Local pit bull owners support bill dropping 'vicious' label

Lawmakers who don't know Zoey, a 1-year-old pocket pit bull, have unfairly labeled her as a terror and a threat.
Andy Ouriel
Feb 10, 2012

Lawmakers who don’t know Zoey, a 1-year-old pocket pit bull, have unfairly labeled her as a terror and a threat.

Pit bulls are the only dog breed in Ohio considered vicious upon birth. State law defines a vicious dog as dogs with the ability to seriously hurt or kill another dog or human.

A vicious label means pit bull owners must take special precautions in owning one. This includes keeping pit bulls on a 6-foot, chain-linked leash while outside and purchasing liability insurance in case the dog attacks someone.

The label, however, could soon vanish.

House Bill 14, which awaits Gov. John Kasich’s approval, aims to:
• Remove the reference of calling pit bulls “vicious.”
• Create three labels to classify all dogs, which would be assessed to them based on an individualpooch’s past behavior.

A county’s dog warden or a judge would determine how hazardous a particular dog — from a basset hound to a sheltie — really is by using evidence such as biting history to classify the dog.

Police dogs are exempt from being classified as dangerous, vicious or a nuisance.

Today, no such ranking system exists.

Other than pit bulls, no legal recourse exists to punish a dog owner if the animal bites or attacks a person, said Jean Keating, president for the Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates organization. Keating helped author the bill.

If a pit bull is running loose, for instance, the dog warden or police will charge someone with a misdemeanor. If any other dog does something similar, the owner receives a minor misdemeanor, a lesser charge.

If a pit bull bites or tries to attack someone, they could be put down because of the breed’s vicious label.

No other dog breed would face such a harsh, unfair penalty, said Keating, who owns two pit bulls herself.

“If you get bitten by a dog, and it’s not a pit bull, there is nothing you can do about it,” she said. “Instead of confiscating and killing pit bulls, now we can identify a specific dog as a problem before it hurts someone.”

Read more on this story and about how one local family feels about the bill in Friday's Register.

Comments

wiredmama222

if any dog bites someone, it isn't the police they will have to worry about, it is the impending lawsuit that will cover it.  You can bet on it.  But with a pit bull it is even worse.  that is just plain fact.  you see it in courts all over this country every day.  Just passing a law that SAYS  they are not of the vicious list does not make it so.  Ask the people who have been attacked, had their necks ripped out, their faces bit off or their pets killed by one.  then come back and tell me a law will change all that. 

big_d

For more information on breed specific legislation, and all things Pit Bull, see www.workingpitbull.com/ This woman tells it like it is, the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Over the past 35 years Diane has trained industrial guard dogs; dogs used in movies and commercials; and put over 60 training titles on her own dogs. (I might add this was before agility and other modern sports which offer dozens and dozens of titles for the same sport). She is a certified police K9 trainer and retired from 20 years as an animal control officer. In an effort to speak out on behalf of game animals everywhere, she became POST certified as an expert on dog fighting and has been an invited speaker on the subject of blood sports, the American pit bull and American game fowl, dog aggression and dog behavior for law enforcement in five countries. She has served as an expert witness on behalf of police K9 units and has been featured on shows like 48 Hours, McNeil/Leher, The O'Reilly Factor, Oprah and hundreds of news shows and articles.

Cityslicker

well then they better update the law for discharging a firearm within the city limits. I for one will not give them the chance to get within 10 feet of me.

 

LovesAllDogs

AWESOME!!!! It is time to start holding the people who TRAIN animals to be vicious or provoke them into aggressive behavior accountable, not a specific breed. This is a major step forward for pitties and their families everywhere! I am fostering one of the 27 bait dogs rescued from the Cleveland dog fighting ring right now. She’s a pitbull, and couldn’t be sweeter. And the male pitbull I already had when I brought the new one in to foster is being very nurturing and protective toward her. Valid scientific research (not charts put together by those with agendas on the internet) have proven that pitbulls are NOT “genetically predisposed” to behaving violently. Which is why this law is so important and why, as a society, we need to go after the PEOPLE who use animals as weapons.

