JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. - When it comes to adding a dog to your family local shelters are full of loving pups looking for homes, but one local shelter says they have an abundance of dogs that people aren't adopting.
The Washington County Johnson City Animal Shelter has a surplus of pit bulls.
Shelter workers say pit bulls have a bad reputation, but according to them that's a misconception. They believe the dogs can be loving animals and they're hoping to get some adopted.
"Pit bulls were originally known as "nanny dogs." People had them years and years ago and used them as dogs to watch over their infants and to watch over their kids. They are extremely loyal dogs," according to Eric Rogers, an employee at the Washington County Johnson City Animal Shelter.
Shelter workers say some people utilize the dog's protective nature and raise the dogs to be aggressive. Because of the spotlight on dog fighting and pit bulls the shelter is extra cautious about who can adopt these pups.
"They are the only breed here that has adoption requirements. We come out to the home and check any potential adopter that is interested in any pit bull or pit bull mix," adds Rogers.
After learning about what these animals can be like Rachael Hyder, who is looking to adopt a dog, says she's not against rescuing a pit bull, "I think it is a possibility knowing that they are more nurturing and not as violent as they are kind of framed to be."
Eric Rogers is hoping to spread the word. He owns three pit bulls and says if you don't judge a book by its cover you may be surprised at what you get.
The shelter tells us out of 63 dogs in the shelter, 23 are pit bulls or pit bull mixes.
Rogers adds, in Washington County, Tennessee most dog bite cases are not from pit bulls, but actually from smaller dogs like Chihuahuas and Dachshunds.