Letters to the Editor

Pit bulls have been poorly bred for a long time

I have lived on San Juan Island for 14 years; this is my first “letter to the editor." I am a respected business woman; my business is about healing.

Last week's thank-you letter from Valerie Tibbett struck a chord with me. Her loving words of thanks are words I've thought many times since moving here, after 20 years of living in the city. It has been a delight to be loved and feel safe here.

Last year, I heard strange dog sounds coming from the woods near my house for a couple of weeks and my cats acted nervous. Then, one afternoon, my cat narrowly missed being caught by a pit bull. The dog was completely unresponsive to me telling it to “go home”; its master was equally verbally unresponsive to my phone call.

A few days later, another neighbor's alpaca was tortured and killed by two other pit bulls. I realized that the sound I'd been hearing were probably three loose pit bulls killing wild animals or pets that had “gone missing.”

It is my opinion that pit bulls have been poorly bred for a long time. They are unpredictable, to say the least. The news is full of stories of the beloved family pet suddenly tearing up the three-year -old child or an old lady walking down the street or someone's pet.

These are the well-loved, well-treated pit bulls, not the ones that only behave this way because of mistreatment by their owners.

I grew up in a rural area; no one's dogs were allowed to terrorize people or livestock. I love dogs; some of my best friends have been dogs. I also love walking on country roads and island beaches and feeling safe. And I love my cats.

There are thousands of mentally healthy, wonderful dogs to own. So what is the choice to own pit bulls about? I have come to distrust the owners as much as the pit bulls.

I'm wondering if the pit bull is becoming our San Juan Island mascot; should we have a banner of a bloody-faced pit bull next to a dead lamb, alpaca, cat or dog? Or possibly a child? What can be done? Who cares?

Susan L. Feldmiller, LMT
Friday Harbor

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