Home / Mom Defends Pit Bull Calling it Not a Murderer

Mom Defends Pit Bull Calling it Not a Murderer

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Here’s looking out for your kid. Maureen Faibish was so concerned about her son’s safety, she put little Nicholas in the basement to protect him from the family’s pit bulls, one of which reportedly mauled the child to death. “It [was] Nicky’s time to go,” she said in an interview to the San Francisco Chronicle. “When you’re born you’re destined to go and this was his time.”

Insisting pit bulls are appropriate family pets, Faibish said she placed a shovel against the door (to keep the child in or the dogs out?) because one of the animals was in heat. She told the Chronicle she believes that when Nicholas left the basement, he stumbled upon the dogs mating and that’s when the male dog, Rex, killed her son. He was 12 years old.

Faibish is angry with public officials who have leveled criticism at pit-bull owners. She even yelled at Mayor Gavin Newsom in a telephone conversation. Newsom is pushing for some sort of legislation to deal with the problem of fatal dog attacks. “Just for the record, I yelled at Gavin Newsom,” she said in a published account in The Chronicle. “I told him off. How dare him say anything about my family?”

There is an easy and obvious answer to that question: apparently no one in the family really cared for the safety of the children. How Faibish can say the animals were safe after she had taken precautions to protect the child eludes this blogger. To suggest it was her son’s time is extraordinary, plain stupid, and cruel.

It’s the dog’s fault, she contends. “I think of Rex as someone who molested my child, murdered my child.”

The Chronicle wrote her comments illustrate the “confusion and mixed feelings pit bulls can bring out in their owners.” Confusion? Mixed feelings? Rex is an animal, incapable of thought or reason. Faibish is a human, though seemingly incapable of genuine concern for her son. The death of Nicholas was not a “freak accident” as Faibish contends, but an act of child neglect and endangerment. The San Francisco D.A. ought to hold Faibish criminally libel for this incident because it was not his time.


The Chronicle: Mother shut boy in basement to protect him from pit bull — 12-year-old was killed by family dog; owner sees death as tragic accident but defends the breed as loving pets. Certainly, mommy dearest should have consulted a public relations professional before spouting off to the Chron:

“I put him down there, with a shovel on the door,” said Faibish, who had left the boy alone with the dogs on June 3 to run some errands. “He had a bunch of food. And I told him, ‘Stay down there until I come back.’ Typical Nicky, he wouldn’t listen to me.”

The San Francisco Examiner: Family, friends mourn loss of ‘special’ child — No, actually, it is about a dog attack:

In a statement, the Faibishs urged the public to “keep our family and son in your prayers,” but to view the tragedy as, “about a little boy — not a dog attack.” Nicky’s death by pit bulls, the second involving canines in four years here, has reignited a debate over the danger of certain dogs and prompted the mayor to pull together a task force to determine what sort of regulations should be instated to ensure further attacks do not occur.

Mercury News: Pit bull owners defend breed — Not all dogs maul children to death, though:

“This is simply canine behavior not a breed specific behavior,” said Ron Cole of San Francisco. “All dogs have teeth. All dogs can be potential lethal weapons.”

Pit Bull Community: Pit Bull Owners Say Dogs Misunderstood — Not actually opposed to pit bull ownership, but some discretion is called for. Here’s the pro-pit-bull side:

Lorrie Varanco, pit bull owner: “They’re extremely loyal dogs, and if people understand them and what they’re capable of and how to work with them, they’re probably one of the best pets you can have.”

San Francisco Chronicle: Pit bull’s demeanor depends on who’s holding the leash, Training determines breed’s disposition, animal experts say. Locking a child in a basement probably does not add up to a good trainer:

Seraphin said the breeding to fight is just one element of the pit bull’s makeup. What is less known, she said, is that they were also bred to differentiate between humans and other animals. In much of the literature on the dogs’ early days, it was noted that a dog handler had to be able to pull his dog out of a fight without getting bitten himself. Getting bitten meant disqualification for the dog, and death, too.

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    No offense, but do we need more than 1 post on this subject? Yours appears to be a bit better supported, though.

  • Yeah, probably didn’t need more than one post on this subject, but it took a few search terms for me to find the previous entry on it. That said, anyone who so flagrantly mistreats a child ought to be publicly chastised… over and over again.

  • Sockses

    This woman has already lied once about what happened. Can we check the shape of that head wound to see if it matches the shovel?

  • This whole story is about gross child negligence. This mother, thru her own statements, has clearly shown her lack of judgement about children and dogs both. They wanted puppies, so they did not spay or nueter. She didnt want the packed clothes destroyed by the dogs, so she locked her SON in the basement. I would certainly hope the law does its job and charges her accordingly.

