As more people bring dogs into their homes, the rate of dog attacks continue to increase. In an attempt to reduce violent dog attacks on citizens, many U.S. States are turning to a tactic known as Breed Specific Legislation. Breed-specific legislation (also known as BSL), also referred to as breed-discriminatory legislation (also known as BDL), is a law or ordinance that prohibits or restricts the ownership of specific breeds of dogs, and/or dogs presumed to be mixes of one or more of those breeds (Breed-specific legislation (BSL) FAQ, n.d.). The harshest of the BSL laws is a complete ban, which prohibits breeds of dogs to be kept within state borders. Breed specific legislation also includes less absurd limits that include mandatory spay and neutering, muzzling, property posting requirements, special insurance requirements, breed-specific limitations, and various other rules. Breed specific laws cause numerous loving dogs to be put down each year (BSL, n.d.). Some laws and rules that are enforced are logical under circumstances, but others are questionable.
Many people believe it is only Pit-bulls and Rottweilers that are targeted by BSL laws, but there are various breeds of dogs targeted with Breed Specific Legislation. In fact, there are 75 dog breeds in the United States that have been banned or restricted with BSL laws (75 dog breeds…, 2012). This list includes numerous shapes and sizes of dogs, from all different backgrounds. Most of the dogs on this list are common household pets, like the Labrador retriever, and are normally non-aggressive and very friendly. Many times these dogs show no sign of aggression and pose no threat to society.
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Breed-specific legislation. (n.d.). American Humane Association. Retrieved March 19, 2014, from http://www.americanhumane.org/animals/stop-animal-abuse/fact-sheets/breed-specific-legislation.html
Breed-specific legislation (BSL) FAQ. (n.d.). National Canine Research Council. Retrieved March 20, 2014, from http://nationalcanineresearchcouncil.com/dog-legislation/breed-specific-legislation-bsl-faq/
Chapter 9 of division 14 of the food and agricultural code of California. (n.d.). Retrieved March 20, 2014 from http://www.rott-n-chatter.com/rottweilers/laws/california.html
Why breed-specific legislation doesn't work. (2013, January 9). The Humane Society of the United States. Retrieved March 20, 2014, from http://www.humanesociety.org/issues/breed-specific-legislation/fact_sheets/breed-specific-legislation-flaws.html
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