Tag Archives: spay

Riverside City CA seeks to change spay/neuter laws

Riverside City is seeking to change their current spay/neuter laws in the wake of the recently passed breed discriminatory spay/neuter law passed by Riverside County officials.

The Riverside County law only applies to unincorporated areas of the county, so it becomes the job of the incorporated areas of the county to decide if they will enact similar legislation.

Oddly, Riverside City already has a mandatory spay/neuter law that applies to all dogs, with some exemptions.  Officials have said that this law is enforced only when an animal is picked up for another violation, or if there is some kind of complaint.

The changes being sought would have city officials actively targeting dogs they think are pit bulls for enforcement.

It is expected that the change will mirror the Riverside County law, which requires that all dogs who are deemed to be a targeted type be altered by the young age of four months.

There has been no discussion by either the Riverside County officials or Riverside city officials about the implications for the health and welfare of the dogs that are being forced to undergo a pediatric procedure that is extremely controversial in the veterinary community.

The changes would target “Staffordshire Bull Terriers, American Pit Bull Terriers, American Stafford Terriers and mixes in which those breeds can be easily identified. It would include exceptions for registered breeders, dogs with health issues that prevent sterilization and law enforcement dogs.” (read more)

Riverside City already has a spay/neuter law, so what is the motivation for targeting one type of dog for special enforcement and attention?  The language used by officials make their intentions very clear.

Increasing the conversations being had by officials in California is troublesome.  Officials in Pasadena were questioning the existence of the state law that prohibits all breed based laws with the exception of mandatory spay/neuter, saying their hands were “tied” and that was all they were able to do about their “pit bull problem.”   Riverside County officials started the conversation with promises to overturn the state law but, after the backlash, went for the more palatable spay/neuter.  Now there is Riverside City, who, if they change the current law, will be actively going after people whose dogs look a certain way, while not bothering to enforce the spay/neuter law that is in place for all other dogs unless they are caught.

There is something decidedly wrong with this pattern.

Breed discrimination is breed discrimination.  The laws are not designed to protect the dogs, they are not designed to keep the community safe.  They are there to target a group of dogs that officials feel need special monitoring and regulation based on nothing more than a gut feeling.

The issue is set for discussion on October 22nd  meeting of the Riverside City Council meeting, Tuesday, 6:30 p.m., City Hall, 3900 Main St., Riverside.

Residents can find their City Council representatives on the cities website.

 

Riverside County CA passes breed discriminatory spay/neuter 5-0

October 8th, 2013, the Riverside County California board of commissioners met for a public hearing on the proposed breed discriminatory law targeting pit bulls for mandatory spay/neuter.

The commissioners voted 5-0 to enact the proposal, which makes it mandatory for any owner of a dog deemed to be a pit bull to have their dog altered by the age of 4 months in unincorporated areas of Riverside County.

The commissioners gave several different reasons for wanting enact the ordinance, from “protecting” the public from dangerous dogs, to curbing populations of pit bull like dogs in shelters.  The conversation on this law started out with the familiar anti-pit bull rhetoric, that all pit bulls were different from other dogs, vicious by nature, etc.  It was not until the blow back from a statement made about challenging the state law that prohibits restrictions or bans that officials began changing their story to attempting to “protect” pit bulls.  This is a familiar end run that is used by pro-BDL groups when they are backed into a corner.  It is a tactic that has been more and more common, and one that some cannot seem to see for what it is.

As Josh Liddy, from SwayLove.org, said in an interview on Pit Bulletin Legal News Radio, that even at the passage of the spay/neuter law, the language employed by officials was that which is used to justify bans.  The interview details the events of the ordinances passage.

Acceptance of any breed discriminatory law is acceptance that “these dogs are different.”  Regardless of how one feels about mandatory spay/neuter in general, this is something that the dog community strongly opposes in theory, but the in person presence did not reflect that at today’s meeting.

