Tell Lee's Summit Parks and Recreation District to Stop Discriminating Against Dogs
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Update December 18, 2010: Councilman Brian Whitley contacted the Parks Department to follow-up on concerns about restrictions within the dog obedience classes in Lee’s Summit, Missouri. Lee’s Summit had recently opened a dog park. This dog park is open to all breeds of dogs.
Whitley was told that the policy referenced from the cityofls.net website was implemented by the dog obedience instructor in the early 2000’s. The instructor has since retired and the Parks Department has contracted with a few different providers since that time. Staff has verified with the current dog obedience contractor that specific breeds are not prohibited in obedience classes. Staff are in the process of updating brochures and other media to state that the programs prohibit aggressive dogs as opposed to specific breeds.
In October, Lee's Summit, Missouri won a national award for their parks and recreation department. Their progressive parks and recreation department runs dog obedience classes to teach dogs to be well-mannered, but they refuse to let "pit bulls" into the class. This is Lee's Summit's Park District Policy -- not the obedience class instructors.
Any dog that is well trained makes a good canine citizen, regardless of breed. The city of Lee's Summit should want pit bulls to be obedience trained. All dog owners, including pit bull owners, should be encouraged, not discouraged from taking their dogs to obedience classes.
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