The Mom Whose Toddler Was Killed By Pitbulls Faces Up To 10 Years In Prison

Pet Pitbulls AttackedRemember when I wrote about the family who had the pet pitbulls who attacked the toddler and you guys got all rage-y at me and told me all about how everyone should have 20 dogs roaming free in their yards and that dog breeders are awesome people and pitbulls are not strong dogs at all and they are as dangerous as kittens? Well, the mom in this case is being charged with second degree cruelty to a child and faces up to 10 years in prison. According to the Daily Mail:

A mother whose 21-month-old daughter was mauled to death in their backyard by the family’s seven dogs is facing up to 10 years in prison after being charged with second-degree cruelty to children yesterday.

Summer Laminack, 18, was studying in her bedroom when her toddler, Monica Renee, slipped into their backyard, in the tiny town of Ellabell, near Savannah, and was attacked, her attorney said today.

Bryan County sheriff’s investigators said the child slipped outside through a doggie door and was attacked by the seven pit bulls and pit bull mixes.

By the time the girl’s mother and other adults in the house noticed the dogs barking, the child was dead – on March 27.

Her clothing and diaper were found in shreds throughout the large fenced-in yard.

Edenfield said the toddler’s mother was in her bedroom studying for her GED diploma when the attack happened.

The pet pitbulls attacked the baby while her mother was studying for her GED, and that to me is pretty much the most tragic thing I can ever imagine. The family loved their dogs and had said previously Monica had grown up with them, and “used them as a pillow while watching TV.” The dogs were well fed and cared for, and had never attacked another human, but I have read speculation that they may have killed neighborhood cats. That’s not the dog’s fault, if you have a cat and you let it out or if it gets out I think the owner has to realize there is a good chance it could wander into a neighbor’s yard and get killed by a dog or a wild animal.
Now the dogs are all euthanized, the baby is dead, and a mom who is only 18 faces ten years in prison when she doesn’t even have her high school diploma yet.  I still stand by my belief that this family had too many dogs. I still think the baby should have never been left alone with that many dogs in the house (or yard) and that a pack of pitbulls, even beloved family pets, are capable of being dangerous. Any pack of dogs is, but I still believe pitbulls are a strong breed with a high prey drive. I’m sure this poor family is wishing they could turn back time and do things differently and that baby Monica and their pets were still alive today. And I know you guys will disagree with me, but I still feel that having a really young child around pitbulls isn’t a great parenting technique, especially seven of them.
The crux of the issue is that for every awesome dog owner out there, and I am going to stick with pit owner, because this article IS about pitbulls, there are a hundred bad pit owners out there. People who get a pit because they see them as a status symbol, who don’t train them or give them the proper exercise, who ignore the special tendencies of the breed, their strength and their prey drive, who insist that their dogs would “never, ever hurt anyone ever” and whose arrogance ends up with people killed and the poor dogs put down.
It’s a terrible story, and I feel awful for the baby, the mom, and the dogs. I think this all could have been prevented, but I’m sure this poor family thinks the same thing every day.
(Photo: Facebook)
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    • http://www.facebook.com/JenCortijo Jennifer Cortijo

      I think the breed of dog is only marginally relevant. No small child should be left alone with any dogs, ever, period. I have a puggle and a baby. The dog is the sweetest thing. He’ll never be alone with my baby. It’s just that simple!

      • faifai

        hear hear!

      • faifai
      • Jason Fraser

        If the breed of the dog is only “marginally relevant,” why didn’t the other two dogs in the yard join the pit bulls while they were murdering Monica Laminack? In addition to the seven pit bulls, the family also owned an Irish setter and a beagle, both of which were cowering at the rear of the yard while the pit bulls were ripping the child limb-from-limb.

        You say the dog will “never be alone with my baby.” Dream on! Many other parents have said the same thing. It takes a large dog only seconds to kill a child and the presence of a parent means absolutely nothing. Back in 2009, a pet Weimaraner in Florida killed a 2-year-old child and his father was just inches away. In 2011, four adults were present when a pit bull-type dog killed a 1-year old in Washington state, and last year, three adults were present when a big, ugly Mastiff killed a 1-year-old in Nevada. You may also think a small dog cannot badly injure a child, but last year, a Jack Russell terrier killed a child and a few years ago, an infant was killed by an 8-week-old Labrador puppy. People who have babies or toddlers in the home should NEVER allow a dog inside the house!

      • Lydia

        Your comment is ridiculous. You basically just said what Jen said. And just because you have a child doesn’t mean you can throw your dog outside for a few years. Breeds have different needs and some can deteriorate severely mentally if just left outside.

        If you socialize and train your dog to be a good canine citizen and if you train your kid proper interactions and I do mean proper, I’m sick of kids running up and getting all in a dogs face theve never met before to get a small warning bite or growl and the dogs the one to blame, I correct many kids who have zero manners right in front of the parents. You can have a wonderful dog who treats your child as a higher member of the pack.

        Sounds like the beagle and setter were socialized and well mannered. And sounds like the pits were not as friendly as imagined. But what can you expect when they are only lawn decorations?

      • Jason Fraser

        If a person has a child, then the child should be the most important thing in his/her life and anyone who places the “needs” of some worthless fleabag about the safety of their own child should be going to prison along with Summer Laminack! I really hope you don’t have any children because not only are you not fit to raise a child, you aren’t fit to raise a rat!

        The reason the “beagle and setter” did not attack is because they weren’t PIT BULLS! The same thing happened when Mary Jo Hunt in North Carolina was attacked by her yard full of fleabags. As the pit bulls literally ripped her apart, the other dogs cowered at the back fence.

        Yesterday in Lincolnshire, England, a 22-year-old pit bull lover named Joanne McCord was scalped by her boyfriend’s pit bull. They were both pit freaks and both owned pit bull-type dogs – even though the American pit bull terrier is banned in the UK. On McCord’s Facebook page, she says: “There’s not [sic] such thing as a dangerous dog. Just a dangerous owner.” She also has a photo of a pit bull with its rear end in the air with the caption: “To everyone who thinks that pitbulls are mean – you can kiss my hiney.” McCord hasn’t regained consciousness since she was admitted to the hospital where she is having her scalp reattached and plastic surgeons are attempting to repair her face where her boyfriend’s “sweet, gentle, wouldn’t-hurt-a-fly pittie” tore out huge chunks of flesh. She had been around her boyfriend’s pit bull for more than two years and there had never been a problem until yesterday when the “nanny dog,” without warning or provocation, decided to kill her! When police went to the boyfriend’s council flat (that’s equivalent to Section 8 housing in the US), he started screaming, “Don’t take my dog! I love my dog!” He was arrested and will hopefully be prosecuted under the Dangerous Dogs Act.

      • XxdiexforxyouxX

        You’re an idiot. I see breed prejudice! “Worthless fleabags” my ass, dogs are as much part of the family as the kids you pop out, and if you teach them properly (the dogs AND the kids) these sorts of things don’t happen. You can’t raise all dogs exactly the same, you know. Different breeds and just different personalities need different attentions. Maybe the Pitt mixes weren’t getting it, but the other dogs were.

