Educating not Discriminating
Dog Legislation Education (DLE) is for anyone on either side of the Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) fence. I wanted to provide a place where you can ask questions that otherwise might spark debate. This is not meant to be a place to argue the issues, but to help people understand why dogs bite, who's really responsible, and what types of legislation have proven successful in protecting the public and punishing human offenders. Anyone commenting on the blog will be removed from the group for being insensitive. My main focus will be for citizens of Springfield, Mo as the Animal Issues Task Force (AITF) has proposed new legislation, policies, programs to City Council. Because these proposals could help improve the safety of citizens anywhere, the blog is open to anyone.
The Root of Fear is Ignorance.
The one thing I have learned over the years, is that most people who have a problem with a specific breed of dog either had one bad experience or heard bad stuff on the news. Humans are allowed to be afraid...I'm afraid of spiders, hopefully no one faults me for that! What I hope to accomplish with this blog is to help Pit Bull and other Power Breed owners to understand that some people don't know any better than to be afraid. As dog owners we have to take our time and show the public that no one breed stands alone with behavioral issues. I hope to not only educate people who don't know the blessings our dogs bring, but also help educate people who may not know what is appropriate behavior for them and their dog. Though I don't believe Breed Specific Legislation is effective in educating the public, I do believe Potentially Dangerous Dog, Dangerous Dog, and Irresponsible Owner Legislation can not only educate, but improve public safety as well.
Please enjoy the blog, sign up for email updates, keep your filters on when commenting, and hopefully learn something new today.
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Monday, April 13, 2015

The Last Pit Bull Decision for the Current City Council!

Tonight Burlison and Ruschefsky voted "yes" to repeal the Breed Specific wording in our Dangerous/ Vicious dog legislation the City of Springfield currently has. However, the rest of the council voted "no". Mayor Stephens stated that he would vote against it because the new legislative pieces are not currently in place. Doug tried to explain that there would be plenty of time for the BSL language to be replaced with the proposal from the Health Department (and the Animal Issues Task Force...) for the new Dangerous/Vicious, Reckless Owner, and Nuisance Dog Legislation pieces, and that it would work with no lag time. Unfortunately, that wasn't good enough.

The second Pit Bull item the City Council passed. This saved at least 6 of the 8 Pit Bull type dogs currently residing in the City Pound. It says that the city and the rescues came to an agreement on a contract in which the rescue will hold a ridiculous 1 million dollar liability policy for the Pit Bulls they pull. I am glad there was at least one rescue that could afford to deal with the Health Department that will never admit they were wrong. ***2,000 plus Pit Bulls dead and only 32 bites less in 6 years? That doesn't sound like progress to me. It sounds like our city killed a horribly large number of dogs, and caused an even greater amount to get dumped and shipped out of the city, and only reduced the number of bites by 32.

I do want to note that Mayor Stephens said that he would vote for this... dun dun dun... because he voted against us having chickens in Springfield city limits and has seen none of the predicted fallout. LOL Did our mayor just compare Pit Bulls to chickens? I would love to hear what he would compare cats to!

All I can think to do at this point is to  keep giving council, and those opposed, information to prove that the new legislation is more than what we currently have and will keep our citizens safe. Here are some of the most reputable organizations in the US and their stance on Breed Specific Legislation

American Bar Association


American Veterinarian Medical Association

Center For Disease Control- Apparently their stance hasn't changed since 1998? Let me know if I'm wrong.

National Canine Research Council

Pit Girl's unfiltered opinion:
I hope that the city isn't going to continue to be extremely difficult to work with when it comes to other rescues. I know there are rescues out there that are difficult to deal with, but there are more good than bad. I don't understand why the City of Springfield gets to say that only two rescues are good enough for them. There are many rescues in town doing way more than the city will ever be able to do without help. This is a group effort, and until the Health Department, certain AC professionals, and City Officials learn to work together or go away, we are going to continue to keep hitting these brick walls over and over. I am not currently proud of my City at this point...I hope it starts to turn since there has been all of these public awareness efforts lately. I also hope that the City Council understands now how little they know of what goes on behind the scenes. The answers that Kevin Gipson gave were in fact not all true, but I'm not going to argue with him because that would make him look like he was a person that didn't know what he was talking about when he is in a position to make decisions and recommendations to our City Council. Hehe

At this point, I'm just waiting to see if any of these "citizens" speaking out are going to help with the fostering of any of these dogs...or if they're just here for their own "oh so sweet Pit Bull". That may have offended some people, but I certainly hope it lights a fire under them, we need all the help we can get fostering dogs.

***My strongest fight against BSL still continues to be that...Pit Bulls are a "Type" of dog. In my 20 years of learning about dogs, I have seen too many dogs bred together that come out looking pit and are not. I have seen way too many DNA tests, that are not admissible in court, come out saying dogs that definitely "look pit" are cattle dog, or rat terrier, or border collie...


Oh! and by the way! I haven't ever heard of a BSL being repealed... and then being put back into effect...prove me wrong?

Check out this video of a 14 year old Pit Bull, originally bred for fighting by an irresponsible owner, and now living with a responsible owner!
BSL at work in Springfield Mo