Friday, December 3, 2010
Once upon a time, there was a website called realpitbull.com
Once upon a time, circa 1997, a website called The Real Pit Bull (RPB) was launched by a dog trainer/behavior specialist who was also a breed guardian. The goal of this website was to provide factual information on a breed officially known as the American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT), but called “Pit Bull” for short by its fanciers. (Just like Labrador Retrievers are called “Labs”, Rottweilers are called “Rotts”, German Shepherds are called “Shepherds”, and Golden Retrievers are called “Goldens”, the American Pit Bull Terrier is called “Pit Bull” for short. Most breeds have a nickname that breed fanciers use to refer to their dogs. “Greater Swiss Mountain Dog” doesn’t roll off the tongue as nicely as “Swissy”, nor does “American Pit Bull Terrier” come out as easily as “Pit Bull”.)
The name “The Real Pit Bull” was chosen for two reasons: “Real” because the typical portrayal of the breed in the media and the idea people held about the dogs in general (both pro and con) was so often so far from reality that it was basically fiction; and “Pit Bull” because it was easy shorthand used to refer to the breed. The Real Pit Bull seemed like an apropos name.
The original RPB website was bare-bones and consisted of the usual basics: breed history, debunked myths, and temperament information. The website quickly became a go-to source for information in the online community and as word of the site spread – and the site itself grew – it also became a contact point for the media, general public, and Pit Bull guardians seeking more information about the breed, behavior, care, and training.
Somewhere along the way, RPB became much more than a website. It morphed into an IRS-recognized 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, with real-world services in the form of dog training and behavioral help, lectures, hard copy educational material, hosting of educational booths at fairs, rescue and placement of Pit Bulls, and more. Meanwhile, RPB has continued to provide a constant stream of free information online to anyone who needs it. Today, www.RealPitBull.com is one of the oldest and largest breed information websites on the Internet and we’re pretty proud of that.
Through the years, the breed education and advocacy landscape has evolved, in some ways changing drastically: in many ways for the better, but in some ways not so much. RPB has always kept its proverbial finger on the pulse of the Pit Bull education/rescue/advocacy world, and as such we’ve evolved as necessary as well. Evolution in our case comes in the form of learning through experience, always striving to do what is best for the dogs and the breed as a whole, and adapting to the needs of an ever-growing community of breed guardians. But most importantly, we strive to live up to the name The REAL Pit Bull – our main goal is to represent the truth, reality, the real-deal story on the Pit Bull breed. Never sugar-coated, never watered down.
RPB was originally created to help preserve and protect a breed of dog; we saw a need and we jumped in to help. RPB is a purebred rescue, advocacy, and education organization. We will continue to work to save a breed that continues to be ostracized, misunderstood, and ignored by many (even those, ironically enough purporting to love and advocate for ‘pit bulls’).
There are many organizations, groups, and individuals whose focus is on saving dogs in general, or dogs that happen to look a certain way, or mixes of all sorts, or dogs lumped into arbitrary/unofficial groups. RPB is dedicated solely to the American PIT BULL Terrier breed. And we are so proud to stand up for and next to these amazing dogs who continue to inspire us every single day.
We have always been, are, and always will be APBT and PROUD.