What do you think of when you hear the words “pit bull?” Do you picture dog fights or vicious attacks you may have heard about on the news? With this infographic, National Geographic hopes to dispel some of the vicious rumors behind this normally sweet and loyal breed of dogs.

In the early part of the 20th century, pit bulls were seen as “America’s Dog,” used on posters during World War I and frequently shown with children in movies and films. That all changed in the 1980s, when illegal dogfighting surged in popularity and gangs began to use pits for protection. These days, the prevailing image of pit bulls is ruthless killers with locking jaws and a brutal bite force of 1600 psi (both false statements). In fact, 86.8 percent of pit bulls have passed their temperament tests – they rank number four out of the 122 breeds tested, better than collies, golden retrievers and beagles.

What are your thoughts on pit bulls? Do you think the news media portrays them unfairly, or do you think there’s truth to the accusations? Check out this infographic for surprising facts about the dogs, and be sure to make your voice heard in the comments!