Pending the inspection, Charming and I have accepted the counter-offer on a really fabulous little colonial and are about to enter back into the process of inspections and financing and whatever other crap comes with buying a house.
So naturally that means that one of my biggest worries is what kind of dog to get.
I love dogs. I grew up with a Shepherd/Collie/roaming milkman mutt, then a Rhodesian Ridgeback, then a Jack Russell and the bastard offspring of the Jack Russell – a Jack Shit (Jack Russell x Shih Tzu). I’m that crazy person who beelines for strangers’ dogs on the street so I can pet them and love them, usually while totally ignoring the owner.
I kind of tend to want every dog I see. I want the cute fluffy little orange and white thing, and a Boston Terrier, and a Pug (ohmygod a PUG!) and a Dachshund and a French bulldog and a Boxer and a Rhodesian Ridgeback and a mutt of any sort, or probably a lab mix. But mostly, what I really want, is a Pit Bull.
A May law in Maryland declared all pit bulls – pure or crossbred – to be inherently dangerous. The law made landlords liable for any dangerous animals they allowed on their properly. So immediately landlords began banning pit bulls, and thousands ended up in rescues or being euthanized for no reason.
Even though the courts decided last week that the standards couldn’t be applied to crossbreeds (because they’re too hard to identify), it’s still a huge problem because “pit bull” isn’t actually a breed. There are three breeds generally referred to as pits - American pit bull terrier, the American Staffordshire terrier and the Staffordshire Bull terrier – and they’re still hard to identify.
My mother shakes her head and clucks at me in that Jewish-mother way of hers when I mention getting a pit bull, and I remind her that pits actually used to be called “nanny dogs.” They were known for their trainability and protectiveness, and were the first choice for family dogs. On temperament tests, the American Pit Bull Terrier actually scores in the top 5 of all breeds.
So long story short, people don’t want to have to take responsibility and be good dog owners – they’d rather just blame the dogs instead. It’s absolutely a case of nurture over nature – if someone abuses the dog or teaches the dog to be violent, then yes, it could end up being a dangerous dog. But if the dog is treated properly, they make absolutely fantastic, loyal companions.
Poor Charming. He doesn’t realize that we may very well end up with all three. :)