“…so preoccupied with whether they could that they didn’t stop to think if they should.” -Ian Malcom, Jurassic Park
This is Hulk. At 175 pounds, he is the world’s largest pitbull (which yes, I know isn’t even a breed, but rather a conglomeration of different breeds). He is owned by Marlon Gannon of Dark Dynasty K9. Hulk has been bred, and according to Gannon, is a trained professional guard dog, who will heed his owners every command and protect them with his life. Lisa Gannon claims she trusts him around her toddler “precisely because of his thorough guard-dog training” and even lets her toddler ride him(!), a very dangerous (and stupid) thing to do.
Let me start by stating that anyone who claims their dog will follow their “every command” has some ego problems. My dogs and I are pack members. I have nothing to prove to them except that I will always take care of them, and in a crisis situation (say, intruder breaks in or a zombie apocalypse) I know they will do their best to protect me. I will never claim any animal (or human, for that matter) will obey every command, as every creature has a breaking point.
I’ll admit it: I don’t respect guard dog trainers very much. I think it takes a special kind of bully to turn a dog into a compensating appendage.
I do realize that there are indeed special circumstances that actually require a guard dog, and that there are indeed wonderful trainers who can train dogs to safely handle these situations. Police dogs, military dogs, even personal protection dogs, are all a necessary evil. However, I do wonder at the ludacris number of “guard dog trainers” out there. Especially the ones who use pitties as guard dogs. One of the worst choices for the job. Yeah, they’re muscular, but so was Michael Clarke Duncan. Who was a vegetarian.
I stumbled across the best statement about this whole “Hulk” debacle on Facebook. Trainer Shannon Duffy, from Your Good Dog, had this to say about it:
“This may come as a surprise but I am not a fan of Hulk. Well, Hulk I love, the situation around him is despicable in my opinion. Hulk, the 175 pound “Pit Bull”, is the latest internet sensation. Hulk is also a mutation that is the result of irresponsible breeding that is done purely for looks and size with no regard for the health or temperament of the dogs created. He seems to be a great family dog even when the parents, showing extreme poor judgment, allows their child to ride him like a horse. I wish him all the best and hope that he continues to be a good ambassador for Pit type dogs but I cannot support the concept of breeding based purely on appearance (looking at you too AKC).”
And that sums up everything despicable surrounding poor Hulk. I, too, wish you the best in this crazy world you’ve been thrust into, big guy.
Dog Training in Cleveland, Ohio