An Open Letter to the Toronto Star Newspaper

Today’s post is my public response to an article published recently in the Toronto Star newspaper (or at least on their website) READ ARTICLE  HERE

I left my opinion on their website but apparently they are not interested in hearing from yet another pit bull owner, and so far have yet to moderate my comment. Or at least they are assuming I am a pit bull owner, and I guess in a way you could say that I am. Not because my dog IS a pit bull, but because she LOOKS “substantially similar,” and therefore could be ripped from the only home she has ever known simply because she had the misfortune to grow up with looks one might attribute to the pit bull breed, if such a breed indeed existed. But that’s just the point here, pit bulls as a breed DO NOT EXIST! Therefore there is no way to say you are going to ban all pit bulls. Even by the government’s own definition pit bulls are one of or a combination of the following:

  • Pit bull terrier
  • Staffordshire bull terrier
  • American Staffordshire terrier
  • American pit bull terrier
  • A dog that has an appearance and physical characteristics that are substantially similar to those of dogs referred to in any of the above categories.

A broad definition to be sure, and one that leaves room for a witch hunt against just about any short haired mixed breed dog out there. It also leaves room for a lot of dead animals and brokenhearted families. It is genocide pure and simple, but because we are “merely dealing with animals” it is not seen as such, except by those of us that know that character of the animals affected, those of us that love them!

Let me address a few sections of the Star article:

“We know that Chihuahuas are as capable of biting, or more capable of biting, as so-called pit bulls,” she said. True — but where a rampaging Chihuahua is likely to nip someone’s ankle, a pit bull can rip out a child’s throat or disembowel another dog. Indeed, both these horrors have been perpetrated by pit bulls. In these cases, the deed is the breed.”

Where, dear writer is your evidence that a pit bull has ever ripped out a child’s throat in Ontario? I can find no case history or evidence of this in fact ever having taken place. Where is the report on the dog disembowled by pitt bulls? I could find no evidence of that having taken place in Ontario either. Please DO share your sources with us!

Secondly on this matter, while you dear writer may think an attack by a chihuahua is cute and amusing, chihuahuas have only to bite that ankle in the right place to kill now don’t they? After all main arteries DO run through the ankle you know, just a little anatomy lesson for you. Just because a dog doesn’t have a big bite doesn’t mean that bite can’t be deadly. ANY breed can bite, any breed can maim and kill, which is precisely why we say the OWNER and not the dog is the problem. Let us move on:

“Yes, the critics are right: it’s hard to define all possible pit bull mixes. But difficulty in defining a problem is no reason not to address it. And yes, bad owners are largely to blame when pit bulls go rogue. So what? Bad people are the only ones likely to use a machine gun to commit robbery. But — in the interest of public safety — we ban machine guns from all, including the good.”

Please do tell me how one addresses a problem one can not define clearly? And “when pit bulls go rogue” as you put it, and “bad owners are largely to blame” you expect us to take a “so what” attitude, and blame the animal? Oh and in what society are machine guns banned? I am pretty sure our army and most military factions in the world use automatic weapons so how are they banned from the good? Besides this apparent ban you think society has on machine guns, hasn’t stopped criminals from using them.

Following that reasoning, then if we outlaw pit bulls, only outlaws will have pit bulls. Of course explaining to you dear writer, how the world works was not on my agenda for the day. Yet here I find myself doing so.   These animal are not killers they are innocent creatures who are abused and forced to fight and be killers for the amusement of men. Because they are the dog of choice for outlaw dog fighters, they get a bad rap. They are, however the most intelligent animals I have ever met and their loyalty to a fair and loving owner knows no bounds. They are  misunderstood and used as scapegoats by politicians and the media.

“In fact, the province’s pit bull “ban” is a misnomer. Ontarians are free to own these dogs, provided the animals have been neutered and kept muzzled in public. Given the danger they present, pit bulls can’t be legally bred or imported into the province. That seems a reasonable compromise.”

What rock have you been living under dear writer? We are NOT free to own these dogs in Ontario. The pit bulls that currently still exist in Ontario are all over the age of seven years. They are dogs spared from euthanasia by a Grandfather clause in the original bill 132 which introduced BSL to Ontario. Once those dogs die a natural death, or some crazy uninformed person, such as yourself reports them for sneezing on the sidewalk, and has them ordered euthanized, well then there will be no more pit bulls in the province of Ontario. They will in effect be extinct in this part of the country. All because Michael Bryant found them a fitting target! Congratulations on graduating from stupidity 101 dear writer!

Please dear writer don’t assume I dislike you for your views, be SURE of it, for people like you are the ones that throughout history have perpetuated witch hunts such as this by spreading misinformation and sensationalizing things. Those tactics dear writer worked for Hitler, but he did not have the benefit of living in the instant information age. No these days an unresearched rant that makes wild accusations in a public forum can be researched and refuted in mere minutes. So I ask you once again dear writer, WHERE ARE YOUR REFERENCES? These days it isn’t good enough to just form an opinion and spread it on, no, you had beter be able to back up your BS.

As for your ridiculous opening statement about pit owners being misguided, I am afraid it is you who have been lead astray by your own uninformed zeal.

Can we stop the ban on pitbulls in Ontario?

YES WE CAN!

Namaste’

Everydogsmom

Bill 16 Passes Second Reading!!!

