Pit Bull Ban Lives On in Miami-Dade As Repeal Falls Short in Tallahassee

Still banned in Dade
A full month before the season kicks off, Mark Buehrle is close to taking his first loss in Miami. The new Marlins ace is celebrity spokesman number one for pit bulls and the activists trying to overturn Miami-Dade's two-decade ban on the dog breed. Along with his wife, he's vocally pushed for lawmakers to pass bills in the House and Senate to negate Dade's rule.

Last night the House bill fell short of getting out of committee. The measure isn't dead, but with just over a week left in the session, pit bulls are perilously close to another year on the wrong side of Dade's laws. Still, pro-pit bull activists are pushing for a vote. "If I wasn't hopeful, I would have hung up my hat a long time ago," says activist Dahlia Canes.

"I try to tell people, 'If you're scared of pit bulls or don't like them just because of the way they look, let me introduce you to my dog.' We treat him right," Buehrle tells the Sun-Sentinel this morning.

Despite the committee defeat, the bills aren't dead. Canes says that both the Senate and House bills could reach the floor for a vote before the session ends on March 9 if they're pulled from committee and submitted directly for a vote.

"We're not finishing fighting yet," she say.

Blame Fred Grimm for the delay. The Herald columnist has decided to take up the mantle of media scaremonger to keep the old ban in place.

His column two weeks ago is a case study in the kind of pit bull panic that initiated Dade's nonsensical ban two decades ago. He cites horrific attacks - including that of an 8-year-old girl that inspired Miami's prohibition. He mentions a CDC study supposedly showing pit bulls to be responsible for a huge number of injuries and deaths.

"Equal rights for all breeds," he writes scathingly of Buehrle's goal, "even dangerous breeds."

Never mind that the CDC study Grimm cites has been widely discredited, in large part because it relied on police who tend to classify virtually every dog incident as a "pit bull attack."

Never mind that nearly every legit animal group, from the Humane Society to the American Veterinary Medical Association, opposes the ban.

Never mind that the law is expensive, nearly impossible to enforce and flaunted by loads of research that shows that no breed is born deadly.

"We don't believe any one breed of dog is inherently more dangerous than any other breed," Adam Goldfarb, a Humane Society spokesman, told New Times.

In fact, about the only organization still standing behind Grimm and the Miami-Dade ban is PETA. And frankly, if you're alone in a room with those guys, God have mercy on your soul.

But after Tallahassee's whiff yesterday, it appears that Dade's ban will live to see another day. The failed committee vote came just a few days after Ohio's governor, John Kasich, signed a bill legalizing pit bulls across his state.

His reasons? Ohioans were spending $17 million a year enforcing a law that didn't work.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes. Tim Elfrink writes about crime, politics and South Florida insanity @timelfrinkmia.
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79 comments
GenevieveJ
GenevieveJ

Go to Dogsbite.com. Read the articles about sweet and loving pit bulls mauling and/or killing infants. Terrible article about UK death of infant. Aren't these dogs sweet? 

Katie
Katie

I have a pitbull and she has never even once showed any aggression! If u are afraid of the breed don't get one! Simple as that! :)

Fuckpits
Fuckpits

I don't give a damn we donot need pits in miami dade.that's what we now need every getto thug walking around with pits.he'll no I bet they do lift the ban we are in big trouble.sorry I don't care what y'all say .I and many others don't want pits.I live all my life in miami dade and I seen what pits done you can say its there owners but most that have pits are getto thugs.

BIG BOY PITBOSS
BIG BOY PITBOSS

Fuck u asshole cock sucking son of a bitch u dumb motherfucker we don't need people like u ,u peace of shit things like u r gonna rot in hell.

Fuckpits
Fuckpits

And for all you fuckers and honkeys that don't live in dade and say y'all love pits take them to your countys if you freaking want.

