Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Pooches: How to End the Fear of Pitbulls & Other "Scary" Dogs


As pit bull and "other scary dog" owners know, many people have irrational fears of our dogs. And as long as these people are not meeting our dogs, and learning the realities of our breeds, they will likely continue to have these fears.But I think Tales and Tails was onto something when they observed more people are wanting to approach their German Shepherd when she's wearing her backpack. Could cool gear and costumes be the secret to making our dogs more approachable?
 I do have to say this is true when we bring our dogs to the Gay Pride Parade. While we had visited the same neighborhood mere weeks ago, no one wanted to pet Miss M despite all of her wiggling and staring. Yet, throw a tutu on her and all of a sudden people are flocking to them like paparazzi and asking to have their pictures taken with the pooches:
And how could you possibly be afraid of Mr B's huge jaws when he's using them to pose as a smiling Statue of Liberty:
Or showing spirit in as a Chicago Bear:
But on a more realistic note, I think when people see them in technical gear they are curious about what they're wearing, and they probably know they have a owner who really dotes on them. The pooches do
 draw a lot of attention in their matching Ruff Wear Sun Shower Jackets:
And when using their backpacks which can be conversation starters:
Though it is kind of tempting to let Mr. B walk around like this all the time:

32 comments:

puddleofink.com said...

After taking my pit bull, presa and foster presa to the park tonight and being given the dirtiest of dirty looks from all the local soccer moms, I am seriously about to resort to fluffy boas and doggie clothes to buy the dogs some slack. They come home so sad when every opportunity to make friends is met with disgust.

Benny and Lily said...

you guys are hysterical. We think your unclipped ears make you look much more friendly...
Benny & Lily

jet said...

Nothing like the silly to circumvent the irrational!!

Maggie said...

OH MY! Where did you find that frog costume?? I sort of think I need it! And I think you're onto something with the dogs-in-cute-outfits thing. It seems to encourage people to let their guard down, approach you and your dog, ask questions, etc. What a great way to engage people who might otherwise be afraid!

kissa-bull said...

oh we just adowe all your purrty costumes and we fink you all look adowabull no matter what!!!

pibble sugars
the pittie pack

Shauna (Fido and Wino) said...

I second what jet said- I love that you woop it up :)

houndstooth said...

I really do think it makes a big difference in how people see them! I think they see the costume or gear first, and realize what sort of dog it is second. But, the rationalization seems to be "if the dog is wearing that, he must be friendly or a good sport" and so they approach. I don't think there's any way I could resist Miss M ever, but especially in that tutu, she is just adorable!

Janet Dillon Robinson said...

I think you're on to something!!! ..and I love the tutu & tuft of hair!

parlance said...

I'm not actually in favor of dogs in clothing, but in this case I think you are onto a good idea.

Kari in WeHo said...

I thing Mr. B should sport a Mr. T style Mohawk out of the fluff :)


Kari
http://dogisgodinreverse.com/

Alison said...

I always have my pit bull (Sharona) wear a bandanna (Pink of course, so people will stop thinking she's a boy). It helps people to see she's just a dog. But it is discouraging when folks cross the street when they see her coming. It's too bad, because otherwise they would meet the sweetest dog and gotten a lick on the hand (if she thinks you're worthy).
http://theotherwinniecooper.blogspot.com/

Two Crazy Coaches said...

I think the outfits definitely make them more approachable. It just makes me sad that that is what it takes.

mayziegal said...

Uh oh. Why is my mom talking abouts what size tutu I would wear now?

Wiggles & Wags,
Mayzie

Corbin said...

Hm, I hope mom never puts me in a tutu! We run into the same problems though, maybe I'll make mom get me a back pack!
-Corbin

Mack said...

Mr. B looks ultra cool with his mohawk!

A Couple of Misfits said...

