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Thread: Adopting Lab/pitbull mix

  1. #1

    Adopting Lab/pitbull mix

    Hi all,

    Im new to this forum. My GF and i are adopting a Lab/pitbull mix from a local shelter. She is approx. 6 months old and is a real sweetheart. Apparently she was recently found leashed to a parking meter so she's had kind of a hard life so far. We're gonna give her a great home and being right next to central park, a great place to take her to play and for walks. We just want to know more specificlly about the behavior traits that come with such a dog being mixed with a pit, things we should be aware and any training tips. Any info would be a great help to us. thanks!

  2. #2
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    Aww, congrats on your new addition. Training, training, training! Obedience training is a good start, and depending on her build, it may be better for her to have a harness than a collar to attach the leash to, as with some "bully" breeds, the neck is bigger than the head, so that can make it far to easy for them to slip out of their collar. Leash training is vital, teaching her NOT to pull is vitally important, as these little powerhouses can be difficult to control if they think they are in charge of things, they're so muscular!

    In general (every dog is different, of course) they can be pretty energetic, and sweet as can be, so it's great you are near the park so she can get lots of exercise! After all, we all know a tired puppy is a well-behaved puppy! And lots of "okay-to-chew" things - keep them handy, and hide all the shoes you like, as of course we don't know what training she has had before!

    Oh, and when anyone asks, if they seem skittish, just tell them she's a Lab mix, and if they ask "with what?" you can honestly say "some kind of terrier," and hopefully avoid the prejudice people have just because of the name pitbull.
    I've Been Frosted

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Karen View Post
    Aww, congrats on your new addition. Training, training, training! Obedience training is a good start, and depending on her build, it may be better for her to have a harness than a collar to attach the leash to, as with some "bully" breeds, the neck is bigger than the head, so that can make it far to easy for them to slip out of their collar. Leash training is vital, teaching her NOT to pull is vitally important, as these little powerhouses can be difficult to control if they think they are in charge of things, they're so muscular!

    In general (every dog is different, of course) they can be pretty energetic, and sweet as can be, so it's great you are near the park so she can get lots of exercise! After all, we all know a tired puppy is a well-behaved puppy! And lots of "okay-to-chew" things - keep them handy, and hide all the shoes you like, as of course we don't know what training she has had before!

    Oh, and when anyone asks, if they seem skittish, just tell them she's a Lab mix, and if they ask "with what?" you can honestly say "some kind of terrier," and hopefully avoid the prejudice people have just because of the name pitbull.
    Good point. We'll definately take all this into consideration. We pick her up from the shelter tomorrow so we're gonna be "dog proofing" our home as well as buying the ammenities for her today. She's very enregetic and loving but i hope that's not just we had her taken out of the kennel to get aquainted because she definately didn't wanna go back in afterwards lol. I guess we'll be DVR'ing Caesar Milan a lot but i agree the obedience training is key so that'll def. be enforced. thank you very much for the information!

  4. #4
    Oh a new puppy how exciting. Good luck with the puppy proofing. Just a tip, think "outside the box" on that one. I have lost a nice pair of glasses by leaving them on the coffee table, and also if the pupperoni turns out to be a counter surfer, keep meds in the medicne cabinet. I know most people do, but I came home one day to a gnawed excedrin bottle and an afrin squeezie that was totaled, fortunately my "angels" didn't get into them.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    First of all Congratulations on your new addition! I Pm'd you a website that is very knowledgeable with pit bulls. However, my advice to you is learn all you can to be a responsible owner for your new girl.

    No dog parks!! Dog aggression is very common in this breed and can be managed but not trained out. However, Human aggression is not to be tolerated and these dogs should welcome each person with open paws so to speak and make horrible guard dogs because they are so friendly!! Dog aggression does not equal human aggression just to be clear.

    Dog parks are a bad idea anyways for any breed, you don't know what vaccines the dogs have had, and owners just talk while their dogs play without watching them and you cannot trust your dog to be safe there. You can however have supervised play dates that is in a controlled environment.

    Pit bulls LOVE, LOVE people and do not need doggie companions as they weren't originally bred to fight other dogs, they were bred to bait bulls in the beginning but Dog aggression (DA) has and will always be part of their history and you may not like dog fighting and I am NO way advocating it..

    but it's in their genetics to be aggressive towards other dogs. If you have another dog do not ever, ever leave her unsupervised with your other dog or other animals.

    Pit bull ownership is rewarding, but you must be responsible and have thick skin. If you were to get another dog, always get the opposite sex but it doesn't mean 100% that they will get along. I am sorry Karen with all due respect, but I do not agree she should lie about the dog's breed to people. It will be a chance to educate and change a person's mind.

