Friday, October 1, 2010

I say let's ban cars!

In tonight's "Outlaw" the issue was a child who died after having been forgotten in a car. This prompted me to look up some statistics. According to Kids and Cars, a Kansas-based organization, in 2010, a record number of children - 48 - have died of hyperthermia after being left or trapped in a hot car or truck. My heart breaks at the thought of what those parents must be experiencing.

According to the worthless Merritt Clifton "report," the most often cited b.s. source by self-serving entities, such as lawyers and politicians who clearly have an ax to grind, an average of 17 deaths a year are attributable to dog bites. Let's suppose that the shysters (comes from the German term scheisser, meaning “one who defecates”) who try frighten us into suing somebody (actually ANYBODY), are correct and that "the number of fatal dog attacks in the USA has been going up."

Since the response of politicians, the media, and some ill-educate mindless organizations to dog fatalities is to advocate the ban and the murder a million dogs a year, it follows that we should ban cars and/or kill car manufacturers.

Sounds logical to me.

P.S. I am curious... how come no car manufacturer has come up with a gizmo that would ding your head off if you locked and left your kid in the car? Did you know there is no law that says you can't leave your child in the car unattended? You get it? No law, no responsibility. See, we have to legislate common sense.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Most Dangerous Breeds?

I really like the Dog Politics Weblog.

This excerpt is from an article published on it:

The Most Dangerous Breeds?

How To Stop Breed Bans - New eBook

I'll tell you the most dangerous breeds - write these down!

#1 All Time Dangerous Breed:

The #1 most dangerous breed are media outlets that deliberately breed fear, spreading myths and lies about dog breeds and canine behavior through irresponsible reporting and reinforcement of undeserved and negative breed stereotypes

What You Can Do About It:

  1. Call up the paper, the TV station or email the website and complain about the biased dog story
  2. Ask for the Editor, Sales Manager and/or Program Director
  3. Tell them you won't read, watch or visit
  4. Tell then you won't patronize their advertisers until they stop their biased coverage
  5. Tell them they have the opportunity to spread knowledge, not fear
  6. Tell them My Dog Votes!
#2 All Time Dangerous Breed:

The #2 most dangerous breeds are the local and state politicians that feed on the fear created by the irresponsible media, and the public's ignorance. They are greedy for the headlines, campaign dough and do the bidding of the private sector instead of truly advocating for the public health, safety and welfare. They pass breed bans , weight or size restrictions, public space bans, and mandatory microchip laws, and other anti-dog legislation limiting the rights of responsible tax-paying citizens rather than deal with their criminal and social problems.

What You Can Do About It:

  1. Call or write the offending local of state elected official and complain about the breed ban or other anti-dog legislation
  2. Tell them you want the ban overturned in favor of breed-neutral legislation
  3. Tell them you want any other anti-dog legislation stopped or overturned
  4. Tell them you will vote them out in the next election
  5. Tell them you will vote out any politician that supported the ban
  6. Tell them you will rally every dog owner in town against them
  7. Tell them they have the opportunity to educate instead of legislate
  8. Tell them My Dog Votes!

#3 All Time Dangerous Breed:

The #3 most dangerous breeds are the apathetic dog owners who say nothing, or do nothing because they think they cannot affect change, or fight the sytem, or it doesn't affect them directly. Or maybe they just don't care - or won't care - that is - until they come for their dog.

What You Can Do About It:

  1. Tell all of your friends, neighbors, relatives and associates, regardless of whether or not they own a dog about the breed ban or other anti-dog legislation
  2. Tell them they must support their fellow dog owners, friends, and neighbors
  3. Tell them if we don't stand together now, we all fall
  4. Tell them they have the opportunity to unite the community, not divide the community
  5. Tell them to do it for their dog
  6. Tell them My Dog Votes!

Now get off your butts and go do it.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Mobile police now say dogs that attacked ponies were not pit bulls

Whaddya Know? A "news agency" actually publishes corrected information. Miracles will never cease. Of, course this one was picked up (so far) only by local media and blogs.

