It’s safe to say that we’ve all watched a movie or two from Hollywood. Remember that scene where a guy is being chased by some angry, aggressive dog? It’s almost always a pitbull, right?
Hollywood and the media, in general, are the largest contributors to the misconception that Pit bulls are dangerous dogs who don’t play well with others.
If you’re reading this, either you’re a pit bull owner considering bringing in a new dog breed or vice versa. You’re considering adopting a pitbull terrier into the family but can’t help but wonder if that’ll be the end of peace and quiet in your home.
So are Pit bulls good with other dogs? Let’s find out.
History of the pit bull breed
Pit bulls were originally bred for fighting and bull-baiting, but they have since been bred for companionship and loyalty. They are a cross-breed between the American Pitbull terrier and the Staffordshire bull terrier, both of which are Pitbull type dogs.
Although their muscular frame makes them look tough, a Pit bull from a genuine breeder can be a gentle and loving companion if properly trained and socialized.
Are Pit Bulls aggressive?
Interestingly, the American Temperament Testing society found that Pit bulls and Golden retrievers have similar pass rates. The ATTS test measures different aspects of temperament, such as stability, shyness, aggressiveness, and friendliness. Both breeds averaged 86%.
Having said that, we cannot ignore the numbers. According to dogsbite.org, from 2005 to 2019, Pitbulls are reported to have killed 346 Americans. So caution is still advised when it comes to handling this dog breed.
Many factors contribute to a dog’s behavior and temperaments, such as upbringing, training, and human interaction. It’s these factors that determine whether a dog is aggressive or not. Any dog, no matter how calm they are, if treated with cruelty, might develop aggressive tendencies.
Training and socialization for Pit bulls
1. Start early
This means exposing your young pitbull to different types of people, animals, and circumstances in a positive way, so they're not fearful or aggressive as they grow up.
When it comes to socialization, try and find a neutral and familiar place. A park is not recommended since some dogs have yet to be properly trained.
A perfect introduction would be getting together with friends or family and their dogs in a controlled environment.
For Pit bull owners with a busy schedule, you can enroll your Pitbull terrier in a dog socialization and training class.
One of the benefits of these classes is that your terrier will be handled by a professional trainer - All you have to do is sit back, relax and wait for a transformed snuggle buddy who comes running when you call.
Pit bulls can be trained to be good with other breeds, but it takes time, patience, and consistency.
2. Be consistent
This dog breed is intelligent and can learn quickly, but they can also be stubborn and aggressive sometimes. Consistency is key to teaching them obedience commands and tricks.
This will help your pit bull terrier know what behavior is expected of them when around other dogs and humans.
Sparkpaw’s anti-pulling Y harness is perfect for training large breeds such as the Pit Bull, giving you better control over heavy pullers.
3. Be aware of your pitbull's body language.
If they are stiff, their tail is wagging, or their hackles are raised, they may be getting ready to fight.
Be prepared to step in and separate him from the other dog quickly. The quicker you deescalate the situation, the less chance you, your Pit Bull or the other dog will get hurt in the scuffle.
4. A Pitbull needs plenty of exercise.
The American Pitbull terrier is a high-energy dog that needs to burn energy through walking, running, playing, etc. Without sufficient exercise, your dog could become frustrated and start misbehaving.
Having a companion to play with can help your Pit Bull burn off excess energy. Use these times as an opportunity to teach them to “play nice” with other dogs.
Dog breeds that get along with pit bulls
As mentioned, Pit bull terriers are full of energy - They will keep on playing and running for hours. It’s hard to keep up, especially if you’re on a tight schedule. One of the easiest solutions is to bring home a new furry friend.
You may be unsure if the new family member will get along with your pitbull, though.
Here are some dog breeds that are known to get along well with Pit Bulls
If you’re still not convinced that the American Pit bull terrier is one of the best dog breeds to keep, you can always look around your neighborhood. Ask any Pit bull owner about their experience.
The answer will probably be the same as what you’ve read here. Not only do you get a snuggle buddy, but also a security guard since it’s very protective of its loved ones. However, It is important to exercise caution if you don’t know their background and upbringing.
You don't have to be worried about bringing home a new furry friend. They'll get along just fine with the right breed and a proper introduction.