There are some exemptions in the ordinance for animals who are unable to undergo the procedure, registered breeders, law enforcement and other service dogs, dogs who are only in Riverside County but licensed elsewhere and dogs that are pending a breed determination.  There is nothing about service dogs that are in training or show dogs.

“Pit bull” is defined by the ordinance as, “Any Staffordshire Bull Terrier,  American Pit Bull Terrier, or American Stafford (the typo is in the ordinance) Terrier breed of dog, or any mixed breed of dog which contains, as an element of its breeding, any of these breeds so as to be identifiable as partially of one or more of these breeds.”  The “as an element of its breeding” is problematic, from an enforcement and constitutional standpoint, because it is implicit of 1% of the targeted breeds.  How officials intend to prove 1% of a breed in a mixed breed dog is still a mystery.  This is an open door to litigation and has resulted in the overturning of other ordinances with this language.

The new law mandates that all targeted dogs, that are not exempted, be altered by 4 months of age.  There is a lot of debate about the detriments of pediatric spay/neuter in the veterinary community.  It is disturbing that officials would mandate a procedure that has a potential for serious health repercussions down the line.  What is even more disturbing is that a vet was on the panel today and this issue seems to have escaped his notice entirely.

People have 30 days from the ordinances passage to come up with the money to have their puppies and dogs fixed.  

Officials have said nothing about low-cost options for people who do not have the hundreds of dollars immediately, or people who may have been saving to have their dogs altered.  That would have been the better route, community outreach, education and extreme low cost spay/neuter for anyone who needs it, and making these things accessible to people who do not have transportation.  Many places have chosen this route over mandatory laws, which usually end in higher shelter intake, and have amazing successes.  It is a shame that this option was not implemented.

The full ordinance can be viewed here.

Riverside County California is trying to pass breed discriminatory spay/neuter law

Riverside County California has been having some issues recently with dog attacks including a fatal attack that happened in February. As a response to these incidents officials have been given the go ahead to draft a mandatory spay/neuter law that would target pit bull type dogs.

The topic of mandatory spay/neuter is a tricky one. Spay/neuter itself is by no means a bad thing for several reasons.

The problem comes in when these laws are mandatory and targeted to one type of animal.  A mandatory, discriminatory spay/neuter law by itself does nothing. What does affect pet over population is broad reaching community outreach initiatives, very much like the Pets for Life program. All the laws in the world will not get people to alter their pets but by providing inexpensive care and education on the topic more people are able to be reached.

It would be much better for Riverside County to implement a community outreach program to target under served neighborhoods than to pass a law that would target the owners of dogs who look a certain way. Breed discriminatory is breed discriminatory, no matter what the regulation, and always has a much larger impact on the community than expected. The only times these laws have been shown to work are when they are combined with the types of programs mentioned above.  Which goes to show that it is not the law itself, but the outreach, that affects the community.

This topic has been covered extensively by Brent Toellner, KC Dog Blog, where he has taken a detailed look at mandatory spay/neuter laws in various locations. Here is a link to the category of postings on the topic of mandatory spay/neuter.

Find out more information on mandatory spay/neuter laws.

Riverside County residents: Officials are crafting a mandatory spay/neuter law targeting pit bull type dogs. Please reach out to urge the county to spend the resources on more effective education and community outreach instead. You can find you specific district here or contact all the supervisors whose information is provided below.

First District Supervisor Kevin Jeffries: district1@rcbos.org

Second District Supervisor John F. Tavaglione: District2@rcbos.org

Third District Supervisor (Vice Chairman) Jeff Stone: district3@rcbos.org

Fourth District Supervisor (Chairman) John Benoit: district4@rcbos.org

Fifth District Supervisor Marion Ashley: district5@rcbos.org

Cuyahoga County, OH: BS-MSN proposed

A Cuyahoga County councilwoman has proposed breed-specific mandatory spay-neuter for “pit bulls” only. A public hearing on the proposal is expected to be held this summer (date currently unknown).

