Michigan: HB 4714 would ban “pit bulls” statewide

Update 6/9/11: The chair of the Regulatory Reform committee has stated that he does not intend to schedule this bill for a hearing—at least, not in the summer session. This is a good sign, because bills without committee support tend to die. However, we do not consider the bill to be “dead” at this time, because it is still possible for the bill to advance. Michigan residents, this is a good opportunity to “meet and greet” your legislators, educate them, and put a human (and canine) face on this issue, so that they will remember you favorably if and when it comes to a vote.

Representative Timothy Bledsoe has introduced HB 4714, which would ban “pit bulls” statewide.

Contact bill author Rep. Timothy Bledsoe:
Office Address: S585 House Office Building
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 30014, Lansing, MI 48909-7514
Phone: (517) 373-0154
Toll-Free:(888) 254-5291
Fax: (517) 373-6094
Webpage with contact form: http://001.housedems.com/

HB 1474 defines “pit bull” as American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and any other dog that looks like one of these. The first year after the legislation is enacted, it will be illegal to breed or sell “pit bulls” in Michigan. The fourth year after enactment, all “pit bulls” in the state must be neutered. The tenth year after enactment, it will be illegal to possess a “pit bull” in the state.

Read the bill here: http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2011-2012/billintroduced/House/htm/2011-HIB-4714.htm

The bill has been sent to the Regulatory Reform committee. Contact the members of the Regulatory Reform committee and ask them to oppose HB 4714.

Angie Lake, Committee Clerk, 517-373-5795, alake@house.mi.gov
Regulatory Reform Committee Members:
HughCrawford@house.mi.gov; KenYonker@house.mi.gov; paulopsommer@house.mi.gov; KevinDaley@house.mi.gov; TomMcMillin@house.mi.gov; JimStamas@house.mi.gov; MikeShirkey@house.mi.gov; RayFranz@house.mi.gov; EdMcBroom@house.mi.gov; BruceRendon@house.mi.gov; timmelton@house.mi.gov; haroldhaugh@house.mi.gov; barbbyrum@house.mi.gov; dianslavens@house.mi.gov; jimmywomack@house.mi.gov

HB 4714 is not yet scheduled for a committee hearing.

Tracking page for HB 4714:  http://www.legislature.mi.gov/(S(44ghvauhqqnqzc55ztl2iz2p))/mileg.aspx?page=getObject&objectName=2011-HB-4714

Thanks to Jen for the heads up.

45 responses to “Michigan: HB 4714 would ban “pit bulls” statewide

  1. This is an outrage!!! It’s discrimination against a breed instead of punishing the deed or the owner. How would you like it if you or your family member were discriminated against because of your/their overall look? It’s a disgrace! I would do anything for my dog, including standing up for his rights!!! Think about what you are doing. I challenge you to meet my dog, hang out, play, and have fun! I guarantee you your opinion of pit bulls would change forever. The loyalty and sincerety a pit bull brings to your life is inevitable. You’d be amazed!!!

  2. I think these laws are absurd! For one thing your banning the breed pit bull. Obviously these law makers should do some research due to the fact there isn’t a breed called a pit bull. Who are these people telling me what breed of dogs I am allowed to have?? It’s called racial profiling! We are taught to not judge people by their race so you shouldn’t be judging a dog by it’s breed! The part about in 10 years it will be illegal to own a pit bull what happens if a person had their dog before this law was passed in 10 years there is a good chance the dog would still be alive what are you going to do make them euthanize them? Get real!

  3. valerie cote

    This is America, punish the people that cause the problems, not the dogs that ae the victoms

  4. jessika eden

    As a responsible pit bull owner, I am highly saddened by this attempt at legislature. Our constitution demands that we be given the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. My pit bull is my baby girl and my son’s best friend. She sleeps in his bed, underneath his arm. She plays fetch with him and watches over him when he is sick. She is the most loyal, well behaved dog I have ever owned. My pit bull and my right to own her are protected under my right to the pursuit of happiness. My dog has never harmed a living soul and I refuse to sell her off or put her down early if she’s still alive in 10 years when it becomes illegal to own a pit bull. If the government is concerned about the threat these dogs may pose, then maybe they should clean up their own mess. If dogs were licensed and registered as they are supposed to be, there would be less risk. People are always going to find a way to go around an unjust law. It seems to me that this is an outright violation of our freedom and should not pass. If it does, I say that I have witnessed the death of democracy and a crack in the illusion of freedom. Shame on you all.

