Following an attack on a woman in Westwego Louisiana, Councilman Glen Green has sworn to add more breeds of dogs to the cities dangerous dog laws, which currently single out pit bulls.
Westwego’s law, which was passed in 2000, requires owners of pit bull type dogs to keep the dogs confined in kennels when not on leash or with their owners. Kennels must be made of chain link fencing at least six feet high, five feet from the property line, and 20 feet from neighboring homes. Failure to do so results in a fine of $250.
Though Councilman Green has not said exactly which breeds will be added, he has mentioned Rottweilers specifically. According to Green, he will be seeking additional support from other members of the council before approaching this issue. He was quoted in a recent news story saying “If they want to challenge it in court, so be it. There are several breeds that I’m putting in there.”
What is rather unfortunate is that these challenges will cost everyone in the city by making poor use of tax payer dollars. Councilman Green says that he blames the owner of these dogs for not taking care of them properly, yet he is choosing to target the dogs instead. Not the attacking dogs, but dogs that he has a perception of as being vicious.
Councilman Green knew the victim personally.
Residents: Please respectfully, and sympathetically reach out to your council members to ask that they look into a strong and enforceable breed neutral law instead of adding breeds to their restrictions. The urge, after such a terrible incident, is to act but actions taken must still be in the best interests of the community at large. No amount of breed specific laws would have stopped this heartbreaking incident. By creating a comprehensive breed neutral ordinance with stiff penalties for violation serious incidents like this can be reduced.
Officials can be found here. It is of absolute utmost importance that, when communicating after an attack this severe, you remain unimpeachable in your professionalism in every communication. This is not about dogs. This is about creating a safer community for the residents of Westwego. Breed specific laws divert resources from the real obstacles to making communities safer, which is why breed neutral laws have been shown repeatedly to increase public safety.
Our heartfelt sympathies go out to the victim of this attack and all the friends and family of the victim.