Category Archives: Non-BSL Passed

Chesterfield, MO – Repeals Pit Bull Legislation


Chesterfield, Missouri! Bill No. 2909, which amends the “Dangerous Animals” ordinance to REMOVE all the breed specific language was APPROVED at the second reading on December 3rd, 2012!

Way to go Chesterfield!


Chesterfield, Missouri Council members will meet at 7:00 PM tonight, Monday, December 3rd to move forward with removal of the cities current breed specific legislation REPEAL.

If you are in the area, please attend the meeting in effort to show your support of this action.

For more information….


We reported that two separate pieces of legislation had been proposed in Miami-Dade and would be voted on Tuesday night.

Officials chose to adopt Commissioner Diaz’s proposed ‘Dangerous Dog Registry’ last night.  The new ordinance increases fines from $500 to $1000 and creates an on-line registry that will allow residents to identify dangerous dogs within their own communities, and permits police officers to take any dog it determines is vicious.

“This is all about being responsible for your animal. I don’t believe in bad dogs, I believe in bad owners,” said Miami-Dade County Commissioner Jose Diaz.

Commissioner Lynda Bell wasn’t as certain the registry would be as successful, “I just see so many potential problems for abuse in this legislation.  I really appreciate the intent but I have to say that I appreciate the intent.”

Now, when your dog, no matter the breed or type of dog, bites a person or another pet, your dog’s “mug-shot” will be posted on-line along with your address, and a description of how the bite occurred.
According to Alex Munoz, Animal Services Director, “Any action taken can be appealed to a hearing officer”.
 So, we ask….why does Miami-Dade need a pit bull ban?

Massachusetts S.2192 signed by governor

Massachusetts S.2192, a comprehensive overhaul of Massachusetts state animal control laws, was signed by the governor today. The new law specifically states: “No city or town shall regulate dogs in a manner that is specific to breed.”

In essence, BSL will be illegal in Massachusetts when the law goes into effect at the end of October. Massachusetts joins 12 other U.S. states that prohibit municipalities from passing breed-specific laws.

The big question now is: What about the cities in Massachusetts that currently have BSL in place?

The answer is not as cut and dry as you’d expect. State law generally preempts (takes precedence over) municipal ordinances, but there are several ways that cities can get around the preemption and keep their BSL, most commonly using “grandfathering” (as happened in Miami-Dade) or “home rule” (as is common in Colorado and Illinois) justifications. In particular, every state handles home rule a bit differently; some states severely limit home rule powers, while other states are more flexible. From what I’ve gathered so far, there are differing opinions about whether cities that are in conflict with the new state law (e.g. Boston) can use home rule as a viable defense of their BSL.

I know that’s not the answer you were looking for, but unfortunately, we may have to wait for a better answer. I expect that, as news of the law’s passage sinks in, city councils across the state will consult with their attorneys to figure out what, if anything, they need to do in response to the changes in state law. Legislators and judges may also weigh in. We’ll know more as time goes on.

In the meantime, congratulations to Massachusetts for sweeping animal control reform and for making a stand against BSL.

Law bans breed-specific dog regulation

By Steve Decosta,
August 02, 2012 6:06 PM

With New Bedford Animal Control Officer Manny Maciel by his side today, Gov. Deval Patrick signed a new, broad-based animal control bill into law, that, among its many provisions, prevents the regulation of dogs based solely on breed.

Stating clearly that “No city or town shall regulate dogs in a manner that is specific to breed,” the legislation ends debate in New Bedford and elsewhere on whether pits bulls should be banned.

The law further states that “no dog shall be deemed dangerous … based upon the breed of such dog.” […]

Full article retrieved 8/2/12 from

Many thanks to the MSPCA for keeping us up to date. Visit their page to learn more about the many changes that this bill brings to Massachusetts:

Bill tracking page:

All alerts for S.2192:

Elgin, IL: Breed-neutral ordinance helping to reduce dog incidents

Elgin decided against BSL in early 2010. The early results seem positive, though it’s too early to say that their new breed-neutral ordinance has been a success. Previous alerts for Elgin:

New ordinance is helping to reduce dog incidents

September 6, 2010

ELGIN — It has been about three months since the city enacted a tougher animal-control ordinance designed to curb a growing number of dog-related incidents in recent years.

Although questions remain about whether the new rules will reduce the number of complaints against loose and dangerous dogs, city officials already have credited the ordinance with raising awareness by dog owners and the police officers charged with identifying violations.

Read the rest of the article here:,3_1_EL06_06DOGS_S1-100906.article

Exeter, CA: Non-breed-specific ordinance passed

The proposal had been breed-specific at one time, in violation of state law, but public outcry caused council members to rethink the ordinance. Previous alerts for Exeter:

Exeter City Council approves non-breed-specific ordinance protecting the public against ‘dangerous’ dogs

Staff reports • April 27, 2010

[…] Instead of targeting specific breeds — which an earlier version of the ordinance did — this version covers all types of dogs, records show.

Article retrieved 4/27/10 from

West Baton Rouge Parish, LA: Animal control ordinance passes without BSL

Previous alert for West Baton Rouge Parish:

WBR strengthens animal control ordinance

By Rachel Frost
Source: WBRZ
Updated: April 9, 2010 5:49 PM

West Baton Rouge Parish Council voted 7-2 Thursday to strengthen its animal control ordinance.

The new ordinance does not specifically list dog breeds, instead it focuses on dog behavior.

Article retrieved 4/19/10 from

Renton, WA: Dangerous dogs banned (not BSL)

Summary:  Renton citizens requested a ban on ‘dangerous dogs’ when they heard someone who owned a ‘dangerous dog’ might be moving in.  Judging from the article, in Washington State a dog is declared ‘dangerous’ based not on his or her breed, but on his or her behavior:  killing a domestic animal without provocation, or seriously injuring or killing a human without provocation.  A dog can get a ‘potentially dangerous’ designation by threatening or biting a domestic animal or human; then a second minor biting incident can have the dog declared ‘dangerous.’  Once a dog is labeled ‘dangerous,’ by State law the owner must keep the dog in a child-resistant enclosure and carry a $250,000 insurance policy or surety bond.  According to Renton ACO Dennis MccAskill, Renton dogs who would have qualified for the ‘dangerous dog’ label have usually been euthanized before a ‘dangerous dog’ declaration was rendered.  And, most Renton residents would not be able to afford the insurance necessary for keeping a ‘dangerous dog.’  Indeed, many owners opt for euthanasia once AC explains the risks of owning a dog designated ‘potentially dangerous.’  Renton City Council chose to ban ‘dangerous dogs,’ rather than try for better enforcement of the old law, hoping to prevent accidents.  It’s now “technically illegal” to transport a ‘dangerous dog’ through Renton, even on the freeway.

City of Renton bans ‘dangerous dogs’

Renton Reporter Staff Writer
Dec 29 2009, 5:04 PM · UPDATED

[…] “Could you really design a perfectly safe way to keep a (dangerous) dog in a crowded urban environment?” said council member Randy Corman. “You can commit to enforcing the law, but you’ll have accidents, because to err is human….”

“The old way of dealing with it, requiring people to have liability insurance and to have an enclosure, were not protective enough,” Corman said….

The law was passed quickly with a first and second reading Dec. 7….

Renton Reporter Staff Writer Celeste Gracey can be reached at or 425-255-3484, ext. 5052.

Full article retrieved 2009-12-31 from