Tag Archives: BSL

Please TWEET or CALL Ohio Governor Kasich

Ohio Governor John Kasich signed SB 331, the ‘Petland’ bill, into law, “behind closed doors and without additional comment”, as reported by the Vindicator.  

A huge thanks goes to each of you for all the calls and tweets that  sent to the governor. You stayed active, dedicated, and strong right until the final moments.

You are wonderful advocates for our animal friends.

Governor Kasich and the legislators that VOTED YES on SB 331 did not listen to us. The bill moved very quickly through the legislature and then to the governor. Interested parties were not included in all of the discussions. It was not properly vetted.

Governor Kasich and the legislators who voted yes have failed us and the animals that we love.

There are some 22 states have passed “Puppy Lemon” laws and 206 jurisdictions across the nation that have passed pet store ordinances, aimed at drying up the market for mill animals. 

Why has Ohio moved so quickly in the OPPOSITE direction?

Petland could continue to stay in business utilizing a humane, business model, as other successful, national, pet stores use.

Finally, the governor and the Statehouse majority have stomped ‘home-rule’, embedded in the Ohio Constitution. The same legislators that cry “No more big government”, always bristling at interference from the federal government, have dishonored the work and the judgement of local jurisdictions and have taken away some of their legal rights with the passage of SB 331.

How did YOUR STATE SENATOR and YOUR STATE REP vote?  A YES VOTE means they are in support of SB 331. A NO VOTE means they are opposed to SB 331.

Ohio Senate Vote – December 7, 2016

Yeas : 21 – Nays : 10

Yeas

Kevin Bacon (R), Troy Balderson (R), Bill Beagle (R), Dave Burke (R), Bill Coley (R), John Eklund (R), Keith Faber (R), Bob D. Hackett (R), Cliff Hite (R), Jay Hottinger (R),Shannon Jones (R), Kris Jordan (R), Frank LaRose (R), Peggy Lehner (R), Gayle Manning (R),Larry Obhof (R), Scott Oelslager (R), Tom Patton (R), Bob Peterson (R), Bill Seitz (R), Joe Uecker (R), Bob D. Hackett (R)

Nays

Edna Brown (D), Randy Gardner (R), Lou Gentile (D), Tom Sawyer (D), Joe Schiavoni (D), Michael J. Skindell (D), Charleta B. Tavares (D), Cecil Thomas (D), Sandra R. Williams (D), Kenny Yuko (D)

Ohio House Votes – December 7, 2016

Yeas : 55 – Nays : 42

Yeas

Ron Amstutz (R), Marlene Anielski (R), Niraj J. Antani (R), Steven Arndt (R), Nan A. Baker (R), John Becker (R), Louis W. Blessing III (R), Terry Boose (R), Andrew Brenner (R), Jim Buchy (R), Tony Burkley (R), Jim Butler (R), Margaret Conditt (R), Robert R. Cupp (R), Anthony DeVitis (R), Bill Dean (R), Jonathan Dever (R), Mike Dovilla (R), Theresa Gavarone (R), Timothy E. Ginter (R), Anne Gonzales (R), Wesley A. Goodman (R), Doug Green (R), Christina Hagan (R), David Hall (R), Bill Hayes (R), Michael Henne (R), Brian Hill (R), Ron Hood (R), Stephen A. Huffman (R), Candice R. Keller (R), Kyle Koehler (R), Al Landis (R), Ron Maag (R), Nathan H. Manning (R), Robert McColley (R), Derek Merrin (R), Dorothy Pelanda (R), Rick Perales (R), Bill Reineke (R), Wes Retherford (R), Kristina Roegner (R), Mark J. Romanchuk (R), Speaker Cliff Rosenberger (R), Scott Ryan (R), Tim Schaffer (R), Gary Scherer (R), Kirk Schuring (R), Marilyn Slaby (R), Ryan Smith (R), Robert Sprague (R), Louis Terhar (R), Andy Thompson (R), Ron Young (R), Paul Zeltwanger (R)

