Public Hearings Planned on Mandatory Pit Bull Sterilization
Photo: Video by kmir6.com
CREATED Sep. 24, 2013
THOUSAND PALMS - The Riverside County Board of Supervisors postponed voting on an a proposal that would make it mandatory to sterilize pit bulls in unincorporated communities in the county.
Under the ordinance crafted by the Riverside County Department of Animal Services, a person owning a pit bull or pitbull mix over the age of four months must have the animal spayed or neutered. There are several exceptions including registered breeders, law enforcement officials who use pit bulls on the job and disabled who use this breed as a service dog.
Many pit bull owners, like Calvin Jones from Indio, are against the proposal, saying the breed would become extinct.
"It will pretty much kill the breed, I think because people want puppies, people want to raise their dogs," expressed Jones while petting his three-year-old American Pit Bull Terrier, "I don't think anything should be mandated as far as what you should be able to do with the breed because you can take that so many ways and do that with other breeds."
According to the Department of Animal Services, 20 percent of the dogs impounded are pit bulls, and they account for 30 percent of the dogs euthanized. A spokesperson from the department said this new law would solve this over-population problem as well as make it safer for people out on the streets; however, Jones explained that when pit bulls attack, it's the fault of their owners and not the breed itself.
"I always raised her real well and she's the nicest dog. She's the last dog I could ever imagine [to attack], she's never even bitten me," shared Jones, "If I wouldn't have been able to raise her, maybe I wouldn't have been as comfortable with her, but they're the same breed as any other dog. It's all how you raise them."
The ordinance was first introduced to the board of supervisors in April; now a public hearing awaits on the proposal on October 8 at the board's meeting.
This year, there have been four pit bull attacks in Riverside County, one of them fatal.