Breed Specific Legislation or “BSL” is a law that either bans or restricts ownership of certain dogs based on their appearance. Breed-specific legislation generally refers to laws that target specific breeds of dogs. KEY COMPONENT: The key component is a law requiring neutering and spaying of both male and female pit bulls, so further breeding is impossible. Breed-specific legislation is a type of dangerous dog law. Following a thorough study of human fatalities resulting from dog bites, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) decided to strongly oppose BSL. What is Breed Specific Legislation (BSL)? Breed-specific laws are also costly and difficult to enforce. It refers to laws that ban or restrict certain types of dogs based simply on their appearance, usually because they are perceived as dangerous. A breed-neutral approach may include the following: Increased availability to low-cost sterilization (spay/neuter) services, Dangerous dog laws that are breed-neutral and focus on the behavior of the individual guardian and dog, Graduated penalties and options for dogs deemed dangerous, Laws that hold dog guardians financially accountable for failure to adhere to animal control laws, Laws that hold dog guardians civilly and criminally liable for unjustified injuries or damage caused by their dogs, Laws that prohibit chaining, tethering and unreasonable confinement, coupled with enhanced enforcement of animal cruelty and animal fighting lawsÂ, Community-based approaches to resolving reckless guardian/dangerous dog questions that encompass all stakeholders, available dog bite data and recommended realistic and enforceable policies, Read the ASPCA’s complete position statement on Breed-Specific Legislation, By providing my mobile number, I agree to receive periodic text messages from the ASPCA. Some say, "do nothing at all." Exclusive Subaru VIP offer for ASPCA Guardians & Founders. Breed Specific Legislation was introduced 26 years ago as part of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 to restrict the ownership of certain types of dogs deemed to be dangerous to people. http://www.dogsbite.org/legislating-dangerous-dogs-bsl-faq.php, Attacks by pit bulls rescued from shelters, Where are pit bulls banned internationally, http://www.dogsbite.org/legislating-dangerous-dogs-bsl-faq.php, http://www.care4paws.org/programsspayneuter.html, http://www.examiner.com/article/pit-bulls-and-euthanasia-rates, http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/S-F-sterilization-law-successful-in-reducing-pit-2507585.php, requiring pit bull type dogs to be muzzled and on short leashes while in public, requiring additional liability insurance for both home owners and renters, requiring landlord agreements for rentals to pit bull owners, requiring warning signs on properties where pit bulls are housed, requiring special housing and fencing requirements, requiring special training certificates for pit bull owners, making it illegal for pit bull type dogs to use designated dog parks, making it illegal to rescue or import pit bull type dogs from other areas, mandatory spay and neutering to reduce euthanization rates, regulations about the transport of pit bull type dogs from one location to another, outright bans on the ownership of pit bull type dogs. Breed Specific Legislation or “BSL” is a law that either bans or restricts ownership of certain dogs based on their appearance. There is no evidence that breed-specific laws make communities safer for people or companion animals. Text STOP to opt-out, HELP for more info. A few cities and communities may propose outdated breed-specific legislation (BSL), also known as breed discrimination, out of misinformation regarding the issue of dangerous dogs. As certain breeds are regulated, individuals who exploit aggression in dogs are likely to turn to other, unregulated breeds. All rights reserved.The ASPCA is a 501(c)(3) non-for-profit organization. Often, BSL is implemented as a reaction to one or two recent and highly publicized serious attacks in the area. Breed-Specific Legislation’s Dirty Little Secret. Which seems unfair, to put it mildly, because as a result, dogs have lost … Legislation may ban certain types of dog in a defined geographic area, or it may restrict particular kinds of dogs in specific ways. A: Breed-specific legislation (BSL), also referred to as breed-discriminatory legislation (BDL), is a law or ordinance that prohibits or restricts the keeping of dogs of specific breeds, dogs presumed to be specific breeds, mixes of specific breeds, and/or dogs presumed to be mixes of one or more of those breeds. It is defined as any ordinance or policy that pertains to a specific dog breed or several breeds, but does not affect any others. In terms of Breed Bias, this refers to the bias against certain dog breeds. The intention is to reduce the number of life changing attacks and deaths caused by this type of dog. Although the topic of Breed-specific legislation (BSL) has not dominated conversations in the same way as other divisive issues, it has, for many years, permeated the dog world View model and noted breed-specific ordinances and mandatory pit bull spaying and neutering ordinances. Proponents of breed-specific laws seek to limit public exposure to well-documented dangerous dog breeds by regulating the ownership of them. This’s often completed in an effort to avoid vicious dog attacks. BSL is a misnomer in that BSL laws are anything but specific. Breed specific legislation (BSL) targets specific dog breeds, such as pit bulls and pit-bull-type dogs because they are deemed inherently dangerous and therefore deserving of prejudicial rules and regulations. Breed-specific laws have a tendency to compromise rather than enhance public safety. Responsible owners of entirely friendly, properly supervised and well-socialized dogs who happen to fall within the regulated breed are required to comply with local breed bans and regulations. Breed-specific legislation seeks to protect the public by limiting or regulating the ownership of what are deemed to … Founded on the notion that certain breeds of dogs present an immediate danger, BSL punishes responsible