The Nature of the Beast
Ledy Van Kavage’s first and best friend was an American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT) named Boody, a stray puppy her family adopted when Ledy was 4. Boody was a partner in all of Van Kavage’s childhood exploits. She recalls hiding out with Boody in his dog house when she didn’t want to come indoors. But that was decades ago, “before the time of responsible ownership,” says Van Kavage of Maryville, Illinois, who is now the Midwest regional legislative liaison for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).
Not only was Boody allowed to roam, he was never neutered, and he often fought with other dogs. Intact adult male dogs of all breeds are well-known to be more likely to fight than neutered males or females. Adding a biological imperative to a bully breed’s genetic programming is like pulling the pin on a hand granade. “I remember jumping into the middle of a dog fight when I was 6 and pulling Boody off another dog because someone had called the police,” Van Kavage recalls. “I didn’t want the cops to shoot my dog.”
Tragically, Boody’s propensity to fight and his unneutered status were his undoing. “He got in a fight,” Van Kavage remembers. “He was able to drag himself to our street, where he met me every day on my walk home from school. I found him on my way home. We took him to the vet, but he died of his fighting wounds. To this day I grieve for him.”
ledy pulled a few strings and had this article pulled from the internet. good thing i saved a pdf. click here to download your copy.