Breed-specific legislation refers to a type of laws and regulations that are passed by a legislative body and is concerned with a particular breed or breeds of domestic animals. This law restricts or bans certain breeds of mongrels depending on their physical appearance, generally because they are perceived to be dangerous types or breeds of dogs such as the pit bull Terrier (Pitbulls.org). This legislation has two sides, that is, restrictions and bans. The breed or dog type ban legislation requires that all the dogs of a particular appearance be totally taken away from the municipality where the prohibition has been employed.
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According to this legislation, when the deadline for the ban is reached, all the breeds or type of the dogs that are identified as a subject for expulsion are either killed or relocated if there is that option as per the concerned municipal laws and regulation. Based on how the legislation is drafted, the breed-specific legislation may require that owners of the targeted type or breed of dog to do either of the following; he or she can be required to muzzle the dog while in public places, keep the dog on a restraint of a specific length or material.
In addition to this, the owner of the dog may be required to force the dog wear a tag showing that it is both dangerous and malicious, put vicious signs on the outside of the habitant where the dog lives and purchase a liability insurance which will cover any damage that is caused by the dog. This paper is both an argumentative essay as well as a case study. The paper describes breed specific legislation by giving a case where the legislation has been applied. In addition, to shows how the law is ineffective and why it is not a solution to the skyrocketing levels of insecurity by giving different cases where the application of the law has not been a success;
One case involving killing or attack of a person by dogs occurred in Pacifica, California whereby, Greg Napora came from work only to find out his wife, Darla already killed by one of their family dog’s, a pit bull breed dog type. The dog was found standing over the body and it was assumed that Darla has succumbed from the excessive blood loss. Consequently, police officers killed the dog using a pistol as he tried to run from the back yard. Though the dogs lead to death of Darla, many U.S citizens have different views towards the killing of the bull pit dog. Many citizens argued that if the death of Darla was caused by another type of dog, the news could not be widespread as it did (Nancoo).
They argued that the media is bias towards the Bull pit breed of dog. This story was taken so serious that it was the headlines of almost all the newspapers in the United States the following day. Instead of shorting the dog and killing it as a measure of mitigating the problem in future, the media should have published an article that educated the mass how to protect themselves from the attacks from dogs. The breed specific legislation is not effective and it is not an ultimate solution to the problems of insecurity. Some of the weaknesses of the legislation include;
The Breed Specific legislation is not the only solution to the skyrocketing levels of insecurity, in fact it leads to the increasing tension of insecurity in a nation than a sense of security. In addition to this, the law has been biased and also not inclusive but seems only target particular individual dogs. For example, according to site Laws, a large group of experts and organizations believes that nothing should be done to the dogs, but instead the owners of the dogs, children and the elderly must be educated. In addition the government should enact strong criminal laws that prohibit dangerous behavior on the dog owners, and help gather more information from the dog owners that would help come up with legislations that are geared towards the security of the people from the dogs but that does not involve killing of the dos.
According to laws, any dog could be a dangerous and a bad dog, and therefore it is impossible to identify bad breeds of dogs such as the pit bulls, and therefore people or organizations with bad intentions will try to harm breeds by painting them killer breeds for the purpose of staying one ahead of the law. Other weaknesses of the breed specific legislation include; always focusing on the dangerous dogs tries to divert the attention of from the real problem to other issues which are not the main cause of the problem-The main problem is the presence of irresponsible dog owners. Another reason why the legislation is not effective is that it deprives pet owners of their beloved pets (laws).
Another challenge with the breed specific laws is that, the owners of the breeds of dog which are considered to be dangerous hide them from the public, the laws punishes good owners and good dogs- since the law covers all the dogs that are of a certain breed, even the good dogs and their owners are affected (ASPCA). For example the Pit Bull Terrier was used as pet before it was declared a dangerous breed of dog (Modern Dog magazine).
When the legislation is passed it does not exclude the dogs which have been taken good care of by the owners but target all the dogs whether good or bad provided that they are members of the “illegal” breed. It is not logical to assume that all dogs that are of a particular breed all dangerous and this is what lead to the U.S president Barack Obama to come out clear and condemn the legislation (The Huffington Post). In addition to this, the laws impart a sense of insecurity and also may encourage ownership of the outlawed breeds of dogs but irresponsible people.
To conclude, I do not support the breed specific legislation because the law is not only biased but also has many weaknesses which should be factored before it is fully implemented. In addition the law does not solve the real issue of dog bite but instead turn the focus from the problem to other issues. Moreover, killing of a certain breed of animals is doing injustice to the animal family and an act that is against the rights of animals. Instead of implementing the breed specific legislation and killing a certain breed of dogs, it is better to educate the dog owners, the youths and the elderly on how to handle dogs.
“Breed Specific Legislation.” ASPCA. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Mar. 2015.
“A Brief History of the American Pit Bull Terrier.” About the Pit Bull: Origins and History. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Mar. 2015.
“What Is It About Pit Bulls?” Modern Dog Magazine. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Mar. 2015.
“White House Comes Out Against Dog Breed Bans.” Vetstreet. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Mar. 2015.
“Animals and Society Institute – Media Paparazzi and Bully Dogs.” Animals and Society Institute – Media Paparazzi and Bully Dogs. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Mar. 2015.
“Arguments for and Against Breed Specific Laws.” Dog Bite Law. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Mar. 2015.