PAB (who no longer blogs) sent me an email yesterday regarding a new bill that lawmakers are looking to pass in California. The bill (SB 861) was introduced by Senator Jackie Speier and advocated by San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom.
The law will allow for cities/counties to enact Breed Specific Legislation (BRL)that restricts the ownership of or mandates the spay/neuter of specific "potentially dangerous" breeds.
In other states that have allowed for Breed-Specific Legislation the breeds that have been targeted are:
€ American Pit Bull Terriers
€ American Staffordshire Terriers
€ Staffordshire Bull Terriers
€ American Bulldogs
€ German Shepherds
€ Alaskan Malamutes
€ Great Danes (Mason with "vicious" Dane)
You may not like some of the breeds on here –and that’s fine, but there is no guideline for this list. There could be someone on your city/town council that got bit by your breed as a child and puts it on the list for your area. I truly believe that there are no bad dogs and only bad owners. This doesn't mean that one necessarily raises a dog to be mean --it could just be a novice owner that gets a breed that they have no business owning. Case in point --someone that gets a Great Dane and never socializes it and then is shocked when it bites someone. Why can't people take a few hours and research the breeds that they are interested in. As I have blogged about before, the good thing about breeds is they are pretty true to form. If you run 5 miles a day, don't get a lazy pug. If you live in a Manhattan shoebox, don't get a Mastiff and if you are a little old lady that no one ever comes to visit...don't get a cocker spaniel.
The only States that currently have State level laws prohibiting local municipalities from passing BSL are:
California (SB861 looks to overturn it), Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia.
Contact the following persons to express your opposition to SB 861:The Honorable Gavin Newsom; firstname.lastname@example.org, (415) 554-6141, Fax: (415) 554-6160; The Bill's Author: Senator Jackie Speier, Senator.Speier@sen.ca.gov, fax: 916.327.2186; phone: 415-445-0503