History of the pit bull, long

Discussion in 'Working and Companion Animals' started by Unregistered, Jul 24, 2005.

  1. Unregistered

    Unregistered Well-Known Member

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    I am an old man and have mainly been interested in one breed of dog for the most of my life. This is a history of that dog as I was taught. I am not sure of many of the facts and many will not agree but is only one of the many school of thought.

    The dog is not a true descendant of the wolf but a species more closely related to the fox which developed in parallel with the wolf. The wolf is still in existence in its true form and has not changed greatly during the life of man. The dog has greatly changed and has been developed into many different breeds. The wolf still hasn't been domesticated but the dog has.

    When man began to use the dog as more than a food source over the years they developed three types of dogs. The sight hound, the scent hound, and the kill dog. All three types are still found with only a little refinements over the many hundred of generations of breeding.

    The sight hound, the modern day greyhound, is really little changed from the dogs used even before the time of written records. There are many variations of this type dog which man has developed over the years to satisify the requirements of man. Some large, some small, some short hair, and some long hair. Basically the same dog.

    The scent hound, the modern day hunting dog, has underwent the most change of the three types. They come in many shapes and sizes. They are basically the same dog with the normal variations man has developed to better suit the dog to his type of hunting. Some specialize in hunting birds, some mammals, anything is possible.

    The kill dog, the modern day pit bull still registered by the A.D.B.A., is very nearly the same dog as was used before written records. The body style and size is very close to the same. They have been known by many names but by most of the old timers it is still known as a bulldog.

    From these three types of dogs there have been many different breeds developed. Most do the same type of job as the original dogs but have been refined to look more in style with what man wanted at that time.

    Since my interest has been the bulldog my studies and research has mainly been with these dogs. The original bulldog was split into three groups which included the smaller dogs, nowdays called the terriers, used for small animals and rodents, the mid size dog, nowdays called the pit bull, used for large animals, and the large size dog, nowdays called the mastiff, used for mainly intimadation and war dogs. In each group man has developed breeds of dogs that specialize in certain jobs.

    The mid size group of dogs, the pit bull, has remained basically the same dog. Man has developed many different breeds from the original. The english bulldog, bull terrier, american bulldog are more modern dogs bred from the original dog for different purposes, some just for the look that man thought would improve the original. The bulldog/terrier cross many think developed into the pit bull actually produced the modern day bull terrier which is a smaller dog originally developed for smaller game, mainly used in later days as a ratter. It was cheaper to keep and maintain than the larger dog and used for the smaller game that many families subsisted on. The modern day english bulldog was developed by man to be an improvement of the original dog that failed miserably. The shorter legs, wider chest, and undershot jaw was mans idea on what a dog should possess to hold and throw the larger animals and was intended mainly for bull baiting. It was later found to be a failure and the caused of the failures exaggrated to become more a large lap dog. The american bulldog is a later day breed which included a cross of the original bulldog, modern day pitbull, with several breeds of the mastiff with a few other breeds thrown in.

    The modern day pitbull, the original bulldog has changed very little from the dog of many centurys ago. You can put a picture of a modern day A.D.B.A. confirmation show champion against the ancient pictures of the original bulldog and see very little differences in the dog. It has been used in many of the different breeds to improve the health and stamina of dogs bred mainly for a certain look or color. It has been used in modern days by the A.K.C. which has allowed certain handpicked breeders to infuse the pitbull blood in their lines to improve the health of ceretain breeds and allowed these breeders to register their dogs as pure breeds.
    The pit bull should not have a wide chest but a deep chest for better breathing. Its legs should be set squarely under the dog and be such a length to give the dog great leverage. The body should be muscular without being bulky, this dog is an athalete.

    Many people will not agree with this history of the pitbull and I can't say it is the correct history. It is one I was taught many years ago with records, pedigrees, and pictures handed down from many generations. As I am an older man these records have been handed down to a younger man who has shown an interest in the dogs.
    Hope this will give someone else interested in the dogs a different outlook on a dog I consider to be the one of the original three styles of dogs developed by man.
     
  2. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    History can be a tricky subject. From what I've read the pits, bulldogs, and boxers, and mastiffs of today all developed from the molosses (sp?). I don't subscribe to the theory that all dogs developed from the wolf. I think there are at least a couple of lines of dogs open to deep sceculation but the pit bull, from all I've read, was a breed developed to fight and bait. It came from a cross between the English Bulldog, at the time a baiting dog, and a terrier. As such it does not predate the buldog of England.

    The name Bulldog is used so interchangeably in the South that I doubt many people really care whether it is a pit bull, a boxer, an AB, or one of the many bulldog mixes used in hunting wild pigs. Anyone who has recognized my AB as a bulldog has also confused him with a pit bull as if they were one in the same.
     

  3. Unregistered

    Unregistered Well-Known Member

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    The english bulldog is really a young breed. It was developed in England in the 1200's. The boston terrier is a cross of the bulldog and a terrier and originated in the U.S. The english bulldog was developed from a cross of the bulldog, modern day pit bull. By looking at early paintings you can see the type of dogs in ancient times. They look very much like the modern day pit bull. This should answer the question, why cross a english bulldog and a terrier to get a dog that is already available. The english bulldog was tried at bull baiting but was a miserable failure. The undershot jaw that people thought would give the dog a better grip and better breathing ability lessened the power of the grip and the nostrils farther back caused breathing difficulties. The wide shest and heavy body thought to give the dog strength and weight to throw a bull really cause a clumsy slow dog with legs easiely broken and dislocated. It did become popular because of these qualities as an oddity. The reason being it was developed by people who thought they knew better what would make a bull baiting dog and bred for these qualities rather than breeding dogs that already possessed these qualities. The pit bull, known by many other names, was developed to be the ultimate fighting dog. It has been a great success and no other breed can come even remotely close to competing with it is this sport. There is always some one who will try to develope a better dog but for hundreds of years that has been impossible. The Tosa is the best anyone has come yet and it will never be able to compete.
    The boxer is a even younger breed developed in the 1800's. There was already a very healthy population of pit bulls in the U.S. before the boxer was even developed. Many pedigrees go back to the Irish dogs and the English dogs imported in the very early 1800's. There was really a very few imported and the majority of pit bulls were bred from these few dogs.
    Most people do not recognize a well bred pit bull. They are not the short, heavy, wide chested, short legged, big headed dog the public believes them to be. The AB started to become a more popular dog in recent years. Some may remember the Alpha Blue Blood Bull Dogs advertised years ago. They were some of the first AB's that bred true. The Johnson dogs didn't start breeding true for several more years. The Scott dogs were the same. There may still be a few old timers that can tell you the foundation dogs of both bloodlines. They both were a cross of the pitbull and mastiff. It caused many arguments in the early days from breeders that had the dogs that would not breed true. With more work they became the AB we have today.
    They were tried in the pit but was a failure there but they had the look that people thought a fighting dog should have. The AB were just another bandog in the early days and were at times called by that name. They have been refined in later years to become a breed.
    Most people do not notice a dog unless it happens to be the popular dog at the time then think it is a recent development. The rotty was developed about the year 50. Most people think it is a recent breed as it became popular in U.S. in the last 20-30 years. The great pyrennes that most people think is a relative new breed was developed in 1800-1000 B.C.
     
  4. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    With all due respect, I believe you are confusing the Pit Bull with the Molosser. The Pit Bull Terrier is not an ancient dog, certainly newer than the Mastiff whose blood runs in its veins thanks to the Bulldog blood. The Alapaha Blue Blood Bulldog is an American Bulldog developed in the Alapaha region of Georgia. There is basically no difference and there is some speculation that one of John Johnson bulldogs was used to invigorate those ol' southern bulldogs at one point. If you like history, you may enjoy reading the history of the Mollosser breeds at www.moloss.com Their page to information on the American Pit Bull Terrier, The American Staffordshire, and other dogs in that line is at Bull and Terrier Breeds Many breeds have descended from the Molosser. Take a look at them Mollosser Breeds Of course you may be referring to an ancient Mastiff. Not at all sure if you are really referring to the Pit Bull Terrier whose very name gives its origin.
     
  5. barnbilder

    barnbilder Well-Known Member

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    Thank you Tango for the link. I was going to look up the adress myself in a little while. I have found that site very informative.
    In reading it, as well as other sources, one is quick to realize that any dog with a protruding bottom jaw and non-existant muzzle (boxer,French Bulldog)came about after Oriental influencefrom a dog reffered to as the "pugnance". Formidable but not functional.
     
  6. Unregistered

    Unregistered Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the links. It is very interesting reading. The way it was explained to me many years ago the pit bull type came before the mollosser type dogs. The proof given is the nose of the dogs. Primitive dogs did not have the undershot jaws. The skeletons of dogs from ancient days had the longer sizzor bite long before the undershot jaw was developed. That was man made. Man already had the pit bull type to experiment with to make the mollosser type. An explanation, by pit bull type I am referring to the body type of the modern day dog. It has been known by many names but pit bull is the latest. I do not mean that has been the name of the dog all through history, just the body type stays the same, only the name changes. Back to the nose, no species of wild dog, fox, wolf, or any other canine has the undershot jaw seen in many mollosser breeds. In nature this type of dog would not be able to live. If by some chance such a dog was born it would not live long enough to add this type bite to offsprings. Therefore the pit bull type was here before the mollosser type.
    Couple of things I am curious about. The site mentions the breeds Blue Paul and Red Smut as extinct breeds from Scotland. While it is true both came from Scotland they were not breeds. These were actual dogs. Both were pit bulls (not called pit bulls then) and research will show both dogs in the pedigree of modern day pit bulls. There were bloodlines from these dogs much like the Colby, Hemphill bloodlines. Instead of being named after the people who developed the bloodlines they were named from the most famous dogs of the bloodline. At that time it wasn't unusual. Blue Pauls were usually a blue or blue brindle color and the Red Smuts were usually red dogs.
    The problem we have in researching different breeds is made more difficult by the books put out on dog breeds by people really knowing little about the breed but simply copying what they like best from other authors. It would be very difficult for any author to write a history about more than one breed as it would take too many years to really research the breed. Many of the best known books are by authors that have written books about several breeds.
    I am not trying to say what is true or untrue about the history of dogs but give it a little thought. Nature will show you the undershot dog did not exist before man made it. Next, what dog was used to make the undershot dog? The scent hounds needed the longer nose to help in trailing game. The sight dogs needed the longer nose for better breathing while chasing game. The kill dog really needs the longer nose for the added strength to catch and hold game. Man in his wisdom tries to improve each type. Even most people in modern times would, if shown pictures of the mollosser types heads along side of the pit bull type heads, choose the mollosser type as haveing greater strenght and holding power. The people with knowledge and experience on their side will instantly tell you the opposite. The mollosser type head was bred in later years when people could experiment with breeding what they thought would improve the dogs. In the earlier days the best was bred to the best, or mother nature did the choosing, because it was needed to keep alive and keep the people alive. In later years man had the luxury to experiment, not so in the early days.
    Think about it for a while and see if you can explain why the undershot dog would have been here first.
     
  7. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    The undershot jaw, at least to the extent it has incapacitated dogs today, was a human intervention; it was not a natural evolving jaw. The Molosser did not have an undershot jaw but he did have a broad skull. Here is another article in reference to one of the theories I adhere to as far as the evolution of the "dog." History of the Dogge It is a theory but one from an author who has put in some time in research and concerns himself with questions that are usually dismissed. Do you recognize the type you are referring to in his descriptions (ie. no need for a pack, lack of wolf language, pacer as opposed to trotter, etc.? ) In as much as these are all theories, they are each, imo, valid. The basic trouble I have with your claim is that to go that far back, even to the Molosser (which you say came later than the dog your are calling Pit Bull) we are speculating as to types only. There are a few different types of dogs that became the precursors to our dogs today. But there were no breeds that far back. As I understand it, you are saying that the Pit Bull type was its own type long before the bulldog and terrier mixes of the 1800's. If that is the case then you are speaking of an entirely different dog than the Pit ull terrier, perhaps the Brabent type. Not sure; I do not know as much to speculate. Do you happen to have a photo of the dog you are referring to? It may well be we are actually speaking of a similar dog but using different modern day terminology to describe it.
     
  8. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I believe the English bulldog that we know today, with the massive chest and pushed in face, is the product of fashion. While bulldogs were bred with a slight underbite, it wasn't until people of fashion began walking bulldogs that the extreme underbite was bred for. It was bred for because the extreme underbite was "cute" and more puppylike than a correct bite. This type of dog has enough diffeculty breathing and would never have been bred for real biting work.
     
  9. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

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    DNA evidence now shows that all dogs came from the wolf. In the book, "Dogs", by Raymond and Lorna Coppinger, it is suggested that the wolf changed into something doglike, and then was incorporated into human village life. If you are interested in the evolution of the dog, this is a wonderful read.
     
  10. Unregistered

    Unregistered Well-Known Member

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    It seems like you are stuck on a dog breeds name. I am referring to a type dog. It will have many names throughout its history By using the name pit bull I am referring to the breed of dog today that most resembles the dog of ancient time. What breed of moden dog would resemble the mollosser without the undershot jaw? The mollosser pictured in most articles is a large heavy dog. Nature would prevent this as such a dog could not exist in early days. The dog had to be atheletic. In your mind picture a dog closely resembeling the mollosser but without the undershot jaw and the extra weight and bulk.

    I will tell a story told to me by an old man who raised only pit bulls all his life. I also read many books and researched the history of dogs.

    When I asked the old man about the modern day pit bull being a cross of the bulldog and terrier he stopped me to tell me his new money making idea.
    His idea was to take a white donkey and breed it to a black donkey. The result would be a black and white stripped donkey and he planned on making a lot of money selling the stripped donkey to people and zoos all over the world. Me being young and knowing just about everything began to explain to the old man about the zebra. It was basically the same animal and has been around for many thousands of years. Why try to make such an animal when there is already one here. He listened until I got tired trying to explain what a zebra was and why he would be waisting his time.
    He then replied, why spend all the time to make a heavy undershot dog out of the original dog then breed it to another different type dog to get another type of dog, one that closely resembles the original dog?

    The three types early dogs, scent hound, sight hound, and kill dog.
    Scent hound put in modern day terms would closely resemble any of the many huntig dogs, hound group
    Sight hounds put in modern day terms would resemble any of the coursing hounds, greyhound type dogs.
    Kill dog put in modern day terms would resemble in body type the dog now known as the pit bull.
    These three different types of dogs would be refined to the many different breeds of today. The mollosser would be a later development where man tried to improve with the undershot jaw and heavy body. Such a dog could never have existed without the help of man as it could not have fed, or even defended itself long enough to become a type of dog. There had to be a type of dog predating the mollosser. Such a dog would not have the undershot jaw which weakens the dog. Such a dog would not have the size and weight as it could not move quickly enough to catch food.
    Such a dog would resemble the modern day dog now known as the pit bull, a more atheletic built dog without the undershot jaw. One who for many thousands of generations was able to live and produce to become the forebears of many modern day dogs.

    I have enjoyed out discussion. Thanks
     
  11. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    Hi Maura, I believe it is a strong point of suggestion but there is no proof yet. Please correct me if I am wrong. It is also being speculated that there is more than one point of domestication and probably varying amounts of "hybridization" among other canids. The subject is very interesting to me and a point of amateur reading since my childhood.
     
  12. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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    We may have failed to convince each other but I have also enjoyed our discussion.
     
  13. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

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