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Thread: Florida father shoots, kills dog after it attacks teen son

  1. #21
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    People tend to take their position on dogs based on their own experience. "I have a Pit and its a loving family member" is one data point and not scientific at all. It has the same weight as saying my neighbor has a pit bull and it mauled the mailman.

    It's hard to use the internet to prove or disprove scientific hypotheses. Most of what you can find is opinion or cherry picked data. For comparison, look at the climate change literature. Most of it is BS crafted from bad data or faulty climate models. People with an agenda either way will attempt to persuade you of their beliefs. For this reason confirmation bias is mostly what happens. You can find "data" to support your opinion and only present that fraction.

    For example:
    https://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmc...s-infographic/
    Based on a CDC study.

    Pit bulls make up only 6% of the dog population, but they’re responsible for 68% of dog attacks and 52% of dog-related deaths since 1982, according to research compiled by Merritt Clifton, editor of Animals 24-7, an animal-news organization that focuses on humane work and animal-cruelty prevention.
    https://time.com/2891180/kfc-and-the...a-little-girl/

    #1 Pit Bull

    #2 Chow Chow
    #3 Rottweiler
    https://www.thedailybeast.com/danger...ead?ref=scroll

    The Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control & Prevention once conducted a study of 20 years worth of fatal dog bite data. The study found 66 people died through bite-related incidents involving various types of pit bulls, which was more than any other type of dog. Rottweilers were a distant second, with 39
    https://www.politifact.com/georgia/s...ve-other-dogs/
    (this is the same article that High Seas Drifter quoted first)

    Pit bulls and pit-bull crosses (not always easy to distinguish) have caused more than a third of the nation's dog-bite fatalities since 1979 and a comparable proportion of serious injuries.
    https://www.city-journal.org/html/sc...-be-11995.html

    Looking at the Pro-Pit Bull articles, they reference studies (such as the CDC study) but never link directly to it. Instead, they make up their own conclusion such as saying over 40 different breeds were responsible for human deaths and ignoring the ranking of the breeds in the study. Other studies use bite data but not fatalities. Yes, maybe chihuahuas are more aggressive and bite more, but nobody has died or been maimed for life by a chihuahua. Coming to the conclusion that therefore pit bulls as a breed are not aggressive or dangerous is faulty reasoning.
    They also use language like, "DNA can point to tendencies, but there are other factors." That does not disprove that DNA is a factor, or even the most important factor, it just misdirects your attention to the other factors. They say stuff like not all pit bulls are good for fighting and not all pointers point and not all greyhounds run fast, but it does not address the question.

    This looks to me like agree to disagree territory. There are studies you can look at but you can draw your own conclusion and it can be colored by your bias going in.

  2. #22
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    Yes, maybe chihuahuas are more aggressive and bite more, but nobody has died or been maimed for life by a chihuahua. Coming to the conclusion that therefore pit bulls as a breed are not aggressive or dangerous is faulty reasoning.
    I know someone with a scar on their face from being attacked by a Chihuahua. Does that meet your criteria for "maimed for life?" Disfigurement from an injury is worth a lot of cash in court, so I think it meets the threshold.

    More to the point, no one that I've seen (or read here) is making a conclusion that pit bulls are not aggressive, only that they are not the only ones who are. In fact no one is making any claims or showing any evidence that any dogs do any thing "as a breed." THAT would be faulty reasoning, as it is easily disputed by producing a single dog within a breed who is clam. Instead what has been laid out is that you can find aggressiveness as a trait in any dog, regardless of breed, and it seems to be more a factor to do with improper breeding practices (perhsps lack of any practice) or the way the individual dog is socialized or raised.

    I mentioned I had a Rottie who never bit anyone his whole life. That dog's father belonged to the mom of a Navy LT I once worked for, and her dog killed a man (silently) who attempted to burglarize their home. She came downstairs in the morning to find a body with no throat left laying in a pool of blood in her living room. If it were only a matter of genetics, I should have expected my dog to be more aggressive, perhaps even to have viciously attacked that unwanted solicitor who bothered my wife - but he never did much more than bark at anyone. He would tear his dog toys to shreds, but not humans, and I think it has to do with how we treated him as a pup, not letting him get too much control. Not scientific analysis perhaps but a reasonable theory.