 Nays

Nickie J. Antonio (D), Mike Ashford (D), John Barnes, Jr. (D), Heather Bishoff (D), John Boccieri (D), Kristin Boggs (D), Kevin Boyce (D), Janine R. Boyd (D), Thomas E. Brinkman, Jr. (R), Nicholas J. Celebrezze (D), Jack Cera (D), Kathleen Clyde (D), Hearcel F. Craig (D), Michael F. Curtin (D), Denise Driehaus (D), Mike Duffey (R), Teresa Fedor (D), Cheryl L. Grossman (R), Stephen D. Hambley (R), Stephanie D. Howse (D), Greta Johnson (D), Christie Bryant Kuhns (D), Stephanie Kunze (R), Sarah LaTourette (R), David Leland (D), Michele Lepore-Hagan (D), Michael J. O’Brien (D), Sean O’Brien (D), Bill Patmon (D), John Patterson (D), Debbie Phillips (D), Alicia Reece (D), Jeffery S. Rezabek (R), John M. Rogers (D), Margaret Ann Ruhl (R), Michael Sheehy (D), Stephen Slesnick (D), Kent Smith (D), Fred Strahorn (D), Martin J. Sweeney (D), Emilia Strong Sykes (D), A. Nino Vitale (R)

SB 331 also OVERTURNS the pet store ordinances already in effect in Toledo and Grove City and STOPS other, Ohio jurisdictions from passing future pet store ordinances. 

Please send a RESPECTFUL tweet, expressing disappointment in the passage of SB 331.  I know that many of you are angry, hurt, and fed up.  This bill is not fair to our puppies, our families, and our workers.  Yet, your message will not be well received unless it is POLITE.

You may tweet these phrases, or you might want to tweet your personal message.  

#SB331stompshomerule 22 states & 205 jurisdictions protect unsuspecting consumers – Why not Ohio?

#SB331stompshomerule OH Gov Kasich fails workers, families, & puppies

#SB331stompshomerule fast-tracked without proper vetting hurts OH workers, consumers, puppies

Is Ohio HOME RULE state (Statehouse said yes on BSL bill) or not (Statehouse said no on Petland bill)?

 Would you like to create a Twitter account?  It is free.  You can set up an account in a few easy steps.  Ask a teenager for help if you need support.

I went down the entire Twitter list here on this page in just 2 minutes, tweeting to all.

Yes, you can use your e-mail address (instead of your telephone number).

https://support.twitter.com/articles/100990

Twitter accounts 

@JohnKasich  —   John Kasich, governor

@TeamJohnKasich  —   John Kasich, communication team

@OhioSenateGOP  —  Ohio Senate GOP Caucus

@OhioSenateDems  —  Ohio Senate Dem Caucus

@OHRGOPCaucus  —  Ohio House GOP Caucus

@OHHouseDems  —  Ohio House Dem Caucus

@OhioPoliticsNow  —  Columbus Dispatch, politics

@Enquirer  —  Cincinnati Enquirer

@jpelzer  —  Jeremy Pelzer, Cleveland Plain Dealer

@dskolnick  —  David Skolnick, Youngstown Vindicator

@ohiocapitalblog  —  Marc Kovac

@ThomasSuddes —  Thomas Suddes

@ohioaj  —  Alan Johnson, Columbus Dispatch

@dispatcheditor  — Alan D. Miller, editor at Columbus Dispatch

                                Add your own hometown newspaper.

Call Governor Kasich at 614-466-3555.

https://www.legislature.ohio.gov/legislation/legislation-summary?id=GA131-SB-331   (Read SB 331 here.)

Is your state rep a humane legislator?

Paws and the Law is proud to endorse

these humane legislators …

The single, most important act you can take to curb animal cruelty and neglect is to VOTE SMART!  Vote for HUMANE LEGISLATORS that have a proven, voting record of sponsoring / cosponsoring and voting for good, companion animal bills and voting against bad ones.

Here are the humane legislators, currently serving in the House of Representatives.  The newer representatives are not included since they do not have a significant voting record yet.  Some candidates on your November 8 ballot have no voting records because they have not been elected yet.

Please VOTE SMART for HUMANE LEGISLATORS on November 8.  All 99 House seats and half of the 33 Senate seats will be on the ballot. These are the Columbus decision makers who vote for (or against) our companion animal laws.

