With the numerous amounts of domesticated pets in the USA it is highly likely that there will an attack or two; add to the mix the irresponsible owner, or the street thug who trains his dog to be aggressive, and someone in our society is going to be hurt by their actions - or lack of actions - and it is often the child down the street or the woman asleep in her bed.
It is inevitable that the media will have a field day reporting such events. Hey, what else are they going to cover? Iraq, I think that story is getting old and nothing ever changes apart from more money being funded to operate the war, and soldiers and civilians killed - all in the pursuit of peace (or is that oil). I better leave that rant for another post.
Ok, so back to the news reports and biased journalists who, lacking indepth news to cover, will need other sensational materials to quench the thirst of the American public - many of which were recently reported to never pick up a book. So, watching television or reading news articles may be the only means of education, or should that be information, that people have access too. The information that these reporters feed the public will lead one to believe that every dog attack is carried out by a pit bull (aka APBT, American Staffordshire Terrier or Staffordshire bull terrier) or any of these mixes. I am sorry to burst your bubble people, but numerous other breeds have attacked and will continue to do so, as long as irresponsible dog owners exist. But this is something you will not read in the newspapers, for it seems that unless it involves a pit bull, then it is not newsworthy. You will read about the pit bulls who attack that reside in home where they are chained outside and.or mistreated. What you won't read about are the thousands and thousands of pit bulls that reside in homes around the States who are loved, trained and cared for by responsible owners. The ones who are are much more than disposable pets, but are an extension of the families who welcome them into their homes. These are the loyal, happy-go-lucky breed ambassadors who excel in agility, flyball and even search & rescue efforts. The ones who find the most pleasure when curled up on the sofa with their owners. But these are not the things you will read in a news article because in all honesty these are way to boring and not sensational enough. So what 'facts' will these wonderful journalists provide for the American public, who seem all too eager to swallow them hook, line and sinker...lets see.
National Canine Research Council Examines the Pit Bull Paparazzi: Fear vs.Fact
A study by the National Canine Research Council reveals biased reporting by the media, its Slanesville, WV August 25, 2007 -- A study by the National Canine Research Council reveals biased reporting by the media, its devastating consequences for dogs and the toll it takes on public safety.
Consider how the media reported four incidents that happened between August 18th and August 21st:
August 18, 2007 -
A Labrador mix attacked a 70-year-old man sending him to the hospital in critical condition. Police officers arrived at the scene and the dog was shot after charging the officers.
This incident was reported in ONE (1) article and only in the local paper.
August 19, 2007 -
A 16-month old child received fatal head and neck injuries after being attacked by a mixed breed dog.
This attack was reported TWO (2) times by the local paper only.
August 20, 2007 -
A 6-year-old boy is hospitalized after having his ear torn off and receiving severe bites to the head by a medium-sized mixed breed dog.
This attack was reported in ONE (1) article and only in the local paper.
August 21, 2007 -
A 59-year-old woman was attacked in her home by two Pit bulls and was hospitalized with severe injuries. This attack was reported in over two hundred and thirty (230) articles in national and international newspapers, as well as major television news networks, including CNN, MSNBC and FOX.
"Clearly a fatal attack by an unremarkable breed is not nearly as newsworthy as a non-fatal attack by a Pit bull," says Karen Delise, researcher for the National Canine Research Council.
The National Canine Research Council reports that people routinely cite media coverage as "proof" that pit bulls are more dangerous than other dogs. Delise says costly and ineffective public policy decisions are being made on the basis of such "proof". While this biased reporting is not only lethal to an entire population of dogs; sensationalized media coverage endangers the public by misleading them about the real factors in canine aggression.
About The National Canine Research Council
The National Canine Research Council investigates all reported cases of fatal dog attacks in the United States. Serious analysis and discussion of canine aggression cannot be conducted from information acquired from media
For accurate and in depth information on verified cases of fatal dog attacks and the circumstances contributing to these incidents, please go to the National Canine Research Council at: