If you are wondering what kind of dog I have, she’s an “Australian Brindle Hound.” Her disposition is as pleasant and loving as the name sounds. I have to confess, she wasn’t always an Australian Brindle Hound. She used to be a Pit Bull. Can you believe it?It was horrible. Every time Lori, my wife, and I would be out with Gabby and people would approach to ask us what kind of dog Gabby was, once we said, “She’s a Pit Bull,” the color would drain from their faces and if they happened to have a child with them they’d snatch them up quick and look at us with, “how could you?”
Soon we both dreaded hearing the question and if asked I began to immediately explain how sweet she is, that we have 2 cats she loves, that not all Pit Bulls are bad, that it depends how they are raised, etc… It was so much work. I would even catch myself firing off a quick Pit Bull history lesson on how at the turn of last Century the Pit Bull, AKA, the American Staffordshire Terrier, was considered America’s Sweetheart breed. Theodore Roosevelt had one, the Buster Brown dog was a Pit, so was Petey on the Little Rascals, Wells Fargo’s mascot was a Pit, and even Helen Keller’s guide dog was a Pit Bull. All fascinating stuff, but it never seemed to convince anyone, besides it was exhausting.
Then something wonderful happened. One day while Lori and I were having lunch at an outdoor cafe with Gabby a couple at the table next to us asked the dreaded question. “What kind of dog is that?” I took a deep breath and tentatively let it out, “She’s a Pit Bull.” The lady immediately responded, “I thought so, we had a Pit Bull exactly like her. She was so sweet. She loved our grand kids.” Lori and I were overjoyed. Someone knew the truth about Gabby and most Pit Bulls. I began to tell the woman how most people freak out when they hear she is a Pit Bull. While the lady was loving up Gabby she said, “I know isn’t that terrible, my husband would tell people she was an Australian Brindle Hound.” Lori and I were blown away, could it be that simple?
From that day on Gabby was no longer a Pit Bull she became an Australian Brindle Hound. As we began introducing her we discovered that everyone loves an Australian Brindle Hound. Some people, after we answer their question as to what breed she is, have told us how they thought that she was an Australian Brindle Hound by her sweet disposition! At first I was concerned I was being deceptive. But then I realized introducing Gabby as an Australian Brindle Hound wasn’t deceptive, introducing her as a Pit Bull was. And although Australian Brindle Hounds only exist in that wonderfully sweet and loving part of everyone’s imagination, so does the notorious Pit Bull. So just like someone once said, “I thought she was an Australian Brindle Hound by her sweet disposition.” So she must be.
*The actual history of the “Australian Brindle Hound,” aka the American Pit Bull Terrier is even more fascinating than you probably imagine. Click here to read about how this heroic breed played an important role as an American Mascot.
June 15, 2013