After sponsoring a bill that would require the owners of pit bulls, mastiffs, Rottweilers and other large breeds of dogs to undergo criminal background checks, a North Carolina lawmaker got a lot of angry responses from his constituents. In fact, Rep. Rodney Moore’s office got thousands of emails from people who were upset with his plan.
He said the majority of them were from pit bull owners. Most of the owners attached pictures of their dogs looking cute and “passive.”
The bill would have applied to owners of breeds that were designated as “aggressive.” Besides the background check, owners would also have been forced to take at least four hours of training courses and fill out an application for a special “aggressive dog” permit. Dog owners would have had to pay to apply for the permit, according to Fox News.
“There needs to be some kind of accountability,” Moore said. “A lot of people breed them the wrong way. You have very harsh incidents of these dogs maiming children, maiming older folks, and sometimes even turning on their owner.”
Moore said that he wasn’t positive that the dogs the bill designated as aggressive were involved in the most amount of violent incidents, but they were “the most prevalent by the feedback that I’ve gotten.”
Moore’s proposed legislation died in committee. “I’ve been inundated,” Moore said. “It’s a good idea, but maybe the language was kind of harsh.” He now plans to meet with stakeholders to talk about animal-safety issues.
“This is not a state where you can mess with people’s dogs,” a legislative aide said.