      • Jason Fraser

        Unless a person has four legs and a tail (actually, the tail wouldn’t surprise me!), no dog will ever be “as much a part of the family as the kids you pot out.” I realize this is a major disappointment to a zoophile like you, but that’s the way it is. As for so-called “breed prejudice,” dogs have no rights and hating a particular “breed,” or all dogs for that matter, is no different than hating rats, roaches or mosquitoes. As for your “ass,” I can understand why the term “worthless fleabags” brought that part of your anatomy to mind because it’s probably covered in fleas.

      • XxdiexforxyouxX

        Charming. That’s really charming. Clearly you hate dogs, are a major troll, and have no idea how to have a civil discussion. I’m a “zoophile” because I don’t think all dogs should be put down for being “fleabags”? Lovely. And no, for the record, my ass is flea-free and most people seem pretty fond of it :)

      • Jason Fraser

        Is that the best you’ve got, dog freak? I’m not surprised. This is what happens when a person keeps his or her nose stuck up some dog’s rear end 24-7. Furthermore, you are attacking and condemning me for something I posted TWO MONTHS AGO! That makes YOU the TROLL because obviously you don’t have anything better to do than “troll” the internet looking for an excuse to post dog-obsessed garbage! GET A LIFE!

      • XxdiexforxyouxX

        Actually, I just read the article and commented after I did. But that’s nice. Good for you

      • Jason Fraser

        How could YOU have possibly “commented after” YOU “did”? You personally attacked me and called me names, both of which are AGAINST THE RULES!

      • Robert Granger

        Well, I know you are at least wrong about Nevada. It was a Rhodesian Ridgeback mix with a small amount of ENGLISH mastiff and there was ONE person on site when the incident occurred. One person was upstairs. And in as much as everyone recognizes it was a tragedy, they still loved their dog and wanted him saved. And, he was. Thankfully.

        This is a Rhodesian Ridgeback… Formerly named Onion.

    • chickadee
    • LiteBrite

      ANY animal, whether it’s a big strong pitbull or a tiny dwarf hamster, is capable of biting or attacking a child or even an adult under the right circumstances. The problem is that a lot of people humanize their pets to a degree where they forget this one basic fact: animals are not human. Animals act on instinct. Even the sweetest, gentlest animal can bite (or worse) if they feel threatened or provoked. Supervision of small children and animals is crucial. Not only can a pet do damage to a child (and of course, the bigger the pet, the more damage it can do) but a child can do damage to a pet.

      I feel for this family. I really do. As you said, a child is dead, beloved family pets have been euthanized, and a parent is now facing prison time. It’s the epitome of a lose-lose situation, and I can’t imagine their grief and horror. However, as a pet owner and a parent, I will keep saying this until I’m blue in the face: SUPERVISE YOUR PETS AND KIDS, ESPECIALLY IF YOUR CHILDREN ARE SMALL.

      Rant over.

      • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

        Oh fuck hamsters for real. I would never get a rodent like that, rats and ferrets yes, gerbils, hamsters? NO

      • http://www.facebook.com/paul.white.3532507 Paul White

        Gerbils are CUTE! So much cute :D Rats, not so much.

      • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

        BITEY!

      • http://www.facebook.com/paul.white.3532507 Paul White

        See, my gerbils were always sweethearts (just a bit jumpy). My hamster I had though…good lord, evil incarnate. I only kept him around to use for scenting—I’d rub his bedding on a prekilled rat to make it smell like a hamster for snakes that were reluctant to eat. For some reason they liked hamsters more but hamsters were pricey and kinda small.

      • http://fairlyoddmedia.com/ Frances Locke

        My mom has a bird we named bitey for obvious reasons.

      • Tea

        The rats I’ve had were awesome, sweet, affectionate creatures. I stopped owning them because I would without fail be a sobbing mess every two years thanks to their life span. The only bad one we had was almost fully grown and from the feeder tank, not the “pet” tank. But man, the hamsters I have known have been jerks.

      • LiteBrite

        I have two guinea pigs. They’re pretty sweet and easy to handle, but yeah, they pack a pretty mean bite. My one guinea pig bit me on the nipple a couple of years ago. OUCH.

      • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

        I may have just tweeted this factoid.

      • http://fairlyoddmedia.com/ Frances Locke

        I love you. Seriously.

      • http://www.facebook.com/RetiredSceneQueen Emmali Lucia

        Ferrets bite like crazy! And they smell awful.

      • Kat

        Wow, I’ve never known one to bite, but yes, they definitely smell horrible.

      • http://www.facebook.com/diana.tatroe Diana Brown

        Yes ferrets bite, but mostly it’s just playfulness on their part. They can get out of hand when they get hyper and are playing around, but you can train them to playfully bite without breaking the skin. They are extremely smart animals and I know this because I currently have 4 ferrets ranging from 5mo to almost 2yrs old. We have had a total of 6 ferrets in the last year in a half. We have been able to train all 6 of them to not break the skin, hence “playfully biting”. As for the smell, as long as they are well taken care of and their scent glands are removed, then the smell can be controlled. Unfortunately I hate to say it but most people that have either been around ferrets or try taking one in as a pet don’t know the first thing about taking care of them and that’s why ferrets get a bad rap of being smelly. People think that by bathing them constantly will “rid” them of the musky smell. When they are only causing it to get worse. The more you bathe them the stronger the musky smell will get because it dries out their skin causing their bodies to produce more “oil” to calm down the irritation. A true ferret lover/owner would know that you only bathe a ferret once a month!

      • Diana Ross

        It’s all about keeping their ears clean. That’s were I found the bulk of the scent to come from. And clean litter daily!

        Yeah, I wouldn’t let children near ferrets either. Even the most lovable of fuzzbutts can play too rough with their mouths.

      • Spiderpigmom

        Aren’t rats rodents?

      • http://www.facebook.com/paul.white.3532507 Paul White

        Yep. And they’re actually very smart, and neat animals. But I tried keeping a pair as pets and HATED it.

      • Kat

        Thank you! I thought I was the only one who noticed this.

      • Jason Fraser

        If a dog decides to attack a child, the presence of a parent or other adult means absolutely NOTHING. A dog can attack in seconds and if it is a large dog, it can rip the throat out of a child, or crush its skull in seconds. There have been numerous cases in recent years of dogs killing or badly injuring children in the presence of parents and other adults. In years past, one seldom heard of a dog killing an infant or toddler because back then, people exercised common sense and kept dogs OUTSIDE, where all dogs belong. The death of Monica Laminack is a case in point. But for that “doggie door,” the child could not have gotten into the back yard to be murdered by those land-sharks. As long as people allow dogs to live indoors, toddlers and infants will continue to be killed by them!

    • Annie

      It’s not the breed’s fault, people have been breeding them so irresponsibly for so long. And that’s pretty clear in the article, so I’m not hating. The following rant is a rant in general and not aimed at you, Eve.

      I just wish that both sides of the debate would meet in the middle. No, pits shouldn’t be euthanized or banned, because they’re really a wonderful breed and are usually loving, attentive, gentle dogs. However, because of this irresponsible breeding and their sheer physical strength, people *do* need to be cautious about leaving small children around them. Genetics have made them unpredictable.