Well, here it is:

Published: Wednesday, August 25, 2010, 4:00 PM
by David Ferrara, Press-Register

MOBILE, Ala. -- A pack of dogs that attacked two miniature ponies owned by the Mobile Police Department were multiple mixed-breeds, not pit bulls, police said this afternoon.
An officer on patrol heard yelping and found the ponies, Woggie and Little Joe, being attacked by at least six dogs at about 1:50 a.m. Tuesday morning just outside the department's barn at 1251 Virginia Street, according to police spokesman Christopher Levy.
The ponies were taken to a Highland Animal Hospital in Daphne, where they later died, according to Sgt. Eddie Carr, who heads the department's Mounted Unit.
Police caught three of the dogs, which were later euthanized, and set traps to catch the others.
The responding officer originally described the dogs as pit bulls, and police initially reported the incident as a pit bull attack.  However, a veterinarian who euthanized the dogs later said they were "very aggressive" mixed-breeds, according to Levy.
For much of the past year, aggressive dogs have killed at least eight cats kept around the stables, Carr said. Officers who work in the Mounted Unit have tried to keep the dogs away in the past.
Police believe that someone owns the dogs, and the owners could face criminal charges. Investigators were looking into tips this afternoon, Levy said.
Many in the department's Mounted Unit had become attached to the ponies, which stood no taller than 28 inches, Carr said.
"We considered them officers, because they became our friends," Carr said.
Little Joe, a 2-year-old named for Deputy Chief Joe Kennedy, and Woggie, a 3-year-old, were purchased for a minimal price about two years ago, Carr said. They ate only about 50-pounds of feed a month, and cost little to maintain.
Police had plans to use the ponies to help pull children with disabilities through a Mardi Gras parade next year, Carr added.
"We took good care of them," Carr said. "They were here for the public -- the kids especially. We were proud of these two fellas."

A good link

Very extensive media "news" about Pit Bulls is by PitOwner whose motto is: Punish the OWNER for allowing the deed, and the dog, if you must, but NOT the breed!

Love it!

Saturday, August 21, 2010


I have been watching all postings on the Internet regarding "Pit Bulls." It's easy, if you use iCurrent. 

The most often-seen ignorant remark by some yahoo is that 'Pit Bulls have been bred to do one thing and one thing only “rip your face off.”' Normally, I would say that everybody is entitled to an opinion. Unfortunately sometimes opinions are based on insufficient data. To come to a rational and, ideally, a scientific conclusion one would have to do a bit of homework and, at the least, have several sources of information other than media-fed sensationalistic and hysterical pumping out of misinformation created simply to sell more copy.

The Clifton Report (2009), which is frequently cited by Pit Bull haters, was compiled from press reports of dog attack deaths and severe bites in the United States and Canada. Clifton’s only source is the… press: specifically, press accounts of dog bites requiring “extensive hospitalization” and caused by “clearly identified” animals. Elsewhere in this blog I provided that most people, including doctors, EMTs, police officers, or animal control officers cannot tell a Pit Bull from any of several dozen dogs.

Clifton’s report never mentions that there is a huge discrepancy between actual hospital records and press accounts of dog attacks --- between relatively objective data, in other words, and highly subjective reporting and editing with an eye to selling papers.

If Clifton’s pit bull numbers are correct, and no more than 49 of the 6,000 or so hospitalizations due to severe dog bites in the U.S. each year are a result of pit bull bites or attacks, then Pit Bulls and Pit mixes are responsible for less than one percent of those hospitalizations.

0.82%. Eighty-two hundredths of a percent of hospitalizations due to dog bites in the U.S. each year are a result of pit bull bites or attacks, if the press has accurately represented the number of serious attacks by pit bulls and pit mixes.

