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Pit Bull Informational Pages
by Diane Jessup 

AN IDIOT'S GUIDE TO BREED SPECIFIC LEGISLATION (BSL)

This page is designed to be a quick and easy guide to fighting BSL in today's world. Check here to quickly see if a product or service you are considering is provided by a corportation which has anti-pit bull or ANY anti-dog policies. EACH AND EVERY person counts!
Please, don't support anti-dog corporations or jurisdictions...

If you act like it is "business as usual", the banning of dogs WILL become business as usual.

WHAT IS BSL?

Breed specific legislation is best defined as discriminative restrictions placed on innocent animals and owners based on the appearance or breed of the animal. No matter how friendly, well trained or useful a dog is, if the animal fits a specific description of a "banned" breed it will face cruel restrictions, banishment or even death in jurisdictions with BSL.

More loosely, BSL covers any type of discrimination against a dog breed or breeds. Example, PetSmart discriminates against several dog breeds by refusing entry to their "day cares". This sends a very poor message to the public that these breeds need to be treated "differently" than other dogs. In truth, if PetSmart trainers were skilled, they would be able to determine each dog of every breed's level of dog aggression on a case by case basis.

Each discriminating act is a brick in the wall of anti-dog sentiment.

CORPORATION CHECK LIST
CLICK HERE
for information on airline policies
CLICK HERE
for information on insurance companies
CLICK HERE
for information on pet related industries
 
 
 


 

 

 

BSL STATEMENTS
The following is the official statement on breed specific legislation
of the American Humane Association

American Humane understands that any breed of dog can bite, and as such, believes that breed-specific legislation does not effectively protect the community from dangerous animals. Legislation banning particular breeds can unnecessarily discriminate against dogs that are not dangerous, and does little to protect the community from dog bite incidents. Such legislation can often have unintended consequences, such as black market interest, indiscriminate breeding practices, and subsequent overpopulation issues. Additionally, there can be confusion when dealing with "mixed-breed" dogs, which can make legislation difficult to enforce. Therefore, American Humane supports local legislation to protect communities from dangerous animals, but does not advocate laws that target specific breeds of dogs.
The following is the official statement on breed specific legislation
of the Humane Society of the United States

The HSUS opposes legislation aimed at eradicating or strictly regulating dogs based solely on their breed for a number of reasons. Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) is a common first approach that many communities take. Thankfully, once research is conducted most community leaders correctly realize that BSL won't solve the problems they face with dangerous dogs.

There are over 4.5 million dog bites each year. This is an estimate as there is no central reporting agency for dog bites, thus breed and other information is not captured. Out of the millions of bites, about 10-20 are fatal each year. While certainly tragic, it represents a very small number statistically and should not be considered as a basis for sweeping legislative action.

It is imperative that the dog population in the community be understood. To simply pull numbers of attacks does not give an accurate representation of a breed necessarily. For example, by reviewing a study that states there have been five attacks by golden retrievers in a community and 10 attacks by pit bulls in that same community it would appear that pit bulls are more dangerous. However, if you look at the dog populations in that community and learn that there are 50 golden retrievers present and 500 pit bulls, then the pit bulls are actually the safer breed statistically.

While breed is one factor that contributes to a dog's temperament, it alone cannot be used to predict whether a dog may pose a danger to his or her community. A September 2000 study published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association (VetMed Today: Special Report) further illustrates this point. The report details dog bite related fatalities in the United States from 1979 through 1998, and reveals that over the nineteen years examined in the study at least 25 different breeds or crossbreeds of dogs were involved in fatally wounding human beings. Breeds cited range from oft-maligned pit bulls and Rottweilers to the legendary "forever loyal" breed of St. Bernards. The study was conducted by a group of veterinarians, medical doctors, and psychology and public health experts.

The main conclusion of the study was that breed-specific legislation doesn't work for several reasons: that there are inherent problems in trying to determine a dog's breed, making enforcement of breed-specific legislation difficult at best; that fatal attacks represent a very small portion of bite-related injuries and should not be the major factor driving public policy; and that existing non-breed-specific legislation already exists and offers promise for the prevention of dog bites.

Two decades ago, pit bulls and Rottweilers (the most recent breeds targeted) attracted little to no public concern. At that time it was the Doberman pinscher who was being vilified. In 2001, few people had heard of the Presa Canario breed, involved in the tragic, fatal attack on Diane Whipple in California in January of that year. Now that breed is being sought by individuals who desire the new "killer dog." Unfortunately, the "problem dog" at any given time is often the most popular breed among individuals who tend to be irresponsible, if not abusive, in the control and keeping of their pets. Simply put, if you ban one breed, individuals will just move on to another one. Banning a breed only speeds up the timetable.

Communities that have banned specific breeds have discovered that it has not been the easy answer they thought it would be. In some areas, media hype has actually increased the demand for dogs whose breed is in danger of being banned. Animal control agencies, even those that are well funded and equipped, have found the laws to be an enforcement nightmare.

Restrictions placed on a specific breed fail to address the larger problems of abuse, aggression training, and irresponsible dog ownership. Again, breed alone is not an adequate indicator of a dog's propensity to bite. Rather, a dog's tendency to bite is a product of several factors, including but not limited to:

· ·Early socialization, or lack thereof, of the dog to people.
· ·Sound obedience training for recognition of where he or she "fits" with regard to dominance and people, or mistraining for fighting or increased aggression.
· ·Genetic makeup, including breed and strains within a breed.
· ·Quality of care and supervision by the owner (is the dog part of the family or is she kept chained out side?).
· ·Current levels of socialization of the dog with his or her human family.
· ·Behavior of the victim.
· ·Whether the dog has been spayed or neutered.