      • Annie

        Also need to add that unless you’re experienced in keeping that many dogs, as in that is your LIFE, they get rowdy.

      • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

        I would never ever want them banned, I just want creepy ass creeps to stop owning them <3

      • http://www.facebook.com/paul.white.3532507 Paul White

        That’s true of a lot of breeds; I mean, any fairly muscular breed (rotts, GSDs, any large terrier, huskies, etc) is going to be strong and strong willed.

        Personally, I love my 30-40 lb couch potato dogs :D Working breeds as a whole are too high energy for me.

      • http://www.facebook.com/paul.white.3532507 Paul White

        that said, I still won’t leave Scruffy or Nelson alone with Sam. They’re both predators (and ahve killed all the squirrels in our yard). Even at 30 lbs, they’re dangerous to a small child if they decide to try to eat them.

      • Annie

        Yeah, people really underestimate a dog’s prey drive. Children are small, make high-pitched noises, and scurry around, just like the critters breeds such as terriers have been carefully bred to chase after.

      • Lily

        I have a Bichon Frise and she has a wicked prey drive, she has caught and killed squirrels, chases my cats pretty much anything that moves she bolts after. I have caught her a few times stalking one of my cats. She only weighs 11lbs but she is all muscle, quick, agile, full of energy and needs constant supervision. I had no idea this would be an issue with the breed but when you bring home an animal you really have to be prepared for anything I guess.

      • http://www.facebook.com/paul.white.3532507 Paul White

        and I agree with the next to last sentence; I just think focusing on one group of breeds is probably unfair to that group of breeds and dangerous since it may lead to the impression other breeds are safe…and really, even small breeds aren’t truly safe.

    • Billysgirl

      I don’t think ANY dog can be 100% trusted. My mom in law ( who treats her dogs wonderfully) had her golden lab in the backseat of the car coming back from the vet, and my 19 yr old son was helping her. The dog kept crawling all over my son, then it just snapped its head up and bit him in the face!! It missed his eye by inches! My mom in law still has this dog, as she said its not his fault he bit. He still corners us and growls when we visit, but never in frount of my mom in law. We also had a collie who acted very strange at times and would do mean things to our toddler. Because of this behavior and our constant ER visits because of allergies to this dog, we gave her to a local organization that will try to train her and give her to an understanding owner. Both these breeds are not considered ” violent” but these dogs did what they did. Its an animal, it does not think on the same level as a human.

      • http://www.facebook.com/paul.white.3532507 Paul White

        I had something similar happen with a neighbors dog a couple years ago. it ran over to me while I was on the front step, nuzzled me, got some petting and tummy rubs then lunged and almost got me in the face. I was freaked, the neighbor was mortified, etc. It was a mix with strong GSD influence FWIW.

        The only time I’ve actually been successfully bitten was by a pack of herding dogs; that royally sucked.

      • Jules

        I haven’t had a dog in a long time but when I was little and we lived in a house with a yard, we always had big dogs that would be considered dangerous: pitts, boxers, mastiffs, etc. I don’t think any of them ever did so much as nibble or snap at me. It was finally a collie that I was alone with for maybe a couple of minutes that supposedly got startled and bit me in the face. I had to stay in the hospital for a few days and had my eye sewn shut for a month. That is all completely anecdotal of course, but it just makes me angry when people discriminate against a particular dog breed. It’s like discriminating against an entire nationality or race. That’s a little dramatic, but I don’t think it’s a bad comparison.

      • Hyperbolme

        I do think you’re right to a degree, yet I have never once heard of a toddler mauled by collies. Pit bulls seem like the assault weapons of dogs. I feel terrified when I see one near a child because children can be so unpredictable. If these dogs react to the sudden movements or whims of children, the consequences are dire.

      • lea

        UK, 2010, infant almost loses leg after family border collie mauls it in its car seat

        (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1288786/Familys-border-collie-leaps-car-mauls-baby.html)

      • Jules

        Damn the more and more I read about children and dogs, the more I am surprised I made it through my childhood unscathed. I never had any supervision when I was around our dogs or any of our neighbor’s dogs. And lets not even talk about how much unsupervised time I spent with our farm animals, some of which were huge and had horns!

      • PSG

        Maybe it was part of your upbringing, that your folks taught you by some method how to interact with animals?

        Regularly in the company of canines, I was only bitten once, and that was a result of ignoring the elders telling me to LEAVE THE DOG ALONE.

      • Jason Fraser

        There’s a difference between outside dogs and those allowed inside the house. In years past, you never heard of dogs badly injuring or killing infants and toddlers because dogs lived outdoors where all dogs belong. Dogs that spend all their time outdoors are much better adjusted, know their place and much less likely to attack a family member than dogs that live inside the house. Ninety-plus percent of dog attacks on infants and toddlers occur inside the house and could be prevented if people would simply exercise a little common sense and keep the dogs OUTSIDE!

      • Simone

        Sometimes it’s the breed and more often, it’s the social groups that tend to favour owning a particular breed that cause the problem. In the 90′s, Rottweilers were very popular among … in Australia we call them ‘bogans’. So over a ten year period, there were more and more backyard breeders putting out inferior dogs, more Rotties in homes where they weren’t well managed or trained, and as a result, more people being bitten by Rotties.

        Pitbulls and Staffordshire terriers also have biological characteristics (such as massive jaw strength and super-hard skulls) that tend to make them a special case, partly due to the breeding that has gone into them over decades. But these dogs are also popular among lower socioeconomic status groups with less investment in training and good management, so it’s a bit more complex than just accusing a certain breed of being dangerous for reasons inherent to the breed.

      • Jason Fraser

        And you allowed that monster to live? I’m talking about the dog, not your mom-in-law. Why didn’t you kill it? The next person it decides to bite may be 19-months, not 19-years-old.

    • whiteroses

      The fact remains that, pits or no, it’s completely irresponsible to leave a small child alone with any dog. Animals are wonderful creatures who deserve our respect- but treating them as if they were human is a massive mistake. When a dog gets angry, they can and will snap. Even a dachsund could kill a child if it’s aggressive enough.
      As I said in previous articles- using a dog as a babysitter is pretty much the same thing as using a tiger as a pet. It’s a nice idea for cartoons, but it’s a spectacularly bad idea in real life.

      • http://www.facebook.com/RetiredSceneQueen Emmali Lucia

        My friend has a chihuahua that she kept in a kennel when it was around one of her friend’s baby. The baby mama (Who is the dumbest broad you could even imagine), let the dog out so the baby could play with it and the dog bit her baby. The baby mama was demanding that the dog be euthanized. It was the ugliest mess ever.

        Long story short, babies and animals don’t mix.

      • http://www.facebook.com/iwill.findu.90 Iwill Findu

        What a stupid women, your friend knew her dog better then anyone else does and made a call to do her best to keep her dog away from babies and children. She was being responsible, and now some fool that thought she knew better is trying to punish your friend and her dog because she doesn’t a lick of common sense. I hope your friends dog is ok.

