Pit-bulls-eye to the Heart


I am currently looking after a pitbull on occasion. A case of a person, with good intentions adopting a puppy from family litter and then realising there isn’t the time available to raise the dog.

So another lady and myself share homes. With the Budster. BUDDY.

He walked in. All the one colour, light brown. So cute. Needless to say the small puppy stage did not last long, at all.

I’m not familiar with pitbulls. Yes, I’m aware of the stigma. But here in my care was a soft natured, often whining baby doggy. Loved inching closer to the heater, until his new favourite position was one cm away. Seriously.

He liked chasing bubbles. Learnt to sit and shake hands. I discovered slipper flat shoes with only a leash are no good, for the walks. It was like being pulled along by a buffalo. Tremendous power.

This is what pitbulls are. Very, very strong and what we have here is a needy, affectionate, intelligent, clumsy power in a big puppy body. Hence the people who train them to be powerhouses that are mean dogs. Really only doing what they learned from negative training. Truly breaks my heart.

Any genuine pitbull owner will tell you, how loyal they are and loving.

Yes they need diligent training. To sit. Not jump. They’re not trying to “attack” they’re excited. But jumping is a no-no. I walk him without a harness now. Seventy percent of the pulling is gone with the brilliant harness.

I took this photo when he was little. I love the lines on the house and ground. I love how he’s sitting with this huge shadow looming up in front of him, How his future will be. But for now he’s small. I took this photo a few months back so Buddy is nearly one. Still a klutlz. The wagging tail knocks over things. He enjoys the transitions too from one home to another. Everybody says How lovely he is. And do think of how it could be so easy to take him to the shelter. But there-we-go. Another pitbull in the system. Potential owners not knowing he loved bubbles. How he learnt to shake. That he liked the heater, really close. Those who would meet him would see a handsome looking pitbull, with big floppy ears. Would they use him for good or for bad? So he sleeps over at mine a few nights. Then back to granny’s home. It’s the small dog there that leads him astray. But the big dog will always get the blame.

Either way, those two get up to mischief. There’s two toy Fluffy cows to play with. One each, but of course they squabble over the same one.

Buddy has learned not to chase the cats. At my place. The cats home, too. He gets treats for behaving. A pitbull and a cat sprinting around the living area is not for anyone’s benefit.

There is a small gate across the doorway so Buddy can not go down to the bedrooms. It is cute to see him looking over the toddler gate. Really he can jump it. But he doesn’t. He has a cry. At 4am I’ve told him to lie back down, it’s not morning yet. He lies back down on his bed. Tough Love.

So, I guess my experience with Buddy has taught me how pitbulls really are. When raised correctly.

I love this photograph in black and white. Seeing the straight lines then his body. He’s looking right at me. Sitting obediently. All around him is the air of uncertainty about him, because he’s a pitbull. Yet he is unaware. That’s why we have to speak up for animals. Born into reputations and stigma. Too easily the energy, the jumping, the strength surpasses a new owner and they want to give them up.

The cute stage soon goes. They grow and grow up fast, physically. But they have the baby brain.

Buddy is very loved. He will grow to the size of the shadow in the photograph. Proud and big - on - love.

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Anita T.

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