Several states including California, have breed specific laws regarding dogs. These laws primarily target pit bulls and various breeds that are included in the pit bull line and mixed breed dogs with pit bull blood.
According to our dog bite attorneys, in the past 12 years, there have been 392 Americans who have been killed by dogs. Of the nearly 400 deaths, 65% of these deaths are contributed to the pit bull breed. The combined pit bull and rottweiler breed raise the figure to 76% and when you add in breeds that are considered “cousins” of these breeds, you get nearly 90% of all the deaths caused by breed specific dogs.
There are several breeds sited on the breed specific ordinances. They include (but are not limited to):
- American Pit Bull Terriers
- American Staffordshire Terriers
- Staffordshire Bull Terriers
* and any dog with the same blood heritage of bull baiting as featured in the United Kennel Club
Why the Pit Bull?
The history of the pit bull is a violent one. This dog was bred and trained in Europe to bait and bring down bulls that were chained or placed in a hole in the ground. The dog would attack the bull viciously.
Historians point out that bull baiting did not begin as a bloody sport.At one time it was believed that if a bull was baited by dogs, the tearing would cause the tough meat to tenderize. For a while, it was illegal to kill a bull that had not been baited by dogs. But, over time the “necessary” evil became a wildly popular sport and there was a public outrage to bring it down.
In more modern times, the pit bull has become the breed of choice of drug dealers, gang members, and other violent criminals. While dog lovers protest that it is these specifics that cause people to misjudge the pit bull, the facts prove that the pit bull and dogs in that line are involved in more serious injury and death dog attacks than any other breed.
What Does This Mean for the Pit Bull in California?
California does not enforce any targeting of the pit bull over other breeds. But they do maintain some ordinances pertaining to the breed specific laws of the state. According to these BSL ordinances, a pit bull or another dog on the BSL that is over the age of 4 months old must be licensed. Further, any pit bull or another dog on the list must be placed in a spay/neuter program. Low-income families or families with hardships to prevent them from affording the spay/neutering can receive a $50 voucher from the county of San Bernardino.
These BSL laws have been showing promise. Numbers of pit bulls being left in animal shelters are dropping. This means fewer are being euthanized. Fewer pit bull mixes are wandering the roads, and people are taking their responsibility as dog owners seriously.
If properly loved, cared for, and trained, the pit bull can be a wonderful pet. The problem is the people who want to look tough at the expense of the animal.
For more information, speak to a dog bite attorney today.