By D.A. KASIMAKIS
In a world where there would be and is a movement afoot to genocide an entire breed of animal we should all be very afraid. The established breed lovingly known as “Nanny Dogs” is on the road to extinction; because of this wide spread misconception about these majestic beasts. “The Staffordshire Bull Terrier was developed in England during the 19th century for dog fighting. In order to create a faster and more compact dog breed, Bulldogs were crossed with small Terriers (likely Manchester Terriers and similar breeds). The Staffordshire Bull Terrier was brought to the US towards the end of the 19th century, but was not officially recognized by the AKC until 1974.” Man created them and now, they want to destroy them. Help!
Those of us who share our lives with these amazing creatures know the truth. They are gentle (most of the time) to everyone and everything. The strong predator instinct is, just that, instinct, bred into them by man. You would think that the long history we share with this breed would make us know better than to question who they are. It is a travesty, a black mark on the soul of our educated civilization, to vilify an entire breed of dog for what we have created and have total control over. Before you jump to a conclusion about anyone, person or being, learn the truth. Perception is often wrong. Look in the mirror. Can you live with yourself knowing you are to blame? If you bear witness and say nothing, it is as if you are condoning the act. The only hope these unwitting animals have lies in your hands, the public’s hands, mankind’s hands. We are their keepers. They do our bidding. They are whatever we make them. If left to their own devices, they are sweet, loving, dogs, like any other. It is my best hope they are freed from the persona people have burdened them with by false accusations of horror. Our Staffordshire Bull Terrier is a gentle giant at 86 pounds. He has only known love from the time he was but a pup. Let’s all work together to bring the breed back to the stature it so rightly deserves and bring the focus on the true cause of the conflict, which is those who break the law, break the breed and condemn our humanity to unscrupulous heinous actions. If you see something, say something.
Remember, generally speaking, “Breed Specific Legislation” doesn’t only affect one breed. Many breeds fall under its thumb. There are almost thirty breeds and another eighteen breeds, over one hundred pounds, defined by the ban. Different cities, states or countries have different lists. Your own pet may be at risk next. The blame and burden needs to be placed on unscrupulous owners, breeders and law breakers. With better laws in place, we would be further along in eradicating the underworld society that feeds the flame of dog abuse, dog fighting and the like. You can help in any way you feel comfortable. Education, teaching children about respect and proper behavior around animals at home or in public will hold the key to further help in the preservation of all that love these breeds and want to keep them safe. If you are so inclined there are petitions all over the internet to encourage proactive steps towards keeping this law from running private citizen’s lives. Whether you live on Long Island, NY or anywhere else in the world, responsible pet ownership is at the root of the issue, the problem and the cure. If your own state is trying to enforce this type of legislation, beware, this list is long. Your own pet may already be on the list. If it is, you risk having your loving family member ripped from your home, as Lennox, a service dog on death row, from Belfast, was. He was confiscated and has been under arrest in a shelter, away from his family and the girl he was to help, for over two years.
There are a myriad of websites to learn more about BSL and preventing this attitude from overwhelming the portion of society that promotes responsible pet ownership. To learn more you may look up “The Pit Bull Project”, BSL or check your local areas laws on this matter. More information on this important issue is just a click away by searching the internet with your specific area’s facts.
It is up to all of us to make sure that BSL does not take hold in our states, our counties, our towns. With the support of all of us behind it, the future for these animals is bright and with cooperation, education and vigilance the Bull Terrier in every incarnation , as well as, every other breed that is discriminated against by this attitude and laws will take its rightful place in the American family life once more.