Find your state rep and your state senator by filling in BOTH boxes (zip code PLUS four-digit extension) at the link below.

https://www.legislature.ohio.gov/legisl…/find-my-legislators

Candidates running for office have both a web site and a Facebook page.  Why not call them or message them on their web page or on Facebook?  Ask them which companion animal bills they have voted for in the past.  Ask what their position is on an animal cruelty registry, animal fighting, and felony for animal cruelty.

Be sure to share what you have learned with your family and friends before November 8!

Because of our heavily gerrymandered districts in Ohio, the November winners for our Senate and House will be largely determined in March. Yet, that does not mean that we should not try!

Thank you for VOTING SMART!

 Marlene Anielski (R ) 

Nickie J. Antonio (D)

Michael D. Ashford (D) 

John E. Barnes (D) 

Heather Bishoff (D)

Louis Blessing (R) 

Kristin Boggs (D) 

Janine Boyd (D) 

Tim Brown (R )

 Jim Butler (R ) 

Nicholas J. Celebrezze (D) 

 Jack Cera (D) 

Kathleen Clyde (D) 

Margaret Conditt (R )  

Bob Cupp (R ) 

Anthony DeVitis (R ) 

Mike Duffey (R ) 

Tim Ginter (R ) 

Anne Gonzales (R ) 

Doug Green (R ) 

Christina M. Hagan (R ) 

Stephanie Howse (D)

Jim Hughes (R)

Terry A. Johnson (R )

Al Landis (R ) 

Michele Lepore-Hagan (D) 

John Patterson (D) 

Rick Perales (R ) …

Dan Ramos (D) 

Alicia Reece (D) 

Wes Retherford (R ) 

John M. Rogers (D) 

Mark Romanchuk (R ) 

Cliff Rosenberger (R )

Gary K. Scherer (R ) …

Kirk Schuring (R) 

Michael Sheehy (D)

Marilyn Slaby (R)  

Kent Smith (D) 

Ryan Smith (R )

Robert Cole Sprague (R )

Fred Strahorn (D) 

Ron Young (R ) 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is your state senator a humane legislator?

VOTE SMART for your Ohio State Senator in November!

Our companion animal bills languish and die year after year in the Ohio Senate.  In the last seven years only three of our stand-alone bills, HB 14, “No BSL”; SB 177, “Puppy Mills”; and SB 177, “Domestic Violence and Pet Protection Orders”, have been enacted into law. “Nitro’s Law” was folded into the governor’s two-year budget at the end of its five-year journey through the legislature.

The voting record of Senator Keith Faber shows those three votes.  Senator Faber, Senate president, has the authority to get legislative action for our bills.  In the last SEVEN YEARS, he has consistently chosen not to move our bills forward in committees and not to call our bills to the floor for votes.  He now has term limits in the Senate and is running in the House.

Senator Keith Faber (R) (in 8th year of Senate) 

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – no vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote

Please know who your state senator is and his voting record on our bills before you vote in November.  

Each voter can vote for no more than one state rep and one state senator.  

Find your state rep and your state senator at the following link.  Fill in both boxes.  The first box is for your zip code.  The second is for your 4-digit extension.  If you do not know your 4-digit extension, there is a quick link right above the boxes to find it.

If you have done everything correctly, you will see just two names, your state rep and your state senator.  PM me, Beth Sheehan, with those two names.  I’ll give you their contact information.

https://www.legislature.ohio.gov/legislators/find-my-legislators

The voting records of the current legislators, who are Senate candidates, are listed below.  Note that the majority of votes below are from the legislators when they were in the House, not the Senate.  Our stand-alone bills can pass the House.  Our bills were only passed by the Senate three times in the last seven years.

There will also be candidates on your ballot that have no voting record because they have not yet voted at the state level.  

I strongly urge you to contact those Senate candidates in your area.  Ask them how they have voted on animal issues in the past.  Ask them how they would vote on a felony for animal cruelty bill, an animal abuse registry, a bill to bring dogs and cats inside when there is a weather emergency.  Then, share that information with friends and family in your district.

Half of the state Senate seats are up for reelection.  Half are not.  Please check to see if your state senator’s seat is on your ballot. 

