Society
Society

Pit Bull Ban (BSL) Results in 37 Percent Decline in Dog Bites

| by Phyllis M Daugherty

In 2008 Sioux City, Iowa, banned Pit Bulls and vicious dogs within the city limits. Since then, there has been a drastic reduction in the number of reported dog bites.

The actual numbers show that officers responded to 37 percent fewer dog-bite complaints last year than they did in 2007, the year before the city banned pit bulls, the Des Moines Register reports.

The ban includes an exception for owners who registered their Pit Bulls, but no new pit bulls were allowed. More than 550 were registered before the April 2009 deadline, according to the report. The number of registered Pit Bulls in the city now has dropped to 163.

Sioux City police and Animal Control records do not track dog bites by breed within the city, the Sioux City Journal states.

However, Sioux City is the County seat of Woodbury County, and the Siouxland District Health Department provides a breakdown by breed of all bites within the county.

Twenty-six (26) bites by Pit Bulls or Pit bull mixes were reported in the city in 2007-- the year before Sioux City Council began discussion of a breed ban, according to the Journal.

That number dropped to six bites countywide in the entire year of 2013.

DOES THIS MEAN THAT BSL WORKS?

This dramatic reduction in dog attacks appears to indicate that breed-specific legislation (BSL) is effective in improving public safety—contrary to claims by advocates that Pit Bulls are no more dangerous than other dogs.

SIOUX CITY, IA., MUNICIPAL CODE, §§ 7.10.010 - 7.10.050 (2009)  Adopted:  2008

Summary:

The City of Sioux City, Iowa makes it unlawful to own, transport, or sell any pit bull, with exceptions.  Pit bulls currently and continuously registered, licensed, properly confined and cared for are exempt from the ban, but a failure to maintain its status immediately removes its exemption. The poundmaster is authorized to immediately impound any pit bull that does not fall within one of the exceptions and is mandated to destroy the pit bull within ten calendar days. 

Section 7.10.010 Pit Bull defined. 
  
Section 7.10.020 Pit Bull registration, confinement and care. 
  
Section 7.10.030 Pit Bulls prohibited. 
  
Section 7.10.040 Exceptions. 
  
Section 7.10.050 Impoundment.       

(Michigan State University - Animallaw.info)

Sources: Des Moines Register, Sioux City Journal, Animal Law

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