Kottage Kat

Saw this on the news, and God Bless all who have taken these dogs in. 

 

Solve the problem------get Kats

big_d

You mean to tell me that if I am walking down the street with my dog,on a leash, and I happen to come within 10 ft. of you, you would shoot him? 

Good Luck with that, Mr Internet Tough Guy.

Find me one Pit Bull owner who talks like you do.

This is mine from another thread:

big_d says

think again says: If it comes down to me or mine. Your beloved breed will be dead indeed.

As it should be with any breed which would threaten you or yours.

Prevent the deed, regulate the breed!

Your catchy sayings suggest to me that any dog over 40# or so is capable of causing enormous damage.

You know, I once had no qualms about anything you say, I agreed with all of it.

Then one was given to me by someone who had adopted it from a shelter.

He brought it around a few times.

I told him "I want nothing to do with those killer dogs."

But you know what? The more I was around this dog, the better I liked him.

When his family situation changed and he could no longer keep him. I took him in.

Best thing I ever did. I learned everything I could about the breed, talked to owners, breeders, trainers,

And they all told me the same thing.

"They are the most social of dogs, they crave human contact."

"They want to be part of your pack."

"A bored or unsocialized pitbull is going to get into trouble"

So I had him neutered, which removed the tug of hormones and left him a playful active dog.

This is probably the most important thing you can do, because it will remove most if not all of the aggresiveness.

He also gets exercised 3-5 ntimes a day, winter, summer, rain, snow, day or night.

If you can't commit to that DO NOT GET ONE.

Peninsula Pundit

Did you see that another one of these vicious animals attacked a TV anchorwoman while on the air this week?  Just a couple days ago. The owner was right there.

The poor woman had to have facial surgery in a profession where your face is everything.

Name another breed of anything that reacts in this vicious, violent manner.

'The Owner', albeit most likely true, is not an acceptable answer.

Maintain the current ban.

Or, include them in the exotic animal bill pending in the Ohio house.

A hand-raised tiger is no more likely to attack than one of these 'slum-prestige' animals.

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/cutl...

My Opinion is...

Peninsula - If you saw the video, the tv achor did everything wrong. First, you never just go up and pet a dog you don't know or, more importantly, doesn't know you - if anything you present your open hand for them to smell first. She just got down on the floor and started rubbing her hands all over his head. Second, you don't invade their personal space the way she did. Any animal who feels threatened will react. I've seen it with Bassett Hounds, German Shephards, Dauchshunds and even Chihuahuas. Don't blame the animal for the anchor's erroneous behavior. Funny, all the people who get bitten or attacked by any other breed of dog and we don't hear a word about it. Oh wait, the dog in question was an 85-pound Argentine mastiff - not a pit bull.

Katelih-Trailer...

I just saw the video.. I agree with My Opinion ! This woman got on the floor to the same level of a dog she does NOT even know. ..By the way it was licking its lips...it seemed to be a little nervous to begin with. 

ladydye_5

Peninsula....that shows your ignorance about the "pittie" breed...the dog that attacked that woman was NOT a pit ....it was an  Argentine mastiff.   NOT a Pit Bull.  If you watch the video she also had her hand on the dogs throat as she leaned over his back/shoulder, to a dog that is a THREAT.  Another breed that has done this is a Trained Police dog, a German Shephard (bit another news anchor).  You make a Threatening move towards ANY dog they will protect themselves. **** I did NOT buy my pit for "fear factor" I adopted her, she was the ONLY dog not barking.  I also adopted a "vicious" rottie 3 years later. 

 

 
Captain Gutz

The answer is simple. Arm everyone with their own personal pit bull, but first extract all their teeth.

And Sarah, watch your fingers willya?

LovesAllDogs

Wow, big_d. You approached something you admitted you knew little about with an open mind and educated yourself. That's a pretty novel idea!

Katelih-Trailer...

RIP Gauge..The most loving, loyal and eager to please Pitbull I will ever lose. )':

My Opinion is...

I have been around all sizes and breeds of dogs my whole life, from Saint Bernards all the way down to Dauchshunds - including Pit Bulls. The pit bulls were always very sweet and gentle. I had no qualms about having my infant daughter around them. I've only ever been bitten by a dog twice in my life, and both times the vicious dog was a dauchshund. Dogs are like children, it's all about how they're raised. Wiredmama,  by your statement I can personify the situation and say that: if one of your children attacked and killed a person then "[it] is just plain fact" that you and anyone unfortunate enough to share your bloodline must also be vicious and should have a law stating so. Please don't spout your ignorance on "facts" that don't exist. If you believe the facts you're stating do exist, please let me know where the facts are so I can see them for myself. Keep in mind, 500 years ago it was a "fact" that the world was flat and the the sun revolved around the earth. With time comes wisdom - get out of the dark ages!!

juggalo7

 pitbulls are NOT the problem. it's the OWNER! i have a pitbull and he is the biggest baby ever. only thing he will do is nibble at you but not bite.. you cant just judge one dog by the history of them.

Bada Bing

When my children were small back in the 80's we had Dobes...everyone thought then they were the demon dogs,well let me tell you that my 2 dobes loved the kids.  The kids would sit by them as they ate and would even feed them by hand. the dogs were very pertective over them and would sit in the yard and watch over them as they played. They were very loving dogs and loved the kids,and NEVER were angry towards them. My kids were lucky to have such loving friends as them.  And now that there older they to love all animals. They are what you make them!!!!!!

patriot5
If you want to label a dog vicious, perhaps they need to track all hospital visits for dog-related injury no matter how small. The School For Veterinary Medicine said worldwide that award would go to the Cocker Spaniel, also in the top would be Yorkies, and Labs. Thanks again to backyard breeding. Maybe they too should be labeled vicious?   Best solution just lock up irresponsible owners. A dog (any breed) will be the direct result of their owner or bad breeding practices. Many have loyal pits that are well trained; others purposely make the dog aggressive or chain them in the yard and not socialize them. A breed manifests their true characteristics (and often negative) when they are not trained or socialized correctly, you have to channel energy into something positive and know the breed. Some people should not own any type of pets     A Pit did not attack the TV anchor lady, so you answered your own question. Would you put your face up to a large dog you just met? Try that with a Fila and let me know how it works out. Its still irresponsible, the owner should not have let her do that. I have no pits, but have always had guard dogs. Any well-trained guard dog will attack you with the same tenacity and destruction. Good luck double tapping a charging dog between the eyes.
SamAdams

The ONLY dogs I've had any problems with on my daily walks are a couple of pit bulls. I like dogs and have no real fear of them, but I can honestly say that it's terrifying when one of these very strong and aggressive dogs is charging you! And yes, I understand entirely the man who says he'd shoot. I'm not sure what else you CAN do under those circumstances.

But I'd point out that those dogs (there's a pair of them in the area in which I live, owned by different people) were running around loose. I'm not blaming the dog for being out and about. THAT'S irresponsible ownership! Be that as it may, an attack because the dog is vicious or just freaked out wouldn't and couldn't happen if the animal was properly confined.

Peninsula Pundit, the incident you mention concerning the news anchor who was bitten by a dog on live TV doesn't involve a pit bull. The dog was some kind of a mastiff. (As an aside, I'd note that the idiot anchor put her face right in the dog's face — he was loving the attention until she got stupid.)

nosey rosey

Most people who think they are experts on pitbulls probably wouldn't know one if they saw one.  There are lots of breeds that get lumped into the "pitbull" standard.  I once got out of the car at Pet Supplies Plus with my boxer when I heard a mother call her children to the car because of the "pitbull".  Really???  Obviously she was someone who get scared by the media frenzy and knew nothing.  She was doing a huge disservice to her children by teaching them that bigotry is ok and all dogs with a certain "look" should be feared.   People on here who are trying to perpetuate the myths of the "pitbull" are unfortunately very ignorant of dogs and dog behavior.  For the record - I do not own or know anyone who owns a pitbull.  But of the ones that I have met in passing, there wasn't an aggressive one in the bunch.