If the goal is to offer communities better protection from dogs who are dangerous, then thoughtful legislation that addresses responsible dog keeping is in order. Legislation aimed at punishing the owner of the dog rather than punishing the dog is far more effective in reducing the number of dog bites and attacks. Well enforced, non-breed-specific laws offer an effective and fair solution to the problem of dangerous dogs in all communities.

Comprehensive "dog bite" legislation, coupled with better consumer education and forced responsible pet keeping efforts, would do far more to protect communities than banning a specific breed. The HSUS encourages you to read the Community Approach to Dog Bite Prevention by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

The HSUS is committed to keeping dogs and people safe and is available and willing to offer advice, educational materials and model legislation to communities interested in decreasing the incidence of dog bites and aggression.

 

 

 


CLICK HERE
for information on airline policies
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

BSL STATEMENTS
The following is the official statement on breed specific legislation
of the American Humane Association

American Humane understands that any breed of dog can bite, and as such, believes that breed-specific legislation does not effectively protect the community from dangerous animals. Legislation banning particular breeds can unnecessarily discriminate against dogs that are not dangerous, and does little to protect the community from dog bite incidents. Such legislation can often have unintended consequences, such as black market interest, indiscriminate breeding practices, and subsequent overpopulation issues. Additionally, there can be confusion when dealing with "mixed-breed" dogs, which can make legislation difficult to enforce. Therefore, American Humane supports local legislation to protect communities from dangerous animals, but does not advocate laws that target specific breeds of dogs.
The following is the official statement on breed specific legislation
of the Humane Society of the United States

The HSUS opposes legislation aimed at eradicating or strictly regulating dogs based solely on their breed for a number of reasons. Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) is a common first approach that many communities take. Thankfully, once research is conducted most community leaders correctly realize that BSL won't solve the problems they face with dangerous dogs.

There are over 4.5 million dog bites each year. This is an estimate as there is no central reporting agency for dog bites, thus breed and other information is not captured. Out of the millions of bites, about 10-20 are fatal each year. While certainly tragic, it represents a very small number statistically and should not be considered as a basis for sweeping legislative action.

It is imperative that the dog population in the community be understood. To simply pull numbers of attacks does not give an accurate representation of a breed necessarily. For example, by reviewing a study that states there have been five attacks by golden retrievers in a community and 10 attacks by pit bulls in that same community it would appear that pit bulls are more dangerous. However, if you look at the dog populations in that community and learn that there are 50 golden retrievers present and 500 pit bulls, then the pit bulls are actually the safer breed statistically.

While breed is one factor that contributes to a dog's temperament, it alone cannot be used to predict whether a dog may pose a danger to his or her community. A September 2000 study published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association (VetMed Today: Special Report) further illustrates this point. The report details dog bite related fatalities in the United States from 1979 through 1998, and reveals that over the nineteen years examined in the study at least 25 different breeds or crossbreeds of dogs were involved in fatally wounding human beings. Breeds cited range from oft-maligned pit bulls and Rottweilers to the legendary "forever loyal" breed of St. Bernards. The study was conducted by a group of veterinarians, medical doctors, and psychology and public health experts.

The main conclusion of the study was that breed-specific legislation doesn't work for several reasons: that there are inherent problems in trying to determine a dog's breed, making enforcement of breed-specific legislation difficult at best; that fatal attacks represent a very small portion of bite-related injuries and should not be the major factor driving public policy; and that existing non-breed-specific legislation already exists and offers promise for the prevention of dog bites.

Two decades ago, pit bulls and Rottweilers (the most recent breeds targeted) attracted little to no public concern. At that time it was the Doberman pinscher who was being vilified. In 2001, few people had heard of the Presa Canario breed, involved in the tragic, fatal attack on Diane Whipple in California in January of that year. Now that breed is being sought by individuals who desire the new "killer dog." Unfortunately, the "problem dog" at any given time is often the most popular breed among individuals who tend to be irresponsible, if not abusive, in the control and keeping of their pets. Simply put, if you ban one breed, individuals will just move on to another one. Banning a breed only speeds up the timetable.

Communities that have banned specific breeds have discovered that it has not been the easy answer they thought it would be. In some areas, media hype has actually increased the demand for dogs whose breed is in danger of being banned. Animal control agencies, even those that are well funded and equipped, have found the laws to be an enforcement nightmare.

Restrictions placed on a specific breed fail to address the larger problems of abuse, aggression training, and irresponsible dog ownership. Again, breed alone is not an adequate indicator of a dog's propensity to bite. Rather, a dog's tendency to bite is a product of several factors, including but not limited to:

· ·Early socialization, or lack thereof, of the dog to people.
· ·Sound obedience training for recognition of where he or she "fits" with regard to dominance and people, or mistraining for fighting or increased aggression.
· ·Genetic makeup, including breed and strains within a breed.
· ·Quality of care and supervision by the owner (is the dog part of the family or is she kept chained out side?).
· ·Current levels of socialization of the dog with his or her human family.
· ·Behavior of the victim.
· ·Whether the dog has been spayed or neutered.

If the goal is to offer communities better protection from dogs who are dangerous, then thoughtful legislation that addresses responsible dog keeping is in order. Legislation aimed at punishing the owner of the dog rather than punishing the dog is far more effective in reducing the number of dog bites and attacks. Well enforced, non-breed-specific laws offer an effective and fair solution to the problem of dangerous dogs in all communities.

Comprehensive "dog bite" legislation, coupled with better consumer education and forced responsible pet keeping efforts, would do far more to protect communities than banning a specific breed. The HSUS encourages you to read the Community Approach to Dog Bite Prevention by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

The HSUS is committed to keeping dogs and people safe and is available and willing to offer advice, educational materials and model legislation to communities interested in decreasing the incidence of dog bites and aggression.

 

 

 

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