The Clifton report has value ONLY as proof of media bias,. The media have done a great job convincing the public that only "dangerous breeds" hurt people. Editors in a shrinking market know that it is more lucrative to rail against Pit Bulls than talk about the importance of puppy socialization and parent supervision and how to prevent resource guarding. Clifton’s list illustrates perfectly what the AVMA Task Force on Canine Aggression calls “media-driven portrayals of a specific breed as ‘dangerous.’

A more rational and believable opinion comes for The Center of Disease Control. The latest CDC "Dog Bite: Fact Sheet" includes a disclaimer regarding this study, saying that "it does not identify specific breeds that are most likely to bite or kill, and thus is not appropriate for policy-making decisions related to the topic. Each year, 4.7 million Americans are bitten by dogs. These bites result in approximately 16 fatalities; about 0.0002 percent of the total number of people bitten. These relatively few fatalities offer the only available information about breeds involved in dog bites. There is currently no accurate way to identify the number of dogs of a particular breed, and consequently no measure to determine which breeds are more likely to bite or kill." "Dog Bite: Fact Sheet". Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
If you want facts on dog aggression, read A Community Approach to Dog Bite Prevention, the AVMA’s groundbreaking 2001 task force report. [You’ll find it in the sidebar, under More Dog Links]. Seminal quote:
"Dog bite statistics are not really statistics, and they do not give an accurate picture of dogs that bite."

For the record, the AVMA task force included representatives from the American Veterinary Medical Association; the American Academy of Pediatrics; the American College of Emergency Physicians; the Professional Liability Insurance Trust; the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists; the American Medical Association; the National Animal Control Association; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; and the Humane Society of the United States.

Just because you read it in the papers, saw it on the television news or because you know somebody who has been bitten by a dog that they (or you) THINK is a Pit Bull, doesn’t make the American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT) a breed to be vilified. Most people, and that includes “experts” such as animal control or police officers would not be able to tell the difference between a Pit Bull, a Ca de Beu, a Dogo Argentino, or a Pressa Canario. The latter being guard dogs, specifically bred for defending their human owners.
One would do the “Pit Bull” breed justice by looking at the hundreds of thousands of APBTs that live peacefully, respectfully, and lovingly in hundreds of thousands of homes across America. (I use quotes because for all intents there is no such a thing as a “pitbull” – do your homework).

You don’t have to be a Pit Bull lover to acknowledge that this decade (previous decades the German Sheppard Dog, the Doberman Pinscher, and the Rottweiler occupied the media’s attention) is not representative of the perception that this dog has had in American history. Indeed, if you know a bit of dog history you know that, for 200 years, the Pit Bull has been and is to this day a non-human aggressive dog. In fact, in the early days of dog fighting, handlers stayed in the pit with their dogs and were required to separate them several times by hand, during the fight. Any pit dog showing human aggression was quickly excluded from breeding lines.

Status-seeking dog owners who choose the Pit Bull for a macho image would, most likely, pick another breed if these dogs still carried the reputation of ‘nanny dog’ that they held a generation ago. Remember Petey of the popular classic children’s show called Our Gang, and later Little Rascals?

The dog that for 200 years has been called the “nanny dog” both in Great Britain and in America is and always has been a devoted pet who has to be handled with appropriate care. Would I leave my 2-year-old alone with an APBT? No! But I, by the same token, I would NOT leave my small child alone with ANY dog. There are historical reports of almost any breed having the ability of seriously hurting or even killing a child, and elder or a defenseless person. That includes a Pomeranian.

