Yesterday I wept as I read Beth's post about the loss of her beloved dog Max. My heart just aches for her. She also posted about not wanting to replace Max with another Pit bull because of the stigma and Laws associated with the breed. Beth-- I would not hesitate to replace Max with another Pit. You are a Great pet owner and any dog you choose will be lucky to have you. I am a firm believer that it is NOT the dog but the people who own the dog that cause the problem. Bad dogs usually are neglected and unloved.
On October 26 2006 I was attacked by a pit bull as I walked to my front door. It happened in a flash. The dog ran out from behind a Spruce tree and leaped towards my face. I raised my hands to block him and he latched onto my hand. It was a shockingly silent attack. The dog shook me so hard that it tore my rotater cuff in my shoulder which was not even noticed till days later when some of the other pain had subsided a bit.
The Damage to my right hand consisted of a broken Index finger, skin and muscle peeled from My "flipper" finger and a lacerated Pinkie finger. Numerous Puncture wounds and My thumb was bitten off at the first knuckle. The dog released me and ran off the moment my thumb came off. Why? I still don't know that answer. Just glad he did. The dog was never found. My thumb was, but could not be reattached. Its very strange sitting in an Emergency room with one off your "parts" sitting next to you in a dish.
The first surgery consisted of sewing my thumb nubbin to my "flipper" finger. They took a skin flap from my Finger and attached it the end of what was left of my thumb . They left the two sewn together for 2 weeks to make sure that Blood flow was good throughout the tissue. They took a Skin graft from my forearm and put it over the area on my finger where the tissue was gone. This whole time my hand and forearm were wrapped in gauze and bandages. It looked a little like a club. The second surgery was at 2 weeks --where they separated the finger and thumb from each other and they straightened my hand from the "fist" position that it had been wrapped in. 2 weeks later -one month after the attack I had the bulky bandages removed stitches taken out and could finally shower without being wrapped in plastic bags. My finger and Thumb could be individually wrapped in gauze and stretchy tape and I could change the bandages everyday. I had to continue to wear bandages for about another month to protect my hand while I was at work.
It all could have been much worse.
I know several people who have Pit bulls. Their dogs are loving family members and have been raised in an environment that is structured and safe.