owners and their beloved pets simply due to … One of the unfortunate results of breed stereotypes, misinformation, and irresponsible ownership is breed-specific legislation, also known as breed discriminatory bans. Learn more about fighting BSL in our advocate toolkit. Breed specific legislation specifies that dogs of a certain type or appearance be subjected to particular laws. Breed-Specific Legislation. Dogs suspected of being a banned type are typically seized by the police and can spend significant time in kennels away from their owners during which they are assessed to determine whether or not the dog is a banned type. BSL takes many forms, some of … However, more than 700 U.S. cities have enacted breed-specific laws. For canine regulation, it is important to understand the differences between the two major forms of regulation - breed-specific legislation (BSL) and breed-neutral legislation (BNL). Breed-specific legislation is … Message and data rates may apply. There is an even darker side to breed-specific legislation, one that isn’t so readily apparent. BSL targets specific types of dogs. BSL stands for breed-specific legislation. Terms & Conditions / Privacy Policy, © 2021 American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pit_bull, “Communities that enact breed-specific laws usually do because a single class of dogs — pit bulls — constitutes a small percent of the registered dog population but commits a large number of bites. Dog attacks can be a real and serious problem in communities across the country, but addressing dangerous and potentially dangerous dogs can be a confusing and touchy issue. Breed-specific legislation (BSL) is the blanket term for laws that either regulate or ban certain dog breeds in an effort to decrease dog attacks on humans and other animals. However, the problem of dangerous dogs will not be remedied by the “quick fix” of breed-specific laws—or, as they should truly be called, breed-discriminatory laws. They are punished based entirely on what breed they happen to be, or even slightly resemble. The FAQ also dismantles a variety of false myths about BSL. When animal control resources are used to regulate or ban a certain breed, the focus is shifted away from effective enforcement of laws that have the best chances of making communities safer: dog license laws, leash laws, anti-animal fighting laws, anti-tethering laws, laws facilitating spaying and neutering and laws that require all owners to control their dogs, regardless of breed. Additionally, guardians of banned breeds may be deterred from seeking routine veterinary care, which can lead to outbreaks of rabies and other diseases that endanger communities.Breed-specific laws may also have the unintended consequence of encouraging irresponsible dog ownership. Conversely, studies can be referenced that point to clear, positive effects of carefully crafted breed-neutral laws. In some countries like Australia, the goal is for pit bull type dogs to die out by natural attrition. Breed-specific legislation is being proposed and enacted all over the world, and targets so-called 'aggressive breeds.' Breed Specific Legislation are actually laws governing ownership, insurance needs, and housing or maybe rental restrictions placed on particular animals based upon breed look. Breed Specific Legislation fails to take into account that any breed of dog can be dangerous when in the hands of an irresponsible owner. Following a thorough study of human fatalities resulting from dog bites, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) decided to strongly oppose BSL.The CDC cited, among other problems, the inaccuracy of dog bite data and the difficulty in identifying dog breeds (especially true of mixed-breed dogs). In some areas, regulated breeds also include a variety of other dogs like American Bulldogs, Rottweilers, Mastiffs, Dalmatians, Chow Chows, German Shepherds, Doberman Pinschers or any mix of these breeds—and dogs who simply resemble these breeds. In places where BSL has been implemented it varies from a complete ban of certain types of dogs to regulations imposing restrictions on ownership and special requirements including, but not limited to, mandatory muzzling; leash laws; special ‘housing’ (for example, fully enclosed cages); chaining; minimal wall enclosure height; mandatory microchipping; tatt… Breed specific legislation (BSL) is an attempt by legislators to reduce dog bites by targeting specific types of dogs. There are two types of BSL laws, those that “ban” and those that “regulate.” Underwritten by United States Fire Insurance Company. States in green signify that there is not BSL currently being enforced. The result is high levels of costly and tragic euthanization due to excessive over-population. Not only that, but police or animal control classifying a dog as even just suspected “type” (a banned breed) means the dog is seized and the owner will have to pay court costs to fight for the dogs life. Breed-specific legislation refers to public policies or legal statutes that control, limit or prevent ownership of specific dog breeds or mixes. This is further compounded by the fact that many pit bull bites result in severe injury.” Breed safety laws :: Over 900 U.S. cities have enacted breed-specific legislation and wolf-dog hybrid laws. For comprehensive information, see Breed-Specific Legislation FAQ They feel that dogs attack people who deserve it for one reason or another. This type of legislation is usually enacted by local municipal or county governments and operates under the presumption that certain physical characteristics make some breeds of dogs more dangerous than others. "Breed-specific" legislation (BSL) is the blanket term for laws that either regulate or ban certain breeds completely in the hopes of reducing dog attacks. Breed Specific Legislation Map. http://www.dogsbite.org/legislating-dangerous-dogs-bsl-faq.php. Rebecca F. Wisch : Brief Summary of Breed Specific Laws: This article provides a brief summary of breed-specific legislation and the legal challenges to such laws. Breed-specific legislation applies only to dogs of a certain appearance, not to any and all dogs. Breed-specific