Insensitive Pit Bull Ad is the Latest McDonald's Media Miscue

February 6, 2012

Just days after an online promotion got hijacked by savvy Twitter users, a local McDonald's ad was pulled for depicting pit bulls in a negative light. The radio ad, which ran in the Kansas City area, boasted, "Trying a new menu item at McDonald's isn't risky. You know what's risky? Petting a stray pit bull." The ad went on to share other perilous pursuits like "giving friends your Facebook password" and "shaving your head."

The McDonald's pit bull ad sparked a swift backlash. Pit bull rescue organizations and owners of the much-maligned dogs formed Facebook groups, Twitter threads and online petitions in protest.

McDonald's pulled the ad and issued a recorded apology that said, in part, "The ad was insensitive in its mention of pit bulls. We apologize. As soon as we learned of it, we tracked the source and had the local markets pull the ad immediately. We'll do a better job next time. It's never our intent to offend anyone with how we communicate news about McDonald's.

Listen to the original pit bull ad below. Do you think the McDonald's response was sufficient?

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