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Forsyth County, North Carolina
Mina - awesome
rinalia wrote in stop_bsl
UPDATE: Won't seek ban or restrictions
Breeds affected: German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Doberman Pinschers, Pit Bulls

To contact, fill out email online form: http://www.co.forsyth.nc.us/commissioners/contactus.aspx

Board votes against regulating by breed
Forsyth seeks guidance on aggressive dogs

By Wesley Young
JOURNAL REPORTER

Forsyth County’s Animal Control Advisory Board voted unanimously last night to recommend that county commissioners not pass any regulations that would single out or even ban particular breeds of dogs as dangerous.

That pleased a group of dog owners who told the board that dog problems trace back to irresponsible behavior by some dog owners, not the breed of dog.

Opponents of what is called breed-specific legislation came armed with binders to hand out to advisory-board members and a petition that they said had been signed by 1,500 people.

But it turned out that all the members of the advisory board had already made up their minds that regulations singling out particular breeds are not the solution to dog aggression.

The board said that dog owners, not breeds, have to be held accountable.

“I don’t think it is fair to pick on one breed,” board member Joe Redman said. “I’ve seen aggressive large dogs and I’ve seen aggressive small dogs. Most dogs can be teased and made mean. A person who has a mean dog should be held responsible for it.”

Many of those speaking to the board said they owned Rottweilers or pit bulls and that their animals disproved the reputation of the breeds as being overly aggressive.

“I’ve had Rottweilers for 20 years,” dog-owner Richard Willis told the board.

“It all comes down to how you train them and how you socialize them. I hate to hear about people who are chaining dogs and training them to be mean,” Willis said.

The advisory board is looking at the issue of aggressive dogs at the request of the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners, which has asked the panel to come up with possible solutions.

About 50 people turned out for the meeting, but only 20 or so could actually go in because the meeting room is small.

Tim Jennings, the county’s director of animal control, talked to people in the lobby before the meeting and assured them that any proposal that the advisory panel ends up making will get plenty of public airing.

People were able to sign up to speak or get e-mail updates on future meetings.

With breed-specific regulations off the table, the advisory board will consider alternatives that focus on making dog owners accountable. Some ideas mentioned last night included
requiring people to put aggressive dogs in dog-training courses or regulating problem dogs with more expensive licensing.

Some discussed requiring dogs to be spayed or neutered, but people who show and breed dogs said that would hurt them.

http://www.journalnow.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=WSJ/MGArticle/WSJ_BasicArticle&c=MGArticle&cid=1173354705522


WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (WGHP) -- Forsyth County leaders are considering breed specific legislation which may result in some types of dogs being banned.

One year ago, Forsyth County commissioners asked the Animal Control Advisory Board to study all options for regulating aggressive dogs, especially German shephards, rottweillers, doberman pinchers, and pit bulls.

Thursday night, the Animal Control advisory board will hold its first public meeting to discuss ways to better control aggressive or dangerous dogs.

Talks of a dog breed ban angered some residents.  The Floyd family, who breed, raise, and show pit bulls, consider their dogs part of the family.

"It would just heartbreak us as a family to have to give up our dogs because of other irresponsible owners," said Dawn Floyd.

The Floyds have more than 1400 signatures of pet owners who contend instead of regulating certain breeds, county leaders should look to tougher laws for dog owners.

"They are going to penalize me for what other people do, what other people's dogs do and that's not right...makes me very angry," said Mike Floyd.

The American Kennel Club and the Human Society of the United States are also against laws that single out certain breeds.

County commissioners said aggression issues are not the only concern.  The aforementioned breeds are the breeds that take up the bulk of Animal Contol's time.

In 2006, 780 pit bulls came through Forsyth County's shelter.  641 were euthanized because either no one adopted the dogs, or the animals failed health and behavior evaluations.

The advisory board has not submitted a formal proposal, they are only studying all options for dangerous dogs.  The board will allow public comment at the dog ordinance meeting, which will be held Thursday night at 6:00 p.m. 

http://www.myfoxwghp.com/myfox/pages/News/Detail?contentId=5844709&version=1&locale=EN-US&layoutCode=TSTY&pageId=3.2.1

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