      • once upon a time

        Please tell me that the dog wasn’t euthanised :(

        My in laws have a Jack Russell. Honestly, I think I’d prefer my toddler to play with a pit bull than one of those small, snappy dogs.

      • http://www.facebook.com/RetiredSceneQueen Emmali Lucia

        She couldn’t legally force my friend to euthanize her dog (her baby wasn’t injured). So my friend just quit talking to her and her Husband.

      • PSG

        Glad the dog wasn’t put down.

      • http://helloalle.com/ Alle

        I have a minpin-Russell terrier mix who loves kids and has never been anything other than playful and loving with them. THAT SAID, I would never, ever leave him unattended with a child. As sweet and as wonderful as he is, and as much work as I’ve done on his training, he’s still a dog and there’s still an element of unpredictability to his behaviour.

        There’s also a lot of unpredictability to kids’ behaviour too. A lot of the time they don’t know any better, but I never want to have to explain to an angry mother than my pup bit their kid because the child pulled his ears. You know? Even with a small dog, you have to ALWAYS be on guard.

      • PSG

        Yes. I was raised around animals, and was good with dogs even at a young age. But there was this one time we went to visit someone, and they had a little dog that wasn’t terribly child-friendly. They warned me to leave the dog be, that it liked to be around people but wasn’t a hands-on type.
        But I, in my youthful wisdom, kept trying to make friends with it and was bitten. It was a real bite and I was shaken, crying and sad – but it also taught me at that very young age not to discount a growl (or the advice to let something alone) ever again.

      • http://helloalle.com/ Alle

        Ohhhhh yeah. One of my neighbours had two Siamese cats when I was growing up. I loved those things, but they HAAAAATED me. Their owner even told me that they didn’t really like people, but oh no, I kept trying to make best friends. And then they teamed up and attacked me, and it was horrible, and I had to be in hospital for five days. So yeah, it isn’t just dogs that can be problem animals.

      • Diana Ross

        I also wouldn’t let my ferrets near children. My little niece was always warned to stay clear of their cage.

      • PSG

        Eh, I wouldn’t have my toddler playing with either of them.

        I had a wonderful Parson’s. Great Electric Dog. Sweet. Loving. Not nippy. BUT we knew from the beginning, not one to be around children, because she had no patience for pulling and poking, or in a situation with other small animals that couldn’t be monitored.

      • Simone

        More that idiots and animals don’t mix…

    • http://www.facebook.com/valerisexton.jones Valeri Jones

      Everyone’s talking about dogs and how breeds have genetic predispositions and no kid should ever be left alone with a pet and I’m just over here like, “That poor baby and mom!” It breaks my heart to think of the terror that poor toddler must have felt in the last few seconds of her life. And as for the mom? I don’t think a prison sentence will do any good in this situation because I don’t think anything can compare to what she must be putting herself through right now.

      • Jason Fraser

        Obviously, you don’t know much about this so-called “mom.” She is an unemployed high school dropout who smokes, spends money on herself and left her child in the care of her mother and other family members. The only reason she was studying for her GED is because if she did not obtain a GED and look for work, she was going to lose her public assistance. Actually, prison would be a blessing in disguise because it would get her away from her dysfunctional, dog freak family and she could possibly get an education while behind bars and learn to do something besides make babies!

      • Simone

        NONE OF THAT MEANS THAT EITHER SHE OR THE CHILD DO NOT DESERVE EMPATHY AND ***ING SHAME ON YOU.

      • calgarth

        I doubt there is a person posting on this site who doesn’t feel for the innocent child, who was torn limb-from-limb by those 4-legged sharks, but I, for one, have no sympathy or empathy whatsoever for that sorry excuse for a mother!

      • Simone

        You sound like you really understand dogs and have a lot of knowledge on how they should be safely managed. Fucking shame you have no idea about people; if you did, you might be able to better share your useful knowledge without advertising yourself as a massive arsehole. :)

      • calgarth

        I think he has a very good understanding of people because every word he said about Summer Laminack and the whole Laminack clan is the TRUTH!

      • http://www.facebook.com/valerisexton.jones Valeri Jones

        I am a college drop out, who smokes, and who only recently went back to work after having my son. I’ve been working for 9 months and my son is 18 months. Does that make me a “so-called mom”? And guess who watches my son while my husband and I are working? My mother and other family members. It’s called a support system for a reason. Yes, there are a lot of single moms out there who do it all on their own. I commend them for that because it has got to be one of the hardest things in the world. I, however, will continue to use my support system when I need it.

      • Diana Ross

        So obviously that little girl deserved to die because you deem her mother unfit.

      • calgarth

        He never said that, you ignoramus, and he is absolutely correct when he calls Summer Laminack a “so-called mother,” because that white trash isn’t fit to raise a frigging rat!

    • B. Gear

      While I am glad that everyone is quick to defend the breed. The fact of the matter is there are some breeds that are more prone to being aggressive and unpredictable than others. I was a Vet Tech for years and have a lot of experience with canine behavior and yes there are always exceptions. But these certain breeds (Pits, Rotties, Shepards) were bred for years and years to be aggressive so they should not be owned by just anyone. And people who own them should always be aware of this and be responsible for them. The second they forget this is when a tragic event like this happens.

      • Michelle

        Exactly. My dog is a sheltie. When she gets excited she runs circles around me and nips at my heels. She has never been around live stock or had any herding training but it’s just in her nature. She wants to herd. I know that when my baby gets bigger I will have to supervise and stop her if she starts to try and herd the kids. The breed doesn’t define the dog but it definitely leads to some predispositions.

      • http://www.xojane.com/author/eve Eve Vawter

        I am sorry but seeing dogs herd kids or cats may be the cutest thing ever.

      • Michelle

        It is super cute. My husband grew up with a border collie so when he would go to ride his bike away she would try to bring him back into the yard. Sometimes it ended up in him crashing from her cutting so close to his tires. I just want to make sure doggy doesn’t get too carried away with her herding duties!

      • Thrillhouse

        I had a border collie mix as a kid, and my mum used to intentionally have him herd us. We had a huge property in the country and when she needed us in for dinner, he would respond to the command “get the kids” and without having to say a word to us, my mum would have us back at the house for dinner within minutes.

      • http://www.facebook.com/valerisexton.jones Valeri Jones

        This is awesome!!! I’ve always wanted a border collie because they are one of the smartest breeds of dogs. However, it never occurred to me to train it to herd the kids. I may have to try that!

    • lin

      I don’t see the point in getting a pit bull. Honestly, just get a different breed. I know, I know, most are super sweet, wouldn’t hurt anyone…until they do. It is a characteristic of the breed, so why take the chance? The are plenty of other dogs out there. It almost seems like their popularity is because people feel the need to prove a point, defend the breed, or get attention.