Jamie D. Kaltz
Jamie D. Kaltz

Clearly the negative comments about Pit bulls also is an indictment of Miami's educational standing in this country, as any individual who takes the time (and is literate with an open mind) would realize that the breed specific paranoia has made its rounds... Rottweilers, Dobermans, German Shepard's, and Pit Bulls Terriers, all have similar traits.... They are intelligent easily trained animals, and all have had a turn being used as a scapegoat in the arena of public opinion.  The advocates of the Ban recite the battle cry "know your history" I will repeat their own phrase back to them...KNOW YOUR HISTORY!  The Pit Bull is one of the most famous breeds that have been loyal family pets for generations in this country.I can understand people being a little nervous... Their strength and teeth are admittedly intimidating; I used to share in this nervousness, but I forced myself to have an open mind and I looked into the breed and interacted with them, even helping with Rescued Pit Bulls, and I have personally found them to be the most loyal, affectionate, good nature d animals I have ever encountered... The rest of Florida was smart enough to do away with breed specific bans (and to my knowledge Orlando's children have not all been mauled) it is time for Miami to follow suit.  Furthermore a Judge in 2009 deemed the ban vague and unenforceable, as animal enforcement agents have to guess if an animal "substantially conforms" to the definition of a pit bull. Which basically confirms that breed alone is not justification to brand a dog vicious and order its destruction. 

Shirles
Shirles

The ban helps to eliminate dog fighting in Dade County

Training Leash
Training Leash

Amazing blog . Thanks . Keep posting . :)

Tomslvtr
Tomslvtr

Sergeant stubby most decorated military dog ever.pitt bull! Save a whole bunch of lives captured German spie met with 3 U.S presidents .women in France new this dog was instrumental in saving the people of there town were so grateful they made him a vest for his metals.saved them from bombs and gas attacks .!

Jamborou
Jamborou

Pit Bulls are just dogs.People are the problem.The ones that use the dogs to project their ignorance and agressions.To start there should be a licence to own this dogs until only the ones that truly love them would have the right to have them.This dogs are so loyal to humans ,so ready to please ,it is incredible what it is been done to them.

Debbie Bell
Debbie Bell

Every pit website states that pits were not created to be human aggressive, only dog aggressive. Even if pits only killed other dogs, why would anyone who truly loves dogs want the abilities and instincts of the fighting breeds to be continued?  Dog aggression is the worst!

Pit pushers are like pit bulls.  Aggression feels good to them. They breed and acquire pits because the pit can be an extension of themselves and their aggression. Watch how quickly they attack any sane solutions to the crisis that pits endure.

Pit promoters are the same as dog fighters. Suffering dying pits is ok with them. Bait dogs (and neighbors), all ok too. All they care about is themselves and their ability to breed, buy, sell own pit bulls. All the suffering and unnecessary death that surrounds this handicapped breed is perfectly acceptable to them.  Remember: all that matters to the pit person is him/herself.

Pitbulls Kill
Pitbulls Kill

Every time the pitbull lovers come up with the same arguments. They are not convincing anybody else.

- "You can't identify between the zillion pitbull and mixes." Doesn't matter. Looks like a pitbull, acts like a pitbull. Dogo, whatever. Still dangerous.

- "Poodles and yorkies bite too." Show me the first death by poodle bite. It's funny how people so discerning about breeds all of a sudden can't distinguish between a bite and a nip.

- "I have a RIGHT to own this particular dog!" No you don't, anymore that you have a right to own a lion or a bear. Animal ownership can be regulated by the state. If you really think you have a right, why aren't you fighting in court?

- "It's the owner's fault!" Agree with you. But I'm (and society) is not willing to wait until there's a mauling victim that showed the owner was irresponsible. Throwing that guy in jail does nothing for the victim.

- "Meet my pitbull, he's very sweet!" I'm sure he is, until he attacks. 90% of owners whose pet has attacked somebody probably say the same thing. I have two friends who own pitbulls, and I won't go to their houses with my infant daughter, because both dogs have acted aggressive out of the blue. They are my friends, but they are idiots, and I have told them so.

- "Breeders already breed them in hiding." Are you seriously saying that having to hide a breed operation is no different than being able to breed dogs legally? That one is a head scratcher.

BTW Tim Elfrink, your "law is too expensive" link doesn't offer any tangible evidence. Just somebody's word. How exactly is it expensive?

I understand you love your pet very much. People that own leopards and chimps and lions love them irrationally as well. But you can't control him 100%. He's a separate being from you. Responsible choices in a civilized society include respecting the rights of others not to live in fear of your pet.

Jose
Jose

Fuckuuuuuuu dip shitttttttttt

Bebep
Bebep

I realized that it would take too long to reply to each one of your moronic statements. Basically just a pile of opinion.

But here's a link to a poodle killing another dog: http://www.rockymountainnews.c...

I'm sure you'll now say it didn't kill a human, but I'm treating this exactly like on of your idiotic replies.

