Monday, October 18, 2010

Gwinnett County Seeks too Tighten the Noose on Pit Bulls

A Gwinnett's Animal Advisory Council meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, October 19, 2010 at the Animal Welfare and Enforcement Center. 884 Winder Hwy, Lawrenceville. The meeting starts at 7:00 PM. 

Items included on the agenda include the year old discussion of a shelter "urgent list", a disaster plan and a new item added - a discussion on revising the dangerous dog ordinances to include pit bull licensing registrations, including tags, microchips, insurance ect.

It also includes a requirement that all pit bulls be on a leash at all times unless in an approved enclosure - in other words, your dogs could not be off leash even if supervised on your property.

We the Pet Owners of Gwinnett opposes any BSL types of restrictions that would only lessen the number of homes for good pit bulls needing rescue and would only increase the number of good pit bulls being surrendered and killed at our already "too high" kill shelter.

We oppose this type of approach for two reasons - as a pet owner, there is no evidence that breed-specific laws make communities safer for people or companion animals.  Those who own and care for pets responsibly are typically not part of the problem and yet are punished nonetheless.  Those who own any type of dog irresponsibly typically won't comply with the laws already on the books so enforcement is counter-productive.

As taxpayers these types of ordinances which attempt to mandate pet care are costly and difficult to enforce.  As we should learned from the "2007 Dog Barking Folly" - pet owners faced with losing their pets, facing huge fines or compliance costs might find it less tedious to dispute any infractions through the courts.  Not only is this a very expensive way to litigate these cases but it is disengenous of the county to further burden taxpayers with these additional expenses as well.
We need to put an end to this senseless approach at tossing a net over small problems that put unnecessary restrictions on those who responsibly own their dogs - including pit bulls.

What isn't on the agenda is equally troublesome. There are no discussions planned on how the shelter might implement many of the No Kill programs that have the support of pet owners throughout the county. There will be no discussion on the process needed to implement no kill here in Gwinnett. Just more of the same - blame and punish approaches that have failed our community in the past.

Pet owners, taxpayers and voters are encouraged to attend.   Just say NO to growing "bigger" governement.

1 comment:

  1. According to the AJC article, it also includes a requirement that pit bulls and mixes be enclosed in a fence that doesn't share a common wall with a perimeter fence - in other words, owners would either need to build a fence inside a fence, or keep their dogs in a pen - when in their own backyard. This requirement, combined with whatever registration fee they want to impose, would likely be financially out of the reach of many responsible owners, causing them to either become criminals or surrender their dogs for euthanasia. The requirements strike me as a backhanded way to get people to get rid of their dogs. We will be at the meeting.