      • Jen

        Because if we thought like that all pit bull type dogs would have no place to go. Of course we defend the breed. We defend ALL breeds, because it’s usually NOT the breed, its the owner. I mentioned it in Eve’s previous article. No matter WHAT breed you get you have to do your research and know that you can handle what comes with it. Labs are generally very energetic and require a lot of attention and exercise, pit bull type dogs are also energetic, yorkies are less so, however, they require serious grooming, pugs and pug mixes have respiratory problems and aren’t appropriate for very warm temperatures or homes with lots of steps. “Just don’t get them”…”they don’t bite…until they do”. Most pit bull type dogs DON’T bite. The problem is when you have people who don’t do research and then create a pack with multiple dogs, in urban areas that don’t allow for proper care and exercise you get dogs who bite…multiple times. In most areas unless it’s like this poor girl who was killed or seriously injured dogs can get up to 3 bites before it’s “vicious”. Unless someone is highly trained for any breed they shouldn’t own 7 dogs. And no biting isn’t characteristic of the breed, it’s a characteristic of people who think a pittie is a status symbol who doesn’t train them right. I don’t actively seek out dogs who need defending, but because of shitty people making dogs mean, or people forgetting that status symbol or no it’s still a dog I get a lot of phone calls for dogs like this. Because NOT just anyone can take care of them. Other people get the beagles and jack russells, because they are familiar with them. We get the rotties, pitties and shepherds because we know how to work with them. It bothers me when people make generalized statements and they have zero familiarity with what really goes on.

      • http://www.facebook.com/paul.white.3532507 Paul White

        yeah, packs are dangerous regardless of breed. I get leery of it when folks have a half dozen dogs of any breeds.

      • http://www.facebook.com/iwill.findu.90 Iwill Findu

        You do know that the number of dog bites with a certain breed does tend to go up and down with how popular the dog breed is at the time. You hear around pit bull attacks because right now lots of people own pit bulls, just like when rotties were the dog to own you heard about rottie attacks. It’s just comes down to numbers more dogs will equal a higher chance of bites.

    • http://www.piperpixiedesigns.etsy.com/ PiperPixieDesigns

      My sister had three Pitts, loved em like kids….until she got pregnant with, like, a real kid! As a pitt owner she knew the breed and made the responsible decision to re-home them before the babies came. Wether people want to make peace with it or not they are a very dangerous breed.

    • faifai

      Ok. Rather than anecdotal evidence or inflammatory media hysteria I went looking for straight facts. Here’s some charts of statistics from the CDC. Note that dachsunds caused 2 deaths-by-dog-bite between 1975 and 1980. I only mention dachsunds because it’s such a weird mental image. http://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/images/dogbreeds-a.pdf

      • Simone

        There’s a wonderful book called How to Lie with Statistics. If only it was required reading. Numbers don’t tell us how things happen.

    • Amanda

      Why is the mother being charged when the grandmother was the one who was supposed to be watching her & decided to nap instead?

      • k_milt

        I have the same question. The mother was not ignoring her child. She arranged for another supposedly responsible adult to care for the toddler while she studied. She may be to blame for owning a pack of large dogs in the first place, but she was not being negligent of her child at the time of the horrible incident. Grandma can live with that guilt all by herself.

      • Jason Fraser

        She allowed her child to live in a household where there were SEVEN pit bulls and two other dogs! Can you imagine the filth and overwhelming stench in a house where NINE dogs came and went as they pleased through a “doggie door”? Any parent who places their child in such danger and exposes her to such filth deserves to go to prison!

      • k_milt

        I just remembered why I stopped coming to this website.

      • calgarth

        Why, because you live in a filthy, stinking house full of dogs? A parent who cares anything about a child does NOT ALLOW DOGS IN THE HOUSE!

      • k_milt

        I don’t have a dog, let alone a “filthy, stinking house full” of them. Go have your stupid little tantrum elsewhere.

      • http://www.facebook.com/valerisexton.jones Valeri Jones

        The police reports all said that the dogs were well taken care of and the house and yard were clean and safe environments for a toddler. And the dogs had no history of being aggressive towards anyone before except maybe a stray cat. I don’t think this is a case of negligence so much as a HARD lesson learned.

      • calgarth

        The sheriff’s reports did not mention the condition of the yard and house, nor did they indicate the yard and house were “save environments for a toddler.” If this had been the case, Sheriff Smith would not have been encouraging the DA to file charges against Summer Laminack. Until she removed them, Summer Laminack had some photos of her daughter on Facebook and all one had to do was look at the photos to tell the house was far from being clean. There is no way to keep a house and yard clean when you have NINE DOGS!

    • Anon13

      Look, it’s a free country, and everyone can think what they want. But here is my experience as a 12 year no-kill shelter volunteer; Pitbulls are always unpredictable dogs. When our shelter takes one in, we pretty much know that it’s a lifetime commitment to the dog because adult pitbulls are close to impossible to place. We also know that taking in that one adult pitbull means that two other non-pits will die, because an adult pit must be placed alone in a containment kennel that would normally hold three adult dogs. This has been learned through hard experience; because no matter how sweet the dog may seem, eventually a thunderstorm will happen, or a dog will get loose and start a barrage of excited barking, or a raccoon or a possum will pass by, or fireworks will go off down the street, and the pit bull will snap and kill his roommates. I’ve seen so many of them leave to go to experienced foster homes with people who just lovelovelove pit bulls…until that sweet “pibble” who would never hurt anyone snaps and bites them or kills another pet. They do not deal well with stress stimuli. They have not been bred to. They have been bred, for the last hundred years or so, to have a bad temperament, to be aggressive and quick to respond with violence. No, it isn’t the dog’s fault. No, it isn’t fair. But it is what it is, and just because they’ve become the hipster cause dog of late, let’s not be irresponsible ostriches with our heads in the sand about them. Yes, some other breeds can be aggressive, chows are not great, GDS and dobies and rotts and mastiffs and other large hunting or fighting breeds can be hard to handle and need an experienced dog owner to train them. But NOTHING and I mean nothing compares to the Pit bull. I’m sorry if it hurts feelings, and it can be argued endlessly forever but what I’ve seen and experienced with my own eyes has made me sure that I would never own a pit bull, I would never even consider fostering one in my home, and I certainly would NEVER consider having one anywhere near a home with children. The kinder gentler “Pibble” PR campaign can do what it wants, but pretending like we don’t know that these animals are victims of instinct and years of irresponsible bad breeding is only going to lead to even more people getting hurt.

      • Blueathena623

        Thank you.

      • http://fairlyoddmedia.com/ Frances Locke

        After hurricane Sandy I had my sister stay with me while her home was repaired and that included her pittbull. As much as I love that dog I understood the danger and kept it 100% separated from my kids and other pets (thankfully we have the space to do that, which is rare in NYC). I have worked with rescue organizations for years and I have lived the horror stories myself in shelters. I agree with you so much.

      • Andrew Mckay

        great post. I have been following the pit bull debate closely for about a year. I was attacked totally unprovoked while running and to be honest the subject had not bothered me as a typical human we are only really interested in something that effects us. I have read alot from both sides and this just sums it up for me. It is what it is .

    • Kaitlin

      Getting your panties in a bind because people disagreed with your last post is poor journalism. “You guys got all rage-y at me and told me all about how everyone should have 20 dogs roaming free in their yards and that dog breeders are awesome people and pitbulls are not strong dogs at all and they are as dangerous as kittens.” I don’t think anyone said exactly that, and making this about how you’re right and other people are wrong is missing the point of this unfortunate event, which is don’t leave your kids unattended.

