ASPCA encouraging awareness after social media tag targets pit bulls for euthanization
A social media campaign encouraging people to adopt pit bulls and immediately take them to kill shelters is circulating on social media.
Look up #PitbullDropOff on Twitter and you'll find tweets from people bragging about adopting pit bulls from unsuspecting owners and then taking them to "high kill shelters."
The goal of the "campaign" is to encourage people to "eradicate" the breed, which sometimes has a reputation of being aggressive.
Pit bull owners who are trying to re-home their pets or put them up for adoption are put under the impression that the people adopting their dogs are bringing them into "loving homes," when in reality, some people are immediately taking the animals to shelters where they'll likely be put down.
In response to the campaign, the ASPCA sent CBS21 this statement:
The #PitbullDropOff campaign, which is encouraging the public to adopt pit bull-type dogs with the purpose of immediately surrendering them to so-called “kill shelters” in an effort to eradicate the breed, is an appalling and shameful betrayal to an entire population of animals who have long been wrongfully stereotyped as inherently dangerous. All dogs, including pit bulls, are individuals with a wide range of behavioral predispositions. When a broad label like “pit bull” is used to designate a category of dogs for the purposes of discrimination without consideration of each dog’s individual background and behavioral traits, we ultimately risk the lives of countless gentle, loyal and loving dogs. We should treat every dog as an individual, provide them with the care, training and supervision they require, and not judge them by their DNA or their physical appearance.
Pet owners who are looking to relinquish or rehome their pets should take cautionary steps to ensure they are surrendering the animal to a responsible shelter or adopting their pet to a person who cares about the well-being of that animal. This includes researching the animal shelter or potential adopters to learn more about his or her personality, lifestyle, living situation, and reasons for wanting to adopt your pet.
In response to the posts, many people have flooded the hashtag with positive messages about pit bulls and pictures of their own loving pets.