    Unless she looks like a lab, I wouldn't worry about it lol. But she may look more like a bully breed as she gets older and you will want to educate! Also, for her to be safe (and your house) crate her when you leave and especially if you have other dogs/animals. You must have thick skin with owning this breed.

    If someone says something to you like "Oh I don't care for pit bulls" and it upsets you; just smile and walk away. You do not want to blow up at them, education is the key. If you do not want to educate, just smile and keep walking with your dog. I would like some pictures of her, please.

    Here are some links you and your girlfriend can look at -

    http://badrap.org/rescue/breed.html
    http://badrap.org/rescue/myths.html
    http://badrap.org/rescue/owning.html
    http://badrap.org/rescue/responsible.html

    Krista : Buster : Coonhound : Rudy : Airedale Terrier x : Dixie : Schnauzer/Terrier X : Miagi : Tabby : Tiger : Tabby/Bengal X : Angel : Russian Blue X

    Rocky, Jenny, & Ginger.. forever loved & always in my heart..

    I have been frosted!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by luvofallhorses View Post
    Pit bull ownership is rewarding, but you must be responsible and have thick skin. If you were to get another dog, always get the opposite sex but it doesn't mean 100% that they will get along. I am sorry Karen with all due respect, but I do not agree she should lie about the dog's breed to people. It will be a chance to educate and change a person's mind.
    I said only to say that if people seem skittish around her. And it is NOT a lie, she is a Lab and a pittie is a terrier, so saying she's a Lab/terrier mix to someone who seems like they might be nervous is advised. Once you get to know them, and they get to know your dog, you can say that her "terrier" part is pitbull terrier, and can point out whatever positive characteristics she got from that side, and THAT will help educate.

    And not every dog park is full of irresponsible people, or unvaccinated dogs. Many dog parks have rules about dogs needing to be vaccinated before people are allowed to bring their dogs in. Check out any dog park, and how she reacts with other dogs before bringing her to one, of course.

    Dog aggression is not true of every pittie or pittie mix, every one is different and it is always smart to be cautious when meeting new dogs or people, regardless of breed.
    I've Been Frosted

  7. #7
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    You know I am not trying to argue here Karen. I still stand by what I said. You know I do not have an APBT or bully breed right this moment, but I did years ago and have learned all I can and will be prepared. I am just saying that he should be prepared, that is all.

    I do not expect him to shove their Pit bull mix down someone's throat, however if he wants to educate so be it. Heck I work at an animal shelter and have to educate all the time about pit bulls since we always have them. I want owners to be prepared and you cannot ignore something that is a part of their history and genetics.

    They just cannot be blinded by it. You're right not all of them show it, but a lot of them do and you have to expect it. 95% of them do show it and I have seen it.

    If another dog starts a fight at a dog park and his dog reacts, the pit bull will always be blamed and that's one more news story this breed and responsible owners cannot afford. This breed is in enough trouble as it is, so I am just saying be prepared and be responsible.
    Krista : Buster : Coonhound : Rudy : Airedale Terrier x : Dixie : Schnauzer/Terrier X : Miagi : Tabby : Tiger : Tabby/Bengal X : Angel : Russian Blue X

    Rocky, Jenny, & Ginger.. forever loved & always in my heart..

    I have been frosted!

  8. #8
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    I also don't agree with the "no dog parks" statement. That is the best way to socialize a new dog. Now, if they go to a dog park and discover the dog is dog agressive, then sure....no dog parks.

    I was also going to suggest lots of socialization, period. With people and other dogs. I've learned this the hard way with my first dog. She is not agressive, but she just gets so excited she can't control herself around other dogs. Had I done more socialization when she was younger I probably would have avoided this. My second dog is fine. And I didn't socialize him too much either. Could just be different personalities, I suppose. But anyway, lots of socialization.

    Oh, and we'd love to see pictures of your new pup too.
    Our goal in life should be - to be as good a person as our dog thinks we are.

    Thank you for the siggy, Michelle!

    I've been Boo'd!!!

    Cindy (Human) - Taz (RB Tabby) - Zoee (RB Australian Shepherd) - Paizly (Dilute Tortie) - Taggart (Aussie Mix) - Jax (Brown & White Tabby), - Zeplyn (Cattle Dog Mix)

  9. #9
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    I'm sorry but is not a risk I'd be willing to take to find out if my dog was dog aggressive and got in another fight with another dog at a dog park. I'd rather be safe than sorry than my dog ending up in the news and being taken away from me.

    Pit bulls do NOT belong in Dog parks and do not need dog friends. They thrive on human companionship and do not need other dogs to make them happy.
    Krista : Buster : Coonhound : Rudy : Airedale Terrier x : Dixie : Schnauzer/Terrier X : Miagi : Tabby : Tiger : Tabby/Bengal X : Angel : Russian Blue X

    Rocky, Jenny, & Ginger.. forever loved & always in my heart..