    In the matter at hand in the OP, the dog had already attacked, so academic discussions about breed characteristics are irrelevant. If it was my son attacked, the dog would have been dispatched forthwith.
    Last edited by OHEng; 01-11-2020 at 12:17 AM.
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  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by OHEng View Post
    I know someone with a scar on their face from being attacked by a Chihuahua. Does that meet your criteria for "maimed for life?" Disfigurement from an injury is worth a lot of cash in court, so I think it meets the threshold.
    Exactly as I said. It is one data point. I withdraw the word "never". (I am prone to hyperbole)

    Quote Originally Posted by OHEng View Post
    More to the point, no one that I've seen (or read here) is making a conclusion that pit bulls are not aggressive, only that they are not the only ones who are. In fact no one is making any claims or showing any evidence that any dogs do any thing "as a breed." THAT would be faulty reasoning, as it is easily disputed by producing a single dog within a breed who is clam. Instead what has been laid out is that you can find aggressiveness as a trait in any dog, regardless of breed, and it seems to be more a factor to do with improper breeding practices (perhsps lack of any practice) or the way the individual dog is socialized or raised.
    That's like saying Muslims are not the only terrorists because there are other kinds of terrorists. Its true but terrorism and Islam are still strongly linked.
    And I am making the claim that dogs do have certain traits as a breed. It is the very reason they were bred in the first place. Producing a single dog or even a bunch of dogs does NOT disprove that genetics plays an important role in canine behavior. You can find men with low testosterone. But testosterone is still a defining hormone of maleness. You cannot point to a homosexual male and claim testosterone has no role because, look, I found one who does not have any.

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  5. #24
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    No, you are not simply making a claim dogs have certain traits as a breed, you are claiming those characteristics include behavior, and it's demonstrably false. Maybe you've never heard of breeders who specialize in breeds frequently desired for police/guard type work, such as German Shepherd, Belgian Malnois, etc. Try as they might, and they've been "mighting" for hundreds of years, they cannot produce a breed where every single dog has the behavioral traits desired. It's exactly opposite of your Muslim/terrorist example; your claim is like saying because someone is a Muslim, it's like a dog being a Pit Bull - both must be dangerous because of their breeding.

    If it was simply a matter of bloodline, then every dog they breed would be a great police dog, but they're not. Their physical traits - eye color, shape, approximate size - yes those duplicate very well, but no so with temperament. That is an individual dog's quality.

    Talk to animal rescue/shelter folks. They will tell you right up front that some have policies where they won't adopt out certain breeds (Pit Bulls, Dobermans, Rotties, etc.) but then they'll tell you the reason has nothing whatsoever to do with the dogs themselves, it's simply done in order to avoid lawsuits. They can't control what people will do with an adopted animal, and if they get stupid there is always an attorney out there willing to shift the blame to someone else with a larger bank account.
    A man with two watches never really knows what time it is.
    M. Twain


    I think the feminists probably need some serious man in their lives.
    Delores O'Riodan

  6. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by OHEng View Post
    No, you are not simply making a claim dogs have certain traits as a breed, you are claiming those characteristics include behavior, and it's demonstrably false. Maybe you've never heard of breeders who specialize in breeds frequently desired for police/guard type work, such as German Shepherd, Belgian Malnois, etc. Try as they might, and they've been "mighting" for hundreds of years, they cannot produce a breed where every single dog has the behavioral traits desired. It's exactly opposite of your Muslim/terrorist example; your claim is like saying because someone is a Muslim, it's like a dog being a Pit Bull - both must be dangerous because of their breeding.
    I was not saying people are to Muslims as dogs are to pit bulls. I was saying (in the example) that let's assume all Muslims are pit bulls. In the population of Muslims there are a lot of terrorists, in the population of pit bulls, there are a lot of aggressive dogs. More so than other breeds and this is borne out by data (CDC study that everyone seems to dismiss https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00047723.htm)

    Quote Originally Posted by OHEng View Post
    If it was simply a matter of bloodline, then every dog they breed would be a great police dog, but they're not. Their physical traits - eye color, shape, approximate size - yes those duplicate very well, but no so with temperament. That is an individual dog's quality.
    Agreed. And apparently, more individual pit bulls have a temperament that makes them aggressive. Breeding does not guarantee certain behaviors but it can cause leaning a few percent one way or the other. I am certainly not saying that all pit bulls are dangerous killers (nor are all Muslims terrorists). I am saying, as a breed, a higher percentage of individuals have a temperament on the aggressive side and they are big powerful animals.

    Quote Originally Posted by OHEng View Post
    Talk to animal rescue/shelter folks. They will tell you right up front that some have policies where they won't adopt out certain breeds (Pit Bulls, Dobermans, Rotties, etc.) but then they'll tell you the reason has nothing whatsoever to do with the dogs themselves, it's simply done in order to avoid lawsuits. They can't control what people will do with an adopted animal, and if they get stupid there is always an attorney out there willing to shift the blame to someone else with a larger bank account.
    My wife was an animal shelter volunteer. The Flagler Humane Society has a large number of pit bulls and she has walked them for years. She was one of the most experienced "walkers" at the shelter and was cleared to walk dogs that were graded "yellow" meaning possibly hard to handle. The individual dog that attacked her was neutered, vetted and cleared for adoption. It was graded as "green light" meaning anyone could walk him. If they thought it was a bite risk they presumably would not have placed it up for adoption.

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