The whole thing sickens me. Maybe this jerk supports him enough to go stand in the unemployment line with him. I hope he never ever gets to play pro ball again. Living under a bridge somewhere would be too good for the both of them. They will get theirs, only in time.
The new craze with hip hop stars and pro athletes? Pit bulls. For the dogs and our communities, the dark side of this fad. June 30, 2006
Recently pit bulls have become enormously popular with hip-hop stars, professional athletes and other celebrities. While many are beloved pets, pit bulls are now the breed of choice for many celebrities who wish to portray a tough or even violent image. While this may seem like a harmless fad, it is now tragically feeding the popularity of the breed among juveniles and gang members in urban areas looking to emulate these icons of American culture.
In major cities nationwide, pit bulls have become the “macho” dog of choice and every year thousands of dogs are used as personal “weapons” and for street fighting. Pit bulls who are brutally trained for their aggression are more likely to attack people, and there have been numerous incidents nationwide.
Nowhere is this celebrity-induced trend more sadly visible than in shelters across the country. The number of abused pit bulls coming into major urban shelters has increased dramatically and it’s not only the dogs who suffer, it’s our communities.
The trend has now had the unfortunate consequence of fostering a serious public health threat in our communities, an increase in violent crime, and an increased strain on taxpayer funded animal shelters that now must contend with the influx of aggressively bred dogs entering shelters at alarming rates each day.
What happened from the days of “Petey”, the beloved pit bull on the Little Rascals? How did pit bulls, who were historically bred to be non-aggressive to people, end up being the tragic victim of a culture that exploits the dogs’ image for violent purposes? How can our communities reverse this trend so that the health and safety of our citizens and local economies no longer suffer? A thorough exploration of this trend and it’s effect on our communities would help answer these questions.
Through interviews with celebrities, shelter workers, law enforcement personnel, and undercover investigations into dog fighting operations, The HSUS would like to work with Dateline to educate a national audience on the history of the pit bull, how the breed evolved from a non-aggressive, loving companion animal to a dog coveted by celebrities, criminals, and urban youth for their perceived value as a symbol of toughness and aggression, the popularity of which has caused an increasingly serious public health and safety crisis in major cities across the United States.
Pit bulls are enormously popular with professional athletes and hip-hop stars. ● Big Boi (Antwan Patton) from Outkast is the owner of Pitfall Kennels, a pit bull kennel outside of Atlanta. Celebrities who have reportedly bought dogs from Pitfall Kennels include Serena Williams; 50 cent, Young Buck and Lloyd Banks (from “G-Unit”); professional NFL athletes Cosey Coleman, Veron Hayes, Hugh Douglas, Jordon and Jonathan Babineaux; and boxer Roy Jones Jr. (www.pitfallkennels.com) ● Hip-hop artists who reportedly have pit bulls in their video are Tick Daddy, Ludacris, Lil Wayne, Baby, Juvenile, Rick Ross, DMX and a rapper named “PitBull”. ● According to Black Enterprise, “pit bulls have long been associated with hip-hop culture.” ● A search of pit bulls on the web shows many have hip-hop names. This month a pit bull in Waterloo, Iowa name “Fifty” was taken from his owner from being dangerous. ● A lot of athletes have pit bull tattoos.
Pit bulls overwhelm local animal shelters nationwide; the most popular breed of dogs rescued in the New Orleans region after Katrina was pit bulls. ● Over 40% of the dogs in the Los Angeles area shelters are pit bulls. Approximately 120 dogs come in each day to Los Angles shelters. ● Animal control in Chicago estimates there are 60,000 pit bulls in Chicago. ● Of the last 800 dogs rescued after Katrina, approximately 80% were pit bulls.
Pit bulls are typically used to portray an aggressive image. ● Rotweilers and Dobermans were once rappers preferred props--now its pit bulls. ● Hip hop stars like 50 cent, Snoop Dog and Jay-Z glorify dog fighting with pit bulls in their music videos. ● In 2004 Ruff Ryders Entertainment—the record label for Eve, DMX and Jadakiss—capitalized on the pit bull craze by launching “Game Dog pet food”, featuring an aggressive looking pit bull. ●DMX released an album called “Grand Champ” with a pit bull on the cover. A grand champ in dogfighting is a 5 time winner with no losses. ●Lil’ Jon sings “Shortly tried to stick ‘em, told the pit bull to sick ‘em” in “bia’ Bia” ● Kanye West and Ludacris sing “And to get hollow we fightin’ pit bulls and rotweiler’s in the projects, The objective is make dolla’s” in “Whole City Behind Us”. ●Boston Celtic Gerald Green has three pit bulls. He said: “I like aggressive, big dogs. My dogs are well trained, but I want my dogs to be aggressive when its needed.” ●Antwan Patton will be in a new movie, A.T.L.,that has a scene with two men stepping into a chained enclosure with a viciously snarling pit bull.
Pit bulls have historically been bred to be non-aggressive to people. ●Dog fighters bred pit bulls to be trustworthy with people because they needed to control their dogs. They eliminated dogs showing aggression to people. ●During the Civil War, Sallie, a pit bull, served as a mascot for soldiers from Pennsylvania. Soldiers wrote war songs praising her and there is a statute praising her at Gettysburg.
Tens of thousands of pit bulls suffer every year from abuse, neglect and vicious fighting matches. ● Shelters nationwide deal with thousands of abused pit bulls. In fact, they are overwhelming many inter-city shelters. ● Pit bulls are the most commonly used breed for dog fighting. They are specifically bred for the “sport” and also purchased for their aggressive image. ● Pit bulls suffer chained in yards across the country because they are purchased to be aggressive protectors, but have been bred to be dependent on human companionship.
Sports figures and other celebrities get their pit bulls from kennels that are connected to dog fighting. ● Roy Jones Jr. bought 7-8 dogs from Pitfallkennels (owned by Antwan Patton of Outkast. HSUS has evidence that Jones is a dog fighter. ● Pitfallkennels referred an HSUS investigator to Valentine Kennels for fighting dogs. There may be a connection between the two kennels. ● Further investigative work is needed to establish this connection.
Sports figures and others arrested for dog fighting. ●NFL’s LeShon Johnson, the NBA’s Qyntel Woods and DMX have been arrested for dog fighting activities. ● Other nationwide dog fighters recently arrested include Floyd Boudreaux, Bob Lowery, and David Tant.
Trained and bred to be aggressive, pit bulls can also be a danger to our communities. ●NFL’s Thomas Davis and NBA’s Latrell Sprewell have had pit bulls who have attacked people. ●Numerous communities have suffered pit bull attacks. ● Young men obtain pit bills emulating celebrities and their tough image, yet often do not have the experience or resources to care for the dogs or handle them properly.
Many celebrities, sport figures and others have pit bulls as beloved pets.