A Pit Bull Named Daisy

May 15, 2012  

A young girl meets a shelter dog and falls in love, changing her family’s view of pit bulls forever

By Cheryl Westfall

My children, Jesse and Dillon (girls), worked at the animal shelter in San Luis Obispo since they were 12 years old. (They are now 18 and off to college.) One day my little 12-year-old daughter called and told me that there was the best dog in the world at the shelter, and she wanted us to come and see this dog. I asked her what kind of dog it was, and she casually said it was a pit bull. Most of me at the time believed it was just the people who owned pit bulls and mistreated them that made the news, but there was a little part of me that was a skeptical and might have believed pit bulls were bad dogs.

We went down to see the dog, and the people who worked there said, “Watch this.” They put one dog after another in the kennel with her, and all she wanted to do was play. We got the dog, of course, because she was wonderful. She gets along with our other dogs perfectly and is as sweet as can be.

About two weeks later I got a college assignment to write a research paper on whatever I wanted. I looked around and saw beautiful Daisy sitting there and decided right then that I was going to write the research paper about her and all other pit bulls.

I did many nights of research and actually had to try to find situations where they were accused of causing harm to people. It was hard to find that information, especially when they were not mistreated. I did find that they have a higher than average passing rate from the American Temperament Test Society and are great pets and service/therapy dogs in libraries, hospitals and convalescent homes. I also learned all about Sgt. Stubby; he was a big part of my paper. I learned about how this pit bull was a military mascot, won metal after metal, was invited to the White House twice and many other facts.

I also learned that the media is ridiculous in the way it tries to terrify everyone about something every night, but they really try to stick it to pit bulls all the time. For example, one of the gentlemen I researched had gotten attacked by a dog, a Lab. He called the local newspaper and reported the attack. They asked him if it was a pit bull, and he said “No.” They wanted nothing to do with the story. This really irritated the gentlemen, so he called a different paper and said he had been attacked by a pit bull, and in no time there were eight different news agencies at his house. Unbelievable.

Needless to say, no matter what my Daisy went through before we got her, she is my all-time favorite dog. Daisy is 9 now (she was 3 when we got her and had just had puppies). She was abandoned on the streets. I believe that the reason I say she is my favorite dog is because she has broken all stereotypes I have ever had about pit bulls. Anyone who comes to my house gets to see who wonderful she is, and it helps them with their stereotypes. I have four dogs now: two Labs (one is a guide dog puppy I am raising), one is a German Shorthaired Pointer, and then there is wonderful Daisy.

My husband Chris plays fantasy football, and the first year Michael Vick came back to football Chris got him on his team and benched him. He would not let him play and he would not trade him for anything – a small but grand gesture.

PS – I got an A on that paper.

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12 Responses to “A Pit Bull Named Daisy”
  1. hyprgrl79 says:

    my coworker’s grandfather or great-grandfather actually served with sgt. stubby!!!!! 🙂  and there’s is a children’s book about him… can’t remember the name… but thank you so much for sharing your story!!!  brought a smile to my heart 🙂 <3

  2. JudyHutnoodle says:

    we are guide dog raisers too (our here in New Jersey 😉 and our pit bull blaze does a great job too.  We adopted him when he was 8 as an owner surrender.  That was 5 1/2 years ago.  We are raising our third pup now and blaze does a terrific job teaching them proper behavior.
    WONDERFUL STORY!  god bless xoxo

    • StubbyDog says:

       @JudyHutnoodle Wow Judy that’s fantastic, we would love to hear more, if you are interested, please email your story to laurap@stubbydog.org and send photos. We would love to feature Blaze on Stubbydog!

      • JudyHutnoodle says:

         hi laura,
        I finally sent you an email about blaze with some pictures 🙂
        have a wonderful day!   ~ judy

  3. Haven’t met a pittie I didn’t love 🙂

  4. NuriaRodriguez says:

    What a wonderful idea to do a paper.  It would have been great to do the entire paper without mentioning the dogs in question were pit bulls, only doing so at the end. I bet that would make a lot of people rethink their ideas.

  5. ShawnLowe says:

    Regarding the research you did, my research showed the same thing.  There is always a story behind the story.  They are very usually mistreated to bring them to the point of aggression.  I’ve had my girl for over four years now.  She’s a mix, but has that pit bull enthusiasm.  I’ve never been so happy with a dog.  I’ve loved all my rescues, but she is truly special.  Good for you spreading the positive news about pit bulls.  Daisy looks very happy!

  6. AdrienneClegg says:

    Daisy made my day..thanks for letting her have the chance to become your favorite dog. You are both blessed because of it.

  7. WillowWonderBull says:

    Thanks for Sharing! Education is the key. I am so happy when I see young people getting involved in advocating for Pit Bulls. That may be the key to breaking the negative stereotypes.

  8. LeenStYLe says:

    Thanks for sharing!! I also had the opportunity to write a research paper for one of my college classes and wrote about the all mighty American Pit Bull Terrier. 🙂

  9. avegas72 says:

    That was a great story. I love that you took a chance and gave a good dog a good home.