Don't Judge a Pet By His Color or Breed

September 20 2016

You have heard of the old adage: “don’t judge a book by its cover?”The same holds true for dogs. Did you know that black dogs languish in shelters longer than their light-colored counterparts? That some pet parents won’t adopt a Pit Bulls or Rottweilers because of the unfair negative reputation of ‘bully’and other large breeds?

Black Dog Syndrome
Black dogs are commonly the last, if at all, dogs to be adopted. Even the beloved black Lab has difficulty finding it’s way out of shelters.


Is it because the “spooky”dogs in movies such as Harry Potter or The Hound of the Baskervilles are often big, frightening looking and black? Is it because some pet parents associate aggression with a certain color? Or is it because black cats are thought to be superstitious or white teeth against a black face look more menacing?

In fact, some shelters have had to get creative in showcasing their black dogs. They often accessorize them with colorful hats and scarfs.

Whatever the reason, there is absolutely no scientific evidence that black dogs are not as lovable, well mannered, loyal, friendly or cute as dogs of other colors.

Bully Breeds
Similarly, what some people call bully breeds -- American pit bull terriers, American Staffordshire terriers or Staffordshire bull terriers –often face disproportionately longer stays in shelters as well, sometimes three times longer than the average.

Are these breeds more vicious than other breeds? More likely to be bad around children?

Unfortunately, this perception often stems more from fiction than reality. As Bark Busters dog trainers, we are often asked if certain dogs are born mean, or if certain breeds just have a pre-disposition to be aggressive or vicious.

The good news is that dogs aren't born mean; the bad news is that it's dog owners that make them that way. A puppy is like a newborn baby - innocent and sweet. Dogs can become mean because that's what their dog owners teach them either willingly or sometimes inadvertently.

Bark Busters was founded on the principal that there's no such thing as a "bad dog." We have seen too many dogs euthanized or surrendered to shelters because they display aggressive behaviors. Many dogs become aggressive because their owners don't know how to communicate with them. Bad dogs are bad because they do not understand what we consider bad and what we consider good.

Bark Busters has trained more than 1 million dogs worldwide and we have seen it all. Aggressive dogs, ill-mannered dogs and dogs that were trained to fight. We've encountered dogs that were mistreated, neglected and abused. However, we have never encountered a dog we couldn't train with enough love, patience and behavior modification strategies.

Adopt Dont Shop
With October being “Adopt a Dog”month, Bark Busters felt this was the perfect time to remind pet parents not to discriminate against dogs because of misconceptions. In fact, the next time you visit a shelter or rescue group, pay special attention to the beautiful black dogs or the regal-looking pit bulls waiting to be noticed. Give them a chance to find a way into your heart or home.

At Bark Busters, we provide dog training for ALL dogs, regardless of age, breed, color, issue, gender or size! 

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