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Dog trainer: Biting instinctual, not breed related

PHOENIX — A Valley dog trainer isn’t surprised that two young children from Buckeye were bitten by the family pit bull.

“Not surprised at all,” said Sandi Shore of Bad Dog To Good Dog. “Because pit bulls have a strong prey drive, there are certain behaviors I tell people should not be encouraged.”

According to information provided by Buckeye police, on Wednesday, officers responded to the 100 block of Sixth Ave. West for the report of two children who were bitten by a pit bull. The initial investigation revealed the children were playing with a family dog in their back yard when they attempted to pull a chew toy of some sort from the animal’s mouth, at which point the dog began to bite the children.

Shore maintained that it’s not about the breed, it’s about instinct.

“If I pull a chew toy out of my 22-pound Basenji, which is a hunting dog originating in Africa, she’ll bite me because this is her innate behavior,” she said.

Shore said any bully breed could benefit from some professional training.

In the meantime, if you have a dog with strong prey drive, she suggests not allowing children to play tug-of-war with the dog. She also suggested teaching your child to not grab food or toys from their mouths.