be upset,” recalled Gentry.

She said the kids tried to treat the bites.

"They just started putting ice and bandages on my legs," said Gentry.

Sabia tells us she didn't get help until she reached her grandmother, Lisa Eggleston, by cell phone, and Eggleston called 911.

"I was very upset. And when I went to the steps and pulled up her pants. I hollered and screamed," said Eggleston.

Mike Wallace, a city spokesperson, told CBS 6, that an investigation is underway.

Wallace said the dog is being quarantined at the home because the incident was inside the apartment.  He stated that the dog has no other history of bite incidents or running loose away from the owner's property, and the dog is current on its rabies vaccinations.

However, according to the pet policy in the Richmond Redevelopment Housing Authority leasing agreement, prohibited animals include vicious ones – and the pitbull is listed as a breed that has a reputation for displaying vicious behavior.

 “Prohibited Animals: Animals or breeds of animals that are considered by RRHA to be vicious and/or intimidating will not be allowed. Some examples of animals that have a reputation of a vicious nature are: reptiles, Rottweiler, Doberman Pinscher, Pit Bull-type dog, German Shepherd, Chow, and/or any animal that displays vicious behavior. This determination will be made by a RRHA representative prior to the execution of this lease addendum. “

CBS 6 asked why the dog was allowed in that apartment, based on the lease agreement, but the rental office wouldn't comment. Instead they sent us to RRHA's main office on Chamberlayne Avenue.

RRHA sent a statement to CBS 6 that said if they determined that a pet may be a danger or threat to the safety and security of other persons, the pet must be immediately removed from the unit upon receipt of the notice from RRHA.

In the meantime, Eggleston wants the dog put down and her daughter and grand-daughter relocated someplace else.

"I'm praying to God that my daughter will be moved out of those apartments because my granddaughter is terrified to go back," said Eggleston.

"I'm too terrified to go back over there," said Gentry, who lives next door to where the incident happened.


  • Thomas McCartney

    18 People dead by dog attack in 2014
    Pit bull type dogs killed 16 of them.
    Eleven of the dead are children.

    Stars indicate people killed by a ‘family’ pit bull – ones that had
    been raised and cherished as an indoor pet, ‘never showed aggression
    before’, and knew the victim.

    Child fatalities by pit bull type dog (10)
    Kara E. Hartrich, 4 years old, Bloomington, Illinois. **
    Je’vaeh Maye, 2 years old, Temple Texas.
    Braelynn Rayne Coulter, 3 years old, High Point, North Carolina. **
    Kenneth Santillan, 13 years old, Patterson, N.J.
    Raymane Camari Robinson, 2 years old, Killeen, TX
    Mia Derouen, 4 years old, Houma, Louisiana
    Christopher Malone, 3 years old, Thornton, MS **
    John Harvard, 5 year old, Riverside, AL
    Demonta Collins, 13 years old, Augusta, Georgia
    he dashed into traffic as he was running from a pit bull attacking him and was hit by a car and was killed.
    Davon Jiggetts,17 years old, Riverdale, Georgia
    he dashed into traffic as he was running from a pit bull attacking him and was hit by a car as was the pit bull, both were killed.

    Adult fatalities by pit bull type (6):
    Christina Burleson, 43 years old, Houston, Texas.
    Klonda S. Richey, 57 years old, Dayton, Ohio.
    Nancy Newberry, 77 years old, Phoenix, AZ. **
    Dorothy Hamilton, 85 years old, Kaufman, TX **
    Petra Aguirre, 83 years old, San Antonio TX
    Betty Clark, 75 years old, San Antonio TX

    That’s 89% killed by attacking pit bull type dogs.
    Pit Bull type dogs are only about 6% of the entire dog population.

    Summer Sears, 4 years old, Tallassee, AL by Husky/German Shepard Cross

    89-year-old Annabell Martin, Corona, CA. by her grandson’s three Rottweilers.**
    33 People dead by dog attack in 2013.
    Pit bull type dogs killed thirty of them. sixteen of the twenty-nine dead are children.
    Stars indicate people killed by a ‘family’ pit bull – ones that had been raised and cherished as an indoor pet, ‘never showed aggression before’, and knew the victim.

