Peru, safety and pitbulls

How safe is Peru? How dangerous are pitbulls?

Got an email from my mom a while back, loosely translated:

“… Two friends of mine were thinking about visiting Peru. They’ve planned out their trip to Lima, Machu Picchu, and Cusco, and have already bought their tickets. But someone told them Peru is dangerous, and then they also read that Peru is dangerous on some government website. Now they’re thinking about canceling their trip, what should they do?”

So is Peru dangerous in my opinion? Here’s my response, again loosely translated:

“… Jee if I had known how dangerous it is here I could have been scared for the last year and a half !! Peru is very safe in my experience, BUT, it is a poor country so you have to be mindful of petty crime. It often amazes me how some tourists walk around Cusco as if they’re in Disney World. You have to be aware of your belongings, especially in busy places and on buses. Pay attention when the bus stops. There are bad parts of town in Lima, just like anywhere else in the world, but there’s no reason an ordinary tourist would end up there. I imagine the reason the government website said Peru is dangerous is because in a few of the provinces along the border with Colombia there are drug cartels, but again there’s no reason the average tourist would end up there.”

And then I made the mistake of adding some humor…

“Besides if your friends are really scared they can borrow my Pitbull while they’re here…”
We think Manchita is a Blue Pitbull

We think Manchita is a Blue Pitbull

Response from my mother….

“O my God, I’m so worried about what you’re going to do with the dogs now that you’re going to have a baby…”

Sometimes you just can’t win. There are lots of documented benefits of having dogs around children. Needless to say if you have strong, protective dogs like ours you have to pay attention to them, especially around children. But the notion that pitbulls randomly attack people is even more ridiculous than the idea that Peru is some bad unsafe place that you shouldn’t visit.

8 thoughts on “Peru, safety and pitbulls

  1. I have to scratch my head everytime I read about how dangerous Mexico is. It would be more entertaining if it didn’t so impact the economy. Like Peru, just be aware of where you are and what you’re doing. Would you stroll into a known bad part of Denver? No? Then why do it in Lima?

    As for the drug stuff up here, it has been way overplayed in the press. Besides being taken out of the context of time and facts, there have been out and out lies. FOX news is a standing joke here. Even the New York Times got into the act and has yet to publish a single retraction. No, I wouldn’t care to live in Culiacan right now, but I can walk most streets in Mazatlan at 2:00 AM.

    I’m afraid many people NOB have been brainwashed. And it’s really sad because they are missing out on so much.


  2. Thanks for that insight from on the ground in Mexico. I couldn’t agree more:

    “… it’s really sad because they are missing out on so much”

    I remember some border towns like Cuidad Juarez were dangerous back in the days I was in the air cargo business (1999-ish), but so is Gary, IN.

    I figured the situation in Mexico wouldn’t exactly be what the media portrays. Media coverage of Latin America is terrible at times. Alan Garcia (30% approval rating) is often portrayed in a positive light, Hugo Chavez (60% + approval rating) is portrayed in a negative light.

    Without getting into ideologies, ignoring the sentiment of 2/3 of the population of a country you are reporting on is deplorable.

  3. Well, I´ve been murdered without warning over 7 times in Peru, and frankly I´m sick of it. I just can´t walk down the street, past Starbucks or TGI Fridays, and not have some random Peruvian jump out and kill me.


  4. Yep, even in the yuppie parts of town. I think I’m going to head to Baghdad to unwind a little.

    (Ward, we were in Cusco for a few says recently, but doing 16hr days going here and there. Next time, when I don’t have fixed dates, we’ll have to go to get Chicharrón and a!)

  5. I know how that is, every time we’re in Lima we don’t have time to do everything we want. Next time you’re up this way or we’re in Lima we definitely need to do that!

  6. Well my take on it is that crime happens everywhere. Travelers are unlikely to experience problems if they take the same precautions they would in their own country. I have had things stolen in first and third world countries. But the only time I have been physically attacked was in Japan, which is supposed to be one of the safest countries. Be alert wherever you go, but do not be put off travelling to Peru or you will really miss out on a dazzling experience.

  7. I just thought I would let you know that a fake rescue facebook group is using this picture of Manchita and claiming that the dog belongs to her. Yours is not the only dog that has been mislabeled, misrepresented and used for this purpose. There are numerous other pet and show dog owners alike who are finding that their dog was “rescued” and a fake story made up about them:

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