Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Ban on Dogs or Owners

I don't usually write about "hot topics" but this one is a hot button for me.

There was this article about Texas Attorney General being asked his opinion on banning certain breeds of dogs. Very interesting, yet hot topic.

I don't know if I agree or disagree. But let me talk you through some of my thoughts on it.

I am a dog owner. I am not the best nor worst dog owner. I know what to do in theory with him but I don't always follow through as much as I should. One thing that I made sure I did was socialize him as a puppy but since I haven't been able to get him neutered yet (after the first of the year! snip, snip, baby) I haven't done as much socializing as he needs.

So I do try to be a responsible pet owner of a very powerful, strong and smart dog. He is a mix of two of the breeds on this list for home insurance and dog breeds that might raise your insurance rate or you may even get denied. (I was honestly surprised to see Husky because all of them that I have known are big teddy bears but they are strong dogs and in the wrong hands....I guess)

I knew this getting him so I had to take a firm hand (okay somewhat) from the beginning (he was sooo darn cute in the beginning).... He is still really cute and it is hard sometimes to follow through with disciplining him. I also try not to really play with him too much, like rough play (I will throw a ball or toy) but I don't want him to see me as an equal but as the alpha. I need to control the food and boundaries, etc. He can not win "games" with me. I have to win or I don't play.

So anyway, I would hate for my dog "breed" to be banned and I know many pit bull owners would be upset by it too.

However, I think that many of them would agree with me that in the wrong hands and with the crossed and bad bloodlines out there, they can be very dangerous. That isn't to say they all are, just that they can be.... They are smart, strong, powerful dogs. Then again, any dog can be bad in the wrong hands, over bred and after being abused.

So who do you "ban" the dog or the owner or maybe even a little of both? I think if they make it harder to get the dogs, it would help a bit but just like illegal drugs, people will find a way and I think that the dogs might even be treated worse, making them meaner. *shutter*

I thought talking it out would help me be on one side of the fence or the other. I am still clearly on the fence about this. I don't think there is a clear right or wrong answer on this issue because I see how these breeds can be (not just pits but all the "dangerous" dogs). However, how do you control the "bad" ones.... the owners and the mean dogs they created? I just don't think banning is the right answer.....

What do you think? What do you think of the list of dangerous dogs?


trappedintime said...

I understand the list, those are very loyal protective dogs on the list. So, it makes sense why they would nip and bite people on a regular basis to make the list. I don't understand the ban laws. The owner is ultimately responsible. There are exceptions where a dog mysteriously gets out and bites someone, however I think it more comes down to owner irresposibility. I also do not blame a dog (legaly blame) when it bites while on or in it's property. A dog is an animal, whether real or play, it is defending it's territory. Again, there are always situations, but for the most part, if you're scared of dogs, tell the owner or don't go to their house. As for the idiots that regularly let their dogs out ("becuase they are animals), those people should be fined. If you maintain that mentality (they are just animals) then why do you "own" one?
I am scared of pit bulls that I see loose. I do avoid them. I think my fear comes more from news sensationalism than real experience. The owners of pitbulls I've met say they are the greatest dogs.
In conclusion, everyone needs to step up to the plate and take responsibility for their own actions.
(step down, bow, exit left)

m (the misanthrope) said...

Ok, you need to stop writing all these thought-provoking posts! I'm writing more in your comments section than I am on my own blog :-)

Kidding of course, but it seems that you and I ponder a lot of the same things. I do have a lot of thoughts along these lines - don't have time at the moment to put them into coherence but I will leave a longer, less lame comment later!

m (the misanthrope) said...

OK, I have a little bit more time now. I am also on the fence about this issue.

I am not a dog owner, but I hope to be someday. However, I truly believe that with very few exceptions, most domestic animals (i.e. dogs, cats, birds etc.) are only mean or aggressive because people made them that way. I have seen so many cases where an animal was ignored, neglected or abused, and the so-called owner gave them up (to a shelter or just kicked them out of the house) because "the dog/cat/bird is mean". Well, you'd be mean too if you were ignored or mistreated, wouldn't you?

From what I have read about pit bulls and other such breeds, they are intensely loyal dogs with a strong desire to please their master. Thus, they will do whatever earns their master's approval. There are some people (who are beneath contempt in my book) who decide to pervert and exploit that otherwise admirable trait for their own ugly purposes.

So...in my (draconian) world, people would be required to have a license to own a domestic animal. Similar to the driver's license - they would need to demonstrate knowledge of and an intent to responsibly handle the animal before getting their license. But I know that in reality, that would never work.

Trapped in Time made an excellent point - if you do not take responsibility for your animal, why do you own one at all?

Thanks for the thought-provoking post my friend!

Anonymous said...

PS. After writing my comment, I felt inspired to write on the same topic on my own blog. Thanks for the inspiration! It's not the first time and won't be the last :-)

trappedintime said...

there are pleanty of lisense and leash laws, but the reality of enforcing them is not there. Take Chickens for example, they are illegal in the city limits, but to get one removed is next to impossible, unless it's time to make tamales.

TxGambit said...

Good discussion!

Yum... tamales....