    Child fatalities by pit bull type dog (16):
    Christian Gormanous – 4 yrs old Montgomery County, TX
    Isaiah Aguilar – 2 yrs old Sabinal, TX
    Ryan Maxwell – 7 yrs old ** Galesburg, IL.
    Dax Borchardt – 14 mos old ** Walworth, WI.
    Monica Laminack – 21 mos old ** Ellabelle, GA.
    Tyler Jett – 7 yrs old Callaway, FL.
    Jordyn Arndt – 4 yrs old ** Prairie City, IA.
    Beau Rutledge – 2 yrs old ** Fulton County, GA.
    Ayden Evans- 5 yrs old ** Jessieville, AR.
    Nephi Selu – 6 yrs old ** Union City, CA.
    Arianna Jolee Merrbach – 5 yrs old Effingham, SC.
    Daniel (surname as yet not revealed) – 2 yrs old (Gilbert, Arizona) **
    Samuel Eli Zamudio – 2 yrs old** Colton, CA
    Jordan Ryan– 5 yrs old Baker city, Oregon
    Levi Watson-Bradford-4 years old** White County, Arkansas
    Jah’niyah White – 2 years old ** Chicago, Ill

    Adult fatalities by pit bull type (13):
    Betty Todd – 65 yrs old ** Hodges, SC
    Elsie Grace – 91 yrs old ** Hemet, CA
    Claudia Gallardo – 38 yrs old Stockton, CA.
    Pamela Devitt – 63 yrs old Littlerock, CA.
    Carlton Freeman – 80 yrs old Harleyville, SC.
    Linda Oliver – 63 yrs old Dayton, TX.
    James Harding – 62 yrs old -Baltimore, MD
    chased into traffic by two attacking pit bulls
    Juan Campos – 96 yrs old Katy, Texas.
    Terry Douglass 56 years old. **Baltimore, MD
    Katherine Atkins-25 years old ** Kernersville, NC
    Nga Woodhead-65 years old Spanaway, WA.
    Joan Kappen, 75 years old Hot Springs Ark
    Michal Nelson, 41 years old Valencia County, New Mexico **

    (1 non-pit type killing) [Rachel Honabarger – 35 yrs old – mauled to death by her own GSD mix] Coshocton, OH.

    (1 husky-mix killing, unknown if the other half of the dog was pit bull) [Jordan Lee Reed – 5 yrs old] Kotzebue, AK

    (1 Shiba Inu killing) Mia Gibson – age 3 months, of Gibson, OH – mauled to death by family Shiba Inu.

    Three of the pit bull type dogs were BULL mastiffs, ie 40% pit-fighting bulldog.

    If 27 of 33 dead were killed by pit bull attack, that’s 82% dead by pit attack, 9% dead by ‘molosser’, 3% by some kind of GSD mix, 3% by a husky + possibly pit mix, 3% by Shiba Inu.

    If you count the pit-mix mastiffs as pit bull types, that’s 91% killed by attacking pit bull types. Pit types are only about 6% of the entire dog population.

    The man who ran into traffic kept pit bulls himself. He knew perfectly well what the two stranger pit bulls that were chasing him would do if they caught him, so he preferred to risk a swift death by oncoming car.

    534 maimed by pit type dogs 2013 (as of November.28).

    • athynz

      How about posting stats from Doberman Pincher attacks, German Sheppard attacks, and other so-called vicious breeds? I find it amusing that people said the same things about Dobermans in the 1970s and yet my dad raised them when i was growing up and all of us somehow managed to not only survive but thrive in a house with no less than 3 of those “killer” dogs. Why is it that you people cannot accept the fact that it’s not the breed of dog but how the dog is trained?

  • Thomas McCartney

    Springfield, MO

    In April 2008, the Springfield-Greene County Health Department released data to a local TV station – following the City of Springfield’s adoption of a 2006 pit bull ban:

    “The Springfield-Greene County Health Department reports that dog bites and vicious dog complaints are declining since the implementation of the Pit Bull Ordinance in the City of Springfield two years ago. In 2005 the health department fielded 18 vicious dog complaints, but only eight in 2007. Bites were down from 102 in 2005 to 87 in 2007.”

    “The ordinance, which requires pit bull owners to register their dogs annually, has also resulted in fewer pit bull dogs being impounded at the Springfield Animal Shelter.

    In 2005 there were 502 pit bull and pit bull mixes impounded, compared to only 252 in 2007.

    According to statistics taken from the Springfield-Greene County Health Department, as reported in the News-Leader March 12, for the three-year period beginning in 2004, there were 42 “vicious” animal attacks recorded in the jurisdiction covered.

    After passing the local ordinance banning or strictly controlling the ownership of pit bull or pit bull types, the number of attacks has dropped dramatically.

    For the five-year period from 2007-2011, there was a total of 14.

