Often times when a dog bite occurs, two sides will emerge – those that blame the people involved, and those that blame the dog(s). The truth is this: behavior is a complicated matter, all of us – including dogs, are a product of our genetics and our many, varied life experiences. Each dog is an individual based on these factors and should be treated as such. Blanket, reactionary laws do nothing to address the heart of the issue.
These types of policies, known as Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) only serve to negatively impact the very citizens they aim to protect by removing loving pets from families, and overwhelming already full shelters and other aspects of the pet safety net systems in our community.
The APF recommends instead focusing on first creating positive solutions that will effectively decrease bite rates. These solutions include accessibility to affordable spay/neuter, training and behavior support, humane education as well as implementation of enforceable non-breed specific, dangerous dog laws that protect community members if an issue does arise.
For your information, we have provided links to resources and research on the issue of breed specific legislation.