Additionally, all ninety-nine House seats will be voted on.  Each voter votes for one state senator and one state representative.  We vote for them.  They vote for our bills. 

I have not only included the legislators’ votes, but also when they sponsor / cosponsor our bills.  

So, why do so many senators have no sponsor / cosponsor of our companion animal bills?  If they sponsor / cosponsor bills, it indicates that they would vote yes.  

This is why we need you to VOTE SMART on March 15!

 1.  Randy Gardner (R) (I) (was in House earlier; is now 4th year in Senate)  – District 2

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – no vote

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Cockfighting – yes vote

HB 14 – No BSL – sponsor, yes vote

HB 25 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Nitro’s Law – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – cosponsor, yes vote (his only YES VOTE as a senator; he did not cosponsor any other bills as a senator)

2.  Bill Coley (R) (I) (was in House earlier;  is now 4th year in Senate) – District 4 – (He voted twice against our bills: “Nitro’s Law” and Cock Fighting.)

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – no vote

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Cockfighting – no vote

HB 14 – no BSL – sponsor, yes vote

SB 130 SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – cosponsor, yes vote (his only YES VOTE as a senator; he did not cosponsor any other bills as a senator)

3.  Peggy Lehner (R) (I) (was in House earlier; is now 4th year in Senate) – District 6

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – no vote

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Cockfighting – yes vote

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – cosponsor, yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote (her only YES VOTE as a senator; she did not cosponsor any other bills as a senator)

4.  Lou Terhar (R) (is in House; has never been in Senate) – District 8

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

HB 274 – Felony for Animal Cruelty – yes vote

HB 310 – PTSD Merits Service Animal – cosponsor

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote

HB 215 – Cock Fighting – no vote

5.  Robert Hackett (R) (was in House; has never been in Senate) – District 10 – HUMANE LEGISLATOR

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – yes vote

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Cockfighting – sponsor, yes vote

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

HB 25 – PPO – sponsor, yes vote

HB 108 – Nitro’s Law – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

HB 57 – Humane Officer Training – cosponsor, yes vote

HB 274 – Felony for Animal Cruelty – cosponsor, yes vote

HB 310 – PTSD Merits Service Dog – cosponsor

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote

6.   John Adams (R) (was in House; has never been in Senate) – District 12  (He voted EIGHT TIMES against our bills: “Nitro’s Law”, Cock Fighting, No BSL, PPO, “Nitro’s Law”, Puppy Mills, Humane Officer Training, & Felony for Animal Cruelty.)

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – no vote

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Cockfighting – no vote

HB 14 – No BSL – no vote

HB 25 – PPO – no vote

HB 108 – Nitro’s Law – no vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – no vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – no vote

HB 57 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

HB 274 – Felony for Animal Cruelty – no vote

HB 310 – PTSD Merits Service Dog – cosponsor

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote

7.  Matt Huffman (R) (was in House; has never been in Senate) – District 12  (He voted against our bills three times: “Nitro’s Law”, Humane Officer Training, and Cock Fighting.)

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote 

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – no vote

HB 108 – Cockfighting – no vote

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

HB 25 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Nitro’s Law – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – no vote

HB 57 – Humane Officer Training – cosponsor, yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote

8.  Bob Peterson (R)

“A final committee vote (on the “Pet Store Animal Sales” amendment) was postponed until next week. Sen. Bob Peterson (R., Sabina), the committee’s chairman and prime force behind the amendment, said he is working on language he hopes will address some of the concerns raised.”

“The bill would have to return to the House for approval of the Senate changes. House Speaker Cliff Rosenberger (R., Clarksville) said he would prefer to remove the amendment and have the issue considered on its own as a separate bill.”

“’Why would we want to stop cities like Toledo and Grove City from offering consumers and retail pets even more protection?’ asked Lori Seubert, a former Toledo teacher and animal rights advocate. ‘Well, I say it’s because this bill is not about animal welfare and consumer protection at all. It’s about Petland’s plan to expand into the four corners of Ohio by selling puppies that are bred in volume in horrible conditions.’”

“Toledo City Council on Tuesday passed a resolution in defense of its ordinance.”

