Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Dangerous Dog Bans

I was looking at the news this morning and came across an article where Cesar Millan can't bring his pit bull Junior  to Toronto, Ontario because of a dangerous dog ban. Nevermind that Junior is a pit bull mix who has basically been an ambassador whose calming presence help comfort many aggressive dogs.
Junior and Daddy from Cesar Millan's Website
While I think that there are dangerous dogs out there, I think it's unfair to lump them all into one group because of a few bad dogs who probably didn't have an owner, or was doing what they thought their irresponsible owner wanted.

Dangerous Dogs: Myth or Reality?

Many dogs such as Pit Bulls, Rottweilers, Presa Canario, or even Doberman Pinschers are considered dangerous by lawmakers. The irony is that bad owners have made these dogs dangerous. If an owner gets a dog with aggressive tendencies, they must have the patience to help reel in that aggressive streak. Instead, many of them will try to fight them in dog fights, beat them up as an outlet for their frustration or simply turn them into mean dogs so they won't feel intimidated.

Who suffers? It's not the owners, but the dog. There are dogs out there with behavior issues that can be threatening to humans. They may be strays who've had to fend for themselves or dogs who have been severely abused. It's so hard to believe that a certain breed of dog is dangerous though. Everything has its exceptions.

Not everyone likes dogs. Still, as long as certain dogs are raised by responsible owners and act like good citizens, why not exclude them from these bans? Better yet, instead of targeting a specific breed, why not judge every situation individually?

Personally, the more I read about places creating dangerous dog bans, the more I think they are perpetuating the myth instead of getting to the heart of the matter. When you create laws that are based on fear, there is little possibility to change the situation for the better.

Let's Discuss!

What are your feelings on dangerous dog bans?

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  1. Oh, breed-specific legislation (BSL) makes me crazy. Leaving the aside the barely-concealed racist underpinnings, these laws exemplify the magical thinking of the prohibitionist mindset -— that we can cure the degeneracy of a society by banning one of the symptoms. (Rather than, say, by enforcing existing laws -- in this case, against dogfighting.)

    And it just doesn't work. It's feel-good piffle for legislators. I can understand the desire to be seen as doing something about violent crime, but it's deeply unjust to penalize good citizens -- be they human or canine -- in the process.
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  2. Jack, what can I say? I totally agree with your comments. I agree this is just another form of discrimination against dogs and their responsible owners. Thank you for commenting.



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