  5. Don’t think it won’t happen. About 10 yrs ago Michigan made it virtually impossible to own wolf/dogs. They did it then and they’ll do it now. Take this bill very seriously. Michigan would like nothing better than to take everything you love away from you. Its why i don’t live in that state anymore.

  6. This reminds me exterminację Jews in 1939. The year is 2011 and some of the same mind. This is sad

  7. I live in Florida where “pitbulls” are already banned in Miami dade county and I think it is absolutely horrible that they are banned in a county. The fact that a bill is trying to be passed to ban them in an entire state kills me. I absolutely love the breed and think there is no better breed to own. They are so loving and loyal. Yes they do have the power to hurt but they do not have the want. Any breed can turn on someone, but because they are pitbulls, they get publicized more because no one wants to hear about a mean yorkie biting your ankles. This is absolutely horrible and if I had the money I would be fully prepared to take this to the supreme court with the argument that the comment above me made. This is against our right as Americans and the American pitbull terrier is the all American dog. It’s not okay to be racist or sexist but it’s okay to ban a dog based solely on it’s breed? A pitbull does not ask to be born a pitbull just like we do not ask to be born black or white but we are going to kill thousands of dogs that just want to love and be loved just because they were born with more power than most other dogs? That is completely not right and it’s ignorant people who want this that make this country go down the drain. Educate yourselves and foster a pitbull for a little, I garauntee your minds will change.

  8. Wow!
    “pit bulls” are given a bad reputation due to the lack of proper training and people who train them to be fighters NOT lovers!! You can train any dog to be mean and vicious. If your a responsible dog owner, then the dog will be trained properly. Regardless of its breed!! Ban the owner not the victim!!
    How about focusing on child neglect, poor safety, poor education due to lack of funding. NOT BANNING “pit bulls” I know several “pit bulls” that are VERY kind, loyal and loving! And I know several NON-Pit Bulls that are VERY mean and hateful!!
    Give me a break legislation.

  9. Nici Kleman

    http://video214.com/play/MUmzOu0OWlbRhLn2UQPbVw/s/dark – Why not do something like this rather than try to ban thousands of best friends, children, family members, & loyal companions… This is simply ridiculous!!

  10. This is so sad and wrong. It seems that there is a serious case of ignorance fanning the flames here. The breed itself is not responsible for the reputation it’s gotten – people are. I sincerely hope that public outcry opposing this proposed legislation will be enough to stop this!

  11. I can not believe that this happens in civilized societies. Witch hunt, which is not. Europe is going the other way, the hunt is over. It is a pity to shoot for goal, which does not exist

  12. This bill is just a way for them to take the easy way out. “Oh, lets just ban the breed and then we wont have any more dog fighting!” Riiiiiight…. If this comes to pass the dog fighters out there will not stop when the breed is banned. They will find another breed of dog and use them to get their fighting fix and to make the money that they can’t make by working a real job. It will never stop, dont these people see that? It will happen, mark my words!

  13. This is complete and utter BS. Are they really THAT stupid they think pit bulls are a problem? Obviously. If any of them had an IQ over 80 they’d know its THE PEOPLE that are the problem, not the dog.

