Your Action Needed to Prevent Breed Discrimination
Yes, you read correctly. An ordinance is being proposed to mandate owners to tether their dog, particularly when it is on the owner's property.
As incredible and irrational as this sounds, the Butte-Silver Bow council voted 10-1 to send the ordinance to the Judiciary committee. This is the next step to becoming a law in this community.
This is disturbing considering that the Journal of Veterinary Medical Association published a study in 2000 that suggested that 17% of fatal dog attacks involved dogs, of a wide array of breeds and mixed breeds, that were chained as a primary form of containment. Most of those victims were children.
To Montana Residents
The Council of Commissioners of Butte, Montana, will meet regarding a breed discriminatory ordinance proposed by city commissioner Terry Schultz. Commissioner Schultz is calling for an ordinance that mandates tethering of all pit bull terrier type dogs. This is actually an ordinance that requires pit bull terrier dogs to be tethered while on their own property.
Commissioner Schultz clearly has no idea about the dangers of tethering a dog, regardless of breed, and the humane movement nationwide to regulate tethering. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control recently found tethered dogs three times more likely to bite than a free-roaming dog. Currently there are over 150 cities, counties, and states in the nation that regulate or strictly prohibit the tethering or chaining of a dog.
The next Judiciary meeting will be June 23rd, 7 p.m., Courthouse (155 W. Granite St.), third floor, Council Chambers.
Request More Effective Legislation
Best Friends opposes canine profiling as it does not reduce dog bite incidents nor effectively manage dangerous dogs. Rather than breed-discriminatory restrictions, legislators should mirror good breed neutral dangerous dog/reckless owner laws that have been enacted in Illinois and Minnesota.
Some of these laws include regulations that:
Protect innocent dogs and responsible owners.
Encourage residents to spay/neuter their pets.
Effectively identify and manage truly dangerous dogs.
Enforce stricter consequences for dog fighting.
Prevent reckless owners from having dogs.
1. Provide your name and address
Legislators want to know that you are one of the people they represent.
2. Ask for specific action
Ask members to oppose any ordinance that bans or regulates a specific breed of dog.
3. Give reasons and examples
Chose from the list below or share your own. Remember to be always be respectful and avoid being emotional. This is your chance to educate someone about truly effective ways to manage dangerous dogs.
It is often difficult for even experts to determine the breed of a dog-particularly with mixed breed dogs. Click here to find the pit bulls on the web. Many dogs are misidentified and confiscated simply for their appearance.
Breed discriminatory laws cause unintended hardship to responsible owners of friendly dogs that happen to fall within the regulated breed category.
Breed-discriminatory laws compromise public safety by requiring officers to enforce regulation on dogs that may or may not be dangerous instead of investing resources into proven, effective tactics that make the community safer.
A dog is an individual with its own personality. It should be judged on its temperament and not its appearance.
Studies of pre and post breed ban dog-bite-rates in the United Kingdom and Spain concluded that their pit bull breed ban had no effect whatsoever on reducing dog bites.
Italy recently revoked its breed ban stating the ban had no scientific justification.
Calgary, Canada has lowest dog bite rates in 25 years, without enacting BDL.
Contact the Judiciary Committee members today!
Cindi Shaw (406)490-1118 | [email protected]
Wally Frasz (406)491-4121 | [email protected]
Dan Foley (406)723-3836 | [email protected]
Glen Granger (406)497-6379 | [email protected]
Charlie OLeary (406)782-6504 | [email protected]
John Morgan (406)490-6595 | [email protected]
Thank you for taking action for animals!
Additional Information and Resources
Join the Pit Bulls: Saving Americas Dog campaign to help put an end to breed discrimination.
Learn more about breed bans and dog bite facts at the National Canine Research Council.
Posted by Katie Bray, Best Friends Volunteer
Photo by JJ Cook and Sumner County Sheriff's Department