Our topic for today — what are bait dog pit bulls used for? — is quite a tough one but answer it, we must.
As a Pit bull owner, it’s important that you understand all the positive and negative aspects of owning this breed of dog. There are some negative misconceptions surrounding this dog breed due to their dogfighting past.
If you’re wondering what bait dog Pit bulls are used for, in this article we will explain what the concept is all about. We will also explain the history behind dogfighting and topics related to the concept.
By the end of the article, you will be able to educate other Pitbull owners about this topic and you will also know more about your beloved pet.
Marketing Buzz Word Or Actual Bait Dog?
In many cases, dogs found in rescue situations or found with severe wounds are commonly linked or associated with “bait dogs.” Generally, people are quick to draw conclusions from seeing a badly wounded dog, quickly assuming that they got their wounds from engaging violently with other dogs or, otherwise, some form of maltreatment.
It’s a sad truth that some dogs actually end up as cruelty victims for a variety of reasons. However, it’s not every single dog that is either timid or shy that was ill-treated. It’s also not every single dog that ends up in a shelter with wounds that has a dogfighting past.
Notwithstanding, the term bait dog is used as a marketing term in order to get more sympathy and attention to the dog. This ultimately assists fundraising which can be used to care for the dog and also find a new owner.
Another reason why the term bait dog is used by rescue organizations and dog shelters is to make them seem less terrifying to potential owners. This is especially true if the Pit bull has a dogfighting past.
Pit bulls with a dogfighting past are capable of being transformed into loving and loyal pets. Notwithstanding, some people still exercise caution when it comes to adopting a dog with a fighting past. This is another reason why many of these dogs are euthanized.
It’s not always clear anytime a search is conducted by the police whether a dog has a fighting past or not or if they were even trained at all.
This is why dogs with an unknown status are given the term “bait dog.” This term is used to make the dogs appear more sensitive, which increases their chances of getting adopted by new owners.
Notwithstanding, it’s critical that the facts of these circumstances are kept in the right light.
Debating about bait dog Pit bulls including spreading the legend of vicious training dogs is harmful. This is because it has the potential to inspire potential dogfighters to make use of these methods. These methods are not only harsh but also weak.
What Are Bait Dog Pit Bulls Used For?
Bait dog Pitbull’s are used to train another dog used in dog fights or to test another dog’s used in fights instincts. The primary use of a Pitbull bait dog is to provoke a response of a predatory nature in the fighting dog. This is done while making sure that the fighting dog is not in a position where it can be injured.
One of the reasons why illegal dog fights are still profitable is due to the huge sums of money often placed on the outcome of the fight. This practice also makes dogs used in the fights quite valuable. So it makes sense that it’s a priority for the handlers of these dogs that the dogs are protected from sustaining injuries. This is especially true during the testing and training sessions of the fighting dogs.
It may also interest you to know that animals used in the practice of baiting don’t always have to be dogs. In a few cases, animals such as rabbits or cats are used in baiting.
Dogs used in baiting also include either puppies or small dog breeds. Sometimes dogs that do not qualify to be fighting dogs are also used as bait dogs. Dogs with a non-athletic in their build and/or have sweet tempers are also used occasionally by dogfighters. These dogs are used as bait dogs primarily so they don’t get wasted.
Anytime a dog with a larger size is used as a bait dog, its mouth may be taped shut or muzzled. This is done so that the dogs won’t have any chance of causing injury to the valued fighting dog.
This idea of bait dog Pit bulls is an idea that, as you can imagine, garners quite a bit of attention from the media. This is especially true when a rescue is made and its high profile.
On the other hand, it’s interesting to note that a lot of welfare groups dedicated to animals have another argument. Some of these groups are of the opinion that dogs used for baiting are not actually that common.
According to them, the media makes it appear that way. They also argue that a lot of information the public has when it comes to this subject is either exaggerated or just plain fiction.
Now that we know what bait dog Pit bulls are used for, let’s explore the subject of dogfighting. It is, after all, because of this sport that bulldog baiting came to exist in the first place.
To learn a bit more about bait dogs, watch the video below:
Understanding The Concept Of Dog Fighting
Put very simply, dogfighting is essentially a blood sport. In this sport, two dogs are pitted in a fighting ring against each other. These fights are normally linked to gangs, illegal underground activities, and organized crime. It’s also typical for the outcome of the match to be driven very much by bets which have been placed on them.
This sport is not a new one. It has been around for centuries and is actually quite ancient. It’s a source of entertainment even though it’s a very cruel practice.
During the course of history, the practice of animal fighting happened in various forms. This meant that a lot of the modern dog breeds we have today were initially bred simply so they could take part in these blood sports.
An example of this was when the Romans would occasionally pit fighting dogs to fight animals such as Elephants. These fights normally took place in the Coliseum.
Another example is in England where bear baiting and bull baiting were quite popular. This went on till around the 1800s. Thankfully, bear baiting and bull baiting lost their popularity and became unfashionable. What rose up in their place was the sport of dog fighting rather, unfortunately.
The sport of fighting dogs found its way to the United States before the start of the Civil War. The dog fights quickly became a betting and spectator sport. Initially, this sport was actually sustained by the United Kennel Club (UKC). They even endorsed the sport as one that was worthwhile.
However, by the 1860s, people started to grow concerned about how cruel the practice was. Notwithstanding, the sport of dog fighting was still practiced and it continued.
Across the 50 states of the United States, the practice was not given legal rights until the year 1976. Many people still involve themselves in activities concerning dogfighting.
