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The State of the American Dog

We are not a pure country or a country that values purity. We are a country of adoption, a country of rescues, a country of mutts. At least that’s how we like to think of ourselves. But we are also a country that likes to create idylls of its own good intentions and then penalize what doesn’t fit. Pit bulls don’t fit. They don’t fit in the idyll of the dog park or sometimes even in the idyll of rescue, in which dogs that demand total responsibility are instead expected to rise above what they really are. They have upped the ante on American dog ownership by narrowing the margin of error to the point of nonexistence. Their detractors say they are more likely to kill; their advocates say the only thing they are more likely to do is die. We make a habit of asking dogs about their own goodness without expecting or getting an answer. But go to an animal shelter and before they are euthanized, ask the dogs you see there—the pit bulls you see there—about our goodness. You will get all the answer you need.

-from The State of the American Dog. Fantastic, beautiful, and heartbreaking read. (h/t Marjorie.)

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