  • Zuzu

    Firstly, yes, sure, it was outright negligence to leave a 12-year-old boy (statistically the most likely person to be the victim of a dog bite/attack) alone in the house with dogs/pets that you’ve decided are unstable and possibly violent. Undoubtedly charges will be filed – or rather I would be wholly shocked if they were not. I further don’t understand why the family were breeding their dogs when you can get so many wonderful unwanted dogs at shelters throughout the US. At kill shelters in Northern California literally from sun up until sun down it’s people’s jobs to kill as many dogs as they can each day… it’s how they start and finish their days.. every day… eight hours… forty hours a week… The hints of irresponsibility and gross negligence were there before we learned of the mom locking her kid in the basement. The family owned two un-fixed dogs in a country where dogs are being killed daily because of irresponsible breeding. (And besides…what do they say, something about the difference between being a child and adult rests in the difference between statements like, “my son got killed” and “my negligence was responsible for my son’s death.”) Be all this as it may… I agree with you on these issues, but take issue at the inference that pit bulls are not appropriate pets. Terriers and terrier mixed breeds are awesome pets. The problem isn’t the dog, the problem is the owner/handler. Not every person is capable or responsible enough to be a dog owner. That’s really not the dog’s fault, nor does it mean that particular dog is a “bad” dog or makes a bad family pet.. it means that’s a “bad” family for a pet dog.

  • I’m certainly willing to concede that pit bulls make great pets, but not all humans make great owners. The more dangerous the animal the more responsible the owner needs to be. Faibish *knew* she owned dangerous animals, and she placed her child in harms way. A tragedy? Yes, but the owner, not the animal, is responsible. Society needs to hold Faibish accountable.

  • RJ

    Tell me, would you own an anaconda or a king cobra?

    Would you own a crocodile or an alligator?

    Would you own a lion or a tiger?

    All these animals are capable of KILLING a human being. It’s in their nature, as deadly predators.

    Pit bulls are another deadly predator. And they have killed or hideous mauled a large number of human beings over the last few decades. It’s time we ban the ownership of these monsterous beasts.

    FWIW, I have been bitten (badly) by a dog once. It’s not a lot of fun.

  • Can’t say pit bulls ought to be banned, but perhaps they should be regulated. I’d be interested to know what the figures are regarding pit bull attacks. In my book, people come first.

  • Sockses

    Any pet can kill you if the circumstances come together correctly. I’ve owned 3 pit bulls, and none of them has bit anybody. However, I’ve had some nasty cat scratches get really infected. And rodents can give you rabies. And I’ve had a bunch of friends killed by humans. Can we get rid of them?

  • This is definitely a tragedy and I agree the comments by the mother are strange. However, on the subject of “banning ownership” of pits, that’s a typical newswatching, believe everything the media throws in our face, misinformed person’s answer to any problem, just do away with it. If you haven’t already figured it out, I own two beautiful APBTs as do many of my friends. It’s called RESPONSIBLE PET OWNERSHIP. And get your stats correct. The video in my URL speaks for itself. Watch it and do your own research.

  • Peter Salz

    Wait a minute here. Aren’t we supposed to be presumed innocent? We have condemned this mom and thrown her jail without a key for what? A statement she apparently made which was taken out of context by a sensationalistic journalist. We need to be careful. She obviously was in grief and must be suffering some kind of shock from what she saw. Man, I don’t even know what kind of crazy statements I would make if this happened to one of my children. I saw a few references on some blogs that at trial it came out that the door was broken and that was how you shut it- put a shovel on it. Big difference.

  • I presently own 3 pit Bulls and Rescue them when I can. They are more of a victim than a preditor. Sure there are some bad “Pits” but there is bad “Chows”, “Chihuahuas” & yes even Collies.

    PitBulls pass their temperment testing 84.1% of the time. Collies only 79.2% of the time & Schnauzers only 66.1%. Should we ban them too? The problem is the ownership should be regulated, to many idiots want to own them to fight, feel cool, or look “Bad”. They have NO respect for themselves much less the breed.

    Every year in the U.S. 440,000 people die from smoking, 40,000 in car accidents 2,000 children are killed by their own parents 3 people die from PitBulls

    Heres a link to the American Temperment Testing Society you’ll be shocked at some of the results….

    Lastly; if it was proven that one race of people committed more crimes than the others, should we ban them? I know your first response is “That’s Different”, but would it be different if it was your dog?

    I could go on for hours educating but this is a good start. PUNISH THE DEED-NOT THE BREED!

  • Jen

    People who jump on the “let’s ban pit bulls” bandwagon are clearly ignorant bigots. And the person comparing pit bulls to wild predators ?? come on !! why is the focus always on pit bulls ? because the media has sensationalized the term “pit bull” to sell news thats why. the truth of the matter is that many breeds are now falling under the term “pit bull” most of the dogs involved in attacks are not american pit bull terriers, but are mixed breed dogs of unknown origin or mastiff lines that are being labeled as pit bulls. this entire breed specific legislation movement and bans on certain types of dogs based purely on how they look is
    ludicrous ! I hope that people realize that the flood gates have now been opened to ban all larger breed dogs in the near future. It may be pit bulls now but it will surely move on to all large breeds, and make its way down until we are only allowed to own a few select small breeds of dogs. all dogs have teeth and the ability to inflict damage to humans, yes the more powerful the dog the more damage it may be capable of , but does that mean we should start banning dogs ? who can proove what breed a dog is anyway ? dna tests are worthless when it comes to breed and so far many labs have been euthanized in denver due to its bsl which call for banning of “pit bulls” described as any medium size muscular dog with short coat and blocky head, that allows for so many breeds to be effected ! this is already so far out of hand, what is this country coming to ?