    “Because we are impounding fewer pit bulls, we’ve also seen overcrowding in our shelter subside,” says assistant director Clay Goddard. “It is the natural tendency of pit bulls to fight, so our animal control staff are forced to segregate them in individual pens.

    When we have several pit bulls in the shelter simultaneously, this severely limits space for other dogs.”

    In 2008, the City of Wapato passed an ordinance that bans new pit bulls, rottweilers and mastiffs. Nine months after its adoption, in March 2009, Wapato Police Chief Richard Sanchez reported successful results:

    “Nine months into the ban and police calls about vicious dogs have been cut in half. The Wapato Police tell Action News they’ve gone from 18 reports in January, February and March of last year to seven so far in ’09. “Seven calls in three months… that’s nothing,” says Chief Richard Sanchez, Wapato Police Department.

    Chief Sanchez credits local cooperation for the decline of dangerous dogs.”
    Rhode Island

    When the City of Woonsocket was debating a pit bull ordinance in June 2009, the animal control supervisor in Pawtucket, John Holmes, spoke about the enormous success of Pawtucket’s 2003 pit bull ban:

    “Holmes says he predicted that it would take two years for Pawtucket to experience the full benefit of the law after it was passed, but the results were actually apparent in half the time.

    “It’s working absolutely fantastic,” said Holmes. “We have not had a pit bull maiming in the city since December of 2004.”

    Holmes says the law also capped the number of legal pit bulls in Pawtucket to about 70 animals.”

    In July 2013, Pawtucket Mayor Donald Grebien and City Council President David Moran sent a joint letter to Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee asking that he reject a statewide anti-BSL measure before him.

    While they agree that some pit bulls can make good pets, said Moran and Grebien, “the number and severity of pit bull attacks against people and other animals in the early 2000s required us to take the action we did.”

    Prior to the 2004 city ordinance, Pawtucket Animal Control officers responded to many calls about serious pit bull attacks against people and animals, according to the letter. Two of the worst cases involved a nine-month pregnant woman and a child.

    While proponents of the bill argue that breed-specific bans don’t work, said Grebien and Moran, “the results in Pawtucket dramatically prove that they do work.”

    In 2003, the year before the local ban on pit bulls went into effect, 135 pit bulls, all from Pawtucket, were taken in at the Pawtucket Animal Control Shelter for a variety of health and safety reasons, with 48 of those dogs needing to be put down.

    In 2012, 72 pit bulls were taken in, only 41 from Pawtucket, with only six needing to be euthanized, according to the two officials.
    “That’s a tremendous improvement,” they state in their letter.
    Per section 8-55 of Denvers pit bull ban:

    A pit bull, is defined as any dog that is an APBT, Am Staf Terrier, Staff Bull Terrier, or any dog displaying the majority of physical traits of anyone (1) or more of the above breeds, or any dog exhibiting those distinguishing characteristics which substantially conform to the standards set by the AKC or UKC for any of the above breed.

    Over the course of 22 years, the Denver ban has withstood numerous battles in state and federal courts. It has been used as a model for over 600 USA cities that legislate pit bulls, as well as US Navy, Air Force, Marine and Army bases ( so much for Sgt Stubby).

    without it, we’d see just what we see in Miss E’s lame replies. Every pit owner would claim their land shark was anything but a pit bull.

    Miami Dade county voted 66% to keep their pit bull ban, just as it is worded, last year.

    • reeltime

      Latosha, I’m not sure where you get that Thomas Mccartney is racist. All I read were facts. Put the deck away please.



    • Karen Batchelor

      Thomas McCartney (among other fake profiles she uses) is in fact a well-known canine racist and spammer and infests every article that is anything to do with dogs with her pit bull propaganda spamming. She is a member of the extreme hate group dogsbite dot org who are doing real harm to millions of dogs and people in the pursuit of a vendetta against dogs in general and pit bulldogs in particular.

      Hopefully the mainstream media will pay attention to this group and their activities.

      • Thomas McCartney

        Your the pit nutter and dog hater here, 31,400 dogs attacked in the US and over 12,000 killed, 99% of the time by a pit bull type dog, i am the one trying to save dogs from these mutant undogs, you are the one fighting to ensure that the normal innocent dogs will be mauled, killed, dismembered and mutilated by your pit bull type undogs.

        About 31,400 dogs attacked about 61,500 other animals in the U.S. in 2013, killing 43,500 and seriously injuring 18,100.

        The animals killed included about 12,000 dogs, 8,000 cats, 6,000 hooved animals, and 17,000 other small domestic animals, primarily poultry.

        The seriously injured included about 12,400 dogs, 4,000 cats, and 1,700 hooved animals. Few small mammals and poultry survived reported dog attacks.

