In an incredible show of support for a grassroots movement to regulate pit bulls, Miami/Dade County, Florida voted 2 to 1 to retain their 23 year old and very successful pit bull ban. Successful in the sense that the maulings and fatalities of pit bulls have not had a place in Miami since that time.
What makes this even more incredible is that big names in the humane community all put money and effort behind a repeal of the Miami/Dade County ban. Yet they were defeated by a handful of dedicated people determined to stop the damages of the pit bulls. Word of mouth is a powerful thing if it speaks the truth, not lies and propaganda. The Miami/Dade citizens have sent a powerful message to all the above that they care more for public safety than for a breed of dog designed for only one thing - to kill.
Again we were presented with the types who follow "No Kill" and own pit bulls in the form of Dahlia Canes. Canes is the founder/director of Miami Citizens Against Breed Specific Legislation. Instead of trying to give pit bull owners a better reputation, she encourages them to be criminals. http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Miami-Dade-Residents-Vote-on-Pit-Bull-Ban-Repeal-Tuesday-166056926.html While Canes played with her pit bulls outside her Hialeah home, she told NBC 6 South Florida her pet couldn't be sweeter. "Just because a dog is born of a specific breed, does not make it inherently dangerous, "Canes said. "Any dog can bite".
Canes loves pit bulls, but hates the bad reputation that comes with them. She said they are discriminated against. She's had two pit bulls for a couple years now - even though it's been illegal in Miami-Dade County since 1989. "Yes, I am breaking the law by having two pit bulls in my house, "Canes said. "And you don't care?" a reporter asked her. "They're my family," she answered. " I will defend them."
Placing herself above the law, this is the behavior of those who own pit bulls. Pits are mauling and killing in record numbers. No other breeds have done this much damage. Victims are left with no recourse usually, left in financial ruin, left with life altering scars, left without limbs. Our shelters have an euthanization rate of pit bulls ranging between 40-50% of the total euthanizations.
Yesterday was exciting for another reason as well. Recently the Maryland Court deemed pit bulls dangerous and that landlords could be held liable for their attacks EVEN IF there was no prior aggression from the pit. This decision riled many people and again all the big names put all their money and effort behind getting the Maryland legislature to overrule the Court decision. No agreement was reached and the legislature put it back to the Court, asking that it be reviewed. This is the same Court that made the decision to begin with. This is a victory all the same.
For more information on the pit bull crisis, please spend some time on www.DogsBite.ORG. This is a victim's site geared to help other victims of the pit bull. Links are provided that can provide valuable information to help you in your local fights to regulate pit bulls.