legislation seeks to protect the public by limiting or regulating the ownership of what are deemed to be aggressive or dangerous dog breeds. Legislation may ban certain types of dog in a defined geographic area, or it may restrict particular kinds of dogs in specific ways. They feel that the statistics compiled on dog attacks are inaccurate, and that the press has created the false impression that there is a dog bite problem in the USA. It is legislation regulating a specific breed of dog. Privacy Policy  Legal Info. BSL is usually enacted as a knee jerk reaction that … Many states, including New York, Texas and Illinois, favor laws that identify, track and regulate dangerous dogs individually—regardless of breed—and prohibit BSL. Its called breed specific legislation and its destroying lives in a sweeping worldwide epidemic. Breed specific legislation specifies that dogs of a certain type or appearance be subjected to particular laws. This can either be due to state level legislation, or because there simply is no BSL in that state. Breed-Specific Legislation is something that should be on your radar any time you are thinking of moving to a new city/state, or even if you are planning a road trip with your pup! Currently, more than 900,000 pit bull types dogs are euthanized every year in the United States – more than 6 times the number of other types of dogs – due to excessive breeding. Public Safety Suffers. http://www.dogsbite.org/legislating-dangerous-dogs-bsl-faq.php. There is no evidence that breed-specific laws make communities safer for people or companion animals. Regulated breeds typically comprise the “pit bull” class of dogs, including American Pit Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers and English Bull Terriers. Many of the jurisdictions that ban or restrict pit bulls apply their restrictions to: (a) the modern American Pit Bull Terrier, (b) American Staffordshire Terrier, (c) Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and (d) any other dog that has the substantial physical characteristics and appearance of those breeds. We all want safe and humane communities for people and pets and want to prevent dog bites and attacks. The rise of pit bull ownership among gang members in the late 1980s coincided with the first round of breed-specific legislation.Â, There is no convincing data to indicate that breed-specific legislation has succeeded anywhere to date.Â. Breed Specific Legislation: As defined by the ASPCA, “Breed-specific legislation (BSL) is the blanket term for laws that either regulate or ban certain dog breeds in an effort to decrease dog … Breed-specific laws are also costly and difficult to enforce. BSL requires identification of a dog’s breed which is extremely difficult. BSL saves not only the lives of victims but the lives of pit bulls. Breed-specific legislation (BSL) is a law or ordinance that regulates or completely bans the keeping of dogs of or presumed to be specific breeds, dogs presumed to be specific breeds and/or dogs which are or presumed to be mixes of one or more of those breeds. As a result, certain dog breeds are highlighted as being dangerous because of how they look, rather than act. Breed-specific legislation (BSL) is a type of law that prohibits or restricts particular breeds or … Types of ordinances Less than 25% of pit bull owners spay or neuter their dogs, compared to 75% of other breeds. View an extensive body of information about Breed Specific Legislation. Some city/municipal governments have enacted breed-specific laws, as has the State of Ohio. The CDC has noted that many other factors beyond breed may affect a dog’s tendency toward aggression—things such as heredity, sex, early experience, reproductive status, socialization and training. Some feel that banning a breed is like human racial discrimination. It does not take into account how the owner has raised, trained, or managed the dog. Breed Specific Legislation punishes innocent dogs who have done nothing wrong. Conversely “outlaws” may be attracted to the “outlaw” status of certain breeds. BSL (also known as Breed Discriminatory Legislation) is a law or legal ordinance that restricts or prohibits the ownership of certain breeds (or types) of dogs. Breed-specific legislation violates the federal Americans with Disabilities Act; Lawsuits can cost taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars and place a heavy burden on both the court system and animal control departments. This can lead to housing issues, legal fees or even relinquishment of the animal. It does not take into account the dog’s actual behavior. BSL carries a host of negative and wholly unintended consequences: Owners Suffer. There is no such problem, they say. What is breed-specific legislation? BSL takes many forms, some of which are very simple, inexpensive and effective. The intention of BSL for pit bulls is not to reduce simple bite counts. German Shepherds, Rottweilers, and pit bull type dogs are common victims of this discriminatory and ineffective legislation. Experts agree that breed-specific legislation (BSL) and similar policies that restrict dogs based on appearance do not reduce dog bites in communities or enhance public safety. Q: What is breed-specific legislation? Breed-specific legislation (BSL), as defined by the ASPCA, “is the blanket term for laws that either regulate or ban certain dog breeds in an effort to … The CDC cited, among other problems, the inaccuracy of dog bite data and the difficulty in identifying dog breeds (especially true of mixed-breed dogs). BSL is a law that is enacted by legislators, with hopes of reducing dog bites, unwanted criminal behavior, and achieving public safety. Breed-specific legislation is exactly what it sounds like. Breed specific legislation is active in certain countries across the world, the UK being one. DogsBite.org, a national dog bite victims’ group dedicated to reducing serious dog attacks, releases a Breed-Specific Legislation FAQ on its website. This includes everything from muzzle laws to breed bans. Politicians feel that they must be seen to be doing something to protect public safety. 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