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Behind the Headlines: Owners, Shelter Come to the Defense of Pit Bulls

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SACRAMENTO –

It’s an all too familiar scene played out in the media.  On Sunday a Stockton woman was attacked by two Pit Bulls.  Her bites so severe she remained in the hospital this week.

The dogs are in the care of Animal Control.  They will likely be labeled aggressive and later destroyed.

At any particular Animal Shelter across the country, the overwhelming breed you’ll find is Pit Bulls.  But ask most who work at the City of Sacramento Shelter and their opinion is surprisingly different.

“When I got here, I was afraid of them,” admitted Shelter Manager Gina Knepp.  “I had never been around one.  Never known anyone who owned one.  But now their my favorite.”

Ricardo Gaitan, an Animal Care Tech at the Shelter has been to both sides with this breed.  He’s been a Pit Bull owner and he regularly has to euthanize the dogs.

“It’s sad.  It’s depressing.  It really takes a part of you,” expressed Gaitan.  “People need to change their mentality around Pit Bulls.  It’s an excellent breed, but if it’s bred like any other animal. If you raise it wrong, you will have negative results.”

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1 Comment

  • sassikat66

    Excellent job Mark and Fox40 for covering pit bulls in a positive way. Like Gina, I had was afraid of the dogs just 4 years ago in large part due to what you hear in the media. I stumbled on a dog not even knowing her breed and she is the best, most loving dog I have had. We just adopted via rescue a second pit bull in large part to add to our family but also so we can keep advocating for this breed that is very misunderstood. I am sorry for the girl in Stockton that was hurt or anyone else by a dog attack but in 99% of these cases the dogs are not neutered and again it comes down to being a responsible dog owner. Again, I’m really happy for Fox40 doing such a good story and if anyone wants to really understand how the media has played into the negative positioning of this breed, watch, “Beyond the Myth”. It will open your eyes and if you love animals, it will break your heart.