  14. I agree with every post thus far. I am also a responsible pit bull owner and plan to have many more in my lifetime as I have fallen in love with this breed. I think legislation needs to pull their heads out of their a**es an focus on the real problems plaguing the state, banning PIT BULLS should not be their focus. People who raise these dogs to be mean and nasty are the only problem they should be worrying about; I have never met a human aggressive pit bull and any pit bull who is outwardly aggressive toward other dogs or animals has likely been taught to be like that or never been properly socialized and taught to behave appropriately. All of the above land on the shoulders of the owner and if you can’t handle the effort it takes to exercise and work with this dogs to make them good canine citizens you should leave owning them to those of us who do…and quit causing problems for the rest of us. This bill is absolute BS and I truly believe that the government is going to have a much larger problem on their hands if they pass this bill then they ever thought of having currently. Banning the breed is NOT the answer and if we had anyone in legislation with an IQ greater than a rock or who knew anything about dogs they would know that every single dog breed as had its share of “problems” but if they are cute little Jack Russell or Maltese they would NEVER bite anyone, well again BS!!!! Small dogs are more prone to do so, if any of these jacka**es did their homework or knew what they were doing might have shot this bill down from the beginning. Passing this bill is going to cause a lot of animosity amongst dog lovers in this state and I for one plan on owning pit bulls til I did, since I am only 24 that’s gonna be awhile; whether its illegal or not. I say GOOD LUCK to the Michigan government after they try and pass this…

  15. what is this 1940? come on, lets deal with this with a current (2011) solution. BSL does not work! come up with something new!!

  16. Sheena Andrew (PITBULL Owner)


  17. Sarah Bewley

    What is tragic is that it is not the breed, but both the lack of positive training (idiots such as the “Dog Whisperer” telling people to dominate their animals) and owners who bolster their egos (and to make up for their shortcomings) who give these animals a bad reputation.

    American Pit Bulls, and other similar breeds can be loving, obedient, and gentle animals when bred and raised properly.

    Strengthen the laws against animal abuse, make positive training available, and control bad breeders. That will make a difference. Outlawing a breed will simply cause bad owners and trainers to find a new breed to turn into a bad dog.

  18. Sheena Andrew ( Proud PITBULL Owner)

    Please do not take our dogs away from us. We are responsible owners and love them so very much. And they mean the world to my kids, which would be so devastated and heartbroken if they knew their pets were murdered. And yes they would know the truth and I wouldn’t be the one to explain it to them. We love our pit bulls very dearly, we have them spayed and neutered and keep them in proper contaminant when we have to go somewhere that they can’t come with us. They are very well fed, infact when we run out of dog food before pay day we cook them a home maid meal. They have all shots and get reg vet care. And they are licensed. Again we are very responsible pit bull owners and we love them so very much. So the Burd family asks PLEASE do not go through with this bill and don’t take our family pets away from us! Thank you for your time.

  19. It is so dumb that they are banning these dogs. I am going to something about it. But if they want to ban pits then why dont they ban rots, german shepards, bullmastiffs, dobermans. They have a bad rep to so why not ban them too. You are taking away a dog that so many people love and what are the parents supposed to say to their kid when they ask why THEIR dog is gone. So help the pits and do something about it.. and remeber they can’t talk so do it for them!!

  20. Where are our rights as Americans! I have a pit and three small dogs. I have more problems with my little dogs then I ever had with any of the pits I have owned. What does the Michigan government think there doing!!!! I would never get rid of a family member including my 14 year old pit, which has been the best dog I have ever had around my children. It is how and what you teach your dog not the breed that is the problem!

  21. This is absolutely ridiculous! We cannot blame an entire breed of dogs for a few incidents that have happened, blame the incompetent owners for not taking care of their dog properly! I have worked with dogs for several years and I witnessed a golden retriever attack a pit bull for no reason, what did the pit bull do? She rolled over on her back and took the attack until I could get the golden retriver off of her. Pit bulls have good hearts and are well natured dogs, and banning them from the state would be a travesty!

  22. although i am not an ower of a pit bull at this time, and i do not live in MI, i was born and raised there. i have known several families in my lifetime that have owned and raised good well behaved pits. the few who use them for their own personal gain should be held responsible. they can be very loyal and loving animals if properly cared for. any animal has the potential to hard another animal or human. does that mean we should outlaw all animals as pets? if people are allowed to own jungle animals then we should be allowed to own any animal. i know more children who have been bit by small dogs than pit bulls. myself included. i read in a post about the government making sure animals are licensed, i agree this should be done, and proper vet heatlth should also be a priority of all animal owners. for those of us who truely love our animals as children this is not an issue. there are few who ruin it for many. i hope for all of those who remain in MI that you beloved babies remain in your care and this bill does not pass!!!