        Pit bulls inflicted 99% of the total fatal attacks on other animals (43,000); 96% of the fatal attacks on other dogs (11,520); 95% of the fatal attacks on livestock (5,700) and on small mammals and poultry (16,150); and 94% of the fatal attacks on cats (11,280).

        About 30,000 pit bulls were involved in attacks on other animals, many of them killing multiple other animals.

        There are about 3.2 million pit bulls in the U.S. at any given time, according to the annual ANIMAL PEOPLE surveys of dogs offered for sale or adoption via online classified ads.

        Thus in 2013 about one pit bull in 107 killed or seriously injured another animal, compared with about one dog in 50,000 of other breeds.

        Nationally, fatal and disfiguring attacks by dogs from shelters and rescues have exploded from zero in the first 90 years of the 20th century to 80 since 2010, including 58 by pit bulls, along with 22 fatal & disfiguring attacks by other shelter dogs, mostly Rottweilers & bull mastiffs.

        Altogether, 33 U.S. shelter dogs have participated in killing people since 2010, including 24 pit bulls, seven bull mastiffs, and two Rottweilers.

        The only dogs rehomed from U.S. shelters to kill anyone before 2000 were two wolf hybrids, rehomed in 1988 and 1989, respectively.

        Complete details of the year-long epidemiological survey that produced these estimates will appear in the January/February edition of ANIMAL PEOPLE.

    • Thomas McCartney

      Count Me In As A Hater

      “That’s Canine Racism!”
      A common tactic used by the pit bull industry to shut down any public safety discussion is throwing out the pit bull race card. The Pit Bull problem is an entirely man made creation which could be solved by breeding safer dogs in responsible numbers.

      Instead, the breed community seems to be locked onto the blaming others and creating excuses for the situation they’ve created. Pit Bull attacks are always the fault of the owner or victim, and never caused by reckless breeding or the dog fighting industry.

      Then the tone deaf advocates hide behind the excess pit bulls they created and blame society for the “Hate”…. totally oblivious that the hatred is not toward these poor animals, but that it is aimed toward the grotesque and criminally irresponsible breed stewardship that they toil day and night to perpetuate.

      Race Card Phenomenon:
      Frederick Schauer, who teaches a course on the first amendment at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, was reading about some dog lovers who claimed ”canine racism” in response to measures to curb attacks by pit bulls in New York City.

      That particular race card, he said, was an extreme example of how society has become so obsessed with avoiding any stereotypes that it ignores reality.

      Pit bulls are more aggressive than other breeds, he said, just as statistics show older people have slower reflexes than the young, and there are more bad drivers in Massachusetts than in Vermont. A fair number of generalizations, he insists, turn out to be accurate.

      Let’s explore reasons to hate the $Billion dollar a year tax free Pit Bull Industry:

      I hate it when a kid is laying on the coroner’s table.

      I hate it when someone’s Grandmother is poured into the life flight helicopter.

      I hate it that dogfighters kill 250,000 pits a year…hell bent on engineering a better mauler.

      Fatal dog attack, Rosie Humphreys
      I hate it when a nice lady and her dog are killed by a chain breaking pit bull and the owner gets a mere $150 ticket

      I hate it that the dog lobby is behaving as corruptly as the tobacco lobby in the 50’s and 60’s.

      I hate it that Pit breeders pump out one Million excess dogs that the taxpayer has to euthanize….to top it off they don’t pay taxes.

      I hate it that only convicted felons seem to be able to properly identify Pit Bulls.

      I Hate it when well intentioned Dog Safety Legislation is perverted into a Pit Bull Breeder’s and Dog Fighters Bill Of Rights

      I hate the grotesque breed stewardship exerted by the Pit Bull community.

      I hate when family members of Officers in a state Pit Bull club are busted trafficking fighting dogs.

      I hate The Nanny Dog Lie

      I hate it that Law Enforcement is continually having to shoot these animals.

      I hate it that the Animal Control Professions and Animal welfare Community have abandoned their public safety responsibility

      I hate it when a pit bull owner leaves a blind person and their injured service dog helpless.

      I hate it when radicalized Humane orgs like the Toronto Humane Society spent in excess of $400,000 saving a Pit Bull that attacked on 4 separate occasions, yet this woman can’t get plastic surgery:

      Marie-Helene Tokar

      I hate it that Pit Bull mauling victims have to hold bake sales and blood drives to pay medical costs, while some Pit Bull advocates live in 500K plus houses.