Go live in fear, we'll all be happy when this ban is lifted in the near future.

cetude
cetude

Send these pit bulls to China - they make hamburger and steaks out of them. 

popper
popper

Send u to jail so they can ass fuck basterd.

cetude
cetude

You mean pit bull advocates all over the Country are pounding the Florida legislature and they don't even live in this State.  HOME OWNER'S INSURANCE has PROVEN that pit bulls are the most likely to attack and maim because they are the ones forking over over $400 million a year just on DOG BITES. Attorneys who specialize in DOG BITES alone all say taht PIT BULLS are the MOST OFFENDING of all dogs for bites who attack and maim or kill-not just bite.   Further if you lift the pit bull ban, DOG FIGHTING will dramatically ESCALATE because it will be legal to breed as many as you like-and dog fighters DO, so lifting the pit bull ban is something to the Drug Cartel's best interest as these pit bulls are used as weapons against police and network illegal drugs and weapons with pit bull dog fighting arenas. THANK GOD the pit bull ban was not lifted. AMEN! 

Shirles
Shirles

I am a dog lover and began reading this article out of a mild interest.  However, stats don't lie and I am shocked by the evidence even if there are some inaccuracies in identifying the breed, the preponderance of evidence suggests the ban should continue and not only in Dade County.  Preventing dog fighting is a major concern for the welfare of all dogs.

Gabriel Reyes
Gabriel Reyes

Did you delete the comment where you're saying that drug dealers and dog fighters are going to abide by the ban while they ignore other laws? Maybe you realized how ridiculous you sounded.

Responsible owners are just as offended by dog fighting, overbreeding, and attack training as you are, but they don't want their family friendly pets put down. 

The reasoning you offer is treating the symptom not the cause. Really think about what you're saying. Dog fighters will hide either way. Responsible owners will want to socialize their pets, get them treated by vets, and take them to the dog beach to run and play like normal dogs should. Who do you think will get their dog killed by the ban? The fighters who hide either way, or the responsible owner who is doing nothing wrong by raising a friendly animal? 

Sharon Kaufman Athanasiou
Sharon Kaufman Athanasiou

I think the most "dangerous breeds" are humans who refuse to believe that each and every dog is an individual. Generalizing in any way about any living being is totally ridiculous and ignorant. Unless you have met EVERY SINGLE PITBULL IN EXISTENCE, you cannot generalize about PITBULLS as a whole.

Why can't there just be stiffer penalties for those who abuse and neglect dogs, thereby increasing the possibility of the dog (ANY breed) being aggressive. Why are humans so quickly let off the hook regarding responsibilty for their animals??

mutt
mutt

2011 USA DOG-RELATED FATALITIES.

31.December 31, 2011--AGE:84-PIT BULL (grandson's).

Mable Harrison, McCallister, Cleveland, Tennessee.

30.December 24, 2011--AGE:76-PIT BULL (neighbor’s).

 Emako Mendoza, San Diego, Calif.

29. December 9, 2011--AGE: 40-PIT BULL (neighbor’s).

Misti Wyno, Valdosta, Georgia.

28. December 6, 2011--AGE: 39-PIT BULL (owner’s).

Tonia C. Parks, Rockford, Illinois.

27. December 3, 2011--AGE: 58-PIT BULL (owner’s).

Joseph D. Hines, White County, Indiana

26. November 15,2011--AGE: 71-PIT BULL.

Edna Dyson, Houston, Texas.

25. October 3, 2011--AGE: 11 day old-PIT BULL/MASTIFF MIX (owner's).

Mya Maria Maeda, Amarillo, Texas.

24. September 30, 2011--AGE: 20 months-PIT BULLS (3) (aunt's)

Neveah Angel Bryant, West Haven, Connecticut.

23. September 16, 2011--AGE: 71-DOBERMAN(owner's).

Donna Conrad, Valley View, Texas.

22. September 3, 2011--AGE: 13 day old-PIT BULL (owner's).

Brayden McCollen, Cypress (Houston (Harris County),Texas.

21. August 30, 2011--AGE: 9 day old-Pit Bull, Bulldog, Alaskanmalamute, German shepherd and German shepherd-bulldog mix (5) (owner's).

Addyson Paige Camerino, Clarkton, North Carolina

20. August 30, 2011--AGE: 50-PIT BULLS (5) (owner's).

Carmen Ramos, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

19. August 23, 2011--AGE: 61-PIT BULL (owner's).

Michael Cook, Tucson, AZ.