The reason proposed for MSN in this case makes no sense. County Councilwoman Simon says her proposed BS-MSN is meant to stop dog fighters. The reality is that this ordinance will only affect responsible, law-abiding citizens with “pit bull”-looking dogs. Dog fighters are already committing a felony—why would they suddenly agree to follow this law? We suspect this proposal is really giving the county a new way to portray “pit bull” owners as second-class citizens and criminals, now that the state law no longer enables such discrimination.

Please ask Cuyahoga County officials to drop the breed-specific portion of the proposal. Breed-specific MSN—like any other breed-specific law—discriminates against people and their dogs based on whether the owner or dog have a “desirable” or “undesirable” physical appearance. Breed identification is a subjective, non-scientific process, which results in unfair and unequal application of the law. Disputes over breed identification are also inevitable, and appeals and court cases fighting breed designations are expensive and resource-consuming.

StopBSL takes no position on mandatory spay/neuter as long as it is not breed-specific.

Cuyahoga County officials contact information:
Cuyahoga County Council, 1219 Ontario Street -Room 424, Cleveland, Ohio 44113
216-698-2010 (phone)
216-698-2040 (fax)
County Council email block
ceconnally@cuyahogacounty.us; ssimon@cuyahogacounty.us; dgreenspan@cuyahogacounty.us; damiller@cuyahogacounty.us; dbrady@cuyahogacounty.us; cgermana@cuyahogacounty.us; mjgallagher@cuyahogacounty.us; jschron@cuyahogacounty.us; yconwell@cuyahogacounty.us; pjones@cuyahogacounty.us; jrogers@cuyahogacounty.us
Additional administrative staff emails can be found here: http://council.cuyahogacounty.us/en-US/council-members.aspx

Cuyahoga County Council member proposes requiring pit bulls to be sterilized (poll)

By: Laura Johnston, The Plain Dealer

A Cuyahoga County councilwoman is […] proposing a countywide law that would force all pit bulls to be sterilized.

Council Vice President Sunny Simon […] plans to hold a hearing this summer before officially introducing pit bull legislation.

Simon said she wants to discourage dog fighters from breeding and selling pit bulls for sport, in the wake of the state dropping a provision that automatically labeled pit bulls as “vicious,” a designation that placed restrictions on owners. […]

Full article retrieved 6/1/2012 from http://www.cleveland.com/cuyahoga-county/index.ssf/2012/05/cuyahoga_county_council_considers_requiring_pit_bulls_to_be_sterilized.html

City of Ventura, CA: BSL passed

Ventura city council members voted for mandatory spay/neuter for “pit bulls” during its council meeting this week.

StopBSL takes no position on mandatory spay/neuter as long as it is not breed-specific. Unfortunately, Ventura’s breed-specific MSN brings with it all of the problems that are associated with any BSL: unnecessary discrimination against citizens based on their dog’s physical appearance; subjective, nonscientific visual guesses about a dog’s possible breed, resulting in unequal application of the law and resource-consuming lawsuits and court challenges; enforcement difficulties; and so on. (Think animal shelter workers can reliably identify “pit bulls”? Check out this study done by Maddie’s Fund.)

Some city officials have already expressed concerns that the law will be difficult to enforce. And, of course, BS-MSN has not solved any problems anywhere else it has been implemented.

City of Ventura Mayor and City Council
mike.tracy@cityofventura.net, cheitmann@ci.ventura.ca.us, nandrews@ci.ventura.ca.us, bbrennan@ci.ventura.ca.us, jmonahan@ci.ventura.ca.us, cmorehouse@ci.ventura.ca.us, cweir@ci.ventura.ca.us

All alerts for Ventura (county and cities): http://stopbsl.com/?s=ventura

Ventura council approves pit bull ordinance

By Arlene Martinez
Posted May 23, 2012 at 5:12 p.m.

Despite concerns that enforcement might be difficult, the Ventura City Council voted 6-1 on Monday to require pit bulls to be spayed or neutered by the time they are 16 weeks.