The bill amendment was requested by Petland, a global pet retail chain that has a store in Grove City but not in Toledo. The chain’s headquarters are in Chillicothe in Senator Peterson’s district.”

http://www.toledoblade.com/Politics/2016/05/12/Tempers-fly-over-nbsp-puppy-mill-bill.html

“The amendment (to REVERSE the ordinances in Grove City and Toledo that require pet stores to sell animals from shelters and to STOP other Ohio cities from passing a ban on selling mill animals) was added to House Bill 166 (an unrelated tax cleanup bill) by the committee’s chairman, Sen. Bob Peterson (R., Sabina).”
 http://www.toledoblade.com/Politics/2016/05/07/State-bill-would-negate-Toledo-s-puppy-mill-law.html#EUjWQ04Gw3yObo4P.99 

Sen. Bob Peterson, R-Sabina, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, declined comment. He represents Chillicothe, where Petland is headquartered, and said he expects a vote on the bill next week.”

http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/local/2016/05/11/pet-store-regulations-causing-quite-the-debate-at-the-statehouse.html

Sponsor of SB 331, “Dog Sales in Pet Stores”

8.  Joe Uecker (R) (I) (was in House earlier; is now 4th year in Senate) – District 14  (He voted against our bills three times: “Nitro’s Law”, Cock Fighting, and “Nitro’s Law”.)

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – no vote

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Cock Fighting – no vote

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

HB 25 – PPO – sponsor, yes vote

HB 108 – Nitro’s Law – no vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote (his only YES VOTE as a senator; he did not cosponsor any other bills as a senator)

9.  Stephanie Kunze (R) (was in House; has never been in Senate) – District 16

HB 274 – Felony for Animal Cruelty – yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote

10.  John Eklund (R) (I) (4th year in Senate) – District 18

 HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

 SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

 SB 177 – DV & PPO – cosponsor, yes vote (his only YES VOTE as a senator; he did not cosponsor any other bills as a senator)

11.  Troy Balderson (R) (I) (was in House earlier; is now 4th year in Senate) – District 20  (He voted against our bills twice: “Nitro’s Law” and Cock Fighting.)

HB 70 – “Nitro’s Law” – no vote

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Cockfighting – no vote

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

HB 25 – PPO – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote  (his only YES VOTE as a senator; he did not cosponsor any other bills as a senator)

12.  Larry Obhof – (R) (I) (is now 4th year in Senate) – District 22

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – cosponsor, yes vote (his only YES VOTE as a senator; he did not cosponsor any other bills as a senator)

13.  Nan Baker – (R) (was in House; has never been in Senate) – District 24

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – yes vote

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Cockfighting – yes vote

HB 14 – No BSL – no vote

HB 108 – Nitro’s Law – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

HB 274 – Felony for Animal Abuse – cosponsor

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote

14.  Mike Dovilla – (R) (was in House; has never been in Senate) – District 24 – HUMANE LEGISLATOR

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

HB 25 – PPO – sponsor, yes vote

HB 108 – Nitro’s Law – yes vote

SB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

HB 274 – Felony for Animal Cruelty – cosponsor, yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote

HB 215 – Cock Fighting – yes vote

15.   Dave Burke (R) (I) (was in House earlier; is now 4th year in Senate) – District 26  (He voted no twice on our bills: “Nitro’s Law” and Cock Fighting.)

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – no vote

HB 55 – PPO – yes vote

HB 108 – Cock Fighting – no vote

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

HB 25 – PPO – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – cosponsor, yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – cosponsor, yes vote (his only YES VOTE as a senator; he did not cosponsor any other bills as a senator)

16.  Vernon Sykes (D) (was in House; has never been in Senate) – District 28  (He voted no twice on our bills: No BSL and PPO.)

