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Old 10-03-2009, 10:00 PM
Location: West Palm
21 posts, read 39,626 times
Reputation: 40


I don't think that having a talk with your new neighbor this soon is a good idea. At least welcome him to the neighborhood! I own 4 American Pit Bull Terriers and I know what it is like to feel like you are being attacked because of the breed you love. I have never allowed any of my dogs off the leash unless in a fenced yard, so please do not think I'm in anyway excusing his behavior. BUT..I do think you might be taking the owner actions out on the breed. Im wondering if the leash problem is even your main concern. What kind of dogs do you own? Did you know that Pit Bulls test higher in temperment testing than golden retrievers do?
Having said all of that...the next time you see your neighbor outside just start a conversation about the neighborhood. Make him feel welcomed. Then briefly mention that there is a leash law in your city. Also say that you are only concerned for HIS dog because your dogs become aggressive when another dog approaches "their" fence.
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Old 10-03-2009, 10:01 PM
Location: St. Augustine, Florida
1,930 posts, read 9,067,520 times
Reputation: 1012
Originally Posted by SoHoVe View Post
As of yesterday it appears the house next to mine has sold and people are in the process of moving in...working on the house ect. I really thought nothing of it.

Yesterday evening was unseasonably cool so I had planned to play/work with my dogs outside in my back yard HOWEVER these new people apparently have a pit bull and allow him off leash so he/she was at my gate (wrought iron) and my dogs went nuts trying to protect their yard. My dogs were acting agressively towards it...and it in turn was snarling, snapping ect but fortunately it stayed about a 6 inches away from the gate. My dogs are generally really good with other dogs its only when they are in " their" yard that they become defensive (which I think is normal...correct me if I am wrong). The owner did retrieve his dog after several minutes of chaos and put him in the back yard. At this point my dogs were waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay
over stimulated and we had to retreat back into the house where they remained agitated for several hours.

My concern is this...how responsible is this guy??? Yes he removed his dog but why was the dog loose to begin with? I take two of my dogs with me to work basically everyday I do not want to have to worry about them being ambushed on the way to my truck. Years ago I fostered a Pit who was a very sweet dog and unbelievably intelligent...because he was a pit he was never off leash not for ONE second. My other and very real concern is this dog appeared young and fit...he could jump the wall between our yards with no problem and that no doubt would lead to big problems. I have no idea if this gentleman even realizes that...if I had a pit I would not have purchased a house with 5 ft walls but some people don't think of these things.
So I think I need to approach this guy now with my concerns. I don't want to come across as breed biased but the fact is his dog could easily kill one of mine and thus far I am not viewing him as being very responsible which is a bad combination IMHO. Personally I love Pits...admire them greatly, I just would never take on the responsibilty of having one in my home again.

So how would you approach this or do you think I am jumping the gun?

I have not seen the dog outside today.
I do understand your concern in this situation. I would suggest you talk to the owner. I mean, obviously, especially at this point, I wouldn't suggest being rude. I'd suggest you just go introduce yourself, welcome your new neighbors to the neighborhood, and then casually bring up your concerns. That's really all I can think of that you could do right now.

My husband and I love all 3 of the "pit bull" breeds, but especially American Pit Bull Terriers. APBTs are definitely our breed of choice! We have owned 3 APBTs since my husband and I have been together and all of them were super intelligent, very obedient, loving, loyal and gentle. As I'm sure you know, seeing as how you have spent time around "pit bulls", most of the crap we hear about them from people, on the news, etc, are nothing but myths. A properly bred, raised, trained, socialized and cared for "pit bull" should not be human aggressive. "Pit bulls" were bred specifically to be human friendly. They shouldn't be animal aggressive either. I mean, "pit bulls" were originally bred for things like ratting, fighting other animals, etc, but they are not (or at least should not be) used for fighting anymore. Our "pit bulls" were not animal aggressive in the least. However, because of what they were originally bred for, we were always very cautious of other animals. Like we wouldn't leave our dogs together unattended, etc, just to always be safe. Even though we never had any animal aggression issues. Anyway, from what you said, it seems like the "pit bull" maybe felt threatened by your dogs and was just being aggressive back. I'm not saying you or your dogs did anything wrong, I completely understand that your dogs would be protective of their yard, but to another dog, dogs barking and growling would be threatening.

As far as the "pit bull" jumping the fence, there's no doubt in my mind that it could do that. Brooklyn, our male APBT, could easily jump 6 feet, but he could get higher than that. He use to get a stick off of our roof. He would get a running start then jump. He could jump about 6 feet, like I said, and then he would kind of run up the side of the house to get the stick that was 8' 4" off the ground! But, seeing as how it stayed back 6 inches or so, it doesn't look like the "pit bull" is interested in jumping the fence. To me it sounds like he was just checking things out.

And, last but not least, as far as whether or not that owner is responsible or not, I really couldn't say. I know people who will walk their Labs or Hounds all around the neighborhood without leashes even though we have leash laws here. God forbid someone walk any so-called "dangerous" breed without a leash though! I personally don't agree with any dog, regardless of the breed, ever being walked without a leash. It seems like the people in our neighborhood just assume because their dogs are normally friendly that it's okay to break the law, but I completely disagree with that. Not only could the dog end up getting hurt, even if the dog is normally friendly, or has always been friendly, dogs are still dogs are something could set them off, period. Anyway, my point is that in a way, I consider anyone who walks their dog without a leash an irresponsible owner. At least when it comes to walks. But, I don't know your neighbor or his dog, so I really couldn't say. If the dog is in his yard without a leash, while I wouldn't do that myself, I don't consider that being an irresponsible owner.

So yeah, I don't know, like I said, I would suggest you just bring up your concerns and see how it goes from there. Good luck with everything!

Oh, and I was curious, what kind of dogs do you own?
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Old 10-04-2009, 10:54 AM
Location: Mountains of middle TN
5,232 posts, read 12,820,854 times
Reputation: 5985
I think a chat with the owner is a good idea. Take a basket of muffins and / or cookies over and welcome him to the neighborhood. Tell him you noticed he has a dog too, and it's nice to have another responsible pet owner around. Then mention that the dog must be a Houdini, escaping the way it did in the middle of the chaos of moving into a new home. Hopefully he gets the message. In the conversation mention his fenced yard and ask questions about his dog.

I've got 2 pits in my house right now - one is mine and the other is a foster that is adopted and going to her new home Tuesday. I'm picking up a mom and 4 month old baby after work today that were pulled from a shelter. They're amazing breeds, testing consistently in the very top range of temperament tests when compared to other breeds. They're tested in the high 90's while other breeds that most people think of as perfectly well behaved tested in the 80s.

Unfortunately in the hands of idiots, they can be just as dangerous as other breeds. And they are very athletic. My pit can jump the 5-1/2 foot high wall that runs the length of our land. From a stand still. Right in front of it. She's amazing. It unfortunately makes keeping her confined very difficult and we have to tie her when she's out front with us on a very long cable. We walk her on a leash. Sometimes when you have a dog that outsmarts you, you've got to go back to the basics.

I"m hoping this guy just got busy and the dog snuck out. The fence between him and your dogs is probably what got them all worked up. My guess is if all the dogs are well socialized, if they were in an area together they'd be fine.
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