Let’s acknowledge that not all dogs are meant to be owned by just anybody and some pets (not only dogs) require special expertise, devotion, knowledge, care and commitment. Personally, I would be by far more concerned about the ownership of poisonous snakes, chimpanzees, pythons, tigers, alligators, or scorpions. More people die in a single year by drowning in their bath tubs that have been killed by a dog in 100 years. Is the bath tub at fault? Instead of blaming a breed and advocating extermination, I propose that Pit Bull-haters educate themselves about the real issues regarding dog bites and dog attacks. With the advent of the Internet, there is no longer any excuse for remaining ignorant. See

So, to be fair and smart, let’s start respecting the Pit Bull again. Let’s put the media hype into perspective and get to the root of the problem – the overpopulation of this breed, the mistreatment of this breed, and the myths about this breed. Anecdotal stories and media reports are not reliable. They simply fall in the category of either greed (the media), a bad experience, unwarranted fear or some pathological need to spread rumors. See a terrific article on the whys of urban myths:

I, for one, having done extensive reading and analysis regarding the dog I wanted to have, opted for two APBTs. Both are rescues. My wife, who is a cat person, will tell anybody who cares to listen that my dogs are the best behaved, best-disciplined, most affectionate, and best companions that one could wish for.

Publications on Dog Bites
AVMA Task Force on Canine Aggression and Human-Canine Interactions. A community approach to dog bite prevention. JAVMA 2001; 218: 1732-1749.
This 2001 report, intended for communities interested in developing a comprehensive bite prevention program, includes model legislation for the control of dangerous dogs.

CDC. Nonfatal Dog Bite--Related Injuries Treated in Hospital Emergency Departments--United States, 2001. MMWR 2003; 52(26): 605-610.
This report summarizes the results of CDC’s analysis of data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System-All Injury Program (NEISS-AIP). Findings indicate that in 2001, an estimated 368,245 people were treated in emergency departments for nonfatal dog bite-related injuries, and injury rates were highest among children aged 5-9 years.

Gershman KA, Sacks JJ, Wright JC. Which dogs bite% A case-control study of risk factors. Pediatrics 1994;93:913-7.
Biting and non-biting dogs in Denver are compared. Biting dogs were more likely to be male, unneutered, and chained.

Gilchrist J, Sacks JJ, White D, Kresnow MJ. Dog bites: still a problem% Injury Prevention 2008.
In this study, CDC used a random digit dial survey to determine incidence of dog bites in the U.S. Researchers found that about 4.5 million people in the U.S. are bitten by dogs annually, and about one in five (a total of 885,000) receive medical attention for their injuries.

Quinlan KP, Sacks JJ. Hospitalizations for Dog Bite Injuries. [letter] JAMA 1999; 281:232-233.
Data are provided on the 6,000 hospitalizations for dog bites in 1994, and medical care cost estimates are provided for medically treated dog bites.

Sacks JJ, Sinclair L, Gilchrist J, Golab GC, Lockwood R. Breeds of dogs involved in fatal human attacks in the United States between 1979 and 1998. JAVMA 2000;217:836-840.
This article lists the breeds involved in fatal attacks over 20 years. It does not identify specific breeds that are most likely to bite or kill, and thus is not appropriate for policy-making decisions related to the topic. Each year, 4.5 million Americans are bitten by dogs. These bites result in approximately 16 fatalities; about 0.0002 percent of the total number of people bitten. These relatively few fatalities offer the only available information about breeds involved in dog bites. There is currently no accurate way to identify the number of dogs of a particular breed, and consequently no measure to determine which breeds are more likely to bite or kill.

Friday, August 6, 2010


Today I watched an episode of "Judge Judy" that changed my opinion of her. I always loved her for the way she handles her court cases, but her pronouncements about Pit Bulls are clichéd and uninformed. As a consequence, I have a significantly lesser opionio of her.

