Petaluma, CA: Breed-specific MSN under consideration

The Petaluma Animal Services Advisory Committee will be discussing “dog breed-specific mandates on spay/neuter” tonight, Dec 7, at 7:00 PM. The committee meeting will take place in Petaluma City Council chambers, City Hall, 11 English Street, Petaluma, CA 94952. One of the committee members has asked that the committee consider MSN for “pit bull” types.

California municipalities may not pass breed-specific laws, except for breed-specific mandatory spay/neuter. Please note that breed-specific MSN, like any breed-specific law, discriminates against people based on their dog’s looks, and has all the flaws and quandaries of any law based solely on a dog’s appearance. Breed-specific laws of any kind, including BS-MSN, are not an ethical or effective solution.

Please send respectful, informative, and helpful correspondence to the committee, including effective breed-neutral alternatives for their consideration. I wish to re-emphasize respectful. The committee members need your help, not hate.

Contact information for the entire Animal Services Committee can be found here:
Not all members of the committee have email. Here are the email addresses that are published:;;;;;;

Sincere thanks to Gabe Kearney, Petaluma City Councilman and member of the Animal Services Board, for submitting this BSL alert!


9 responses to “Petaluma, CA: Breed-specific MSN under consideration

  1. This is my last comment I will leave on WordPress,I find it Insulting you thinking that this Law BSL is Debatable,it is not.It is Cold-Blooded Murder.
    Now allow Stop Bsl to carry on Kissing Arses.
    Good Luck.

    • Selwyn, the committee rejected this proposal.

      It is not “kissing ass” to express your opposition in a respectful manner, and in fact, you are more likely to be heard and to change minds by being respectful, showing that you understand the perceived problem, and offering breed-neutral alternatives that you find acceptable. That is Persuasion 101.

      Bitter, angry, hateful verbal attacks on lawmakers do not accomplish anything. Lawmakers are only human; if they feel like they’re under attack, they will defend themselves and their position, and they are far less likely to think reasonably, change their minds, or listen to opponents. That is Psychology 101.

    • I do not know Psychology 101.BSL has zero to do with dogs,it is to me are going after dogs, they rely on Fear-Mongering created by Failing Politicos who are incapable of handling real issues.Ask Hinklehooper,Mcguinty and the Scum from Dade-County where I had a personal interest, Ask these Bastards how it assisted their personal political careers,what is different to what Hitler did?
      The one lot of victims were 2 legged and USA and UK are going after 4 legged.
      Call a spade a spade.
      Injustice anywhere is a Threat to Justice Everywhere – Martin Luther King

    • In some cases it is certainly true that BSL is proposed by someone with bad intentions. In the majority of cases, though, well-meaning people are simply trying to come up with solutions to their perceived dog problems. Fear and misunderstanding are the major drivers for BSL. Most lawmakers don’t even know what BSL is, much less realize why BSL is wrong and how it affects people. It is up to us to educate them, inform them, and show them a better way. And the most effective way to educate people and get them to listen to you is through respectful and helpful dialogue. You can be respectful and still firmly disagree with someone.

      Perhaps you’ve heard of sayings like “You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.” In other words, it’s easier to persuade people and get them to agree with you if you treat them with respect.

      Petaluma is a good example of why we need to be respectful when writing to lawmakers. In Petaluma, only one of the committee members was in favor of BSL. It turns out that all the other committee members were opposed, but we didn’t know that at first. What good would it do to write them all insulting, accusatory emails suggesting they’re in it for their careers–when they’re already opposed to BSL? We must be careful not to make assumptions about lawmakers or their motivations. Unwarranted attacks and accusations will drive lawmakers away. We need them to listen to us and take us seriously. That is only accomplished through mutual respect.

    • For G-Ds Sake whose has the right to play G-D..Your theory has worked very well,in Ontario,Denver,and Dade-County..His comment from Dade-County “It would be Political Suicide” to rid BSL.from our books.
      I say again and again ,this is not a debatable issue.
      Let us try and make the Human Race Decent again.

    • I never said it was a debatable issue, nor have I implicitly or explicity given anyone the right to “play God.” I am not talking about giving people a free pass to do whatever they like. I’m not talking about flattery, “ass kissing,” or saying “yes.” You are apparently confused about the meaning of the word “respect.”

      Since you oppose BSL, I’m sure you understand what it feels like to be disrespected, under attack, and the recipient of hateful words. Everyone who fights against BSL has probably been disrespected or subject to hateful attacks. Do you want to work with those people who disrespect you? Do you want to listen to them? Help them? Of course not! It is the same for everyone. No one who has been disrespected wants to help the person who has disrespected them. Even your allies will naturally stop helping you if you disrespect them.

      This is not theory. This is standard debate and persuasion strategy, and it works very well. Where there is respect between citizens and lawmakers, like in Wentzville, there’s a possibility for repeal. Where there is no respect between citizens and lawmakers, like in Denver and Miami-Dade, then the lawmakers will not consider repeal. I have never seen BSL repealed because of disrespect, name-calling, and hate. Places that repeal BSL (or do not pass it in the first place) usually do so because the citizens work together with lawmakers. You can’t work with lawmakers and attack them at the same time.

    • I just noticed your quote on justice is from Dr. Martin Luther King. MLK was a great man who fought hard against injustice.

      MLK preached respect for all people. He also advocated for respectful opposition to discriminatory laws. Respect was very important to him, and he felt it was also very important for the success of the Civil Rights Movement. Of course, some people accused MLK of “kissing ass” too. I just found it ironic that you would use his own quote while advocating the opposite of what he stood for. :)

    • I have respect for Decent Human Beings,I do not beleive that a letter to Mr Hitler,Dear Kind Sir…………………….. would have achieved much.Just as communiques to the likes of Hinklehooper,Mcguinty and the Lunatic fringe of Dade County Criminals have achieved zero.In 7 odd years they still play the ignor game.Without someone like Obama making it law that BSL is disallowed,it aint gonna happen and more and more of these Villages are going to introduce this Evil.
      Obama has Zero right to call Gaddaffi or Hussein Tyrants while he has this unconstitutional law on his books.

    • Obama has nothing to do with it. Dog ordinances and dog control are considered a local issue in the U.S. Unlike the U.K. and other countries, the federal government of the U.S. does not have the authority to regulate how states or municipalities deal with their dog issues. It doesn’t matter who is president. Federal government can only address federal issues, of which dog control is not one.

      As I stated previously, there are definitely some people who propose or enforce BSL with bad intentions. Those people are in the minority. It doesn’t matter if you treat them with respect or disrespect—they’re not going to listen, either way. The most effective way to deal with those few bad apples is to vote them out and start over with new lawmakers who are willing to listen.

      But most lawmakers don’t have bad intentions. They’re just misguided and uneducated. If we disrespect them from the start, they’re not going to accept our guidance or education. It’s not “kissing ass” and it’s not “letting them get away with murder” to work with them and to help them find a better way to deal with their community’s problems.