Over the last couple of days we’ve posted about issues in the advocacy community around commonly used terminology. We’ve explored the term “pit bull” but let’s go a little deeper and talk about the red nose/blue nose issue!
“Red nose pit bull” and “blue nose pit bull” are terms used by dog owners, irresponsible breeders, and many others. People even use them to refer to dogs who aren’t even red or blue in colour!
Dog noses are wet and adorable and leave distinctive artwork on your car windows, but they don’t tell you anything about what type of dog you have. Dogs have blue noses, red noses, black noses, brown noses, and even pink noses. American Pit Bull Terriers come with noses in several different colors – a link to the breed standard is below and clearly states that the nose may be any colour.
So why the focus on the blue and red as though it means something special? The “blue nose” term became incredibly popular when the foundation stock for the American Bullies was being developed. People wanted large blue dogs with blue noses thinking that it was rare and special. This colour is a result of recessive mutation in the melanophilin gene and causes a distinctive appearance, but there is no known breed or breeding line associated with it.
The blue colouring, with or without blue noses, is now widespread and appears in all kinds of bully breeds, not just American Pit Bull Terriers. Breeders are cultivating the “blue” colour in breeds such as Shar Peis and Labs as well.
What about "red nose pit bulls"? There’s only one reliable reference for this: the OFRN Old Line Red Nose which dates back to the 1900's and is not very common. Even so, it is not a separate breed of dogs – it is a line that has a small gene pool that has been preserved over a very long time. Chances are your ginger dog is not from the OFRN bloodline, and just simply has a nose that is red.
So there you go! Celebrate and show off your beautiful red or blue dog, just as you would a black or brindle dog – there’s no need to bring their nose into the equation when explaining to people that they are special!
The only "red nose" we know is Rudolph.
The only "blue nose" we know is a boat.
#endBSL #notoBill128 #Canada150 #BSLbytes
Source and further reading:
For background on the #BSLbytes campaign visit the HugABull blog: http://blog.hugabull.com/take-a-byte-out-of-bsl