 

BytheBy

@Pundit

PLEASE say you are sorry for your inability to read a news story and get the correct breed of dog. It was an Argentine Mastiff that bit the news anchor!

Your "pitbull" comment was just more of the same, ignorance!

lifetimeresident

What ever breed of dog people choose to keep as a pet is their own business.  That said if you let it run loose outside you should be prepared to pay for any harm your dog might cause or any harm that may be caused to your dog.

SarahTonin

OK! You love your PitBull. You make all kinds of unsupported lame excuses. Here are the statistical facts from dogbite.org for 2011:

2011 statistics 31 U.S. fatal dog attacks occurred in 2011. Despite being regulated in Military Housing areas and over 650 U.S. cities, pit bulls led these attacks accounting for 71% (22). Pit bulls make up less than 5% of the total U.S. dog population.2 Notably in 2011, adult victims of fatal pit bull attacks more than doubled the number of child victims. Of the 22 total pit bull victims, 68% (15) fell between the ages of 32 to 76, and 32% (7) were ages 5 years and younger. The year 2011 also marks an increase in pet pit bulls killing their owners. Of the 8 total instances this year in which a family dog inflicted fatal injury to its primary caretaker, the dog's owner, 88% (7) involved pet pit bulls. Together, pit bulls (22) and rottweilers (4), the number two lethal dog breed, accounted for 84% of all fatal attacks in 2011. In the 7-year period from 2005 to 2011, this same combination accounted for 73% (156) of the total recorded deaths (213). The breakdown between pit bulls and rottweilers is substantial over this 7-year period. From 2005 to 2011, pit bulls killed 127 Americans,3 about one citizen every 20 days, versus rottweilers, which killed 29; about one citizen every 88 days. Annual data from 2011 shows that 58% (18) of the attacks occurred to adults (21 years and older) and 42% (13) occurred to children (11 years and younger). Of the children, 62% (8) occurred to ages 1 and younger. 2011 data also shows that 39% (12) of the fatal incidents involved more than one dog; 26% (8) involved breeding on the dog owner's property either actively or in the recent past, and 6% (2) involved tethered dogs, down from 9% in 2010 and 19% in 2009. Dog ownership information for 2011 shows that family dogs comprised 65% (20) of the attacks that resulted in death; 74% (23) of all incidents occurred on the dog owner's property and 29% (9) resulted in criminal charges, up from 15% in 2010. The states of California and Texas led fatalities in 2011, each with 4 deaths; pit bulls and their mixes contributed to 88% (7) of the 8 deaths. North Carolina, New Mexico, South Carolina and Virginia each incurred 2 deaths.      

I know, these dogs do no harm. Their wonderful and I am a ^&tch but I didn't compile these FACTS and I don't want to argue about it. You can't argue facts!!!!

My Opinion is...

That's really funny, SarahTonin - I wanted to see where dogbite.org got their statistics so I typed the http://www.dogbite.org/ into my address bar and it comes up with a GoDaddy ad page saying "Want to buy this domain? Our Domain Buy Service can help you get it". For those of you not associated with webhosting, that means that the domain "dogbite.org" is available because it's not in use! How can you get statistics from a website that doesn't exist?? I even tried dogbite.com and it's just a series of pretty pictures - no word content at all. Care to try again, Sarah??

