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Readers Respond

News Opinion Readers Respond

Dog attacks are the fault of irresponsible owners, not breeds

If reader Tom Paxton were actually a lifelong animal lover, he would understand that all dogs are "potentially dangerous" ("Pit bull compromise deserved to fail," April 15).

All dogs have teeth. All dogs, given their breeding and life experience, can be problematic — or wonderful.

I've been a professional dog trainer for decades. Mr. Paxton says the owner of a dog that bit him treated her pit bull "like a poodle." I've been threatened (more often than bitten, thanks to dog-smarts and good reflexes) by every breed in existence.

I'm not a pit bull apologist. I know that untrained, un-socialized dogs can be biters regardless of breed. But until we begin to hold all dogs owners responsible for their pets' behavior and focus on responsible ownership and training, we will continue to have dog attacks and a "vicious breed du jour."

Janet Boss, Baltimore

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