      I hate it that nearly 130 Americans have been killed by Pit Bulls since the Vick Bust in 2007, yet they claim success.

      I hate it that Michael Vick’s Beagles have been erased from history.

      I hate it that Pit Bull advocates show zero respect to their victims by not wearing black on Pit Bull Awareness day.

      I hate it when the neighborhood Mail Carrier is put on the disability rolls.

      I hate it when a neighborhood dog is ripped apart by a Pit Bull.

      I hate it that Pit Bulls are approaching 500 world wide DBRFS yet their breeders insist they aren’t human aggressive.

      I don’t mind it so much when a consenting adult pit bull owner is attacked by their own animal, but I do hate the first responder costs…just being honest!

      Oh well…Hose the blood off the sidewalk and pump out another litter!

    • athynz

      April 25, 2014 at 3:38 am

      As much as I disagree with Thomas McCartney’s post just how do they make him racist?

      April 25, 2014 at 9:12 am

      Oh I get the “logic” now – anyone who is not an African American is a racist, is that it? I hate to be the one to break this to you but racists come in many different colors. Not all white people are racists. Sorry to burst your anti-white bubble.

  • Pitt_lover

    I have a Pitt and I’ve had her since she was born. We have raised her to be friendly and she loves people even strangers! It’s all in the way you raise them. Our Pitt loves everyone and everything, all she wants is to cuddle we have never seen no signs of viciousness not even with children. Whenever we have our nieces and nephews over and even other kids that she hasn’t met before she does nothing but stay beside them and protect them even if they do something to her!

    • Doc_Lobot

      Pitt_lover I’m sorry but your comment sounds like that of so many dog owners after their dog has attacked an innocent human or animal, so many of them say but my dog never showed any sign of aggression. you say ” we have never seen no signs of viciousness not even with children” as if this is more of a challenge for a dog to resist biting children over adults. and you say ” she does nothing but stay beside them and protect them even if they do something to her! ” protecting them from what? why is this dog who loves anything with a pulse in protection mode? you make it sound as if he is the vigilant watch dog ready to attack anything that might be construed as an intruder even if its a mistake. Your post doesnt give me confidence in the breed. I think your are missing the point of the post, of coarse any breed can bite, and a pitt bull may be no more likely to bite than any other breed. Its not about the odds of the bite its about the damage done by the bite and this is where the breed matters. you can drop anything on your toe but a brick hurts more.

  • Shawn

    Hey I have an idea, lets get rid of the police in the projects things will be so much better. People are over here in gilpin even taking down the no trespassnig signs. Lease violations of dogs, guns and trespassing dont matter anymore.

  • Cabinetlady_1

    I have owned 3 pits in my life, 2 of which grew old and died of natural causes the other had to be put down due to a heart condition. I do believe it is all in how a dog is raised. I have had people who look down up me for having pits. I love the breed and I love my dogs. Those of you that want to hate on the breed before you have ever allowed one in your heart are just crazy. Assuming ALL pits are bad is the same as saying ALL humans are bad. Simply just not the case.

  • Jennifer

    Any dog can be viscious if trained to be that way, restrained or treated badly! Any dog can be friendly, loving and non-threatening when treated with love and respect.. It is the owners not the dogs themselves that support a dog being viscious.

  • Holly

    I am also an owner of a rescued pit. She is also my third. The first two died of natural causes. They are sweet and loving dogs under the right circumstances. As much as I love my Gracie, I would never let my 3 year old grandson play with her unsupervised. Pits have a strong prey drive and they as sensitive to excess stimulation (i.e. she can really get “ramped up” in play situations). I love her and care for her, but when it comes to children — I don’t trust her 100%. A lot of children don’t know the rules: Don’t look a dog in the eye. Don’t run from a dog or flail your arms. “Be a tree” as I tell kids in school — FREEZE — if a strange dog comes up to you. Freaking out and running ignites that prey drive — and YOU will NOT outrun a pit. If you are ever attacked, roll into a tight ball and yell for help. Most pits owned by responsible dog owners are rescued — we don’t know exactly what life was like for the dog before us. All can be calm and lovely for a long time, but who really knows what scent, sight, or sound might set them off. By the way, this goes for all dogs — not just pits — who were rescued from bad situations. The dog in this story was “ripe” for tragedy from living its life in a box. Shame on the owners….and thank God the young girl was not injured more seriously!

  • Thomas McCartney

    My Legislation Proposal to be enacted by all states,
    cities and counties in the US & Canada.

