A solution to America's Pit Bull problem may be just around the corner.
The problem, of course, is that there are too many Pit Bulls, and too few owners who know what they are really getting into when they acquire one.
The end result is that too many Pits are abandoned to shelters where they represent more than half of all dogs killed in America -- over 40 million pounds of dead Pit Bull a year.
What to do?
To start, we need to understand the problem. The problem is not "Pit Bull discrimination," as some have argued. People who do not like Pit Bulls do not breed Pit Bulls, they do not acquire Pit Bulls, and they do not subsequently abandon Pit Bulls to die at the pound. That's all on the Pit Bull community, which has done a piss-poor job of patrolling their own breed, educating consumers, and shaping a culture that embraces spay and neuter as a core part of responsible pet ownership.
Why do Pit Bulls have such a low spay-neuter rate?
Some will say it's because of the relatively high cost of spaying and neutering a medium-large dog that weighs over 30 or 40 pounds (a cost of $150-$350).
Others point to the machismo factor -- wanna be tough guys do not want to castrate their dogs, as testicles suggest power, and young men, in particular, are uncomfortable with the idea of castration.
The good news is that a new low-cost ($4-10 per neuter) non-surgical form of sterilization has been green-lit, and when it swings into production, sales and distribution, it will keep male dogs with their testicles on (albeit perhaps slightly shrunken). Another benefit that studies show that testosterone production decreases 41-52% in treated dogs -- not a bad thing in most Pit Bulls!
Zeuterin, the new injectible sterilization product, has been specifically developed to sterilize male dogs. Also called "zinc neutering," the drug is a naturally injectable Zinc Gluconate compound with a natural Arginine additive that, combined, sterilizes dogs with just one injection in each testicle. The effects are permanent, and reliable, and virtually painless.
Zeuterin is the first permanent non-surgical sterilant to receive regulatory approval from the U.S. FDA, and it should being marketing later this year.
Dogs treated with Zeuterin retain their testicles, though the testicles may shrink a bit in size and change slightly in texture (they may get a little more rubbery). Have more questions? Read here!