National Pit Bull Awareness Month

October 2011 was designated as National Pit Bull Awareness Month. The Month grew from National Pit Bull Awareness Day, held on the last Saturday in October. Jodi Preis of Bless the Bullys began NPBAD in 2007. Pit Bull Awareness Month arrived a few years later, in 2011. This October, pit bull advocates across the eastern shore are helping to shed new light on this bully breed to help erase the stigma that these furry friends are often associated with. During the month of October it’s time to correct the impression of pit bulls as dangerous. For those who believe all American pit bull terriers are menacing, dangerous fighters, this day is for you. For anyone who hasn’t taken the time to learn that pit bulls are in fact loving pets, National Pit Bull Awareness Day is for you.

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National Pit Bull Awareness Day (NPBAD) was introduced by Bless the Bully’s, a non-profit rescue and education effort in Tennessee, is a day of appreciation and education designed to change perceptions and stereotypes about pit bulls and their responsible owners. NPBAD was established to educate and foster positive communications and experiences in the communities in which we and our dogs live, and it is an initiative dedicated to restoring the image of the American Pit Bull Terrier.

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Despite continued efforts by supporters, much of the general public is overwhelmingly misinformed about the breed, pit bulls, and pit-mixes, are at the very core of breed-specific legislation, discrimination, and negative bias among the nation’s media and government.

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Just look at the number of myths widely believed about the breed – that they’re inherently dangerous, that they have “locking jaws,” that they don’t feel pain… these are myths that contribute to the negative bias against these incredible dogs: Anyone that has had the pleasure of sharing their home and their lives with this loyal, dependable, and the loving breed has without a doubt experienced the prejudice from the misinformed public. A pit bull owner walking their dog down the sidewalk sees pedestrians cross to the other side of the road to avoid them. Pit bull owners are limited in the communities in which they can reside with their four-legged family members. They are restricted from airlines, dog-friendly restaurants, and even entire counties.

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Around 10 years now, people have been coming together on the last Saturday in October to raise awareness that the image of pit bulls needs to change and that humans are at the heart of that effort. Part of the success of the campaign comes from the fact that it is unstructured, meaning that anyone can put on and host an event, which is based on the same guidelines and resources distributed around the country. This ensures continuity but enables anyone to host an awareness event. The ultimate goal is to get the truth out about pit bulls, and ultimately lower the number that ends up in shelters around the country.

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It’s National Pit Bull Awareness Month, a month to spread the word that pit bulls are loyal and courageous, not dangerous killers. Extending the National Pit Bull Awareness celebration to an entire month is a great opportunity for shelters, breed clubs, and rescue organizations to spotlight the breed with adoption, education, and responsible ownership events in multiple communities and venues!  Since its designation in 2011, so many shelters and rescues across the country hosting events during the entire month of October, with the hope that the spirit of National Pit Bull Awareness Day is carried all year through.

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Pit Bulls are often left at shelters and looked over by adopters because of harmful stereotypes. These dogs are loving and affectionate, and they deserve forever homes. We can change the community’s mind by showing how they are, taking them out in public, showing them off on our Facebook page, educating people, adopt a pit bull, share your experiences, keep an open mind, or just hug your pit pull.

Pit bulls are real loyal dogs. They’re easy to train, they’re big teddy bears. Let’s share your pics with us on your Facebook page to celebrate the National Pit Bull Awareness Month.

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