18. August 11, 2011--AGE: 32-PIT BULL (owner's).

Darla Napora (pregnant), Pacifica, Calif.

17.  August 12,2011--AGE: 4-Rottweiler(grandparent's).

James Dowling, Hot Springs, Arkansas

16. July 3, 2011--AGE: 11 months-BULL DOG (owner's).

Michael Naglee, Nehalem, Oregon.

15.  June 29,2011--AGE: 6 months-PITBULL mix (owner's).

Salvador Miguel Cotto, Chesterfield, VA,

14. June 15, 2011--AGE: 74-PIT BULLS (2) (neighbor's).

Roy McSweeney, Palatka, Florida.

13. June 11, 2011--AGE: 38-PIT BULL (owner's).

David Quyon Haigler, Spotsylvania County, VA.

12. May 26, 2011--AGE: 4-Cane Corso (owner's).

Jayelin Graham, Brownsville, New York.

11. April 25, 2011--AGE: 48-PIT BULL (4) (victim).

Margaret Salcedo, Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.

10. April 22, 2011--AGE: 50-PIT BULL (neighbor's).

Virgil A. Cantrell, Ardmore, Oklahoma.

9. April 13, 2011--AGE: 7 months-ROTTWEILER (owner's).

Annabelle Mitchell, Frankfort, Maine.

8. March 6, 2011--AGE: 47-PIT BULL (owner's).

Jennie Erquiaga, San Bernardino, Ca.

7. March 5, 2011--AGE: 3-ROTTWEILERS (2) (grandparent's).

Vanessa Husmann, Hopkinton, Iowa

6. February 19, 2011--AGE: 15 day old-PIT BULL (owner's).

 Darius Tillman, Kalamazoo,Mich.

5. Febuary 17, 2011--AGE: 66-ROTTWEILERS (2) (neighbor's).

Sirlinda Hayes, Dillon County, SC.

4. January 26, 2011--AGE: 51-PIT BULLS (2) (neighbor's).

Ronnie Waldo, Randolph, Miss.

3. January 24, 2011--AGE: 9-AKITA (owner's).

Kristen Dutton, Modoc Shores, SC.

2. January 12, 2011--AGE: 5-PIT BULLS (2) (neighbor's).

McKayla Woodard, Waxhaw, NC.

1. January 4, 2011--AGE: 51-PIT BULL (owner's).

Linda Leal Castillo, Colusa, CA.

 

 

2010 USA DOG-RELATED FATALITIES

35. Dec. 19,2010 Age: 3 months-Rottweiler

Janet Vaughn, Houston, TX

34. Dec. 5,2010-Age: 67-PIT BULL.

Edward Mitchell, Murrieta, Ca.

33. Nov. 17,2010-Age: 25-PIT BULL.

Justin Lane, Latta, South Carolina

32. Nov. 15,2010-Age: 5-Pack (5of 12)

Cason Bryant, Phenix City, AL

31. Nov. 15,2010-Age: 79- German shepherd.

Shirley Lou Bird, Ida Grove, Iowa.

30. Nov. 10,2010-Age: 2-PITBULL.

Kaden Muckleroy, Rusk County, TX.

29. Nov. 2,2010-Age: 53-large PIT BULL/Weimaraner mixes (2).

Christina Casey, Moreno Valley,CA.

28. Oct. 24,2010-Age: 4 days old-PIT BULL.

Justin Valentin, Arlington, Florida.

27. Oct. 13,2010-Age: 84-PIT BULLS (17).

Rev. John Reynolds, Williamsburg, MO.

26. September4, 2010-AGE: 85-PIT BULL.

Mattie Daugherty, McMinn County, TN.

25. August 25, 2010--Age: 7- PITBULLS (3), mixed breed (1).

Jason Walter, Varna Ill.

24. AUG. 25, 2010--AGE: 4-Boxer.            

Taylor Becker, Hustisford, Wis.

23. AUG. 22,2010--AGE: 69-PIT BULLS (2).

Jerry Yates, Mountain Ranch, CA.

22. AUG 19,2010--AGE: 46-PIT BULLS (pack).

Tracey Payne, Macon, GA.

21. August 02,2010--AGE: 2-Germanshepherd mix

Aaron Carlson, San Diego, Ca.

20. July 22,2010--AGE: 2-PITBULLS (3).

Jacob Brisbee, Concord, Contra Costa County, CA.

19. July 20,2010--AGE:  71-PIT BULLS (2).

William Parker, Memphis, TN.