SarahTonin

My OpinionIS said "Care to try again, Sarah"

Yes, I do! This is what I mean by those who love Pits will try to argue with anyone about how sweet their little puppy poo is. So you want to argue with them about where they got their statistics ... Uh OK! As a matter of fact, I want you to go out and get a couple more Pits because the FATAL attacks are mostly against their masters, according to the statistics that I quoted fro DOGSBITE.ORG.

Yes, Sarah's finger slipped and missed the "S" in DOGSBITE.ORG. Then again, anybody familiar with the web and hosting would realize that such a mistake could easily be made and they would have Googled "Pit Bull Statistics" and my heavens, there are pages of statistics on Pit Bulls and how dangerous they are! DOGSBITE.ORG is just the first one that pops up.

I would have gone back and edited my last post but the "EDIT" button disappeared from my post. Somebody at the SR tell me why I can't correct my typing eror on that post?

patriot5
Well then take into account all bites regardless if fatal or not. Chihuahs have biting instincts, as do Russells, and Cattle Dogs. Hell lets label them all vicious. Get on any credible American Cocker Spaniel website and you can see warnings those dogs are the top biters; a Spaniel with “rage disorder” is more unstable than a pit. Surveys of dog owners that get bit by their own pets put the above dogs along with Labs on top of the list of biters. There is an interesting US study from 79-98 about dog bite fatalities, yes pits lead the pack but you will be surprised that otherwise docile dogs are in there also.   This is nothing more than cynophobia based on media hype. Your more likely to be mugged by a real “animal” especially in Sandusky.
Kimo

 

Re:any dog bites someone, it isn't the police they will have to worry about, it is the impending lawsuit that will cover it.

How much do you think you could get out of most pit bull owners?

Wish in one hand and put their assets in the other and see what you have. Most of the pit owners don't have a pit to hiss in.

u can't get blood out of a turnip, get bit, ur on ur own.

it is what it is

 

seenocolor

I was sitting back reading the comments and the ignorance about the breed of dogs makes me have to say my peace. 

I don't care what dog you personally think is vicious.  Although there are some that are biters no matter how you train them. Anyone can train any dog to be vicious.  Just because my dog, a mutt, is a big baby with me does not mean that anyone on the street can come and pet him.  I have people ask me all the time if they can pet him or does he bite?  My answers are these, "No you cannot pet him.  I don't know if he bites.  He doesn't bite me but I cannot guarantee that he won't bite you."

Pundit, the dog that bit that anchor woman was an Argentine Mastiff that are from Argentina, South America and you cannot blame the dog or the owner.  If I was to bring my mutt to you, he doesn't know you and you don't know hiim, would you get down in his face and not expect to be bitten?!  Seriously?  A dog that she doesn't know and he doesn't know her and she's going to get down in his face??  I won't say she derserved to be bitten but anyone with a brain and understand dogs knows you don't get in a strange dogs face!!

And just for sh**s and giggles the  American Pit Bull Terrier, The Ameican Staffordshire Pit Bull Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier are all the same dog...the Pit Bull that is of English and Irish origins...just saying

 

Kimo

 

People don't buy a pit because it's cute.

People buy a pit for the fear factor.

 

WhatTheHeck

 I hope we don't read about this lovable puppy chewing up that newborn in thier house. just sayin'

big_d

 @ SarahTonin, I get what you are saying, your position on this is abundantly clear, but lets face it , BSL's are going away, and with good reason, they target one species of dog. I'm not out to change your mind, it seems pretty well set, and most of the time your posts are well thought out. I'm not given to bombastics like "OMG all pitbulls are evil", or "my bullies would never hurt a flea, and they poop flowers", as always, the truth is somewhere in between. I'm not going to repeat everything I said about pit bull ownership in previous postings now, any one who reads what I write knows I'm no apologist for the breed, I believe in responsible ownership, and spaying and neutering, and that there are way, way too many of this breed running around, due to poor ownership. However if you do the things I have outlined, you will have a rewearding experience, and will find them a great pet. There is really nothing more for me to add.

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