HB 70 – Nitro’s Law – yes vote

HB 108 – Cockfighting – yes vote

HB 14 – No BSL – no vote

HB 25 – PPO – no vote

HB 108 – Nitro’s Law – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

HB 57 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

HB 274 – Felony for Animal Cruelty – yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – yes vote

17.  Lou Gentile – (D) (I) (was in House earlier; is now 4th year in Senate) – District 30 – HUMANE LEGISLATOR

HB 14 – No BSL – yes vote

HB 25 – PPO – yes vote

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – cosponsor, yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

SB 177 – DV & PPO – cosponsor, yes vote  (his only YES VOTE as a senator)

18.  Sean O’Brien – (D) (was in the House; has never been in Senate) – District 32 – HUMANE LEGISLATOR

SB 130 – Puppy Mills – yes vote

HB 138 – Humane Officer Training – yes vote

HB 57 – Humane Officer Training – cosponsor, yes vote

HB 274 – Felony for Animal Cruelty – cosponsor, yes vote

HB 310 – PTSD Merits Service Dog – cosponsor

Breed Discriminatory Legislation Targets the Wrong End of the Leash!

Breed Discriminatory Legislation (BDL)  targets the wrong end of the leash!   Often BDL is quickly enacted in a response to a horrendous, high profile, dog attack.  In a rush to to make communities feel safe from vicious, sometimes fatal, dog attacks, many animal ordinances have targeted specific breeds (pit bulls, Rottweilers, Doberman pinschers)  as the problem. A designation of “dangerous” or “vicious” has serious, legal consequences on both the dog and his owners.  Owners of these breeds have a long, costly checklist to follow if they want to keep their animals.

BDL does not make all dog owners responsible.   It puts undue obligations and financial burdens only on dog owners of specific breeds. Yet, all dog owners must bear the responsibility of training, leashing, and confining their dogs.

BDL does not reduce dog bites. It has proven to be ineffective both in this country and in Europe.  Spain, Italy, Great Britain, and the Netherlands all reported that after years of living with BSL, there were neither reduced dog bites nor improved community safety.

It is costly to enforce BDL.  Shelter costs may rise as owners, unable to comply with the legal and the financial obligations of having a “dangerous dog”, abandon their pets at the shelter.  Additionally, adoptable dogs of targeted breeds would not be able to be adopted out.  They would be euthanized.   Prince George, Maryland attests to spending hundreds of thousands of dollars each year for fifteen years to enforce BDL.  They report no increase to safety during that time.  

In 2012 The Toledo Blade paid for DNA testing on six dogs, declared pit bulls by the county dog warden.  Test results showed that three of the six dogs were not pit bulls at all.  Two dogs contained a small percent of the breeds.  The sixth dog had more than half of the pit bull breeds.  How many dogs were needlessly euthanized because of their blocky heads, short fur, and stocky bodies?

The BDL may not stand up to legal challenges.  The ASPCA says that, when asked to identify the breeds of stray, mixed breed dogs, professionals (dog wardens, shelter staff) are correct less than 25% of the time when compared with DNA testing on the same dogs.  Knowing that, pet owners now can simply pay for a DNA test to challenge an incorrect identification of the breed of their dog.  BDL may also involve taking of property without due process.

There are inconsistencies between federal and local law. The Department of Justice allows ALL BREEDS to be used as service dogs.  How can a local jurisdiction, that supports BSL, be in conflict with a federal law, which is “breed neutral”? Many dogs listed on “the forbidden” list, including American Staffordshire Terriers, Rottweilers, and German Shepherds,  are also used as therapy dogs, search and rescue dogs, police / military working dogs, and service dogs for the disabled.

On the other hand, many well-respected, national organizations support “breed neutral” legislation: The White House, The American Bar Association (ABA),The Center for Disease Control (CDC), The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA),  The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), and a host more. 

A study published by the Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances (2009) found that the owner’s behavior has a direct impact on the dog’s personality and behavior.  The time that the owner spends caring for and training a dog is inversely related to the dog’s aggression.

Ohio is one of 20 states that have banned BDL. BDL is costly.  Its restrictions are difficult to enforce.  No one is any safer because he lives in a BDL jurisdiction. Good dogs can be taken away from loving homes simply because of the shape of their heads.  Some families, deeply upset by BDL, move away from the BDL jurisdiction and into an area that allows blocky-headed dogs.  Other families live in fear that, one day, there will be an unexpected knock on the door and their animals, that have done nothing wrong, will be seized.

Ohio, let’s support reasonable, research-based, “breed neutral” legislation that will put the responsibility for the dog’s behavior on the dog owners  and safeguard our communities against vicious, dog attacks.