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BREED SPECIFIC LEGISLATION: UNFAIR PREJUDICE AND INEFFECTIVE POLICY

Devin Burstein


10 Animal L. 313 (2004)
Publish Date:
2004
Place of Publication: Animal Law Review at Lewis & Clark Law School
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BREED SPECIFIC LEGISLATION: UNFAIR PREJUDICE AND INEFFECTIVE POLICY

BREED SPECIFIC LEGISLATION: UNFAIR PREJUDICE AND INEFFECTIVE POLICY (pdf file - 173.53 KB)

This comment examines breed specific legislation—the unfortunate attempt of legislatures throughout the country to address the valid concern over vicious dog attacks by prohibiting or strictly regulating entire breeds, most often, pit bulls. Such legislation has succeeded in perpetuating uninformed stereotypes and creating a false sense of security for the public. However, breed specific legislation has failed to accomplish the goal of making society safer because it fails to address the responsibility of dog owners for dog attacks. In addition, these laws unfairly punish animal and owner alike by ignoring the obvious facts that dogs are individuals capable of a variety of emotions and behaviors, and that no breed is inherently good or evil. To prevent the tragedies that can occur when a dog attacks a human, legislation must take aim at the heart of the problem, the human owners that allow, through negligence or intentional mistreatment and training, these attacks to occur.

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