I am always connecting with people through social media and love to hear stories about Pit Bulls. Some are sad, like the loss of a long loved family pet but most are positive and happy. When I came across this Instagram user I felt an instant connection because what has happened to their dog rings so close to home.
Years ago my half Pit Bull half Lab named Nova, aka the escape artist, got out of our back yard and the cops were notified. I had no idea and luckily I was home to hear the commotion outside. I thought that it was the neighbors from down the street bringing Nova home because she always went over there to see their two Rhodesian Ridgebacks. When I oppened the front door what I witnessed made my heart stop. A gun had been drawn and was pointing directly at my dog. If I wouldn't have quickly intervened she would've been shot and for what? Barking at an officer that was on her property with no intention on attacking. And the kicker? She was just an excited puppy. Yes a small puppy. I couldn't fathom how an officer could be scared of a puppy. It blew my mind and after that day I was paranoid about her escaping again.
Naturally when I saw this user post the pictures of their Pit Bull I immediately felt compelled to write about their story. Just like my dog had escaped, so had their Pit Bull and Japanese Chin and of course their neighbors called the authorities. This resulted in their Pit Bull, named Tweety, being shot in the face by an officer that was scared and acted too quickly. This caused immediate heartbreak and sadness to his family. Imagine the feeling you would have if someone shot your dog and you didn't know if he would live or die.
On top the the stress on Tweety's family, his mom was out of state and had to spend extra money to take the first flight back to California to see her baby. The vet bill was an addition expense and on top of everything the Veterinarian said that by the way the bullet entered Tweety, it showed that he wasn't even facing the officer! Luckily Tweety lived and he continues to be a handsome guy with a huge Pit Bull smile. Just look at him, how could you ever think he was aggressive?!
Yes I agree with being cautious around strange dogs but to shoot a dog in the face when he hasn't attacked is not right. Pit Bulls all over the world are getting shot because of the strong stereotype that affects these dogs.
What's the solution for dealing with a dog on the loose? Should the first line of defense automatically result in a gun being drawn or can the police department devise another course of action to avoid such drastic measures and possibly taking the life of a non aggressive family dog?
I believe in protecting one's self 100% but there has to be a different approach that needs to be taught to all officers that are placed in this same predicament. I hope that enough people reach out and demand for this, after all, would you want your baby being shot?