    All dogs must be:
    Or all dangerous dogs must be:
    Or all dangerous molosser breeds, including pit bulls (American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire bull terriers, American pit bull terriers, American Bulldog, Bull mastiffs, dogo argentinos, fila brasieros, presa canarios, Japanese Tosa, cane corsos and their mixes and any dog generally recognized as a pit bull or pit bull terrier and includes a dog of mixed breed with predominant pit bull or pit bull terrier characteristics), rottweilers, chow chows, Doberman pinschers, German shepherds, must be:

    * Licensed
    * All Pit bull type dogs Micro-chipped with any bite history in database for reference.
    * Insured: All dogs must be covered by mandatory liability insurance of $100,000 min. generic and $500,000 after a skin breaking bite with insurance companies based on actuarial statistic’s determining said rate.
    * Spayed/neutered (except for limited approved show dog breeders)
    * All breeds involved in any bite incident must be kenneled in a locked five-sided enclosure with concrete bottom.

    For all other dog owners language can be written that enclosure such as fences must be capable of containing your dog period, such generic language puts the onus on the owner, have the fines be so onerous that said owner will ensure this they make this so.

    1,000 the first time, double the second time and permanent confiscation the third time with a ban on said person from owning any dog within city limits, this will create an effective outcome directly or indirectly.
    * All dogs must be on leashes outside of home enclosure
    * All molosser breeds must also be muzzled outside of home enclosure

    * No transport of declared dangerous dogs for the purpose of re-homing. (Dangerous dogs must be dealt with where their history is known.)
    * All of the rules listed above also apply to rescues: rescued dogs must be licensed and subject to inspection.

    $1,000 fine for noncompliance
    Elimination of the one-bite rule in all of the 50 U.S. states
    Manslaughter charges for owner of dog that kills a human
    Felony charge for owner of dog that mauls human, dog, or other domestic animal.

  • Thomas McCartney

    Here’s what dog behaviorist Dr. Radcliffe Robins has to say:

    “Temperament is 100% genetic; it is inherited, and fixed at the moment of the dog’s fertilization/conception/birth.

    Temperament in the dog cannot be eliminated nor transformed from one type to another.

    It cannot change during the dog’s lifetime. It is the permanent mental/neurological characteristic of the individual dog.

    Environment, socialization or training can MODIFY the expression of an individual dog’s temperament, but they cannot transform it nor eliminate it.

    The dog will die with the temperament with which it was born.”

  • Thomas McCartney

    ARTHUR HERM, veterinarian, animal control

    He said he disagrees with those people who believe they can train aggressiveness out of dogs, and added he believes aggressiveness is “inherent” and “genetic” in all dogs while pit bulls “seem to have more of that.”

    MICHAEL W. FOX, veterinarian, animal behaviorist

    “I spent 20 years studying the behavior of dogs and it’s not in their nature. Man, has created a monster, If you wish…These dogs were selectively bred to fight, they have greater propensity to fight than other animals, which is brought out in training.”

    “They can attack people, and because the attitudes of Pit Bulls it is more likely they will attack people. The worry is the power of the dogs jaw…to bite and not let go. It’s quite sufficient to crush right through a child’s arm or leg.”

    SHERYL BLAIR, Tufts Veterinary School symposium – Animal Aggression: Dog Bites and the Pit Bull Terrier

    The injuries these dogs inflict are more serious than other breeds because they go for the deep musculature and don’t release; they hold and shake.

    Colleen Hodges, Veterinary Public Health spokeswoman

    Some families think that they can raise a loving pet if they treat a pit bull like any other dog. They may not realize that the dog was bred to fight and that some of these dogs may have fighting in their genes.

    They are tough, strong, tenacious. They are much more capable of inflicting serious damage, and some of them do. I would not recommend pits as a family dog.

    GARY WILKES, animal behaviorist

    No other breed in America is currently bred for fighting, in such great numbers as the American Pit Bull Terrier. No other breed has instinctive behaviors that are so consistently catastrophic when they occur, regardless of how rarely they happen.

    The reality is that every English Pointer has the ability to point a bird. Every Cattle Dog has the ability to bite the heel of a cow and every Beagle has the ability to make an obnoxious bugling noise when it scents a rabbit or sees a cat walking on the back fence. Realistically, if your English Pointer suddenly and unpredictably points at a bird in the park, nobody cares.

    If my Heeler nips your ankle, I’m going to take care of your injuries and probably be fined for the incident. If your Beagle bugles too much, you’ll get a ticket for a noise violation. If your Pit Bull does what it’s bred to do…well, you fill in the blank.