  23. Chris Kolenda

    It has been proved over and over In other states, Ohio for one, that even the authorities do NOT know the breed of most dogs they choose to lump under these bans. They are going for a profile and that profile could encompass many breeds and/or mixes. Look in your shelters, a beagle mix can look like a Pit bull and for liability issues can even be listed as a pit bull.We have to have laws on training and liciensing not on profiling a “type”. I own one of those purebred types, boxers, live next door to a real pitbull who is a sweet heart with a responsible owner. and I trust with my life. I have no trust in the authorities or the general public to be able to tell the difference. Pitbull owners fight with your votes, Bledsloe should be out of office if this passes. I will fight and vote for you and all dog owners. They will go after anything if this passes. We talk for these animals and the abuse that is coming.
    Concerned in Michigan

  24. We should seek ban on people who do bad things this wonderful pieskom.


  25. I just sent this “person’ a personal comment on his website.
    I own a 3 yr old Pit bull and he is a wonderful, kind, and loving animal. I am a firm believer that it is clearly….. all in how they are raised.
    How could someone be so stupid to think they could hold a breed of dog responsible in such a manner. Tim Bledsoe’s ignorance is flashing on his forehead!!
    This would be comparable to any one person of any one background being convicted of murder and then saying….”lets ban all _____ from the state of MI”
    This HB needs to be stopped in it’s tracks RIGHT NOW!!

  26. I have two pit bull dogs and will NEVER destroy my famliy for the sake of governmental laws…do men who rape children get castration…there are more sexual preditors then bully attacks…I will form petitions in my area (all lake shore towns, southwestern Mi) to stop this bill form passing. There are no “bad dogs” there are bad breeding/owners. My dogs are well maintained, up to date on all vacc’s and I am a law abiding citizen, we have never had one incident in the life of my dogs and they are both 7 years old, well socialized playful animals…every animal has the capability of bitting and unfortunately bully are known to finish the fight and that is what is remembered, that and the power behind that bite. Pit’s are actually know as the original nanny dog, that is fact, they are great with children and protective over them.
    THE LAND OF THE FREE, WHO EVER TELLS YOU THAT IS YOUR ENEMY…Timothy Bledsoe, your thoughts are unjust and unconstitutional and I for one will fight you to the end on this one!!

  27. Do you honestly not realize how many people own pits? I would move out of state just to keep mine.. this is ridiculus!!!!! You can train any dog to be mean and to fight. My pit would lick someone head to toe instead of being violent! If michigan serioiusly wants to loose residents just over the breed of dog we own then srew them. There is no reason pits cant stay! If your going to say no to pits might as well not be able to own any other pet in the state of michigan either!!!

  28. This is outrageous not all pit bulls are bad it is irresponsible pet owners that do not know how to raise an animal of any breed. Pit bulls who are aggressive have been mistreated to trained to be aggressive they are not born that way. My pit bull is a big baby and when I walk her I never worry about her behavior but other dogs and humans behavior. I have had to take her away from areas where other breeds were being the aggessor. And I worry about human behavior because all pit bulls have been given a bad reputation because of people training their dogs to be mean.

  29. stopbslcom

    Update 6/9/11: The chair of the Regulatory Reform committee has stated that he does not intend to schedule this bill for a hearing—at least, not in the summer session. This is a good sign, because bills without committee support tend to die. However, we do not consider the bill to be “dead” at this time, because it is still possible for the bill to advance. Michigan residents, this is a good opportunity to “meet and greet” your legislators, educate them, and put a human (and canine) face on this issue, so that they will remember you favorably if and when it comes to a vote.

