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UPDATE: On August 14, 2012, Miami-Dade voters chose to continue their 23-years long history of breed discrimination by upholding the ban that prevents residents from owning pit bulls and pit mixes.
And so, the fight to end BSL continues.
On August 14, voters in Miami-Dade County, Florida, will decide whether or not to repeal a countywide breed-specific pit bull ban.
Although the state of Florida prohibits breed-specific legislation, Miami-Dade County’s “grandfathered in” law has banned pit bulls and pit bull mixes for the past 23 years.
The ban was prompted when 7-year old Melissa Moreira was mauled by a pit bill outside of her Miami home. Moreira, now 31-years old says the ban’s critics are playing on the emotions of animal lovers at the expense of public safety, reported the Miami Herald.
“I think that if I were bit by a poodle, I wouldn’t have had to have eight major reconstructive plastic surgeries,” said Moreira, who vehemently opposes a lifting of the ban. It is Moreira’s opinion that anyone pushing for the right to own a pit bull is “putting themselves at risk.”
However, in support of the ban lift are the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Humane Society of the United States, and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals – and the Dogington Post. Those opposed to such a ban view it as discrimination, limiting the rights of dog owners and the dogs themselves solely based on looks, rather than the personality and demeanor of the individual dogs.
From the Miami Herald:
In Miami-Dade County, owning American pit bull terriers, American Staffordshire terriers, Staffordshire bull terriers or any dog substantially conforming to any of these breeds’ characteristics has been illegal since 1989. If these breeds wind up in the county shelter, they are eligible for adoption outside the county; otherwise they can be euthanized.
Six animal enforcement officers follow a checklist to determine whether a dog conforms to the county’s definition of a pit bull. Investigators look for dogs with round and well-set eyes, short and stiff coats, a tail that tapers to a point and a somewhat broad chest, among three dozen other physical characteristics – all details that also could describe other breeds.
The current ban forced Miami Marlins pitcher, Mark Buehrle, and his family to live in neighboring Broward County in order to keep his beloved American Staffordshire Terrier, Slater. Because of the ban, one of Miami’s most favorite Marlins is unable to live in the city that he represents.
Last year in Miami-Dade county, 200 pit bulls were euthanized and about 120 were returned to owners or adopted by individuals or rescue organizations outside Miami-Dade.
How do you think Miami-Dade residents should vote next week? Here’s hoping they make the right decision for the dogs.
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We shouldn’t stop breeding a breed because of their owners. Their should be test or standards for people wanting bully breeds. In the 10 years me and my husben have been together we have only had pitbulls or American staffshires. We have 3 kids 9. 3 and 18 months. Our dog now is a 1 year old un neutered male pit we got from a guy down he road. I wanted a frenchie and was willing to shell out the 2000 dollars for one. When we found out he had pit puppies in thanksgiving and the mom and puppies were out side we wanted one so we could love and show that puppies what indoor life was like. He is a great dog and the best friend to my 3 year old. Their a dog that if raised right can be pulled on tuged on without a problem because or their thick skin. And if anyone tryed to break in or take one of my girls theirs no way they could. Love my Reegie we have a 6 foot fence. Hes in a crate when were not home. Never let him run free.
i think people should stop breeding pit bulls. not because of the dogs but because of the stigma that follows the poor animal all it’s life. people are ignorant when they think pit bulls are BAD dogs, which is ridiculous, but for the sake of the animals, they don’t need to be bred and then continuosly judged, killed etc. for their whole lives. that would be the only reason to stop breeding them. they are too good for this stupid world. i also don’t believe in breeding any kind of dogs until all the shelters are empty.
My mom had a pit bull that adopted her. The dog, Lucky, ran away from previous owners because they were mean to her. Lucky was the most gentle dog I have ever been around, even tho she was not treated very nice before she adopted my mom. She would follow my mom around, even when mom was mowing the lawn! Lucky never was aggressive with anyone but would ‘stand at attention’ whenever anyone would come in the yard. She gave my mom, and us, many years of love and we miss her every day! Don’t know how old she was but she lived for many years after mom got her. I am against the ban on the dog. The people should be the ones banned and put in jail for the rest of their life. After all, if it weren’t for them, the pit bull breed would not have the name it carries now.
Please please understand it’s not the breed but the people that own the breed, brought up properly they are like cats in a dog suit, loyal and loving, my bully breed has never grawled except in his sleep once- I have worked with dogs for years and the most difficult breeds to handle and the ones most likely to bite are some of the small lap dog type breeds, are they next to be banned– if any dog isn’t cared for, disaplined and loved,fed properly, played with and excersised things can go pear shaped no matter what breed-, you can’t target any one breed, please open your minds, people seem to be able to own poisiness snakes, cobras, rattlesnakes, vipers of all sorts, but pit bulls came directly from hell–SO NOT SO–wise up.
I support the ban. The facts clearly show that this breed is dangerous. Check out this site. dogsbite.org/dog-bite-statistics-study-dog-attacks-and-maimings-merritt-clifton.php
There are other sites as well that from an actuarial/insurance view point will definitley show that this breed is dangerous. Period.
No offense, but when you site a source that is all about being anti-pit bull, your legitimacy kind of goes out the window.
You claim to be a dog lover, just curious what kind of dog do you own?
Unfortunately, the way a dog behaves is influenced by a lot of things, not just the way they are raised. If that theory were true, then families with several children would all have children that are basically the same, but they don’t. Children raised by the same parents, under the same conditions, with the same amount of discipline & in the same house are all very different. Sure, there are a lot of similarities between siblings, but they all can have different temperaments, different interests, a different sense of what is right and wrong. Some can be very complacent while others can be very rebellious. Different genetics plays a heavy part in who these children are, they are all individuals. Different experiences, both good and bad, also play a role in their development. The same holds true for dogs. They are all individuals and they are all going to be different. Raising them properly just makes a good dog better.
What this means to me is that if the ban is lifted I would be one happy girl. If not I would never step foot into your county! I have a pit bull and had another who recently passed at age 16. They are the best dogs I have ever owned, there are many groups of people who get together with their pits to show support of a breed we feel very passionate about their future in this world. what should be done is ban the people put them in jail and don’t let them out who treat any dog cruelly who force them to be mean this can any breed. Its the ignorant people that need to be dealt with not a breed of dogs.
Let’s get real people. what is the next target breed it use to be dobermans, rottweilers, even german shepherds were feared at one time.
I will continue to do whatever it takes to make sure all bans are lifted on any breed of a dog.
Insane to kill a dog based on his breed. Haven’t we learned anything?
It’s the bad people that make the dogs mean….No dog is born aggressive. It learns from its environment, and how it is trained.. It;s sad so many have been put to death because of the breed. When will people learn to love, and train them well….Poor furbies, born to be killed. So sad!