Breaking Dog Breed Stigmas

Animals Dogs Queensland Law Adoptabull Article taken from The Biscuit magazine Posted Oct 28, 2018
Some of the most common breeds of dogs that come into the RSPCA searching for a second chance are 'bully' breeds (Staffordshire Bull Terriers and Bull Arabs).

This article is from The Biscuit magazine.

Sadly, stigma is still attached to this type of dog breed by the media and public misconceptions.  In 2017 we started our #Adoptabull campaign to break that perception. Read more

Certain Australian states still have Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) in place, meaning that certain breeds of dogs are restricted or illegal to own, regardless of their behaviour. It's a bit like judging a person solely on their appearance, not their actions. Personally, I'd like to call it how I see it; bull**** Legislation. 

One restricted breed in Queensland is the American Pit Bull Terrier. The RSPCA does not agree with BSL as there has been no scientific evidence to support that certain dog breeds are more dangerous than others. Rather, the responsibility lies purely with the dog owner to ensure that their pet is socialised, trained and treated appropriately. The community should also be aware of just how to interact with dogs in public and the home. Any dog can make a loving, devoted pet; regardless of their breed or appearance. Read our national stance on BSL here

Did you know that if you were to ask the RSPCA 10 years ago what happened to restricted breeds that came through a shelter, the answer sadly would have been they were euthanised. A harsh reality for pets that simply looked a certain way. But now, thanks to support from our interstate member societies, when RSPCA Qld receives a restricted breed into our care, if that pet passes all medical and behavioural assessments and is suitable to be rehomed, we do everything we can to ensure that dog gets a second chance just like any other animal. We currently transport Pit Bull Terriers to our friends at RSPCA ACT and RSPCA Darwin for rehoming, where the breed is not restricted to own.


1.       English Staffordshire Bull Terrier cross
2.       American Staffordshire Bull Terrier cross
3.       Bull Arab cross
Interestingly, the top breed of dog that the RSPCA cares for, is also the most popular dog breed in Queensland! The Staffordshire Bull Terrier has been named Queensland's most popular dog for the fourth year in a row representing 10% of all new pups registered with Dogs Queensland in 2015. 

Staffies tend to get a bad rap in the media. When there is a dog bite, generally this breed is referred to as the culprit. Sadly, this is not always accurate and our happy staffy mates carry this generalised assumption.  

Smaller dog breeds can also bite, but obviously their bite usually doesn't inflict as much injury as a larger dog, therefore the chance you will hear of a chihuahua attack in the media is slim. 

Can you actually identify the breed of dog based solely on its appearance? Here are some examples of bully cross breeds that come into the RSPCA. 


Johnson's American Bulldog / American Staffordshire Bull Terrier / English Staffordshire Bull Terrier / Scott's American Bulldog / American Pit Bull Terrier

Our #Adoptabull campaign is running again from April 28 – May 7, 2018 with other RSPCA states also doing the same this year! We hope that by raising awareness about just how loveable and friendly bull type breeds can be, we can help create positive associations with these types of dogs looking for homes, and break negative misconceptions.

Do you own a 'bully' breed? Tell us about them here in the comments sections below.

Emma Lagoon
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