BSL and Doug’s breed info

The idea, let alone the reality, of Breed Specific Legislation should worry and anger every dog owner, regardless of what breed your dogs are.

Melvin as you all know was a lab. Labs are the #1 family dog in all the lands. Melvin was pure, unbridled joy and love.  That combination did not equate to ‘good around kids’ or ‘good with other dogs’. In fact, Melvin was known as the dog who would take a child’s whole hand into his mouth to get to the cupcake they were holding. In his early days, he’d knock kids down for lollipops. People would ask me to put Melvin in a different room when they came over, because he couldn’t harness his own energy. He was not immediately #1 family dog material. It was my responsibility to put him into situations where he could shine (with adults) and to help him out in situations where his love of food could result in a child having to unwillingly share their snacks. We trained, a lot. It was my responsibility to control his environment.

Jake was the same way.  When I first got Jake he would bite the ankles of anyone within reach. I had never had a dog do this and I had no idea what was going on. So again, it was my responsibility to create a world where he could not bite ankles until we could train him to leave ankles alone on his own.

Both Melvin and Jake only liked each other. Other dogs were not welcomed and Jake especially would lunge and attack if given the opportunity. Thus, outside of our yard, they were ALWAYS on leash and we avoided any and all situations with other dogs. On walks, at the vet, no matter where.

Regardless of their quirks, I would have crawled on bloody stumps to fight for their right to exist.

The idea of BSL, affects us all.  The idea that a breed of dog can be targeted or destroyed, based on how it looks, by way of a vote. Today its Pit Bulls, tomorrow it might be Labs, or French Bulldogs, or ‘insert your dogs breed here’. In all its forms, it is wrong, misguided and it has proven itself ineffective.

We cannot sit back and say well it’s Canada, what can I do or I don’t have a Pit Bull, so it doesn’t affect me.  If you own a dog or love a dog or generally like freedom of choice over what dog to get or have as part of your family, it affects you.

As for me, I am now the…


Doug’s DNA panel came back the same day Montreal voted to ban Pit Bulls. There was never any doubt in my mind what the test would come back as.  He is American Staffordshire Terrier and English Bulldog.

Having Doug does not change my approach as a dog owner. I am dedicated to controlling the situations my dogs find themselves in and I am devoted to giving them the tools they need to succeed.  Doug is currently in two training classes a week, not because he is a Pit Bull, but because he is a puppy. Puppies believe in anarchy, they need to be shown that there can be boundaries AND joy.

Please take a minute to realize that BSL could affect you one day. If that worries, saddens or angers you, please take action to help the Pit Bulls and Pitt Bull owners in Montreal (or anywhere else for that matter).

As for the winners of the guesses of what makes up Doug: Doug is 63% American Staffordshire Terrier; 25% English Bulldog (which on this test they refer to as ‘standard’); and he’s 12% something else but they cannot identify that part (I’m not really sure why but it is what it is). Since I can’t tell what the 12% is, I am going to exclude it from the guessing (otherwise everyone could win and your cut of the winnings woudl be $4!).  So…we are going to say the winners are those that only guessed Am Staff and English Bulldog – and that is Wendy Shoemaker and Maila Page!  IF YOU FEEL YOU GUESSED THOSE TWO (only) AND I MISSED YOU, LET ME KNOW! If you are upset about the 12% and how that affected your vote, know that I feel bad about this.  I’m just not sure how else to do the voting!


For the winners, you will split the $100 Sirius Republic gift cert (currently $50 per person but if I missed any winners, this amount could change).   Email us (at or private message us your email and we will get your prize out to you!

Thanks for playing along!




28 thoughts on “BSL and Doug’s breed info

  1. Yay! Pibbles are fantastic – this certainly explains the boundless energy 🙂 Although at 4 years old, by girl does like to nap a lot. There’s hope!

  2. Yay!!! My Bella is a rescued AmStaff!!! Absolutely the best dog ever!!! She is very easy to train , even now, she turned 11 on September 8th. Don’t give up on Doug, he’ll do well with proper training. Bella is very treat motivated when training…

  3. Yeah, there wasn’t much doubt he had a good deal of pittie in him. That’s probably why he’s so damned cute! BSL makes me incredibly sad and SO angry. It’s absurd. I love pretty much all dogs, but my Pitt Bulls have a very special place in my heart. Doug could not have landed in a better place. EVER.

  4. Welcome to the club! Baxter is five and mostly a couch potato so there is hope. =) Although every night around 8 or whenever I am trying get schoolwork done, he turns back into the tasmanian devil dog puppy. Maybe you didn’t want to know that.

  5. Yay Doug!! I have a pibble/catahoula mix, Rosie! She is so very sweet and will tell on herself when she’s been naughty.

    My son goes to school in Denver and they have BSL on pibbles. As dog-loving a city as Denver is, I can’t believe they still have BSL!!

  6. Welcome to the club! We rescued our Bruce, a boxer/pit mix 4 years ago. His front teeth, top and bottom, have been filed down, he has scars and is missing some fur. While the first part of his life was rough, now he knows nothing but love and safety. My granddogs are both rescues, one a pit/shepherd mix and the other a pure Am Staff. My entire family has fallen in love with these sweet, smiling pit bull type dogs!

  7. I couldn’t agree with you more on this topic. I myself have 2 Pit Bulls. I also have a Germen Shepard and German Shepard mix and they were the bag guys at one time . So were Dobermans, Rottweilers and I am sure there have been others. I am sure they the people will go after others in the future and it “could be your dogs breed”. A dogs guardian is the one responsible not the dogs breed. This just shows me how ignorant people can be when they think like this. This is to Doug : Doug you mom is a fantastic mom . You hit the jackpot when she saw you and you saw her. Now you look out for her as she has had a rough time of it and she needs your love right now.Take care of each other. (Please read to Doug)

      • I lost my Felix in 2011 and still miss him to this day. We had that rare special bond. Total in my life I have had 6 of my furbabies pass away and all the way back to my very first dog Rex from when I was a child I still miss them all and think of them often. I can handle the missing because I would never trade what I had with each and everyone of them. I am glad i was able to help your heart.

  8. Thank you so much for you timely comments!!! I too own a pitbull, and this was by error. She is my first dog and the love of my life, I got her from the humane society at 6 months old and they have her listed as boxer/collie. So I adopted her and fell in love. Only after I had her a short while and took her to what would become our vet was I informed of her breed. Disbelieving the first time I was informed, we went for a second and third opinion, and yep she is what she is. At first I was afraid of her then, for 24 hours it played on my mind. My thought was “are you going to kill me now” But after 24 hours I realized no matter what breed, the dog I fell in love with is still the same dog, and we started training. I did not want any problems with owning this dog, especially with neighbors, she was very wild like your doug. We worked so hard, and got her CGC within 6 months of me owning her. She is the love of all in my over 55 (70 if your a day) community. Some people know what she is some don’t. When asked I tell them she is “the greatest dog in the northern hemisphere”. Congrats on you new wonderful dog. I do not support Peta since they came out against pitbull breed dogs, I will not spend money in Montreal, I find withdrawing financial support is a wonderful way to protest, and can be effective.

    • There are so many reasons why I love your comment. One, your love of your baby and that you come back to ‘what is she’ with ‘the greatest…’! Melvin would lung and bark at dogs on our walks and people would say ‘is he aggressive’ or something of the like and I’d say, ‘he’s Melvin’. Second, I love your honesty. You were unsure, you voiced your concern but instead of instituting your own BSL for your household, you choose to be guided by things other than fear. Your girl is lucky to have you and you her! Love, love, love!

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