Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson said Tuesday that “despite opposition from some pit bull and other dog owners, he will begin lobbying council members to support an outright ban of the breed in the city.” Peterson’s comments came a year after Indy’s first attempt to ban “pit bulls.” In that year, Indianapolis has seen a 20% reduction in dog bites which can be attributed to increased Animal Control enforcement and the dangerous dog ordinance that the Indy City Council passed.
Currently, dog owners in Indianapolis whose dogs bite someone are fined $500 and their dogs may be ordered to be confined. What’s wrong with this provision, especially since it appears to be working quite nicely? The mayor can no more prevent dog bites or dog attacks on children or anyone else via a breed ban than he can prevent car accidents involving children and anyone else by passing seatbelt laws. There are people who will never heed the law so why stump for a breed ban which will go on to punish people who were already abiding by the law? That would be like saying people couldn’t drive a certain model of car because the owners of those models were involved in more traffic accidents. Well, just like it is the driver’s responsibility to control his vehicle, it is a dog owner’s responsibility to control his dog.
Please send your respectful letters to the mayor and Indianapolis City Council members and tell them that the dangerous dog law they passed last year is working brilliantly and that Indianapolis does not need a breed ban that will adversely affect only responsible bully breed owners while those who irresponsibly own all kinds of breeds of dog will continue to do so regardless of a ban.