  30. Tracy Reynolds

    I am a mother of two and have a one year old pitbull and cannot believe this nonsense!! Really? With all the things that need to be dealt with in Michigan and this idiot wants to take the time to come up with a Bill for a breed of dogs to be banned statewide?? lmao, in disgust that this person was ever given their position. My mother (grandmother of 9 children), who “coincidently” works for the state used to have the negative view on pitbulls as well. When I first got my dog she wouldnt even come outside ( he was 6weeks old). She didnt want to get attatched and said he was NEVER allowed to come to her home. Myself being the kind of daughter that never really listened well… just kept taking him there anyway and when she seen how well her dog (choc lab) and my pitbull got along she started to slowly acknowledge him. Today, she will say how great of a dog he is and admit he listens better than her own dog. She absolutley loves him and I witnessed her not flip out and actually pet another pitbull that had came up to her from a neighbor of hers…that never would have happened before Marley (pitull) showed her she was wrong. These people are just like she is and they need to WAKE THE HELL UP too!

    *defines genocide as “any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: killing members of the group; causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life, calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; [and] forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.”[3]
    The preamble to the CPPCG states that instances of genocide have taken place throughout history,[3] but it was not until Raphael Lemkin coined the term and the prosecution of perpetrators of the Holocaust at the Nuremberg trials that the United Nations agreed to the CPPCG which defined the crime of genocide under international law.
    I say, Rep Bledsoe “AKA Pitbulls Hilter”… WAKE UP SIR AND DO SOMETHING

  31. Tracy Reynolds


  32. Don’t you people have something else to do rather than dictate what kind of pets we can own. Its not the breed its the idiots that don’t train them properly. As any kind of pet they need to be trained. Perhaps you should focus on Michigans economy like saving peoples jobs and oh, maybe trying to create some and trying to save people from loosing their homes gosh that sounds like a good project!!!!!

  33. Pitbulls are no more dangerous than ANY dog breed. They’re sweet, friendly, playful dogs who get a bad reputation because of cruel owners who train them for fighting. It’s because of the fear put into these dogs that makes them ‘mean’. Punish the abusive owners and not the innocent dogs!
    I would encourage ALL dog owners, not just pitbulls, to take the Canine Good Citizen test. That way we can PROVE that pitbulls are just as gentle, loving, and well behaved as any other dog.

    Ban one breed and you might as well ban them all because ANY dog can be trained to be mean. Stop picking on pits!

  34. I am a PROUD owner a Pit Bull she has brought me and my family so much joy and happiness and she love’s playing with children. Its strange I have known a lot of Pit Bull owners and not one of them has ever had their “friend” attack a living creature/human….Now on the other hand I have been biten by several small breeds including Chihuahuas, Boston Terriors and Sheltie’s. My son when he was 2 was biten in the fave by a Rottweiler he was playing and I asked the owner too put the pet away but he refused now who is at fault we were all close too my son when it happend. The dog came around us and out of no where he attacked! My Mom was bit by a German Sherpard thank God that out of all of those attacks my family welcomes my Baby Girl with open armsM. She is loving, loyal, and loves other dogs big or small! She has her own friends she plays with when we visit family and friends….She plays with 2 Pugs, Austrialan Shepard, a cat and a Pomeranian! Its sad too think the state of Michigan wants too band this breed of dog when its known that other breeds are just as bad if not worst when it comes too attacks!

    • i used to have a runt jack russell terrier and she would try to bite someone almost every day. I’v had freinds and family attacked by chihuahuas. I have never met someone that has been attacked by a pit bull. I hav a pit bull and he was once attacked by a small dachshund and he never showed any sign of aggression. that little dog drew blood, and my baby only wanted to play. My pit is loyal, happy baby. my bf has actually started to call him ‘sissy man’ bc he’s so UN-aggressive.

  35. What about the fact that there are 29 breed recognized by the AKC that look like pitbulls but are not. Are we going to require genetic testing or are they going to be outlawed purely on looks. If it were people that would be construed as extremely racist and would be afforded protection under the law.

  36. I have been a proud pit owner for three years now and she has been a true blessing in my life. I adopted this breed from our local animal shelter when she was just a puppy. Out of the entire shelter she was the one that caught my eye the most! I would never trade her for anything and I will never give her up. Since her, I have adopted a second pitbull that has added nothing but happiness to my life. Both of my girls are very well behaved and very sweet. Their best friends are my two cats I also share a home with. They share beds,food,and water and I have never had any problems. Anyone who has met my pits has had nothing but good things to say about them and that’s because I raised them right with love and care. This bill needs to disappear along with the person(s) trying to pass it!

