End Pit Bull Ban in Miami-Dade County

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What is this Petition all about?

This is a petition to end the ban that is currently in place in Miami-Dade County on Pit Bulls. Ban specific legislation is harmful, expensive, and is not back by current data. If we can end this ban, it will save thousands of dogs, but also save tax payers millions of dollars.

Are Pit Bulls naturally aggressive?

A lot of people think pit bulls are naturally aggressive. Data has shown that this is not true. The reason any breed of dog can become aggressive is based on diet, environment, and genetics. Pit bulls can end up in unfortunate situations because they are large, stocky, and can look intimidating, this makes them more susceptible to be trained to behave aggressively. This breed is not inherently violent. Pit Bulls do also not have “lock jaws”, this myth has been proven to be genetically impossible. They have the same jaw strength and pressure as many other large dog breeds. The myth of Pit Bulls brains swelling in their skull and becoming insane is also a myth, there is no basis for that claim. In reality, these dogs are loving, energetic, loyal and can be a great companion for many families.

How does this ban affect Pit Bulls?

There are many personal anecdotes of how these dogs’ changes people’s lives for the better. I myself have a gray Pit Bull puppy named Axle. He is friendly and has never caused anyone harm, but because we have him, we now how to consider where we live and how we present him in public in fear of judgment, fines, or retaliation. There was an incident posted in the Boston Review in 2010 about a family’s Pit Bulls who were taken from them and euthanized even though they were healthy, non-aggressive, and had never caused anyone injury. The judge in this case even said that is seemed like the county was trying to ‘exterminate’ the breed.  Millions of families across the country and in Miami-Dade County have to leave a family member behind because of bans that are not based in reality. If these dogs are forced to be abandoned or taken away from their families, they will be put in a shelter. Because of the stereotypes that are placed on Pit Bulls in result of these bans, half a million Pit Bulls will be euthanized each year. If they are not euthanized they are much harder to adopt out than other breeds and can become scared or more likely to be aggressive because they are placed in an unknown environment.

How does this ban affect families?

This ban not only affects the breed, it affects their families as well. When families are told they are not allowed to keep their pet, they have to move elsewhere. These bans can make it harder for low income families to find affordable living options. Even if the government doesn’t ban the breed, the apartment complexes in the city might. This leaves families with the tough decision to give away a loved pet or have to find other housing options that might be out of their price range. Having a ban on these dogs not only puts a ban on Pit Bulls, but on the families. In many communities, minorities are given the same negative stereotypes of a Pit Bull just for owning one. They are more likely to be seen as thugs, dangerous, or aggressive than a family who doesn’t own a Pit. This ban affects the dogs and the families in ways that could follow them for generations. This could be through the hardships of finding housing, the stereotypes they are faced with, and the financial difficulties that families can go through just to keep their pets.

Is this ban effective?

This ban also affects people who do not even own Pit Bulls. To enforce these bans, counties have to use tax payer’s money. If a ban on Pit Bulls was to become nationwide, it would cost tax payers 450 million dollars. This includes enforcement, kennels and vet care, euthanizing, and DNA testing. With all this money being spent on banning Pits, it is also helpful to know that these bans are ineffective. The main reason for these bans is too lower dog attacks in the area. When data was taken from a city in Spain where Pit Bulls are banned, it showed no decrease in dog attacks from when the ban was put in place. In many cases, the only attacks that are ever reported are from Pit Bulls. When a Labrador attacked someone and caused major injury, it got very little media coverage. In that same year, a Pit Bull bit someone’s arm and over 250 media outlets covered the story. This also bring up the question of the legality of the ban in the first place. A lot of dog owners see this as a property rights matter. If they are responsible owners of their property, there should not be a ban where the government is allowed to take their property from them or give them a fine for owning that property. In the end, these bans are not cost effective and take away the rights of responsible dog owners to be able to live and work where they please.

How do we fix this?

            When all the evidence is stacked up, it seems to be a better option to take away these bans. I want to start with the county that is closest to my home that bans Pits. Miami-Dade County is one of the two counties in all of Florida that has a ban on Pit Bulls.  If this ban is taken away, it will save tax payers money, save families heart break and give more them more stability financially and on where to live, will save dogs lives, and reverse negative stereotypes that have lasted for too long. Reversing one counties ban on this breed can start a domino effect to where cities and counties across the country can get rid of these bans. Sign my petition and be part of a change that will save countless animals and families from more suffering.

 



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Autumn Knox needs your help with “Carlos A. Giménez: End Pit Bull Bans in Miami-Dade County”. Join Autumn and 1,547 supporters today.