For the past seven years, Ontarians have been fighting BSL. The McGuinty government has ignored what the people of Ontario want for just as long. In their opinion pit bulls (a fictional breed, as no such breed exists) are heinously vicious and all should be destroyed. The McGuinty government has spent years ignoring the advice of experts and doing as they please. For seven years I have lived in fear for my dog Nakita. If you read the last blog you are aware that Nakita is a Husky/lab cross who has more lab blood than husky blood. She is a short haired, barrel chested dog, but she is NOT a pit bull. The government however, insists she is because of her looks and despite the fact that I can prove she is not I still must muzzle her because of her looks. So now I say, does THIS look like a pit bull to you?
Nakita is just one more victime of BSL, gone are the days when she can go to the off leash park with her pack members and run and play with other dogs. Niki has not been able to do that since she was a puppy. All of her running and romping must be done at home in her own backyard.
When she was close to a year old, BSL was introduced into Ontario. BSL killed the normal life that Niki was just beginning. She now had to be muzzled every time she left the house! But Niki has never bitten anyone, never even growled in the general direction of another person. Apparently the McGuinty government knows my dog better than I do, because she can not leave the house unmuzzled. When Niki was a pup she loved to greet every person she met with a lick on the hand and a wag of the tail. Now people cross to the other side of the street to avoid the “big bad pit bull.” People have thrown rocks at her and several times her life has been threatened by misguided people who believe the government hype that all pitbulls are inherently vicious. Niki is a big baby, and besides that, the only reason anyone is afraid of her is the government tells them they should be.
The fact that Niki is not a pit bull means nothing to the government, in their opinion she LOOKS like a pitbull therefore she must be restricted and muzzled for others to feel safe. Funny how people felt perfectly safe with her until some idiot in government labeled her a pit bull.
I have been rehabilitating rescue dogs with major issues for over twenty years. I have worked with pitbulls, and have actually found them to be less aggressive than other breeds I have worked with. My Father bred Staffordshire terriers when I was a child. I grew up with these dogs, I was never bitten by one of my Father’s dogs, although I have been bitten by countless small breed dogs, and find small breed dogs to be more aggressive than larger breeds, and more likely to bite. You could say I am a bit of an expert on the rehabilitation of large breed dogs, yet I have NEVER been bitten by a pitbull. I have been bitten by golden retrievers, poodles, chihuahuas, and once by a Dachshund, but never a pitbull.
Tell me something, if the McGuinty government is so adamant that BSL works to reduce dog bites why is it that dog bite stats show no reduction? Simple, ALL dogs are capable of biting! Banning a dog breed (or a ficticious dog breed as is the case with Ontario’s BSL) does not stop dogs from biting. Banning pitbulls will do nothing to stop dog bites from happening, as a matter of fact all it will do is bring a different breed to the forefront of bite statistics.
In order to reduce the number of dog bites we must educate the public as to how to approach a dog. We must hold owners responsible when dogs bite, after all are we as dog owners not supposed to have care and control of our pets at all times? Is it not our responsibility to see that our pets do no harm?
Right now I have eight dogs that I am responsible for. I have always had multiple dogs, and ironically enough the only people who have ever been bitten by one of our dogs is us, and then only because we are the ones rehabilitating them. None of our dogs has ever bitten anyone else. We are responsible dog owners who will voluntarily muzzle a dog if we know it to be even slightly aggressive. We are always watching the way in which others approach our dogs, and have had to stop many times on a walk to teach children the proper way to approach a strange animal.
If you ask me BSL is the easy way out. Blame the dog and you do not have to take the owner to task when the animal bites, it is just much simpler to condemn the dog. I and many other pitbull owners across Ontario do not agree. We do not agree because we are the type of owners who take responsibility for our dogs, and we see no reason why our GOOD DOGS should be restricted because of the actions of uncaring dog owners. We say LOOK TO THE OTHER END OF THE LEASH when placing responsibility for the actions of a pet.
BSL is mass genocide. What’s worse? We condemned Hitler for the same sort of thing during the second world war, yet we allow Michael Bryant and Dalton McGuinty to do the very same with our family pets? Not on your life! BSL MUST END!
To the McGuinty government I say, Do the right thing! End the mass slaughter of our family pets, and place the responsibility where it belongs, on the shoulders of the dog owner.