I love your blog! It's like the big city version of my own small town dramas. I'll have numerous people approach me and try to pet Parker, my schnauzer, while avoiding Skye, my pit. But Parker is a total snob, and never wants the attention, while Skye is practically doing flips to get a little acknowledgment. I do find that when she's wearing her pink sweatshirt, she gets a slightly better response. I'm picking out a Halloween costume today, and can't wait to see if it helps.

http://friendsagaink9.blogspot.com/

Kate@TwentySixToLife said...

LOL! How could anyone be afraid of cuties like that!

Laura and Hans said...

You've really hit on something here! It's strange how clothing on a dog seems to make them approachable! Wilbur has a bandana and also a pretty flowered lei.
I do love Mr B's toupee (isn't that when he was known as Hans?), but I'm very thankful that my bald Hans doesn't wear one!

Rescued Pittie Family said...

Those poor babies! Love those pictures! I really wish we could hear what they're thinking when we dress them up.
Mine give the same faces yours do.
Haleigh looks totally unamused just like Bruno.
And Greighson loves it as he knows he's the center of attention - just like Mazzy.
So wish we could hear what they're thinking though.

jen said...

I love it!!
The picture of Mr B as the Statue of Liberty is priceless!!

Great post and Ilike you are 100% correct:)

msnform said...

i think it is disarming, my first pittie looked scary unless she had a toy in her mouth or her angora sweater on. And all my pitties have worn costumes for Halloween--it takes the terror out of both sides on the door alerts...

brooke said...

hahah I love this post! The pictures are great! I love Miss M as a ballerina and Mr B as the statue of liberty! Oh if only Darwin would let me do that to her!

dm said...

we have a rottie/shepard mix, and she gets lots of dirty looks from strangers. haven't found a costume that'll fit though :)

road-dog-tales said...

You guys totally crack us up! A dog can never have too many outfits and costumes in his/her closet - especially pink tutus! You know that's our fave!
The Road Dogs

Lola said...

I think you're absolutlely right. Some people are afraid of us, too. It's not the same situation pitties face, but it does happen and there is even a little breed oriented discrimination - mostly in terms of homeowners insurance and things like that. That's one reason why we get bandannas. Blog Mom says that people generally aren't scared of dogs in bandannas or dogs who have been dressed up in other ways. It's probably a wonderful idea for Miss M and Mr. B to go on being the snappy dressers they are.

lotsa licks, Lola

Levi Mac said...

I don't know about all the costumes! My mom has them for me too and I do cuz she laughs so much when I do and I like her laughter :)
Those are some great ones! I love the coats. What a smart way to get people to talk to you.

Kitty+Coco said...

No doubt about it. Costumes break the barriers. How can you possibly not love a dog in a tutu? Mr. B's friendly smile could melt hearts. We know a HUGE german shepherd who is super nice named Cash. Admittedly, he looks kind of scary, but he is a loyal friend. If it were up to us we would see you guys in costumes every day :)

Kitty and Coco

Kitty+Coco said...

Oh yeah, forgot to tell you, but we gave you an award on our blog!

Kitty and Coco

Roo said...

I don't know how anyone could be scare of Miss M and Mr B particularly in all the fun outfits you've shared :)

Such wonderful pooches :)

Waggin at ya,
Roo

Jess said...

We'll have to try this with our Airlie-bear! She LOVES everyone, but we have gotten several glaring glances and rude comments about her unknown pedigree. I think she'd look pretty freakin' cute in a little purple tutu to match her brothers' purple jerseys.

Mary said...

Cutest post ever! I can't even decide which outfit I like the best! I do love Mr. B. in the cowboy hat. I am totally going to show my husband these pictures to prove to him that if funny outfits are good enough for Mr. B. and Ms. M., then Levi can wear one on Halloween. Fingers crossed.

Traci said...

OMG - all those photos are so cute! I really love Miss M with her backpack, as she appears to be taking her job so seriously. I think it's a great way to have people take notice and not be as afraid of specific breeds. I mean, really, how could anyone resist or be scared of a dog wearing a tutu or a Statue of Liberty costume? :)

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