[…] Staffordshire Bull Terriers, American Pit Bull Terriers and American Staffordshire Terriers fall under the “pit bull” category. Dogs used in law enforcement and purebreds registered with the American Kennel Club, United Kennel Club or “other national registry” are exempt from the ordinance. […]

Full article retrieved 5/24/12 from http://www.vcstar.com/news/2012/may/23/ventura-council-approves-pit-bull-ordinance/

City of Ventura, CA: Council will consider BS-MSN proposal, May 21

Ventura city council members will vote on mandatory spay/neuter for “pit bulls” during its council meeting on May 21, 6:00 PM, in Council Chambers, 501 Poli Street, Ventura, CA.

Agenda: http://www.cityofventura.net/meeting/city-council-meeting-118

Please ask the city of Ventura to drop the breed-specific language in their proposal. Breed-specific MSN—like any other breed-specific law—discriminates against people and their dogs based on whether the owner or dog have a “desirable” or “undesirable” physical appearance. Breed identification is a subjective, non-scientific process, which results in unfair and unequal application of the law. Disputes over breed identification are also inevitable, and appeals and court cases fighting breed designations are expensive and resource-consuming.

StopBSL takes no position on mandatory spay/neuter as long as it is not breed-specific. Whether you support or oppose MSN, it doesn’t need to be breed-specific. If MSN is good for dogs that look like “pit bulls,” it is good for any dog. By removing the breed-specific focus, the city of Ventura can avoid the expense and inequality that goes with BSL.

City of Ventura Mayor and City Council
mike.tracy@cityofventura.net, cheitmann@ci.ventura.ca.us, nandrews@ci.ventura.ca.us, bbrennan@ci.ventura.ca.us, jmonahan@ci.ventura.ca.us, cmorehouse@ci.ventura.ca.us, cweir@ci.ventura.ca.us

All alerts for Ventura (county and cities): http://stopbsl.com/?s=ventura

Upland, CA: BS-MSN proposal sent to committee

The Upland, CA, Advisory Committee has recommended mandatory spay/neuter for all “pit bulls.” After they presented this recommendation to council on Monday, the council sent the proposal to the Public Safety Committee for further consideration.

I’m going to say it again: this proposal is NOT about reducing a shelter overpopulation of medium-sized, short-coated dogs. The Upland Advisory Committee believes “pit bulls” are dangerous (despite their own city statistics that indicate otherwise). State law is the only thing preventing them from going further. The committee communicated the danger of “pit bulls” to council on Monday, and the council acknowledged that concern.

Please ask city officials to drop the breed-specific language in their proposal. Breed-specific MSN—like any other breed-specific law—discriminates against people and their dogs based on whether the owner or dog have a “desirable” or “undesirable” physical appearance.

Whether you support or oppose MSN, it doesn’t need to be breed-specific. If you think MSN is good for dogs that look like “pit bulls,” then it is good for any dog. By removing the breed-specific focus, Upland can avoid the expense and inequality that goes with BSL.

Upland City Hall, 460 N. Euclid Ave., Upland, Ca 91786
(909) 931-4100
City Clerk, smendenhall@ci.upland.ca.us
Mayor and City Council, citycouncil@ci.upland.ca.us
City Manager, citymanager@ci.upland.ca.us

All alerts for Upland, CA: https://stopbsl.org/?s=upland

Upland Public Safety Committee to review pit bull ordinance

Sandra Emerson, Staff Writer
Posted: 05/14/2012 10:32:27 AM PDT

UPLAND – The city’s Police and Fire Committee will review a proposal to implement a mandatory spay and neuter ordinance for pit bulls and pit bull mixes.

[…] “You’ve raised some very interesting issues that many citizens of Upland have raised whether it be at the dog park or be at the AYSO fields or whether it be at the Lemon Festival with people walking around with some of these breeds with children around,” Councilman Brendan Brandt said. […]

Full article retrieved 5/16/12 from http://www.contracostatimes.com/california/ci_20618731/upland-council-hear-pit-bull-report