By Sloane Quealy-Miner
Apparently BREEDISM, the canine equivalent to RACISM runs rampant in Georgia still. Not that long ago it was people who were misjudged based solely on their looks but today dogs face that same lynch mob mentality. Women of Wisdom founder and CEO Cheryl LaBon is asking that the Savannah, Georgia city council pass a law that would not only require “pit bull” owners keep their dogs in an 8ft by 12ft pen in neighborhoods where there are kids. But would also require all “pit bulls” to be walked with a muzzle on. In essence Cheryl is asking that ALL dogs that fall under the term “pit bull” be judged and punished for the bad acts of a few.
Cheryl LaBon should already know and understand that negative judgements based solely on appearance are hurtful and unfair, but it seems she’s forgotten and now needs a reminder of the fact that looks-based stereotypes are cruel and venemous and have real-world consequences.
ACTION NEEDED: Contact the individuals below IMMEDIATELY and tell them you do NOT support any breed ban or any piece of breed specific legislation! Urge them to adopt and enforce “dangerous dog” laws that rightly target irresponsible owners and not entire breeds of dogs that fall under the term “pit bull”.
See our Talking Points on BSL and educate these people on why BSL does not work.
Email Block: firstname.lastname@example.org; EdnaJackson3@comcast.net; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact Cheryl LaBon via her FB page here and call call at 631-2689
My letter to the Savannah, Georgia officials
I am writing in regards to Cheryl LaBon’s request to unfairly target pit bulls in the community of Savannah, Georgia.
Stories that cause people to seek out breed specific legislations are tragic BUT they involve individual dogs and are not representative of the countless other “pit bull” type dogs that are friendly and well socialized. The proposed ordinance would like all dogs that fall under the term “pit bull” to be punished for the actions of a few. This is ludicrous!
The problem of dangerous dogs is not remedied by the quick fix of breed-discriminatory laws. Aggression is not a breed issue, it is a dog issue. Any dog can be “trained” to behave aggressively. BSL provides the public with a false sense of security. ALL DOGS CAN BITE. BSL does not work, as it target is misplaced to the dog and not the owner. Numerous jurisdictions have repealed breed specific legislation in favor of dangerous dog laws. Also, numerous jurisdictions did not see any decline in dog bites when they did ban pit bull type dogs. 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 affect whatsoever on reducing dog bites. Indeed, Hiawatha, Iowa repealed their pit bull terrier ban because of identification problems and expense. Now that DNA testing is available to determine the breed of a dog, breed discriminatory laws have gotten very expensive for cities and counties to enforce. Topeka, Kansas also recently repealed their pit bull terrier ban for the same reasons.
Denver, Colorado banned pit bulls in 1989. In the years following the ban, the city continues to suffer a higher rate of hospitalization for severe dog bite injury than the breed neutral jurisdictions in the state. The Denver incidents ALL involved dogs identified as other than pit bulls. In Spain, a study of dog bite reports from five years before breed specific regulation was enacted and five years after, revealed that there had been no reduction in dog bites. The Netherlands maintained a breed ban for 15 years, but has since repealed it, in favor of owner responsibility laws.
In its study of human fatalities resulting from dog bites, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) did not support the breed specific approach. The CDC noted many other factors beyond a dogs breed may affect a dog’s tendency toward aggression – such as reproductive status, heredity, sex, early experience, and socialization and training. These concerns seem well-founded given that more than 70% of all dog bite cases involve unsterilized male dogs, and an unneutered male dog is 2.6 times more likely to bite than a neutered male dog. In 2006, 97% of all dog related human fatalities in the United States involved unsterilized canines.
Breed bans cause shelters to fill up with unadoptable dogs. No room for dangerous dogs of other breeds. Criminals ignore breed bans along with other laws. Other dangerous dogs continue to threaten community. An increased number of competent animal control officers need to be mobilized to investigate abuse and or neglect, and other complaints so attacks by any dog can be avoided. Programs such as mandatory education classes on good ownership and obedience training need to be in place if a dog is declared dangerous or has been reported running loose/menacing an excessive amount of times. If people are convicted of abuse/neglect they need to be ordered not have any other animals. If a dog is found to be “dangerous” the dog should be spayed or neutered, micro chipped for positive identification and muzzled when out in public. Outlaw the tethering/chaining of dogs as 25% of all fatal dog attacks involve tethered or chained dogs.
Breedism is the canine equivalent to racism and it is mentalities like Cheryl LaBon’s that are responsible for the deaths of so many loving, gentle and beautiful animals. Innocent dogs suffer and die in shelters every day because not only do breed specific policies/legislation give false verification to the public that pit bull type dogs are vicious but it effects the ability of people in the communities to adopt these animals, as well as rescues/ shelters to adopt out these animals.
A study by the National Canine Resource Council looked at media coverage of dog attacks during four days in 2007. Three attacks by mixed breed dogs, including one fatal attack, generated one or two articles each. But a similar, non-fatal attack by two pit bulls generated 230 articles.
Stories regarding pit bull attacks are blasted all over the news but it is stories like these that people never hear about. They are just a few of the many cases where pit bulls have performed heroic acts. PUNSIH THE DEED, NOT THE BREED! – Sloane Quealy-Miner