18. July 12,2010----AGE: 5-Shepherd/wolf hybrid or Lab. mix (?).

Kyle Holland, Lincoln Park, Michigan.

17. June 16,2010--AGE: 30-PIT BULL/Boxer Mix.

 (3) Rott.Mix (1), Bullmastiff Mix (5).

Michael Winters, Henrietta Township, OH.

16. June 3,2010--AGE: 33-Rottweiler.

Eddie Lin, Oceanside, CA.

15. June 3,2010--AGE: 9-PIT BULL.

Savannah Gragg, Kokomo,Ind.

14. May28, 10--AGE: 2-PITBULL.

Nathan Aguirre, San Bernardino, CA.

13. May 20,2010--AGE: 3- Sled Dog.

Krystal Brink, Napaskiak, AK.

12. April 14,2010--AGE: 7 Days-PITBULL.

Thomas Carter Jr., New Port Richey, Florida. 11. March 08, 2010--AGE: 9 Months-Rottweiler(2).

Justin Lopez, Perkins, Oklahoma.10. March 04, 2010--AGE: 65-PITBULL.

Ethel Horton, Lee County, SC.

9. February28, 2010--AGE: 4-Rottweiler.

Ashlynn Anderson, Astoria, Oregon. 8. February 18, 2010--AGE: 10 Days-PIT BULL.

Javari Garret (sp?), Conyers, GA.7. February 20, 2010--AGE: 3-American Bulldog.

Violet Haaker, Ocala, FL.6. February 19, 2010--AGE: 37-PITBULLS (6). 

Christine Staab, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.5. February 18, 2010--AGE: 11 Days-Siberianhusky.

RobertHocker, Independence, MN.4. February 12, 2010--AGE: 6-PIT BULL.

Anastasia Bingham, Terry, MS.3. February 07, 2010--AGE:63-Rottweiler mix.

Carolyn Baker, Cleveland Heights, OH.2. January 17, 2010--AGE: 56-PITBULLS (4-6).

Johnny Wilson, Chicago, IL.1. January 09, 2010--AGE: 3-PIT BULL.

Omar Martinez, AppleValley, CA.

March 8, 2010--AGE-- 32- Wolves (2-4)

Candice Berner, Chignik Lake, Alaska  

NuriaRodriguez
NuriaRodriguez

In case you don't realize it, the media and most officials refer to any dog they can't identify the breed as being a "pit bull".  Apart from being the most abused dog in the country, it is sadly also the most misidentified and often blamed for the actions of another dog!

Debbie Bell
Debbie Bell

It's odd how pit bull promoters say that no one can id a pit bull when it does exactly what it was created to do: attack. But then they say "my pit bull is wonderful" and the next weekend they have "pit bulls on parade". How can you tell your dog is a pit bull, or that those dogs on parade are pit bulls then?I do agree that pits are often owned for reasons other than companionship and suffer disproportionately because of that. So, what's your point.? Pit pushers attack any suggestion of reducing pit suffering and death byreducing  pit overpopulation and availability.Pits are the choice of dog fighters because of their fighting abilities and instincts. Let pits mercifully become extinct via free, mandatory, enforced spay neuter microchipping. Everybody sane and compassionate wins. All dogs win, including those tortured pits.

Jose
Jose

Ur a peace of shit wipe my ass cracker

WhiteSands
WhiteSands

prove it

pitboss
pitboss

Can't ur w mom is on my cock

india is great !!!
india is great !!!

you stupid wetbag,why dont you fuck off to mexico and suck your pitbulls cock ???

NuriaRodriguez
NuriaRodriguez

As I stated above, we can agree to disagree.  And I beg to differ, the fool here is you. 

NuriaRodriguez
NuriaRodriguez

No, I don't have to go back 10 years.  Just last week there was a story, I'm sure you read, about a Husky killing an infant. 

We can agree to disagree.  Nothing I, or anyone says will change your mind, and vice versa.  I am of the mind that all dogs as all people deserve to be judged individually.  When you begin to judge everything in a group, then you run the risk of breed AND race extermination.  Good luck with your way of thinking.  

WhiteSands
WhiteSands

"you can safely say a pomeranian can kill anybody".  you've just made yourself look a fool. 

 a pom MIX a decade ago.  one.  that is called a freak accident.  prove it was a pomeranian with pomeranian identifying experts.  

1.4 people a day seriously injured by pit bulls in 2009 - not so much a freak accident as a freak of nature.

