October 27, 2018 is National Pit Bull Awareness Day. In addition, October is National Pit Bull Awareness Month, but this day is at the heart of it all. The day that sparked a movement for the fair treatment of Pit Bulls and any dog fitting the physical description.
A Day Fit to Celebrate and Support
National Pit Bull Awareness Day is, of course, an important day for all Pit Bull owners but also so much more.
This day is about bringing responsible pet owners together to promote equal and fair treatment of Pit Bulls. However, doing so also promotes better treatment of all dogs and animals. In turn, it gives people the opportunity to apply these principles in all aspects of their lives.
Collaboration is an essential part of what makes this day great. It gives people the chance to work together towards a common goal. A goal that if achieved, will benefit everyone within a community, city, county, or state.
Everyone and Every Dog Benefits From Equality
The subject of Pit Bulls is a debate that is both divisive and polarizing. You can barely mention the term “Pit Bull” before someone has an opinion on the subject.
Nevertheless, at the end of the day, all parties involved agree that safety is the goal here. The need is the same for everyone, but how we go about achieving it is where the divide happens.
This is also why a day like National Pit Bull Awareness Day is needed. You will never solve any problem until first, you acknowledge that there is one. Second, you must address what the underlying cause of the problem. Third, figure out what and how to best approach the solution to your problem.
To Have Understanding Requires Communication
Jodi Preis decided that all three of the aforementioned parameters were worth investing her time, money, and effort in. Consequently, upon this realization, National Pit Bull Awareness Day (NPBAD) was born.
In 2007, Jodi Preis of Bless the Bullys, a pit bull rescue and education group in Middle Tennessee held the first NPBAD. This year their plan is to commemorate the past ten years of steady gains and success of the day.
I would certainly consider it a success especially since the one day has blossomed into an entire month of celebration.
How Can Awareness Change Perception?
National Pit Bull Awareness Day is a day of appreciation and education designed to change perceptions and stereotypes about bully breed dogs. This also includes many that are commonly referred to as “pit bulls”.
However, truth be told, it is mostly about the many wonderful and responsible owners of Pit Bulls. It is they that are tasked with this tremendous responsibility of changing this ever-growing negative narrative associated with Pit Bulls.
NPBAD is a day of educating and fostering positive communications and experiences in an attempt to spread awareness. This gives the communities, cities, counties, and states an opportunity to promote change and voice their concerns.
Educating and Fostering a Better and Safer Tomorrow
It doesn’t matter where we and our dogs live, we are all responsible for the safety of our neighborhoods and communities. Days like this gives us the chance by providing a platform and an opportunity to be heard.
This all begins with awareness. The first order of business in this regard is educating the public and restoring the image of the American Pit Bull Terrier.
When Ms. Preis of Bless the Bullys first introduced the idea of a nationwide Pit Bull Awareness Day, the response was overwhelming. It was instantly seen as an opportunity to educate, change minds, and bring about positive media attention to Pit Bulls across the country all on one day.
The Need to Support Days Like This is Stronger Than Ever
The fact that this day has lasted for more than ten years is a testament to the perseverance of all those who have supported it. The flip side of that is that there is still a need for a day like this, even after ten years. It is no secret, there is still a lot of work to be done.
Ms. Jennifer Deane of Pit Sisters Rescue in Jacksonville, Fl said it best, “It seems as if we take one step forward and ten steps back.” I believe her statement best describes the on-going Pit Bull negative image problem.
The consensus is we do not have a Pit Bull problem but rather a Pit Bull owner problem. Many of the experts in the field of animal behavior agree that the main issue with Pit Bulls is the irresponsible owners.
Total Awareness is a Goal Worth Achieving
The Majority Project, founded by the Animal Farm Foundation, is another movement that was started in which they too focused on the responsible Pit Bull owners.
The greater majority of Pit Bull owners are responsible and caring. However, it still does not stop the rest of the uninformed world from blaming them for the attacks of the few. The latest census puts the dog population in America at approximately 89 million.
Pit Bulls specifically, make up an undetermined number but it is estimated in the millions. No matter how you do the math, the number of attacks by percentage in relation to the number of “Pit Bull” type dogs is extremely low.
A Day of Being the Voice for Those Who Cannot Defend Themselves
National Pit Bull Awareness Day is truly about getting the truth out there. You can never achieve awareness without a change in the level of knowledge. Educating the general public is how you get the desired level of understanding and awareness.
This day is also about fostering a positive and real image of the Pit Bull breed. To combat all of the negativity, you must be able to balance it with positive images. The public need to see these amazing animals doing the amazing things many of us already know they are capable of.
So, how can you celebrate this awesome day of awareness? Any way you choose. It does not matter how you celebrate this day, just be sure that you do.
National Pit Bull Awareness Day Should be Every Day
Officially, it is one day within one month, but it really needs to be every day. The task at hand is daunting but achievable. That is why it will take everyone doing their part to make this happen.
So, volunteer at your local shelter if you have the time. Maybe you can adopt a Pit Bull but only if you can do so responsibly.
The message here is simple: use this day and every day to foster the change needed, so that there will be no need for such a day.