      • Kat

        Oh come on, that was obviously tongue in cheek.

    • Casey

      The pit bull temperament rating is an 84.6%. That’s higher than golden retrievers, beagles, chihuahuas, cocker spaniels, yorkshire terriers and many more. So, yeah, your article/argument about them being inherently dangerous is stupid. Any large dog shouldn’t be around babies and as much as we love them all animals are unpredictable.
      But trying to turn this into an argument against pitbulls is just stupid. So shame on you, idiot.

      http://einhorninsurance.com/california-insurance/pit-bulls-pass-atts-temperament-test/

      • http://www.facebook.com/paul.white.3532507 Paul White

        Well, you said some good info but good lord, you said it in the most disagreeable way possible.

      • Simone

        The PUREBRED pitbull temperament rating is ESTIMATED to be at 84.6% according to certain groups with a vested interest in promoting it as such. That statistic is measuring the temperament of individual dogs, when they are single instead of in a pack. That ‘statistic’ has no useful information to give us about the vast majority of pitbulls, and part-pitbulls, and pitbulls that have been permitted to wander and disrespect humans, and pitbulls that have been blooded, and badly-raised pitbulls in the world. It also has nothing to tell us about the correlation between social characteristics of people who tend to own pitbulls, and attacks by pitbulls. That statistic, standing alone, is a piece of crap. It is meaningless.

      • Jason Fraser

        You are referencing the ATTS, which was NOT created to evaluate dogs for “pet” suitability. It was developed in 1977 by Alfons Ertelt and he was a printer, NOT an animal behaviorist. He owned German shepherds and was involved in the sport called shutzhund, which involves training dogs in the same manner in which police dogs are trained. The ATTS was intended to test working dogs for jobs such as police work and favors bold animals, i.e., dogs that face danger head-on without hesitation or fear. Courage was a desirable trait, timidity an undesirable trait. Thus, German shepherds did much better on the ATTS than did collies and other timid breeds. In fact, 95% of the dogs that fail the ATTS do so because they “lack confidence,” e.g., when approaching a weirdly-dressed stranger. Of course, pit bulls are going to score well on a test geared toward aggressive behavior because these monsters were bred for the purpose of fighting and killing other pit bulls and nothing deters them, certainly not weirdly-dressed strangers!

    • Pam

      Dogs in large groups are inherently more dangerous simply because of numbers and because dog playing involves biting and slamming into each other. It is not about the breed, like everyone has said I have met nice pitbulls and mean ones I would never touch, but that was dependent on the owner. My dog, who is a Blue Heeler/Australian Cattle dog, is normally a deeply affection guy but hates men he hasn’t met many times and will attack them if he doesn’t wear his muzzle. We know our dogs limits, he would never be with our kids alone just because you never know with his temperament and especially not if there are other dogs because he goes crazy with them! I love dogs and I do think owning a pet and a having a child together is reasonable you just have to be careful, seven dogs is a lot! Seven big, strong dogs of any kind would scare me with a 21 month old, I mean Golden Retrievers are totally docile but seven of them in a pack would scare me.
      The point is that it isn’t about the breed, its about bad decisions on the adults part in this situation. I feel for this poor young mama, I 16 when my oldest was born and had to get my GED while living with my dad, parenting is hard in someone’s home that isn’t necessarily set up for you and your kid, she was clearly thought her mother was watching the baby so I really dont know why there isn’t any charge going to the person who actually let a baby walk outside to be torn apart by dogs. That the part that shocks me in this article.

    • Tea

      We had a pit when I was a baby, she was an angel and the sweetest derpy dog ever. We had a GSD too, but my mother never left me alone with them, not until I out-weighed both. Our next door neighbors back in no-where Indiana had a pitt. My partner was working on his bike, and the dog went over the fence to bite his shoulder when he bent over to do something on his bike. Upbringing can do so much for a dog, and I’m not denying that certain breeds have certain dispositions. Some pitts are awesome, some are not, and a lot of the kinds of people who get pits shouldn’t have them. They were the dog of choice in our very poor, not very safe neighborhood, and these were not beloved family pets that got to sleep in the house, get walks around the park and get routine vet care. They were status symbols, poorly socialized, and mostly out-door only dogs, and that can do a lot for the behavior of one.

      I don’t think animals should be left alone with children, no matter how sweet. Not because they may “snap” any moment, but because a dog can even kill a child without trying. My mother had a co-worker/accquaintance who owned a Bernese Mountain Dog. She was big, docile, affectionate and attentive, not a mean bone in her body. She also killed their child, because the baby was crying, and she picked it up like a puppy. The family was heartbroken at the loss of their baby, and then had to fight tooth and nail to not have their dog euthanized as well. She wasn’t vicious, she didn’t “snap”, she was just an animal reacting in a way that no one predicted could happen.

    • PSG

      “I still think the baby should have never been left alone”

      That’s pretty much it, right there.

    • Amy

      I have a 9 year old Affenpinscher. Despite her small size, she is aggressive and is known to snap. Instead of risking her biting someone, we don’t let anyone pet her. Ever. The only exceptions are close friends and family who know her and us and who she has had time to adjust to. Other dogs cannot approach her and children are NEVER allowed near her. I they approach her we pick her up and take her away.

      There’s no reason the child should have been left alone with the dogs- whatever their breed may be. They shouldn’t have been roped together like thar in the first place. Any dog will have a pack mentality and could see a little child as a threat.

      Any responsible dog owner would have known this. I grew up with a relative who bread large dogs- mastiffs, Great Danes and Irish wolfhounds. There were no more than two to a group and they were trained and socialized com a young age. It’s about knowledge and common sense. Any group of large dogs is a danger.

      Then people buy Pitts without knowing common sense things like that and rope a ton into a group and classify them as an exception to aggressive breeds. It’s their nature. They’ve been bread aggressively for a long time. It takes a responsible, smart owner to know how to train them right and keep their family safe as well.

      My heart breaks for this family. This could have been prevented.

    • Blueathena623

      Old post, but
      1. I don’t think children should be left along with any dog
      2. I don’t get why people are comparing bites to fatalities, especially a hamster bite to being mauled to death by a pit bull. They are also ignoring the fact that adults are killed by pit bulls, not just small children.

      • Jason Fraser

        They’re pit nutters! They lack the ability to reason.

      • A-nony-mous

        Yes, because you’ve shown yourself to be so impartial. Being extremely anti-pit is as ‘nutty’ as being too overly ‘pro pit’.

      • calgarth

        Says who?

      • http://www.facebook.com/iwill.findu.90 Iwill Findu

        I don’t own a pit bull, nor is a pit bull even in my top 10 lists of dogs that I would own. But I would still defend the breed due to the fact any dog needs a responsible owner that is going to take care of it needs. Failure to do so will turn any breed mean. When a dog breed is popular do you think that only responsible people own the dogs (The world would be a much better place for animals IF only responsible people were allowed them).