Hey folks! I have amazing news!

Ontario’s Bill 16 (the bill that will free our pit bulls) has passed the second reading! Another hurdle has been jumped, are we on our way to seeing the breed ban on pit bulls lifted in Ontario?

Supporters are optimistic, as well they should be. This is the first time Anti BSL activists have gotten this far with the McGuinty government. However, while we have won this battle, we have yet to win the war.

I attended yesterday’s rally at Queen’s Park in Toronto. Attendance was great and people were informed, and supportive. I left my dog Niki at home she doesn’t do well with standing around muzzled for lengthy periods of time, but there were plenty of her kin in evidence, all muzzled and miserable for it. I felt for them, these good dogs that would rather curl up on the sofa with their head in your lap than bite anyone, and thought once again “how cruel and unfair are the restrictions placed upon these dogs because of their looks? Not a one of them has ever done anything to deserve this!”

As I moved through the crowd taking photos, I kept my eye open for a friend from Ottawa I knew was driving in for the rally. I found her eventually and to my surprise she had brought others with her, including one of the most adorable little pit bull girls I have ever met, Mika.

Mika is a wonderfully sweet dog, she would far rather lick your hand than bite it. She’s just a mild mannered family pet who loves her family. “What?” I ask, “is so scary about that?”

Although I only met Mika’s owner Allie briefly, I can see where Mika gets her calm demeanor. Her owner exudes calm, and the same sweetness her dog exhibits, while at the same time being in control of her pet and aware of every move she makes like a diligent Mother supervising one of her children. For Mika while muzzled, those movements are few.

While most of the supporters who brought along their dogs were in control of their pets, one dog stood out from the crowd as a shining example of why we say “look to the other end of the leash.” He wasn’t a pit and I won’t mention his breed mix so as not to embarrass his owner, as I know I am not the only person who felt his owner was a wee bit irresponsible. The dog was leashed but not muzzled, and it was not under control by any means, and it wasn’t a little dog either. In my estimation it had to have weighed at least a hundred pounds and had a powerful upper body.

The dog was leading its owner around instead of the owner controlling the dog with the leash. As a matter of fact for this particular dog and owner the leash seemed to serve merely as a device to tether the two together so they did not become seperated. The animal had obviously had little or no leash training, but that was probably because no one had ever trained the owner in the basics of using a leash, and for his purposes it was just something to drag his dog around by. It was also obvious the dog had never really been properly socialized with other animals. it’s behavior was rude even by doggie standards, and it’s owner did nothing to correct it. Therefore dog and owner narrowly missed involvement in several altercations with other dogs, only because the owners of those dogs knew how to handle their pets. As I said a perfect illustration of why we all say “look to the other end of the leash.”

Ah but now I am off topic. We were speaking about the rally. I have been with this fight for a few years now. I own a dog that although there is no American Pit Bull Terrier or Staffordshire Terrier in her bloodline (she is a Husky/ Lab cross) falls into the “sunstantially similar” category because of her looks. BSL has affected our family because of this and so I stand and fight for the life of my dog and dogs like her.

Yesterday it was obvious that I am not alone, and neither are our dogs! It was also obvious that we are not going to back down, and that people are starting to understand the truth of the matter.

Bill 16 passed the second reading and we are one step closer to freeing our dogs from the restrictions they have been forced to live under for the past seven years! As for those MPP’s that voted nay? Well they are more than likely playing party politics, and all i can say to that is this:

Bill 16 passed the second reading! Yay! VICTORY! We win this battle!

Now let’s go win the war!

Say it with me Ontario pit bull lovers! YES WE CAN!

Namaste’

Everydogsmom

Link

McDonald’s certainly has the attention of pit bull owners this week, but not for good reasons. The multi-national fast food chain has really stuck its proverbial foot in its mouth this time. The company recently released ad spots in which it states ordering their new menu items is safer then petting a stray pit bull! The radio spot was aired by McDonald’s, then later pulled the off the air due to protest over its mention of pit bulls. McDonald’s apologized for the faux pas by announcing their regrets on Twitter.

As if we pit bull advocates don’t have enough to contend with now we must battle the stupidity of ignorant ad executives as well. Perpetuating the myth of pit bulls as vicious killers to sell food that kills? No wonder animal advocates everywhere have had enough of the fast food chain! The company is no stranger to being on the wrong side of animal welfare arguments. The question in my mind is this, how can a company whose product has been linked to the deteriorating health of thousands of North Americans claim any item on their menu is safe? Quite frankly I would rather take my chances with a pack of stray pit bulls then slake my hunger with a McDonald’s food product! I’d rather be loved to death than contract food poisoning or worse!

We have all seen the ancient McDonald’s burgers various nutritionists and doctors have kept around to prove to patients that this food is unhealthy. Some of you may have read the articles about a young 17 year old girl in the US whom doctors have determined will not survive if she continues to eat nothing but McDonald’s chicken nuggets as she has done since the age of 2. Yet McDonald’s has the nerve to claim their food is safer than a pit bull? As I said before I’ll take my chances with the pit bull! After all, do we really need to ingest anything with a longer shelf life than half the items in a landfill? I think not! Therefore it shouldn’t be hard to boycott McDonald’s, just think how much healthier you’ll be for the effort!

Have a great weekend!

& Remember,

“If you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention!”

Everydogsmom

Namaste’