Why Breed Specific Laws Are More Harmful Than Good
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Why Breed Specific Laws Are More Harmful Than Good

BSL Just Doesn't Work

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Why Breed Specific Laws Are More Harmful Than Good
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Pit bulls have a reputation for being violent animals. This reputation has influenced lawmakers, who write and pass "breed specific laws," banning pit bulls (and other "vicious" dog breeds). But contrary to popular belief, BSL does more harm than good.

First, let's look at some pit bull myths that are widely believed. According to petfinder.com, pit bulls do not have locking jaws. While they are are known for their determination, pit bulls can't actually lock their dogs. In fact, if you examine a pit bull skull and the skull of another dog, you will find more similarities than differences. This actually leads to another point: pit bulls aren't one breed. "Pit bull" is a generic term used to describe many similar dog breeds, including American Pit Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, and even American Bulldogs.

According to Villalobos Rescue Center, pit bulls are actually pretty easy to train. They are eager to please, and very adaptable. They love people. Aggression towards people, severe shyness, and instability are, contrary to popular belief, actually aren't found in most pit bulls.

Now let's head over to BSL. It is inadequate and ineffective. For one thing, the term "pit bull" describes many different dog breeds, as stated above. While these breeds do have similar characteristics, they can be different in temperament. BSL also doesn't reduce dog bites. According to anguspost.com, in 2005, there were 1,411 pit bull dogs registered in Toronto, Ontario. By 2014, this went down to 338. While the number of pit bull bites decreased, the number of bites by other dog breeds reached the highest level in a century. And now, let's look at this picture:

According to this list, German shepherds are more likely to bite than pit bulls. Also, between 2004 and 2014, Labrador retriever bites increased. And out of 1,411 pit bulls, there were only 86 reported bites. This doesn't take into account a few things: was the dog just playing? Was it an accident? Was the dog reacting in self defense?

BSL also harms innocent dogs. Between 2005 and 2012, about 1,000 dogs and puppies were killed under the pit bull ban in Ontario. Almost none of them were deemed dangerous, based on their actions. BSL also harms responsible owners. Irresponsible owners, obviously, are less likely to follow the laws related to the pit bull ban. They continue to not register their pit bulls, so they can keep fighting them. Responsible owners are the ones who have been forced to either move, hand over their pet, or stand by powerlessly as it is murdered.

Due to the selfishness of humans, pit bulls were bred specifically for fighting. While this behavior certainly does still exist, it is up to owners to properly train their dogs and learn how to prevent dog fights. Innocent dogs, whom humans have wronged for centuries, are not to be targeted. Irresponsible owners, who force dogs to fight each other so they can can more money, are the ones who should be targeted. They are destroying innocent dogs for profit, and are forcing innocent, responsible owners to pay for their greediness. My message to lawmakers is this: do your research. Interview people who own pit bulls, or have had them. You will find that it's not the dog to blame, but humans.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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