  • Thomas McCartney


    Rottweilers were originally bred to guard the money of peasants returning home from the city of Rottweil in Germany, so their fierceness was prized. Staffordshire bull terriers and pit bulls were programmed to deliver a full crushing bite to the noses of bulls. “They’re locked and loaded,” as Dodman puts it.

    on breed profiling

    But Dodman defends the practice. “The insurance companies have no ax to grind,” he says. They base their decisions on actuarial statistics showing that certain breeds in certain homes are a recipe for trouble and the cause of lawsuits.

    on the MA muzzling law

    After a spate of attacks by pit bulls this summer, Massachusetts lawmakers passed legislation requiring the dogs to be muzzled in public. Some pit bull owners protested, but a Tufts expert says the law may be a good idea. Breeds like pit bulls and Rottweilers, says animal behavior expert Nick Dodman, are hardwired for aggression.

    “Some of these dogs are as dangerous as a loaded handgun,” Dodman– director of the Animal Behavior Clinic at TuftsSchool of Veterinary Medicine – said in an interview with The Boston Globe Magazine.

    Genetics play a big role.

    “No doubt about it, pit bulls are genetically predisposed toward aggression,” he told the magazine. “Justas certain breeds of dogs were bred to herd, certain were bred to hunt, certain to point, and others to swim.”

    While most pet owners accept that their dogs have certain genetic behavioral characteristics, there is still resistance to the idea that some dogs are more dangerous than others.

    “Everybody accepts [genetic behaviors like herding or hunting] until you throw in the word ‘aggression’ and things like a full, crushing bite, which some breeds were specifically bred for in the past.”

    Statistics on dog attacks reinforce the link between certain dogs and dangerous behavior.

    “It’s like a scene from “Casablanca” when they say, ‘Roundup the usual suspects,’” Dodman told the Globe.“It’s always German shepherds, chow, husky, pit bull.The numbers do the talking.”

    He added that pit bulls and Rottweilers alone account for more than 50 percent of the fatal dog attacks every year. Despite the danger, the owners of these dogs often fail to take proper precautions.

    “A lot of owners of aggressive breeds are suffering from denial and ignorance, because no one wants to be fingered as having that kind of dog,” Dodman said.

    “Genetics does play a role and people who think it doesn’t are kidding themselves,” says Dodman. “The pit bull is notorious for a very hard bite. They are always No. 1 in the lethal dog bite parade. The dog was bred for pit fighting. It was bred to never give up, to bite and hang on.”

  • Thomas McCartney

    FRANKLIN LOEW, dean of Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine

    I’m not aware of any other breed of animal that has ever been singled out this way. This is man biting dog.

    HUGH WIRTH, veterinarian

    RSPCA Victoria president Dr Hugh Wirth said the dogs were a menace and were not suitable as pets for anyone.

    “They are time bombs waiting for the right circumstances.”

    “The American pit bull terrier is lethal because it was a breed that was developed purely for dog fighting, in other words killing the opposition.

    “They should never have been allowed into the country. They are an absolute menace.”

    “The fact of life is that the community doesn’t want American pit bull terriers. They’ve said it loud and clear over and over again – they want them banned.”

    GRAEME SMITH, veterinarian

    My views about associating a breed with dangerous behaviours were challenged over time as I saw the impact of Pit Bull attacks. Talking to owners with dogs of this breed who have themselves been turned on, it became clear that these animals are unpredictable and when they attack they can cause serious injury or death.

    It is very hard to give Pit Bulls the benefit of the doubt.

    Avoiding the identification of dogs and their behaviours by their breed means the legislation in place can be such that allows these Pit Bulls “one free bite.” This “one free bite” can have fatal consequences.

    If it looks like a Pit Bull, it is a Pit Bull.

    What’s at stake is the safety of people and their own pets in the wider community, there is no room for gambling with an unpredictable animal.

    And that is so often the case. No one knows where these dogs are until they come out and cause some form of grief. My position is about protecting the public and other animals from these animals.

  • Thomas McCartney



    Randall Lockwood, who said he has witnessed the best and worst of pit bulls, said illegal dog-fighting is perpetuating dogs that are hazards to humans and other animals. Shaped by dog-fight enthusiasts, they are “a perversion of everything normal dogs should do. What they’ve created is a canine psychopath.”

    “Fighting dogs lie all the time. I experienced it first hand when I was investigating three pit bulls that killed a little boy in Georgia. When I went up to do an initial evaluation of the dog’s behavior, the dog came up to the front of the fence, gave me a nice little tail wag and a “play bow” — a little solicitation, a little greeting. As I got closer, he lunged for my face.”