Debbie Bell
Debbie Bell

You have to go back 12 years to get one pom attack. And, following pit bull promoter technique, it probably was a 30 pound pom/pit mix. Prove it was a pom!

I'll give a dog a pass when it mauls/kills an "invading" infant. I'm never be an infant. I'd even accept it if pits only killed their "consenting adult" owners, although that is proof that instinct can make even loving family pits go "pit bull." 

More common than not the vioctim is the neighbor going to get her mail.  I do have to worry about my neighbor's pits getting loose and amputating my arms or feet. Funny how I don't like that idea.

NuriaRodriguez
NuriaRodriguez

 Here's something you can read.  It's an intelligent article, so I'm guessing you've never seen it before.  People that think the way you do rarely go for the smartly written stuff.  Oh and be sure to read the part where it says ANY BREED CAN BITE: 

http://www.americanhumane.org/...

Dog Bites

Dog bite statistics

An estimated 4.7 million dog bites occur in the U.S. each year2,3Nearly 800,000 dog bites require medical care2Approximately 92% of fatal dog attacks involved male dogs, 94% of which were not neutered1Approximately 25% of fatal dog attacks involved chained dogs1Approximately 71% of bites occur to the extremities (arms, legs, hands, feet)2Approximately two-thirds of bites occurred on or near the victim’s property, and most victims knew the dogThe insurance industry pays more than $1 billion in dog-bite claims each year3At least 25 different breeds of dogs have been involved in the 238 dog-bite-related fatalities in the U.S.4Approximately 24% of human deaths involved unrestrained dogs off of their owners’ property4Approximately 58% of human deaths involved unrestrained dogs on their owners’ property4

Breed-specific legislation (BSL)

In response to these statistics, many communities have enacted breed-specific legislation (BSL) that prohibits ownership of certain breeds, such as pit bulls, Rottweilers and others.Any breed of dog can bite, and research suggests BSL does little to protect the community from dog-bite incidents.In fact, BSL can often have unintended consequences -- such as black-market interest and indiscriminant breeding practices -- resulting in subsequent breed overpopulation that leads to increases in the number of homeless, stray and euthanized dogs.Enforcement of BSL has been shown to be very costly and extremely difficult to enforce. One county in Maryland spent more than $560,000 maintaining pit bulls (not including payroll, cross-agency costs and utilities), while fees generated only $35,000.5Responsible breeding and ownership, public education and enforcement of existing laws are the most effective ways of reducing dog bites.American Humane supports local legislation to protect communities from dangerous animals, but does not advocate laws that target specific breeds of dogs.

Dog bites and children 

50% of dog attacks involved children under 12 years old82% of dog bites treated in the emergency room involved children under 15 years old270% of dog-bite fatalities occurred among children under 10 years old5Bite rates are dramatically higher among children who are 5 to 9 years old2Unsupervised newborns were 370 times more likely than an adult to be killed by a dog565% of bites among children occur to the head and neck2Boys under the age of 15 years old are bitten more often than girls of the same age2

What can parents do?

Educate your children. Studies have found that the number-one dog-bite prevention measure is education. Children who understand how to act around dogs, how to play with dogs, when to leave dogs alone and how to properly meet a dog are much less likely to be bitten. To address this need, American Humane has created American Humane KIDS: Kids Interacting with Dogs Safely™, a dog-bite prevention program specifically for children ages 4 to 7.Supervise your children. Unsupervised children may innocently wander too close to a dangerous situation. Eighty-eight percent of fatal dog attacks among 2-year-olds occurred when the child was left unsupervised.1 Supervision of children, especially around dogs, is one way to help ensure they are safe.

Safe rules of behavior for kids

Don’t treat a dog unkindly.

Never hit, kick, slap or bite a dog or pull on his ears, tail or paws.

Don’t bother a dog when she is busy.

Never bother dogs with puppies or dogs that are playing with or guarding toys, eating or sleeping. Always leave service dogs alone while they are working.

Don’t approach a dog you don’t know.

Never approach a dog that is tied up, behind a fence or in a car.If you find an animal, call the police or animal control for help.If you want to meet a dog, first ask the owner for permission. If the owner says it’s OK, hold out your hand in a fist for the dog to sniff. If he’s interested, you can give him a little scratch under the chin (notover the head) and say hello.

Do be calm.

Always talk in a quiet voice or whisper -- no shouting -- and take a “time out” if you feel angry or frustrated.

