The city of Savannah has determined the need to strengthen their dangerous dog ordinance within the city/county limits; and consequently is discussing a proposed ban on pit bulls and pit bull type dogs. The city council has already appointed a panel consisting of at least nine people to take on this “task.” Only one member thus far has any experience with canines. Two of the panel members (that we are aware of) are staunch proponents of breed specific legislation (BSL) against pit bulls, and pit bull type dogs. Many requests have been made from animal advocates to speak in front of the city council to help assist on this issue and have been ignored, as have requests for the minutes from the workshop when the panel was instituted, have been denied. Many advocates have impressed upon the council, mayor, and other city officials the need for at least two professionals in the field of canine behavior to be appointed to the panel to ensure a non-biased outcome in this matter. Their pleas have also been ignored. Certain council members are denying that a panel has even been created, while other members have indirectly confirmed it. There are whisperings that this panel has been meeting behind closed doors without public knowledge, a direct violation of “The Sunshine Law”. Transparency in these proceedings is essential to guarantee citizen’s rights are not trampled upon by a few. This petition has been started to let the Savannah/Chatham County officials know that their residents will not stand by idly and allow their beloved family members to be victimized by unwarranted discrimination by the city of Savannah’s “invisible” panel.
There are plenty of options available to ensuring responsible ownership of ALL dog breeds; breed specific legislation is not one of them. Enforcement of laws already on the book would be a sound place to start. Responsible ownership should be celebrated and not subjugated by ignorance and bias.