    The pit bull, in its purebred or mixed form, has been responsible for most of the fatal dog attacks on humans in the last two years. In 1987, there were eight deaths from dog attacks in the country, and seven involved pit bulls. In 1986, there were 13 deaths, seven involving pit bulls. But pit bulls have been victimized by hype.

    The dogs are no strangers to ordinances. A pit bull ban was passed in London in the 1400s.

    These dogs can be canine crocodiles. They have a dark and bloody history.

    In the United States, pets are considered property in the eyes of the law. And one of the most hotly defended rights of the individual is the right to own anything, no matter how stupid or dangerous the choice — even when what someone wants to own is a threat to them, their family, and the community around them.

  • Thomas McCartney

    From the CDC (1998 report, page 4):

    “Despite these limitations and concerns
    (about identifying the exact ‘breed’ of pit bull type dog responsible for a
    killing), the data indicate that Rottweilers and pit bull-type dogs accounted
    for 67% of human DBRF in the United States between 1997 and 1998.

    It is extremely unlikely that they accounted for anywhere near 60% of dogs in the
    United States during that same period and, thus, there appears to be a
    breed-specific problem with fatalities.”
    In June 2013, after a Bay Area child was killed by a family pit bull, San Francisco Animal Care and Control cited the decrease in pit bull bites and euthanasia since the adoption of a 2005 pit bull law.

    After 12-year-old Nicholas Faibish was fatally mauled by his family’s pit bulls, the city adopted a mandatory spay-neuter law for the breed. The reasoning was that fixed dogs tend to be calmer and better socialized.

    Since then, San Francisco has impounded 14 percent fewer pit bulls and euthanized 29 percent fewer – which is a “significant decrease,” said Rebecca Katz, director of the city’s Animal Care and Control department.

    Another significant indicator, she said, is that there have been 28 pit bull bites reported in the past three years – and 1,229 bites by other breeds during the same period. In the three-year period before that, there were 45 pit bull bites and 907 incidents involving other breeds.

    Results of mandatory breed-specific S/N in SF: success in San Francisco, where in just eight years there was a 49% decline in the number of pit-bulls impounded, a 23% decline in the number of pit-bulls euthanized, and an 81% decline in the number of pit-bulls involved in fatal and disfiguring attacks.

    When the City of Auburn debated enacting a pit bull law in January 2010, Sgt. Bill Herndon of the San Francisco Police Department weighed in about the success of San Francisco’s 2005 pit bull law:

    “Since requiring all pit bulls to be neutered, they say they are finding fewer pit bulls involved in biting incidents.

    Sgt. Bill Herndon, of the San Francisco Police Department’s vicious dog unit, said the numbers and severity of pit bull attacks are down since San Francisco enacted an ordinance in 2005 after the mauling death of 12-year-old Nicholas Faibish.
    “The number of complaints of mean pit bulls has dropped dramatically,” Herndon said.

    San Francisco’s animal control department reports more than 30 percent fewer pit bulls at the shelter or being euthanized.”
    Ed Boks, Executive director, Yavapai Humane Society (responsible Jan 2004 as director City Center for Animal Care & Control in NYC for trying to rename pit bulls New Yorkies; is pb owner)

    Pit bull type dogs represent 3000% the actuarial risk compared to other types of dogs.
    Insurance companies will have calculated the risks the other listed breeds represent based on what they’ve had to pay out through the years.

    This isn’t ‘prejudice’, this is cold statistical reality. Actuarial realities don’t yield to sentiment or a feeling of entitlement — they just are what they are

  • dog lover

    imagine being in a cage the size of your body all the time….. thats the issue. pits are great dogs and so loyal. these statistics that this person is putting up is bullcrap!!! you can look at any dog website that sales dogs and pit bull type dogs are the top dogs on there. statistics actually show that 95% of pitbull breeds are not registered in fear of being harassed by people who dont like them. with that number accounted for than there are 10x as many pit bull breeds in the united states than any other breed

  • dog lover

    and since pit bull actually is multiple different types of breeds and not a breed itself your numbers are flawed Thomas Mccartney….. and everyone come to DC for the pibble march!!!! lots of celebrities will be there in support of the pit bull breeds all over america. sat may 3rd. go to the facebook page and show your support for animal rights and proper care of such a great breed… name on facebook- ONE MILLION PIBBLE MARCH ON WASHINGTON DC

  • click here

    Remarkable things here. I am very glad to see your article.
    Thanks so much and I’m taking a look forward to touch you.
    Will you please drop me a e-mail?

Comments are closed.