Punish irresponsible pet owners, not the pets!



We the undersigned are tax paying, law abiding and concerned citizens from throughout the United States. By means of this petition, we are addressing Ordinance #89-22/Chapter 5/Article2/ Section 5.17 of Miami-Dade County, Florida. This ordinance prohibits and bans the Pit Bull and %u201CPit Bull type dogs%u201D from Miami-Dade County.

1) Counties or cities that have attempted to resolve their dangerous dog issues by placing BSL restrictions have discovered that it does not work; it is inefficient and absolutely unnecessary. A %u201CDangerous Dog%u201D Law or Ordinance, which Miami-Dade County has in place, resolves this problem. Law enforcement can use this to deal with dangerous dogs and their irresponsible owners. 

2) BSL Ordinances takes an incredible amount of funding, it is costly to tax payers, time consuming for law enforcement agents, costly for dog owners, and a legal nightmare for law makers, animal rescue groups and animal activists.

3) There is no scientifically proven method and it is literally impossible, by which to determine if a mixed breed dog is 51% of any given breed. This places the burden of proof on the owner and it becomes a constitutional question in itself and on the other hand, a question regarding the rights of citizens in regard to their personal property. Most owners of Pit Bulls are law abiding citizens. The mix targeted breeds, clouded by the different breeds being classified as Pit Bulls, also pay the consequences as a direct result. The Center For Disease Control no longer includes breed identification dog-bite date, as it is considered irrelevant. The banning also directly punishes therapy dogs, assistance dogs for the handicapped owners, search and rescue dogs, drug sniffing dogs, and police dogs.

4) Miami-Dade County non-residents, cannot travel, vacation or visit this county with their American Pit Bull Terriers as a result of the Pit Bull breed-type dogs, such as the American Staffordshire Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, being banned. This is a financial %u201CPit Hole%u201D for Miami-Dade County. The loss of revenue for the city is tremendous.

5) Readily available and reliable data indicates and concludes that a dog of any breed can bite. There is NO reliable data identifying biting dogs by breed. This can be verified by JAVMA at http://www.atts.org/. The American Temperament Test Society has available results of dogs tested by them. Winnipeg%u2019s dog bite statistics identify the number 1 biter as the German shepherd.

The AKC, UKC, the American Medical Veterinary Association, American Dog Owners Association , Westminster Kennel Club, Best Friends, The Humane Society, and an assortment of other recognized and respected organizations all stand together against the BSL ordinance.

6) The Pit Bull breed in itself, is known as the %u201CNanny%u201D breed for it%u2019s gentleness with children. A trait of this breed is its friendliness and tolerance towards humans. The myth of the breed having a %u201Clocking jaw%u201D is just that. It is physically and anatomically impossible for this jaw mechanism to exist. They also posses stable temperaments. They are known as the %u201Call American%u201D dog. They are ever popular as a family dog.  They have appeared in films, such as the pup %u201CPete%u201D from Our Gang (the Little Rascals). The Pit Bull is the only dog that has ever graced the cover of Life Magazine 3 times. To date, it is still one of the most popular breeds in the world.

7) A constitutional challenge was met in the year 2000 in the State of Florida. It is now a law, that no breed of dog shall be singled out and banned from any municipality. In other words, BSL is illegal in Florida. Unfortunately, the existing BSL ordinance was passed in Miami-Dade County in 1989, without so much as collection of factual data, consulting experts on the subject, or proper research being conducted. This is unconstitutional and it violates due process rights. It is inflammatory and discriminative and it lacks a rational basis.

In summary, this law has hurt humans as well as the Pit Bulls, for both have suffered at the mercy of this violent ordinance. The owners have lost their beloved pets and the dogs, their life. Thousands of innocent Pit Bulls, and other breeds labeled as Pit Bulls, that are not considered %u201CDangerous Dogs%u201D by our county ordinance, are killed with our tax dollars, in our county shelters, as a direct result of this ordinance. We implore you, the Commissioners of Miami-Dade County, to end this senseless hunt of Man%u2019s Best Friend and restore dignity to a breed of dog that has already endured enough hardship.

%u201CThe Greatness Of A Nation In its Moral Progress Can Be Judged By The Way People Treat Animals%u201D. %u2013Gandhi.


The Undersigned

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