  37. This is rediculous to kill all of these pits because stupid ppl train them that way? Really, no there are many breeders down there that know what they are doing they will have to move because your dumb ass legislation, you wonder why our country is corrupt?! Look at these stupid laws, pits used to be our mast DONT punish the breed!! All they try to do is please humans, Thats why they are bred, because of this they can be rehabilitated (if stupid people trained them wrong)
    This is the best breed, all they do is try to please humans!!!
    Look at my dogs, pure pitbulls to the bone ya know Whats there? STRAIGHT UP LOVE!!!!!!!!!!
    They all have good dog certificates through AKC, ADBA, etc
    Learn bout the problem before you punish it, quess what it aint the dog its the ppl who taught it wrong..
    “oh no it a pit, he’s goonnna LICK ME TO DEATH” you need to get it straight!!

  38. If Bledsoe has so much time on his hands and thinks Pit bulls are the problem maybe he should look into the gang situation and how gangs are out of control right now in Michigan.
    Want something productive to do with your time and feel the need to ban something…Bledsoe?.. try starting a bill to ban gangs, gang members, and gang activity. I bet you get some support on that one.
    That will HELP Michigan! Anytime ……we are waiting!

  39. The media just loves this stuff. Especially FOX 2 News. I would never support anyone who introduces a ban or the people in the media who keep pushing it

  40. Contact these law makers tell them MI by far as worse issues to worry about lets not let this go easy email write and call these douche bags. Theres nothing wrong with this breed besides being over bred and fought in urban areas. I own 2 pits and they are great dogs and great with my 1yr old son crack down on the dumb ass owners and hit them hard leave the breed alone

  41. How sad that our government has come to have so much control on our lives! Drug screens and background checks to work and now they are going to take my best buddie from me? My bluenose pit, Wriggley never goes more than 20 ft away from me and probably not that far. He has never been aggressive towards another dog or person and he is almost 3. Pits do not wander around hurting people,they stay home with their families. He is the biggest cry baby and all he wants to do is be by me. Make dog abuse a felony and lock them up, that’s what you like to do isn’t it. You have the control! There is no dog as smart and loving as pits and I am sick to death of the United States Of America telling me what to do every move!!!!!!

  42. slh_1959@yahoo.com

    Hello, Let me tell you a story about a pitbull Named SUGAR 14 yrs ago my daughter came home with this Dog and she wanted to keep it. We had all Ready had 1 dog ,But i let her keep it. she grew up to be one of the best dogs we ever had, She loved every one that walked in our yard, In our home, Loved the kids and grandkids. she just wanted to be loved. And that she got. she didnt have a mean bone in her body. and she was a pit bull !!! Now 14 yrs pasted and she had to be put down 2 months ago . we all MISS her sooooo much. . So what I me asking is please dont Pass this law-bill . It is the mean people out there that make them mean. You can turn any dog mean. I am geting ready to adope a pit bull in a few weeks. and you cant take her away from me. !!!!

  43. This is sooooo ridiculous! If they are going to try to ban pit bulls, they should at least grandfather in the existing pit bulls. And, or make pit bull owners take their dog in for a behavioral evaluation to ensure that any pit bulls left in the state of Michigan aren’t one of the “dangerous breed.” At least, that’s what I think should happen if there has to be a bill. If that doesn’t happen, I’d rather leave the state then get rid of a beloved member of my family.

  44. I don’t live in Michigan I live In California however I do know that if Michigan passes such a bullshit law California could do so also. I for one say ALL of this is just ignorance! People NOT! knowing what they are talking about. I personally own pits who have shown to be very caring, loyal and beautiful family members( Only breed that’s shown such loyalty). I for one would die and go to prison before I ever ALLOW my dogs to EVER be murdered. My pits are the very dogs that have grown with my son. Watched over him and kept him safe through out his years. My oldest pit who by the way is the protector of all babies. Always the one to put herself between a baby and a very hyper puppy :-) Never allows the puppy to jump up on a small child. Pits take after the owners so why don’t you open your eyes and punish the OWNERS! stop putting the blame on such an easy target.