        Also you should never leave a small child alone with a dog, both dogs and children are unpredictable. Dogs function differently then people so if you have a toddler do something stupid (like say jab a pencil in the dogs ear) and hurt that dog, how do you think the dog is going to react? I think there would be a good chance that toddler would get bitten in the face. Even more so when you think dogs train their own young with bites to correct, as part of their nature.

        But hey I would defend pit bulls as much as any other breed. Even ones I hate like the chihuahua. But I must be a pit nutter because I would dare to defend the breed.

    • A-nony-mous

      I’ll try and write this quickly but there’s a lot I want to cover. There’s something to be said for responsible ownership of any breed of dog, whether large or small. I got very curious about the dog attacks and I started to dig and dig as much as I could to try and find patterns and there do seem to be some things I noticed.

      A lot of the attacks took place at the grandmother’s house. This is true of the Jack Russel that killed the 8 day old in England in 2011, the Mastiff-Ridgeback that killed the 1 year old in Nevada in 2012, the Jack Russel and Staffordshire Bull Terrier that killed the 3 month old in Wales in 2009, the pitbull type (no specific breed given) that killed the 5 year old in England in 2007, the pitbull type that killed a 16 month old in New Mexico. And in the more recent case of Dax Borchardt, the 14 month old who was killed by two pitbull type dogs in Wisconsin in March it happened at the sitter’s house.

      Several attacks occurred when the child was in a baby swing and left unsupervised with a dog. Perhaps there’s something about the back and forth movement, especially if combined with a baby that is squeaking/crying.

      Many both fatal and non-fatal attacks had red flags prior to the ‘big incident’. Many owners were known in the community and even had prior citations with animal welfare and law enforcement. Neighbors reported the Jack Russel that killed the 8-day-old in England as being vicious and trying to attack their hand when they put cards through the mail slot. The owner of the Mastiff who killed a 52 year old woman in London in 2010 had previously been ‘banned from owning any animal, or having anything to do with keeping or transporting animal’ but owned more dogs anyway. The Siberian Huskies who killed the baby in Alberta were part of his parents dog-sledding business. They were outside working dogs that weren’t really raised or intended to be pets.

      As far as pitbulls go this situation becomes even worse.

      5 year old Ellie had little chance of surviving dog or no it seemed.
      – Of her grandmother who was watching her that night: “Ms Simpson, who had drunk two bottles of wine and smoked 10 cannabis joints prior to the attack, had broken a family rule by letting Reuben into the house while Ellie was there. The jury heard Ms Simpson was also charged with possession of heroin found in her home after police searched it following Ellie’s death. The court was also told Ms Simpson was jailed for 42 months in 1989 for heroin possession, but this was banned from being reported while the trial was ongoing.”
      – Of the Uncle who was the owner of the dog: “In 2003, he had been sentenced to 21 months in a young offenders institute for possessing 20kg (44lbs), or £24,000 worth of cannabis with intent to supply, after his car was stopped by police.”
      – And of the dog itself prior to the incident: “Six weeks before the fatal attack, Reuben had viciously assaulted Lindsey Simpson’s sister Kelsey, now 20. She needed hospital treatment to the bite wounds in her leg during the unprovoked attack. In another incident in May 2006, Reuben suddenly attacked a Jack Russell dog called Milo as it was being walked by its owner William Dinsdale near the Simpson’s house.”

      So is it this dog and this dog’s breeds fault that it was owned and subjected to a series of clearly irresponsible owners?

      The vet for the two dogs in the Dax Borchardt incident were noted as being ‘stand-offish’ and easily startled, yet the babysitter refused to lock them away during her sitting duties. Again, is that the breed’s fault that this girl knew she had two very skittish, jumpy, nervous dogs and thought the best thing to do was to keep them around a strange young child she was babysitting?

      The dog involved in the Ryan Maxwell incident in March “The pit bull that killed 7-year-old Ryan Maxwell last week was involved in at least four incidents with law enforcement officials since June 2012″
      – The owners allowed two dogs (including that one) to run loose in June 2012 and police were called and the owners issued a citation.
      – Two months after that one of the owners was arrested for shooting another man to death.
      – A few days later the remaining owner moved and took the dogs and animal welfare was called to check on them because she was reported to be leaving them outside in the cold all the time. Following the dog attack March 2, Ferguson insisted the Humane Society take the second pit bull. “The owner told us to take it,” Buckmaster said. “It wasn’t aggressive, but it was pretty hungry, and its ribs were showing.”

      So the dog is basically freezing and starving to death and owned by a murderer but I’m sure it’s just a breed trait, right?

      The PBs that attacked (non fatally) Linda Henry in Louisiana in March were mixed-gendered, unspayed and had recently bred and Henry violated a city ordinance that required owners to keep their PBs in a kennel when not accompanied by their owner.

      The PB-type that attacked the little girl walking down the street in the Bronx, little is known about it or it’s owner except that he’s pretty clearly irresponsible both because his dog got loose and because he didn’t seem to care that it was attacking somebody.

      The PB type that attacked a child in Arkansas in 2012: The mother of the child and owner of the dog had lied on the Humane Society application form. She had a child but ticked the ‘No children’ box on the application form to get around their procedures.

      The PB type that attacked a woman in Orange County, Florida in 2012 was, well, it pretty much speaks for itself: “Police say 30-year-old Ian Summers had taken Robin Johnson, a known prostitute, to a house in order to have sex and smoke crack. In the home was a pit bull named Feisty, a pit bull with a long history of attacking people. Summers admitted he was scared of the dog, but that it was necessary for Johnson to meet Feisty so that it would not get aggressive towards her. “I had to introduce her to the dog because he is very aggressive and has bitten five people over the last month,” Summers later told deputies. Summers was charged with a misdemeanor charge of culpable negligence, and a felony charge of burglary of an occupied dwelling. Turns out he didn’t live at the home as he initially told police. He had moved out last November after SWAT raided the house for narcotics.” So again, breed’s fault? Dog’s fault? Think a Golden Retriever would’ve been any better in this sort of situation? If he’s homeless and supporting both a crack habit and buying prostitutes then I doubt he’s buying enough dog food or stimulating the dog so the dog is hungry, bored, restless and downright cabin-fevered.

      Anyway. Sorry this is long but I think people need to dig further. I often had to look at up to 12 different reports on each incident to piecemeal this information together. Too many reports are basically only a paragraph long; a dog has attacked and someone is injured or dead in X area. Only one or two out of a dozen reports go into further details about the owner and prior issues with the dog.

    • http://www.facebook.com/stephanie.blakelastra Stephanie Blake-Lastra

      I never let my small daughters near large dogs. I don’t care how sweet they are, they are still an ANIMAL and animals can get violent out of nowhere. To me its not worth the risk. I have nothing against pitbulls but I don’t think small children should be around them or any breed large enough to kill them

      • http://www.facebook.com/iwill.findu.90 Iwill Findu

        Any sized dog is large enough to do some real damage, don’t just single out large dogs.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001723038692 Kyle Blank

      There really is no such thing as a “pitbull,” that is a term that refers to any of a number of different dog breeds with similar characteristics. Most of the dogs referred to as “pitbulls” are very friendly dogs that are excellent to have around children. The idea that they are some very deadly and dangerous dog is a myth that caught on because so many drug dealers use them as fighting dogs. But, all that said, dogs are still dogs. You don’t leave any baby around any dogs alone.

