The American Pit Bull Terrier is considered a potentially dangerous dog due to its physical attributes, which make it a strong and robust dog. However, this law does not value in any case the individual psychology of each individual. In fact, within the collective imagination, pit bulls are considered one of the most dangerous dogs.
So does a puppy of this breed need special training? What about an adopted adult dog? In this AnimalWised article, we are going to give you all the answers. Read on and discover below everything about pitbull training, both in puppy dogs and in adults.
❥Are pit bulls aggressive?
In the introduction, we have explained that the pit bull is considered a potentially dangerous dog, which usually causes a very common false belief: thinking that aggressiveness is determined by breed.
The main conclusion of a study published at the University of Córdoba is that the owners are the main ones responsible for the attacks on their dogs. According to the author, Joaquin Pérez Guised, the majority cause of an animal manifesting behaviours related to aggressiveness is the bad or non-existent education provided.
However, it is important to note that there are other factors that can influence, such as genetics, socialization or experiences. Likewise, in another study published at the University of Bristol, scientist Barbara Scheming affirms that linking aggressiveness to certain breeds does not have any scientific rigour.
In fact, a third article published in the American edition of the Huffington Post goes further: in it we find the results of an investigation carried out by the American Temperament Test Society in more than 450 breeds of dogs, which indicates that the American Pit Bull Terrier is the fifth most tolerant dog breed, just behind the Labrador Retriever, the Golden Retriever, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier and the Pug or Pug.
Even so, the law does not seem to be on the side of the American Pit Bull Terrier, since they argue that due to its powerful bite and physical strength, the use of a muzzle and other preventive measures should be mandatory. However, other dogs with very similar characteristics are not considered as PPP, why does this happen? Obviously, history plays a decisive role.
We must know that all the breeds that today are considered “potentially dangerous” have been used in dogfighting, sport hunting, home defence, livestock protection and even as war dogs. Unfortunately, all these factors have led society to believe that these dogs are dangerous, without scientific studies to support it.
❥The real temperament of American Pit Bull Terriers❥
When we talk about the temperament of the pit bull terrier, we can affirm that we are dealing with a lively dog, sure of itself, extremely affectionate towards human beings and protective of young children. Anyone who is part of their family nucleus and environment, including animals of other species, will be able to enjoy a noble, athletic dog with great self-confidence and ease.
❥How to train a pit-bull puppy?❥
The education of a pit-bull puppy dog is governed by the same rules as those of any other breed of dog. However, we offer you a little review so that you know what to take into account when knowing how to train a pit-bull puppy :
Decide in advance of the puppy’s arrival what he will be able to do and what not. For example, if he is going to be able to get on the sofas or the beds, where he is going to sleep … The whole family must know and follow the rules since if you act differently the dog will feel confused.
Find a name for your pit-bull dog and teach him to associate it correctly through the use of positive reinforcement (treats, caresses, kind words …), it is essential for him to pay attention to you. It will be enough with little time if you put effort into it.
You should socialize your pit bulldog from the time he is a puppy with other dogs, people, animals and environments. It is very important so that in the future you can relate to dogs and people properly and not suffer from behaviours related to fear or aggressiveness.
Avoid scolding and punishing your dog when he does something wrong. Replace it with the use of positive reinforcement whenever possible. In an unpleasant situation it is only necessary to use a firm ” No “, he will listen to you and understand the first time.
He must learn how to bite so that he does not hurt you once he grows up, for this, it will be essential to promote a relaxed life as well as the use of toys and tethers and avoid direct play with the hands or other parts of the body.
You should try to create a bond based on understanding and never on fear or imposition. If you scold him excessively, you will be generating stress in the dog and you will make him more predisposed to show behavioural problems. Teach your dog to be left alone little by little and educate yourself on disorders related to separation to prevent it properly. Teach him basic obedience commands that help you prevent an accident and communicate with him, such as sitting, lying down, standing still, or coming. Do short training sessions. Very young dogs can practice for 2 to 5 minutes, while older dogs can train for 5 to 10 minutes at most.
However, it is essential to highlight that the American Pit Bull Terrier is an active and vital dog, full of energy that it needs to burn and release. We must be aware that walks and physical activity cannot be missed in your day-to-day life, for this reason, we encourage you to try to get to know your dog better and discover his specific needs for walks and exercise with him. Each individual is unique and we must adapt to it. Of course, it is not advisable to abuse physical exercise at all, even if the Apbt is an elite athlete. With an average time of two hours a day, we will have more than enough.
Another detail that should not be overlooked is mental stimulation. Although physical exercise is very important for this breed, once the physical routine is established, mental exercises should be carried out.
Finally, remember that any PPP breed must always wear a muzzle in Spain. Therefore, it is essential that you start to accustom your Pit-bull puppy to the muzzle as soon as possible. You can start when it is two months old, but always little by little. It starts with 1-minute sessions and from there, the times should be increased.
❥How to train an adult pit-bull?❥
If you have adopted an American Pit Bull Terrier, we take this opportunity to congratulate you, as there are many pit bull dogs that fill kennels around the world due to the amount of paperwork that must be carried out in order to adopt them.
To begin with, it is important to inform us as much as possible about its origin: history, previous family, if it is a rescued dog if it has suffered abuse, etc. Do not be frustrated if their reaction is aversive towards other dogs or people, you must understand that the behaviour is a reflection of their lived experiences, genetics and socialization.
You must be very clear that under no circumstances should you scold or use physical punishment because you must know that it is a very powerful dog whose character and history you do not know. Looking at his body language will be essential to understand him, in this way we will be able to identify if at any time he feels scared, stressed or tense.
Patience and perseverance are key to training the adult pit-bull because it is a very intelligent dog that bends over backwards to please his human partner and any other part of your circle of friends or family.
We will teach him the basic commands of obedience in short training sessions, making sure that they are a game for him, reinforcing the appropriate behaviors with rewards and ignoring the dogs. However, remember that you should not rely solely on food, praise and caresses are also excellent reinforcers.
If you have observed that your dog manifests a behavioural problem, the ideal is to go to an ethologist or canine educator, especially if he is not well socialized. Never try to do it yourself, you could put him at risk.
more Pit Bull sweetheart, you need to hear this cute tune. This shame of menace breeds is so present in the public arena yet those that have set aside music.
❥Tips for Pit-bull Dogs❥
Remember that if you reside in Spain you must meet all the legal requirements: not have been in prison, have a PPP license, open civil liability insurance and keep the registration up to date. In addition, your dog must always be tied and muzzled in public spaces, using a leash of a maximum of one and a half meters (never extendable).
If you want to read more articles similar to Pit-bull Training, we recommend that you enter our Basic Education section.