Merrillville, IN: Council may add breed(s) to BSL

Merrillville currently has BSL that affects “pit bull” owners. Rather than repeal their currently ineffective BSL and institute an ordinance that applies to all dogs, regardless of breed, the town council is considering adding “Staffordshire Terrier” to the ordinance.

The council and officials are mired in the idea that some “breeds” are inherently dangerous, while others are not. Please help the council understand that by taking the law’s focus off a dog’s appearance, they can craft effective laws that regulate all dogs, no matter what breed label they may be given.

Town council emails:;;;;;;

Town meetings: Second and fourth Tuesdays of each month, 6:30 p.m.
Town Hall, 7820 Broadway, Merrillville, IN 46410
Next council meeting:  October 11

Merrillville considers changes to dangerous dog laws

By Karen Caffarini Post-Tribune correspondent
October 20, 2011 10:30AM

MERRILLVILLE — […] Kenneth Woodside, who runs the town’s small claims court, told council members at a Wednesday workshop that some residents who have received tickets for their pit bulls have had the case thrown out in court because they get a letter from their veterinarian saying the dog is a Staffordshire terrier, not a pit bull.

He said it is difficult to tell the difference between the two breeds, one of which is dangerous and the other that is not. […]

Councilwoman Carol Miano, D-3rd, suggested they eliminate all breeds in the ordinance and just say it deals with all dangerous dogs, but it was pointed out that would eliminate the need for pit bull owners to carry the additional insurance.[…]

Full article retrieved 10/22/11 from

Town seeking assistance with dangerous animals ordinance

By Chas Reilly, (219) 662-5324
Posted: Thursday, October 20, 2011 9:15 pm

MERRILLVILLE  […] Woodside and other town officials said they want to work with a veterinarian to determine if Staffordshire bull terriers and other breeds should be added to an ordinance that requires owners of pit bulls and other dangerous pets to have liability insurance coverage of at least $300,000 and to obtain a license for the animals.[…]

Full article retrieved 10/22/11 from

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