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spcvanessen is right…pit bulls are misunderstood! People go by what they read and hear from the media and run with it.
In my opinion, I wouldn’t consider getting a puppy when you have a 8 month old in the house. You mention that he is mobile, likes to pull things, and hit things. By saying that, right there that throws up a red flag on getting any dog, or even a cat. Getting hit, ears being pulled on, tailed being tugged on, drooled on, etc. is not a good recipe for a dog, cat, and child. It is due to things like this and the rambunctiousness of children on why many dogs bite and attack children. The parents do not understand or misread the warning signs that the dog is giving (whale eyes, paw placement, lip twitches, ear placement, etc.) and then the child gets bit. It doesn’t matter what breed of dog it is; the hyperactivity of a puppy/young dog and a young child isn’t the best combination. Yes, people do it, but it isn’t the best idea for all involved.
If you do decide to get a dog, make sure that you watch every move that the dog and the child makes AT ALL TIMES. Even turning your back for a second can lead to disaster. Kids will take advantage of when you are not looking and do something to the dog. WHAM! The dog bites, the dog is the one who gets in trouble, and the dog is euthanized. That isn’t the life for a dog. Kids take a dog’s toys, the dog wants it back, and accidentally bites the child. Again, the dog will be blammed, when it could have been easily prevented by keeping dog toys out of the reach of children. So many things can happen and as a parent, it is your duty to make sure your child is safe at all times. You have to be extra dilligent in everything that you do when you have a young child and a dog in the house.
You notice that I continue to say “dog” and not pit bull. All of this applies to EVERY DOG BREED! No breed is exempt from biting a child when the dog has had enough. BREED DOESN’T MATTER!
You may want to consider waiting until your child is a bit older and is fully mobile and can learn and understand what NOT to do around a dog or to a dog. Children can be “brutal” to dogs, and even in the face of such treatment, the most well-bred, most obedient, and responsibly owned dog will bite or “attack” the child in defense of what the child is doing to the dog.
Please consider what you are wanting to do and keep the mental health of the dog and safety of the child at hand. That is what is important. You don’t want to set the dog up for failure, or your child up for injury. Again, it doesn’t matter what breed of dog. Dogs and really young children aren’t the best idea. Look at some dog rescue and shelter websites. Many of them have stipulations on the age of children in the home that they will adopt a dog out to. There is a reason for that. It is safety of both the dog and the child.
Due to media bias and frenzy, the public has been misguided into thinking that pit bull attacks are a raging epidemic and dog attacks only occur from pit bulls. Not the case. Here are some statistics from the “Don’t Bully My Breed” website that you should give to your mom:
*About 40 people (children) every year die by drowning in 5-gallon water pails. A person, during their lifetime, is 16 times more likely to drown in a 5-gallon water pail than to be killed by a pit bull.
*Approximately 50 children in the US are killed every year by their CRIBS-25 times the number of children and adults killed by pit bulls.
*Each year, 350 people drown in their bathtubs. You are 151 times more likely to be killed by your bathtub than you are by a pit bull.
*Every year, more than 2,000 children in the US are killed by their parents or guardians either through abuse or negelct. A child is more than 800 times more likely to be killed by their caretaker than by a pit bull.
*It can be estiamted that for every pit bull who kills, there are 10.5 million that DON’T.