    I have been frosted!

  10. #10
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    I have met many Labrador/pittie mixes, and they all seem to be great, fun dogs! Can't wait to see pictures of you newest family member!

    As for dog parks/walking, I say go for it, but be sure to remain calm, if you seem nervous at all, she will sense your fear and might behave in ways you don't want her to behave. You will never know if she is dog aggressive or not if you don't take her for walks or take her around other dogs.

    For the dog park, walk along the fence line surrounding the dog park with her for the first visit, to see how she behaves. If she growls, barks aggressively, jumps, and pulls aggressively towards other dogs, it is wise to not take her inside/let her around the other dogs. If she seems happy, (wagging her tail, yipping with excitement) then go ahead and take her in. It might be a good idea to keep her on the leash for the first few minutes when and if you do go inside after you have observed her behavior, just to be sure. Some dogs don't get along with dogs of certain traits, it's very interesting, actually. The key to knowing your dog is being able to read his/her body language. This is very important!

    Kaitlyn (the human)
    Sadie & Rita (Forever in Our Hearts) (the Labbies)

  11. #11
    wow! thanks for all the help everyone. I will def take all this into consideration. As for pics, i'll post some soon. So far in the first week, we've noticed thats she's very sweet, loving, always wants to be near us, which we love. Also is very well trained. Knows how to use wee wee pads, how to sit, shake paws, responds to the name we gave her the first day. Polite with other people. Though we think she picked up a bug from the shelter cuz she's been having this hacking cough since satruday. She is getting better. Her energy is higher than when we first got her. As for dogs parks, IMO, there's none that close to us without using the subway anyway, so we just walk with her through central park which is more than enough for her.

  12. #12
    I agree with the no dog parks statement. Dog parks are a disaster waiting to happy no matter what the breed of dog is. You can't throw a bunch of dogs together and expect them to get a long just fine... a fight will break out in a matter of time and i promise you your dog will be the one to blame no matter what the situation is because they are a pit bull mix.

    You shouldn't have to lie about your dog either, if people are scared of her then that's fine. People have a choice to interact with your dog or not. I honestly have only run into maybe a handful of people that were afraid of Elijah but i guess i'm just lucky.

    I've learned so much in the 7 years i have owned my pit bull mix and i still learn more every day.

    congratulation on your new addition and I hope she brings you years of joy.

  13. #13
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    Geee, I missed this first time around, oops!
    Did you take her to a vet for a wellness check up? Highly recommended anytime you get a new dog, be it from a shelter, a rescue, a breeder, or even a craigslist post.

    I have my foster bichon Willy in obedience classes just now, and we have one Lab/Pit mix in there. He is a big, oversized goofball, he hee, typical puppy, but big, so his paws are everywhere! Seems like he is going to be our clown (every class has one!). His mom does use a halter to help her control him. He is smart, catching on fast. Only thing is: we are advised not to feed our dogs prior to class; SHE has been told, FEED him! He just drags her around the room otherwise, trying to get everyone's training treats!

    He is very lovable, and lots of fun.

    Even though your dog knows some basic commands, you may want to take some classes. In one hour the dog doesn't learn YOU learn, how to control your dog, how to communicate with your dog. An experienced trainer can point out to you what body language your dog does, so you know what to watch for, when to say "OK, go see friend," and when to tighten up your leash hold. You haven't mentioned if you have any prior dog experience; so just a thought.

    I much prefer the APDT trainers, they use positive reinforcement. APDT - American Pet Dog Trainers. The web site has a place where you can put in your zip code and it gives you trainers in your area.

    I also suggest folks read this book: The Other End of the Leash, by Patricia McConnell Great info in there!

    Now get moving sharing photos with us! Oh and hey, you didn't tell us her name!!
    I've been BOO'd!!
    Thank you Karen, for fixing my siggy!

  14. #14
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    Congrats on the new puppy.
    I've had two pits before and now i own an american bulldog i totally agree on A LOT of training you will enjoy the company of a well behaved dog. As for dog parks i don't see why not if your dog is on leash even if a fight occurred she would be on leash just till you're sure how her temperament is around other dogs or if a fight is close to where she is i did that and it worked just fine with me now i know which dog goes off leash and which doesn't.
    Good luck with your new baby and looking forward to seeing pictures of her

  15. #15
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    I still don't think taking her to a dog park is worth it to find out if she is Dog Aggressive. That's not something you want to toy with, if she gets in a fight she will be blamed no matter who started it.
    Krista : Buster : Coonhound : Rudy : Airedale Terrier x : Dixie : Schnauzer/Terrier X : Miagi : Tabby : Tiger : Tabby/Bengal X : Angel : Russian Blue X

    Rocky, Jenny, & Ginger.. forever loved & always in my heart..

    I have been frosted!

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