Do be still.

If a loose dog approaches you, stand still like a tree. Keep your hands at your sides, and stay quiet and calm. Look away from the dog.If you are on the ground, curl up into a ball, like a rock. Keep your knees to your chest and your hands over your ears. Stay quiet and calm. Look down at your knees, not at the dog.Always make slow movements, set things down carefully and don’t run when you’re around dogs, as this gets them excited and they may accidently hurt you.

What can dog owners do?

Spay or neuter your dog.

Neutering reduces aggression, especially in males. Un-neutered dogs are more than 2.6 times more likely to bite than neutered dogs.3 Female dogs in heat and nursing moms are much more dangerous than spayed females, and their behavior can be unpredictable. Talk to your veterinarian to schedule an appointment, or contact your local humane organization or animal shelter for information on low-cost spay/neuter assistance.

Supervise your dog.

Dogs left on their own may feel uncertain and defensive, or even overly confident, and this poses risks to your dog, as well as to other people and dogs. Eighty-eight percent of fatal dog attacks among 2-year-olds occurred when the child was left unsupervised.1

Train and socialize your dog.

Be sure your dog interacts with and has good manners around all members of the family, the public and other animals. Basic training is as important for the owner as it is for the dog, and socialization is the key to a well-adjusted adult dog. It is essential that puppies between 8 and 16 weeks old be exposed to a variety of people, places, dogs and other animals. As dogs age, do your best to continue their exposure to these things to ensure that they are well socialized throughout their lives.

Restrain your dog.

Twenty-four percent of fatal dog attacks involved loose dogs that were off their owner’s property.4 Dogs that are allowed to roam loose outside the yard may perceive your entire neighborhood as their “territory” and may defend it aggressively. By obeying leash laws and taking care to properly fence your yard, you will not only be respecting the laws in your community, but you will also be helping keep your dog safe from cars, other dogs and unforeseen dangers.

Unchain your dog.

Chained dogs are 2.8 times more likely to bite.3 Tethering or chaining dogs increases their stress, protectiveness and vulnerability, thereby increasing the potential for aggression. Fencing is the better solution.

NuriaRodriguez
NuriaRodriguez

I don't have to.  A person like you already has their mind set, and nothing I can do will change it.  You seem to think it's just pit bulls.  In October 200 a 6 week old baby was killed by the family dog...a Pomeranian.  In case you have never seen one, they weigh about 5 pounds.  Did you know they were breed to be watchdogs?  No, you probably didn't.  Well, the baby's uncle left the dog alone with the infant and while he went to prepare her bottle the dog mauled the baby, who died shortly after.  It happened in Los Angeles. 

So basically, I can safely say that even a Pomeranian can kill anybody. 

Gabriel Reyes
Gabriel Reyes

Pits don't represent that high of a percentage of the dog population. That means one of two things, either they kill people for sport, or they're blamed far more often. In my county (broward) a "pit" was shot as it approached a police officer just last month. Later animal services identified the dog as a dogo argentino... the "super pit" but not a pitbull. The same breed that Dade Commissioner Diaz used to own. Before you list 30 pit attacks, not one of which is an american bulldog or dogo (which look like pits with one or two minor differences like size or coat) think about the potential inaccuracies you're spreading; and remember that this country went to civil war over the belief that people of different skin color are of different intelligence and value, then spent 30 years saying "the black guy did it" at every turn. Prisons are predominantly filled with African Americans to this day. Is that because black people are born criminals? Or is it because when you put anyone in a poor neighborhood that's drug infested with no job market they're likely to turn to crime to survive? 

The implication of your list is that creatures can be born killers, which holds water when you're talking about species. No one should own a grizzly bear. You're saying that an animal that has been domesticated for centuries is now suddenly inherently predestined to kill, so we should kill it first. 

Jenvitrella
Jenvitrella

Were all of the dogs in your cited "Pit Bull" attacks identified by a PROFESSIONAL Vet or by a news reporter, street cop or private citizen with no professional k9 identification training? Over 75% of dog attacks attributed to "Pit Bulls" are misidentified....

WhiteSands
WhiteSands

that 75% where does it come from?  It comes from a "study" that looked at 16 whole mutts  and didn't involve a single aco or leo identification.  It is a crock.  a joke.  by victoria voith shilling for the NCRC which is a completely biased joke of a website funded by wealthy pit bull fanatics.  No fewer than 2 judges have ruled that the average person can id a pit bull.  Its not rocket science.  and cops know how to do investigations.