The sport in modern-day times is usually linked with street gangs. These gangs sometimes use dogfighting as a method to settle any rivalries. They also use it as a type of underground betting which is illegal.
Typically, the dogs which take part in these fights have to be kept secluded from other dogs. They spend the majority of their lives on chains which are short and heavy and are usually out of reach from other dogs in the vicinity.
Several professional fighters tend to invest a significant amount of money and time to get their dogs conditioned. They usually ensure they have basic vet care and excellent nutrition.
They also ensure the dogs get their exercise in conditions which are controlled. A typical example of this is a treadmill.
Dog Types Typically Used In Dog Fighting
Over the course of history, several dog breeds were included in blood sport fighting. In today’s modern world, the breed that is most popular due to a fighting reputation is the American Pit Bull Terrier.
This type of dog is the breed more commonly referred to as a Pit bull. This dog breed is the most common and it has a number of distinct breeds with similar features. They are generally referred to as Pit bulls by people who are not experts on the subject.
The Pitbull breeds include the American Bulldog, the American Staffordshire terrier, the Dogo Argentino, the Staffordshire bull terrier and the Presa Canario. These dog breed examples are usually referred to as Pit bulls.
It’s important to note that in an animal shelter, Pit bulls constitute one-third of that number. It’s not a coincidence and this is largely as a result of their fighting ring past. Due to their history, dog breeds under the Pit bull breed are usually seen in an undesirable light.
In some parts of the United States, this dog breed is even banned and it’s all in a bid to either reduce the crime rate or quite simply, plain fear. (Click here to learn more about Breed Specific Legislation (BSL))
On the other hand, there are several people who support this breed of dog whether individuals or organizations. These supporters normally fight rather strongly against legislations like these. They do this because they understand that a number of the dogs under the Pit bull breed are actually not brutal.
They understand that only a number of these dogs used in fights were born and trained especially for that reason. Notwithstanding, these dogs bred specifically for that purpose still stand a chance. They are often capable of being rescued and rehabilitated by new owners.
Why Dog Fighting?
At this point, you may be wondering why some people even bother to get involved in a sport which is so cruel.
First, you need to understand that due to the fact that dog fights are illegal, it can be a bit difficult to have a true picture of how widespread they are.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) propose that the number of dogfighters which are active in the United States in the range of tens of thousands.
From the 1990s, activity appears to have dropped however there have many high-profile raids. There have also been fighting rings which have been exposed. All these suggest the practice of using dogs in fights still happens in the US at a rate which is fairly steady.
When it comes down to it, the main reason people get tangled up in dogfighting is so they can make money. Remember that these fights are linked to illegal gambling. This means that the handler of the dogs which wins in the fights makes quite a bit of money.
Important raids of dogfights have led to sums of money as large as $500,000 being seized. In one fight, it’s not uncommon for figures as high as $20,000 to $30,000 to be exchanged between dog handlers.
It’s also quite lucrative to breed and sell the dogs used in fighting. For some others, they make their money by selling dogs which come from premium, successful bloodlines.
For some other people, they are attracted to dog fights because they can use the dogs to literally fight their own battles. It’s also an opportunity for them to prove their prowess and strength.
On the other hand, if the dog should lose, it can lead to the dog owners losing not just money but they also lose status. Unfortunately for the dog, this may also cause unfair brutality against him, simply for losing the fight.
Finally, for some, they enjoy the dog fights because they get enjoyment from the sport which is quite frankly rather sadistic.
The vast majority of dogs used in fighting rings are Pitbull dog breeds or a mix.
Typically, if you see any other dog type used in a fighting ring, this type of dog is normally seen as a bait dog. A few Pit bulls are also used for the purpose of bait dogs if they don’t perform as expected in any fight.
Are Bait Dog Pit Bulls A Legend?
Anytime the subject of dogfighting is debated quite frequently in the media, some dispute the fact that the concept of bait dogs is not as common as it appears to be. They argue that this idea of bait dogs used in dog fighting being widely spread by the media can cause half-truths which are unsafe.
One of the issues associated with this idea of using a bait dog Pitbull is the fact that it’s not likely to be effective when it comes to training a fighting dog.
This is because a dog which is capable of killing another dog much weaker than it is not better prepared to fight an opponent more dangerous. In actual fact, a fighting dog which was trained using a muzzled or weak opponent has a higher chance of backing down in a fight. This is especially true if his opponent is a dog which is even more aggressive than him.
The practice of using a bait dog depends on the myth which was built on the concept of the taste of blood. The whole idea behind this is that any dogs can be made to be vicious.
To encourage this vicious behavior, the dog is cheered on to kill another dog. This idea also relies on the concept that once the dog has had its first kill, it will be more willing to do so again.
The honest truth is that animal behavior does not work this way even though a lot of people swear by this legend. In actual fact, dogs do not get driven with methods like these.
Pitbull’s will and can fight each other under circumstances which are very specific however brutishness is not one of the reasons they do so.
Aggression directed at dogs is quite different from the aggression directed towards people. Pitbull’s which have a nature which is of a reactive one and disposed to getting into fights with other dogs also make great pets. In fact, when the circumstances are just right, they make excellent additions to a number of homes and families.
Without a doubt, some people have attempted to use bait dogs in a bid to train their dogs used specifically for fights. This type of methods is another form of cruelty and is a more common practice now. This is why the concept of bait dogs is talked about more commonly.
However, it doesn’t suggest this method is effective and the truth is that it’s not as common as the media suggests it is.