    • Sandy

      I think pack mentality also played a role here. It’s one thing to have one dog. But in dogs, pack think is a lot like group think in people. They can become less of the docile family pets they usually are and act more like animals, which they really are.

      One of the most important things you learn when you actually complete a dog training class is to remember that this is an animal and to keep in mind what is an appropriate expectation of it and what is asking waaaaay too much. It’s fun to anthropomorphize dogs. And really when you get to know them well, it’s easy. But it leads you to forget that it is an animal.

      You also learn a lot about your responsibility to protect the dog from the kind of trouble that can lead your beloved friend to being euthanized. From stepping in when a person who does not know how to approach a dog pops straight down into his face, to making sure that his interactions with people who don’t move like typical adult humans are controlled (they often get freaked out by kids with their jerky movements, people on crutches, and need a controlled chance to see that this is okay, too), and that their interactions with children are controlled because a number of family dogs don’t need to be alpha but they sure aren’t going to be the last in the line and will continuously try to rank the youngest member of the family.

    • Joe bob

      I know people love to say blame the owner, not the breed. And yes that’s partially true. But even the best behaved Pitts can be a little unpredictable. Heck, any dog can, but Pitts especially. My Bassett hound was bred to sniff out rabbits. Despite never being taught this is instinctual for him. Pitts have been bred over the years for protection and fighting. So yes they are bred to be a little more aggressive. People who own pitts should be aware of that. In the end it’s always the owners fault. You don’t leave small children alone near large dogs… Period. Especially Pitts.

    • Ndg

      I am a dog owner. One of my dogs is part pit. She is a therapy dog. She loves children and I feel 100000% comfortable letting my kids play alone with her.
      The thing about pitbulls…all dogs for that matter…they are products of their environment. I hate to say this….I really do…but something about a teen mom with multiple dogs sounds fishy….these dogs were not adopted as family dogs. These dos were probably fighting dogs (which is the sad case for many pits.)
      There are stories of all breeds killing people…labs, beagles, pits, poodles!!! They’re animals and that’s that. Don’t bully one breed. That’s like saying all African American men are thugs.

    • Rachel Sea

      Pit-type dogs, when tested for temperament are found to be the second least likely to bite, after Golden retrievers. Yes, quite a few are raised wrong, and shelter dogs have unknown histories, but that doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with the breed, only the training. I’ve worked with animals my whole life, and I will trust a pit-type, over a Daschund or Beagle, every time. No young child should ever be left alone with an animal large enough to injure. The family in question should have had better safeguards, but the same thing happens with Labradors and Dalmatians.

    • noche

      Any breed of dog has the potential to be dangerous, l never leave my child alone with any animal. I’ve had my share of pitbulls and they’re only loyal to those they respect and see as their owners, including children. The fact isn’t the dog but the damn dog door, it should of been locked.
      I don’t think an 18 yr old child should get 10yrs, yes her daughter is dead. Someone should of been watching that baby, but how the hell could casey anthony get off with only 3 years and she killed her child. We as an nation we are some f-ed up people.

    • Scarlett J. Archer

      Yep, I am all for completely eradicating the pit bull breed. Genetics are important and even the seemingly nicest one can one day turn against a child or adult for no reason at all. Not only that, being a pack animal it can be encouraged easily. Owners of this breed will never learn.

    • melody-mishap

      I’m sorry to say that everyone who has made statement equivalent to”I would never leave a child alone with dog” are under the false assumption that your presence would prevent a dog from harming a child, if the dog decided to attack. My toddler daughter was attacked by a beloved family cocker spaniel, while visiting relatives, in a living room with six adults present. In fact, her father was sitting within arms reach and was able to lift her up and away from the dog, but not before she was injured severely enough to put her in the hospital for 10 days(four of those days in icu), with deep wounds on her face and trying to fight an overwhelming infection. My husband was close enough to lift her with one arm, without standing up. The dog was twenty pounds, not seventy five, and had been a trusted family pet for over a decade with no incidents before that day. My daughter wad not poking or teasing. She simply toddled too close for comfort. The point I’m trying to make is: Parents…please never take a chance with any dog, no matter the size or how trusted they are with children. It might be unusual, but any dog has the potential to attack.

    • Casey

      I actually have been bitten in the face by a dog. It was a collie, not a pit bull. She had long been a family dog, but she was getting older. I was petting her and she was probably displaying some signs that she was uncomfortable, but as a child I didn’t notice. I got bit in the face, right beside my eye and nose. I still have a scar, but I don’t blame the dog, nor was it “put down” or anything like that. These things do happen, regardless of how well dogs are trained, simply because they are still animals. There will always be a risk. However, in the story above, the woman and her mother should definitely be punished because there were so many ways to prevent that incident.

    • Casey

      Also, since there is a lot of hatred going on against pitbulls in this thread, I’d like to add this link to a story about a staffordshire terrier, which is considered a pit. She was found abandoned, frozen into a puddle and about 4lbs total. She was nursed back to health and adopted by a family with a son who has autism. And this “vicious” breed of a dog has actually helped turn this boy’s life around completely, making him more social and comfortable with sharing his personal space. It’s a touching story, and actually quite common if you do a little research. Pitbulls aren’t inherently evil — and this story is just one of many proving it.
      http://todayhealth.today.com/_news/2013/04/28/17708432-xena-the-warrior-puppy-rescued-from-abuse-helps-8-year-old-boy-with-autism

    • pitbull attack survivor

      On mothers day my sons pitbull came into our house killed our cat and attached me and my wife. I had no chance against this dog alone the crushing power of this dogs jaws was like nothing I have ever felt. I have 20 puncture wounds in my arm and hand some go right to the bone!! My hand is also fractured!! I am no small man I had 200 pounds on this dog and could not contain him…it to 2 full grown men and help from my wife to choke this dog enough to weaken it so we could get a chain around its neck and drag it out side. TheSe dogs are killers nothing more!! I worked in a locked mental health ward with killers…never saw such agression as that dog had!

      • http://www.thegrayhomestead.com Richard Gray

        This is the most educated, well written response I have ever read. Before reading this comment, I loved pit bulls. Now, since reading this comment, I absolutely hate pit bulls. If this 280 pound man had no chance against a raging pit bull, how could anyone? I am sure his son is a 100% legit, well caring person who undoubtedly properly socialized and properly trained his dog, as evidenced by how easily he disengaged his dog from the undesired behavior. This dog was completely at fault, and because of that, all pit bulls are killers – nothing more.

        For the edification of those of you who want to claim that pit bulls are bred to be dangerous, such as this poster, you can’t have it both ways. Some pits were bred to fight. However, those same dogs were bred to respect humans. They were bred so that their humans could separate them without being bitten. So, if you want to claim that they are genetically aggressive, you also have to admit that they are genetically submissive to humans. Remember that the next time you want to condemn the breed.