Aurora, CO: Public Safety Committee moves repeal of pit bull ban forward

We learned back in November that Aurora City Councilwoman Renie Peterson planned to bring the issue of repealing the city’s pit bull ban back before the council this year. Peterson pushed for repeal in 2011, but the measure didn’t get enough votes to pass council. However, she feels she may have enough support from the council to repeal the ban now.

At a meeting of the Public Safety Committee on Tuesday, February 4, Peterson presented her proposal, and the committee moved to send the measure to the full council for consideration at a meeting early next month.

The city’s Animal Care division has come out against lifting the ban, arguing it has worked well.

We disagree.

The city is required to track data regarding the ban, including the number of pit bulls killed and the number impounded.  Since the ban took effect in early 2006, 1,158 dogs from the “restricted breeds” have been destroyed in Aurora.

While the number of restricted breed citations has dropped, an obvious effect of regulating a grouping of dogs out of existence in a particular area, city records show that the number of reported dog bites in Aurora has remained the same for about 10 years, about 200 per year.

The primary purpose of any animal control ordinance is to secure and maintain the safety of the community. The numbers collected by the city reflect the ordinance has failed in this regard. In fact, it supports the argument that breed specific legislation is an ineffective means of maintaining the safety and welfare of the entire community – people and animals alike.

Repealing the pit bull ban in Aurora would be a huge victory for responsible dog owners and the city as a whole, as well as the fight against breed discrimination. 

AURORA RESIDENTS:  Please reach out to your city council at citycouncil@auroragov.org and simply let them know you support repealing the ban on pit bulls and encourage them to move forward on Councilwoman Peterson’s measure to create a safer and more humane Aurora.

In addition, I would encourage you to follow the organization, ColoRADogs, as members are working closely with Aurora officials and are keeping everyone updated on the progress of the proposal to repeal the city’s ban on pit bulls.

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