Twistedlizz
Twistedlizz

The ban is the biggest reason I left the area, I refuse to give away my best friend because of a handful of people who are not responsible for their pets.

Selene Suarez
Selene Suarez

Thank you Miami New times for writing a factual and positive article about this wonderful breed!!! It's not common for me to find myself writing a happy and positive non argumentative comments in regards to an article about this issue, Most times I am exhausted defending  this wonderful breed that I call my family!!! Thank you!!!!!!

James
James

Miami-Dade County already has a dangerous dogs ordinance (and the State has a dangerous dogs law) that protects residents and visitors to Miami-Dade County.  This breed discrimination law only punishes responsible dog owners for the misdeeds of a few misguided, irresponsible individuals. Does anyone feel like Broward County residents live in fear because pit bulls are legal there?  I support HB 997 and SB 1322.  The time has come to end 23 years of bad public policy.  Do the right thing and end the ban. 

Fayclis
Fayclis

PETA.  People Euthanizing Tame Animals.  People who WANT to know what PETA is "really" about need to look up "PETA KILLS ANIMALS".  Their disgraceful record is there for everyone to see as are the bills for the huge freezers where they keep their kills.  PETA's "pit bull" stance goes hand in hand with their attempt to rid the world of companion animals.  As they raise millions and millions of dollars every year from caring individuals, while rescues and shelters struggle for a few bucks, again shows how seriously gullible and uneducated MOST people are.

Nanci Little
Nanci Little

I have been a professional dog trainer since 1973. I have had many breeds come to my classes with their owners, and have trained many dogs FOR their owners over these past decades. In addition, I have trained dogs for film work since 1981. In all those years I have never had a Pit Bull  that showed aggression to his owner or trainer. They can be, as any good working dog should be, protective of their owner or property. Irresponsible and ignorant and stupid owners, on the other hand, I have run into by the hundreds. 

Since we have banned Pits in Dade County the only result has been the death of many sweet family dogs and heartbroken families. The unintended but totally forseeable consequence was the cross breeding of Pit Bulls with every imaginable 'other' breed.  Doberman crosses, Mastiff crosses, Rottweiler crosses, and SO MANY American Bulldogs and crosses, are on our streets and back yards. Bigger dogs that cannot be identified as any particular breed!  

Why would our  CONSERVATIVE lawmakers, who  have been screaming from the rafters about personal freedoms, think they HAVE THE RIGHT  to tell ME what kind of dog I am 'allowed' to possess?  Why would ANYONE  have the right to tell ME that I  have to KILL or give away my beloved sweet obedience trained therapy dog who just happens to be a Pit Bull  for no other reason than THEY ARE AFRAID!? ME? Whose dogs have NEVER caused a problem for anyone EVER anywhere! THEY can CONTROL my life to the point of what dog I am allowed to own??   ME!?!  Meanwhile my neighbor can walk his English Mastiff  down the street, pulling him from one side of the road to the other, because HE never found the time nor the necessity to train HIS dog.. and now at 120 lbs. HE has NO control. But, HE has HIS personal freedom left in place, to keep the dog HE happens to love, even though HE is not nearly as responsible about pet ownership as I am!

We live in America, NOT a Communist country and yet the 'MAN' can come and take a beloved and GOOD doggie member of my family out of my home to KILL him! I am not young but in my youth we were told in school that innocent until proven guilty is the foundation of our AMERICAN laws. Why does our government ELITE feel they have the RIGHT to pick and choose WHO among us are allowed to have our rights unencumbered and WHO among us will have OUR rights stifled and OUR hearts broken by their stupid and ineffectual law when WE have done no wrong, nor have OUR dogs!

Maybe if there are enough of US, these politicians in Tallahassee will suddenly remember all the screaming and hollering that the populace has been doing lately ABOUT GOVERNMENT INVOLVEMENT IN OUR PERSONAL LIVES by  activist judges and overbearing pols like them! We Dog Owners will REMEMBER THE NAMES of these blindly and blithely unfair politicians and WILL spread their names on a black list as DOG HATERS,  far and wide.

PUNISH the dog owners who don't take care of their animals, whether through neglect or sadism. Punish THEM for cruelty to the animals and cruelty to the persons involved if THEIR dog causes a problem; be it Dane or Shepherd, Doberman or Poodle! Don't punish ME or MY DOG, for THEIR crime!

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