Note: this segment originally aired June 1, 2016.
Writer Bronwen Dickey grew up with the impression of pit bulls that dominates popular discourse: they are mean, aggressive, and dangerous dogs. But after a freelance writing piece put her in an environment with a sweet and gentle pit bull, she began to wonder whether there was more to the stereotype.
She embarked on a seven-year research investigation into the scientific and social history of dogs in America. She spoke to more than 350 people including vets, animal behaviorists, breeders, and trainers, and discovered that everything she thought she knew turned out to be untrue.
Host Frank Stasio talks to writer Bronwen Dickey about her new book "Pit Bull: The Battle Over The American Icon" (Knopf/2016). Bronwen reads from her book at The Regulator Bookshop in Durham tomorrow night at 7 p.m. and at Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh Friday at 7 p.m.
Pit Bulls and their relationship with Americans throughout history: