Target: Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley
Goal: Stop government officials from passing a law that would discriminate against dogs based solely on their breed
Legislation has been proposed in Cincinnati, Ohio that would unfairly discriminate against dogs based solely on the way they look, rather than their temperament. Countless studies have shown that a dog’s breed does not make it dangerous and breed-specific legislation (BSL) is therefore highly ineffective.
A Cincinnati city council member recently proposed a new ordinance that would unfairly require the owners of pit bulls or pit mixes to register their dog with the Cincinnati Police Department. Registration would entail submitting multiple-view photographs of the dog, a registration fee, evidence of liability insurance and the dog’s microchip number. In addition, the ordinance requires the police be notified immediately if a pit bull or pit mix becomes lost or loose for any reason.
Research shows that BSL is ineffective at preventing dog attacks and therefore is a tremendous waste of taxpayers’ money and public resources. Numerous reputable studies have found that a dog’s breed does not make it inherently dangerous or aggressive; negative situations like abuse and poor upbringing do. The White House even released an official position statement against BSL in 2013, stating that any breed of dog can be raised to be aggressive and that bans on specific breeds are “largely ineffective.” Sadly, BSL ultimately results in high numbers of pit bull and pit bull-type dogs winding up in overcrowded animal shelters. Because of the negative stigma attached to these poor creatures, adopting them out is difficult and the vast majority are euthanized
Urge Cincinnati’s mayor to stand against the proposed ordinance that will discriminate against pit bulls and support effective breed-neutral laws instead.
Dear Mayor Cranley,
As an animal welfare advocate, I strongly oppose a proposed ordinance that would unfairly discriminate against dogs based on their breed. Breed-specific legislation (BSL) has been proven to be ineffective at preventing dog attacks because a dog’s breed does not make it inherently dangerous or aggressive; abuse and poor upbringing do.
As you may know, the ordinance would require the owners of pit bulls and pit mixes to register with the Cincinnati Police Department, pay a fee, and report if their dog becomes lost. Targeting pit bulls is ineffective and a waste of local resources, as well as taxpayers’ money. The White House released an official position statement in 2013 against BSL, citing studies that indicate its ineffectiveness and stating that dogs of any breed can be raised to be aggressive. Rather than preventing dog attacks, all BSL truly does is ensure high numbers of pit bulls and pit mixes wind up in overcrowded animal shelters, where the majority of them are euthanized using taxpayers’ money.
I urge you to ensure that the section of the ordinance discriminating against pit bulls is removed in its entirety before the legislation moves forward.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Almonroth via Wikimedia Commons