Taylor, MI: Resident asks council to consider BSL

According to the article below, a resident of Taylor, Michigan has requested the city consider regulating the ownership of “pit bulls.” It is unclear whether a formal proposal has been introduced. The June 5 council meeting agenda does not indicate the topic was discussed by council, however the “open business” category does not list specific matters. In addition, the minutes for that meeting are not yet posted.

One thing that is very clear, however, is the media is fueling the flames of the issue, and residents need to reach out to city officials and voice their concerns regarding breed specific legislation. Please send your polite, respectful and informative opposition to any proposed breed specific ordinance to the Taylor officials. The link for council agendas is included below, and there is a link to watch council meetings on the city website, as well.

City of Taylor, MI
23555 Goddard Road
Taylor, Michigan 48180
(734) 374-1474
Fax: (734) 374-1343

Online contact form for the city: http://www.cityoftaylor.com/contact

City Council:

Online contact form for Mayor Jeffrey Lamarand: http://www.cityoftaylor.com/contact/mayor%27s%20office

City Council agendas:http://www.cityoftaylor.com/city-council-agendas/2012-agendas

TAYLOR: Pit bull attack sparks debate over safety of the breed

Friday, June 8, 2012
By David Komer
Twitter: @DavidKomer_NH

TAYLOR — A recent pit bull attack that killed a resident’s dog has sparked passionate debate from both sides.

On May 29, a pit bull nudged open an unlatched fence and mauled Elizabeth Smith’s dachshund as it was out for a walk. The daschund was taken to an emergency veterinary clinic, where it was euthanized because its wounds were so serious.

The pit bull was taken by police and is being held at the city’s animal shelter for 10 days before it is expected to be euthanized.

Smith has since requested toughening city ordinances, such as requiring registration or muzzles for specific breeds like pit bulls.

Some cities, like Allen Park, have banned the breed.

Dr. Kerry McKinney, a veterinarian, said dogs should be licensed as a way to make sure they have their rabies vaccinations.

“That’s a public health issue,” she said.

McKinney said she is comfortable with the idea of euthanizing dogs that have a history of unprovoked attacks.

Taylor resident Mark Gersky said he has been an advocate for banning the breed after his 3-year-old nephew was killed by a pit bull in Detroit.

Gersky said his brother, Kevin, an Allen Park police officer, shot and killed a pit bull during an attack on a man when they were unable to pull it off him.

“People need to know they are bred for one thing,” Gersky said. “(Killing) is in their blood.”

Taylor resident Thomas Jenkins owns two pit bulls and said that any dog can be mean — it just depends on how it is raised.

“The worst offenders are kids teasing any animals, throwing rocks, taking sticks, poking at them,” he said. “I had to put a privacy fence up to keep my dogs safe.

“They still egg my dogs on and throw things in my yard.”

When it comes to legislation, McKinney said there is a gray area when it comes to being provoked, and that many laws don’t prevent incidents, but do allow for restitution and punishment.

Online, two posts on The News-Herald Newspapers’ Facebook page netted 86 comments as of Friday, with emotions running high on both sides of the argument.

Reader Liv Preston wrote: “I’ve always hated the false accusation of all pit bulls being aggressive or violent. I owned a pit bull, and he was loving and shy.”

Preston also wrote that she was mauled once by a golden retriever.

Reader Stephanie Monroe is a pit bull owner who is skeptical about attack report statistics.

“Know about a breed before owning one,” she wrote. “Don’t judge a dog if you know nothing about them. Someone that was close to me was attacked by a Labrador, which is supposedly the nicest dog you can get.”

Reader James Garrison II wrote that the bad reputation of pit bulls is not by accident.

“How many people and animals are going to be attacked before people admit how dangerous these dogs are?” he wrote.

Taylor reader Jess Crawford said he had his own close call with a pit bull last year.

“ I had one run out a door at me and my dog on Sloan (Street),” he wrote.

Reader Ronald Wakefield believes the owners are the ones who need to be punished.

“Hold the owners accountable for what their dogs do as if they committed the act themselves,” he wrote.

Monroe wrote that dogs still are man’s best friend, and that comes with a responsibility.

“The way a dog acts is a direct reflection of the owner,” she wrote. “Each and every dog is an animal that has a chance of being dangerous unless it’s trained right.”

Contact Staff Writer David Komer at 1-734-246-0866 or dkomer@heritage.com. Follow him on Facebook and @DavidKomer_NH on Twitter.



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