Archive for Wednesday, July 7, 2004

Letter: Banning breeds of dogs

July 7, 2004

Banning breeds of dogs

To the editor:

Unfortunately, Marsha Meyers, Tonganoxie resident misinformed about our city's ordinances, is now being forced to give up a beloved family member, Countess. It seems as though Mrs. Meyers is a responsible pet owner. Her neighbors spoke on behalf of Countess. Countess, beyond her control, was born a Rottweiler.

The city of Tonganoxie enforces breed-specific legislation. Breed bans are adopted as a result of fear, lack of knowledge and bad media, as well as irresponsible dog owners who may train their dog to become violent, or it may be the dog is allowed to roam. The fact is: Many Rottweiler owners breed and raise these animals to behave contrary to the norm. These are the dogs that end up on your 10 o'clock news. The result is a bad reputation.

To be useful, legislation must be effective, economical and reasonably fair. Statistics do not support the assumption that any one breed is dangerous. Focusing legislation on dogs that are deemed "vicious" distracts attention from the real problem: irresponsible owners.

What should be done?

Actively pursue legislation that will render owners liable for the actions of their pets, such as a "Dangerous Dog Law" that is NOT breed specific.

Pet owners should not be allowed to chain their dog, or let it roam freely.

Animals should be spayed or neutered.

In a proper environment, Rottweilers provide love, affection and are good companions. This breed has also been known to work with disabled persons, elderly, rescue workers, and also assisted in rescue efforts during 9/11.

The AVMA as well as the AKC are opposed to BSL. The following areas have laws that prohibit BSL: Florida, Texas, Virginia, Oklahoma and Kansas City, Mo. Recently, Wichita and Mission have repealed their bans due to becoming educated on the issue. I hope that at some point Tonganoxie will do the same, so that maybe future "Marsha Meyers" will not have to send their innocent family members away due to the ignorance of others.

Our country was not founded on the restriction and punishment of the masses based on the actions of a few.

Kris Taylor,
Tonganoxie.

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