You (well most of you) know me well enough to know that I belong to quite a few groups fighting to eradicate BSL in my home province of Ontario. Collectively we have all been fighting this BS legislation for seven years. Our dogs are all seniors and if we don’t eradicate BSL soon there will be none left in the province of Ontario to fight for! While we fight and rail against the injustice of this legislation that turns good dogs into monsters in the eyes of average citizens, Dalton McGuinty, Ontario’s Premier plots and schemes to avoid making a decision on Bill 16, the bill that would see an end to this archaic legislation in Ontario.
But, I have found a new group, a group whose aim is to wipe Breed Specific Legislation off the face of the globe! Serious like minded people who feel that it is not enough to sign petitions and hold rallies. People who feel that we have much more work than that to do if we hope to save these dogs from extinction. The Worldwide Canine Crusade is bringing together like minded people from all over the globe, and uniting them in a concerted effort to eradicate BSL on a global scale, and they have asked me to join them! My answer of course was a resounding “YES!”
Last night I made a guest appearance on their newly minted internet radio show, and I spoke with a woman in the UK whose dog (a “pit bull”) was sick, and needed desperately to be taken to the vet. Now for most people having to take a dog to the vet is no big thing. You call up the vet’s office take your dog in and the problem is solved right? For most dog owners that would be true, but for this woman it is not. She is the owner of a “pit bull” and she is terrified that if she takes her dog to a local vet she (the dog) might never return home. The UK has some very strict BSL laws, and “pit bulls” are illegal.
Can you imagine living with this much fear? To be so afraid for your dog that the idea of taking her for what should be a routine vet visit paralyzes you with fear for her safety? Get used to it folks, it is the reality of BSL! It is also the reason that no matter how frustrated I become, no matter how many times I feel like we are getting nowhere, despite the hatred and slander I have endured I can not give up. I can not lose this fight because losing means saying goodbye to these dogs forever and that is something I can not stand back and allow to happen.
Speaking with the distraught “pit bull” owner Natalie (sorry if my spelling is wrong) brought home the fact that things really need to change on a global scale. When average citizens must live in fear for the life of their family pet, something is seriously rotten in Denmark (or England or Italy, or wherever in the world you happen to be that BSL exists.)
There are many nights that I lay awake unable to stop my brain from thinking about what my next move should be, but last night I lay awake worrying about Natalie’s dog Molly. Knowing Natalie was faced with the task of taking her beloved Molly to the vet, and being aware of the possibility that when she did, she might not be allowed to bring her baby home kept me sleepless into the wee hours of the morning. I feel for her and I understand her fear, it is a fear that no pet owner should ever have to live with! However, those of us who live in BSL controlled areas of the globe are all too familiar with that fear. I prayed for Natalie and Molly’s safety, and finally fell asleep near dawn telling myself that I could never give up the fight until our dogs were safe, and knowing that it meant many more sleepless nights to come.
My association with the Worldwide Canine Crusade has broadened my audience, and now I ask my new readers to tell me their stories, discuss with me their feelings, and share their fears. I ask that you open up and speak about what BSL means to you and your family. I want you to make it clear to those who do not understand what we are fighting for, that this legislation does NOT work to reduce bite incidents, and that innocent dogs are dying for nothing more than having the misfortune to be born looking like the government definition of a “pit bull.”
Anyone who didn’t catch the show can listen to it here;
Until Next Time,
Peace, Love & Freedome for Pit Bulls!