A Rescuer’s Insight on Breed Specific Legislation

The following guest post was originally posted by the Paw Prints in the Sand Co-Founder and President in Pet Rescue Report

Mack- a PPITS rescue pit out of Carson

Mack- a PPITS rescue pit out of Carson

What is BSL? BSL stands for Breed Specific Legislation, which essentially makes certain dog breeds illegal based on their looks or breed. The breeds most commonly included in these laws are: Pit bulls, Rottweilers, Dobermans, German Shepherds, American Bulldogs, Presa Canarios, Mastiffs, Chow Chows, Dalmatians and Wolf hybrids, among others depending on locality.

The reason these breeds are often deemed “illegal” in areas around the United States including Arkansas, Colorado, and Florida and across the globe is because they are assumed to be “vicious” or “risky” simply due to their breed, mix or even the shape of their heads. Most recently, the City of Montreal passed legislation that would ban any dog resembling a pit bull and kill thousands more. Anyone who owns a dog remotely resembling a pit bull would have to register his or her dog with the municipality and muzzle it while in public. In addition, the dogs would be required to be under adult supervision while in public at all times.

If the dogs are in animal shelters or without an owner (strays), they will be euthanized. Additionally, BSL often prevents responsible would-be dog owners from providing a good, loving home to one of these types of dogs because of landlord or homeowners insurance requirements, which will not allow it. So, here’s why BSL is BS specifically as it applies to pit bulls: Pit bulls used to be known as ‘America’s Nanny Dog’ because of their friendly nature, loyalty and stability. They served in WWI and WWII, and many pit bulls are decorated veterans who have served our country. Furthermore, based on a study by the American Temperament Test Society, Inc., pit bulls are among the most tolerant dogs with 86.8% of pit bulls tested passing for temperament, ranking only second to the Labrador Retriever.

Ruthie is a PPITS rescue dog. She was once a bait dog used in dog fighting. She's now her baby brothers' best friend.

Ruthie is a PPITS rescue dog. She was once a bait dog used in dog fighting. She's now her baby brothers' best friend.

I have personally fostered numerous pitties and have one of my own. Before I got involved in animal rescue, all I knew about Pit Bulls, Rottweilers, Dobermans, and every other dog breed listed under BSL was what I saw in the media and how they were portrayed: vicious, aggressive, or high risk. However, practically every dog that has come through my door has been nothing but loving, loyal, and sweet. It took having hands on experience, educating myself, and gaining a better understanding of these breeds and proper handling for me to change my attitude and perception about these amazing dogs!

We rescued Dalton from San Bernardino Shelter. He had severe pneumonia and had to be hospitalized for a month. He is now living with a wonderful loving home.

We rescued Dalton from San Bernardino Shelter. He had severe pneumonia and had to be hospitalized for a month. He is now living with a wonderful loving home.

We want to help bring awareness to the issue that is BSL and put an end to the unjustified prejudice against certain breeds of dogs. We hope you will join us and support our ‘I’m With The Banned’ campaign by purchasing one of our shirts and give these great dogs the rights they deserve.

To help bring awareness BSL, please go to visit this link to purchase a 'I'm With The Banned' T-Shirt . Proceeds from this campaign will go towards the dominant breed dogs we rescue and towards our rescue programs. For more information on Paw Prints in the Sand and the work we do, please visit our web site at www.pawprintsinthesand.org, or on our social sites: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.