The episode is here:

I went to her site and wrote her my opinion about this episode:

"As a rule, I respect Judge Judy Sheindlin and agree with her general stance regarding personal responsibility for one’s own actions. Her no non-sense approach to applying the law is always on point. However, today I watched an episode in which a small dog was attacked by a Pit Bull and she made several statements regarding Pit Bulls that indicate to us that she is simply not knowledgeable about this dog breed. Pit Bulls do NOT have locking jaws; they do not have a bite harder than other large dogs, and are not aggressive, unless trained to be so. Furthermore, citing “news” articles as proof of “dangerousness” of Pit Bulls is akin to citing trashy newspapers as an insight into the true lives or personalities of famous people. Both are self-serving inasmuch as they do not cater to truth as much as they sell copy by being sensationalistic. True scientific data do not support Judge Judith Sheindlin’s opinion. Being the Judge’s contemporary, I am greatly disappointed by her attitude and lack of wisdom in this particular instance. As an owner of two Pit Bulls I am offended by the great disservice she propagates to a much and unfairly maligned dog breeds. Had she done even a cursory bit of research she would have found out that this all American dog at one time was referred to as the Nanny Dog both in Great Britain and United States, primarily because of its tolerant and even tempered demeanor. Today, Judge Judy has taken a step-down in my opinion of her."
If you want to do something similar go here:

Thursday, March 25, 2010


Our family is expanding. It turns out that Pit Bulls are just like those potato chips in the old commercial: You can't have just one. So, the newest member is Tisza, another American Pit Bull Terrier.

People ask me how I named my dogs...

Tisza (pronounced Teesah) is a major river in Hungary (from where I came to United States almost 50 years ago). I was born near it and it's beautiful... just like the new puppy.

Sándor's (Shahndore) name came from Rózsa Sándor (my last name; in Hungarian it means rose). Rózsa Sándor was the Robin Hood of Hungary. In Hungarian the Family Name goes first and the Christian Name is goes second.

I posted on Sándor (the male) before, when he he was a pup, then again as he was growing up. He is a rescue for whom I drove 7 hours to Tennessee to make sure he was not going to get killed with the rest of his littermates. Sándor is 2 1/2 now.

Tisza (the female) is 6 months old. We just got her spayed. She is also a rescue... she and her sister were foundlings, but the family who found them has about 5 dogs already. Luckily, the lady who found them works at a vet's clinic and we have a nice little network here, so we hear about all the bullies that need help. I moderate the Alabama Pit Bull Lovers' Group on Yahoo, which is the support group for Bama Bully Rescue Alabama's Bully Breed and Pit Bull specific rescue. So, all the announcements about bullies go through there. We have over 110 members and most of the people are either volunteers, fosters (like me), or officers of BBR. So, Tisza (she had a different name) came up... I visited her, fell in love with her and offered to foster her, but after 2 weeks I knew she was the one for us. Sándor REALLY needed a companion...he is so dog friendly that he will play with one until they drop. After the last foster I had was placed, I started looking and the rest, as they say, is history.

Right now the poor things are so tired (I always make sure of that - play fetch hard, treadmill for 20-mins, then walk up and down the hill - every day) that could barely drag themselves into their respective crates, so, instead, Tisza just crawled into Sándor's crate and they are fast asleep, spooning each other. A delight to my eyes.

The whole family, including my wife, who is a cat person, absolutely adores both dogs. The little one goes to eat, takes a few bites, comes back to me for some petting, goes back to eat... and does this for a half an hour. Sándor (he is very dignified, says my wife), just walks under my thighs as I sit and watch them eat. He is self-petting. :-D The funny thing is that both think they are lap dogs, but I can have only one in my lap at a time (he is 65-lbs, she is 40-lbs), so whichever is not in my lap complains. I no longer have to take baths... they give me two tongue-baths every day. I got the cleanest ears in Alabama.

It's interesting how God works sometimes... I had always loved dogs, but never had the time.. schools for ever, then my 18-hr/day career didn't leave much time for anything else. As I started winding down, we got into ballroom dancing and one of our new dance friends, who just happens to be a vet, said to me,"You know what you need? A Pit Bull dog." I thought she was crazy, but I stated reading about them and the more I learned the more I knew she was right.

Beside my wife and son, these dogs are the best things in my life!

Here is a pictorial history

Sándor at 4 weeks old


10 weeks

5 months

7 months

1 year

2 years old


and now...tadah.... TISZA