Bill aims to ban breed specific legislation in Michigan

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Breed specific legislation  is a controversial topic across the country, with a growing effort from animal groups to ban such initiatives. Now a Michigan lawmaker has introduced a bill that would prevent local governments from creating or enforcing policies based on a dog’s breed or perceived breed.

Senate Bill 741 was introduced last week by State Senator David Robertson out of Grand Blanc.

The Grand Rapids Pitbull Alliance is a group trying to end breed discrimination and say they're 100% behind the bill.

“Breed doesn’t determine behavior, and breed specific legislation does not make communities safer," says Tanelle McFadyen, the founder of the Grand Rapids Pitbull Alliance. "Several factors determine behavior through a canine, and breed isn’t one of them. All dogs are individuals, just like people.”

Mcfadyen says places like Waterford and Muskegon Heights currently have breed specific ordinances. Meanwhile the City of Hastings is currently in the process of revising what they call their Vicious Animals Ordinance, which mentions certain breeds by name.

And when it comes to dog attacks, McFadyen says there are things lawmakers and animal owners can do to reduce the statistics. “Let’s enforce leash laws, let’s work on anti-tethering ordinances, let’s educate the community on bite prevention and safety around children.”

SB 741 must be approved by the Michigan Senate and Michigan House before going to governor’s desk to be signed into law.

This bill is only focused on local governments, not private properties like apartment complexes.

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20 comments

  • Lisa Weidenfeller

    My Labrador I worry about around stranger then I do my daughters pure breed pit. Neither dog was raised to be be mean. My lab is extremely protective.

    Each dog is different. I grew up with a Pomeranian that saved my life from an intruder. She bit the crap out him and shredded his calf.
    Should her breed be banned.

    Abide by the leash law, have a fenced in yard they can not get out, they require a lot of attention and love and room to run and play. As with all dogs, it’s how they are RAISED.

  • RG

    All dogs can bite. Instead of banning certain breeds, dog owners should be subjected to large fines and even jail when their dogs harm some one or another animal. Dangerous and aggressive dogs should be put down.

  • Clucko

    How about banning a lot of the idiots that take a perfectly docile dog and purposely mistreat it to the point it becomes aggressive? And in most instances, in addition to punishing an animal that would likely be fine around people, we slap the hell out of the owner, and I mean slap them very hard.

  • Jane Brown

    Domesticated dogs ABSOLUTELY are bred for behavior! A herd dog herds, a retriever retrieves….If lawmakers pass this insane bill, they have more blood on their hands. PLEASE don’t believe these profiteers’ propaganda and fan fiction. Pit fighting breeds were selectively bred to fight to the death in a PIT, take down bulls, and kill.

  • Raygan Harding

    2 people have died from pitbulls this year 2018. 4 last month died from pitbulls. Pitbull kill other dog breeds as well. The only thing that works is bsl. How many more have to die before people listen.

  • James Duncan

    Animal control laws almost everywhere were established when the thought of a pet dog killing or maiming someone was outside of everyone’s experience. Young people tend to imagine that dog attack violence is normal, because they never knew a time when it was not. There’s no doubt that the violent aggression potential deliberately bred into pit bulls (Google “pit bull history”) can eventually be bred out just the same. However, it’s morally unacceptable that over years and decades, thousands of children, grownups, other pets, and various livestock animals must be mauled, often to death, for a pit bull genetic update experiment.

    In most settings, a pit bull may be a great companion, but outside of most settings they can abruptly do explosive, unprovoked, unpredictable attacks of unimaginable ferocity, with a rend, hold and shear bite style that cause severe injuries or death to the target prey. Google “pit bull attack” for daily reports. 39 Americans were mauled to death by pit bulls in 2017.

    • Lynne

      You need to do more research before you make statements like this! Pitties are a large grouping of dog breads, and anything that looks like a pit is labeled a pit. Per capita there are less pit attacks than lab attacks. At this time almost half the population of large dogs is consider a pit. It’s just such a sensationalized issue right now. We have been down this road before with doberman, rottweiler, and German Sheppard. Now it is pit Bulls. To segregate a bread of dog is akin to racial segregation. Guns don’t kill people, people kill people!!!!!

  • Susan Blais

    Bottom line/Facts are.. Breed Bans WORK for the safety of the overall Community. Breeds of dogs are divided into Groups which have genetic behaviours, traits, temperaments etc are all predetermined as to how each dog is judged/compared to its own specific breed standard. Example: Retrievers are from the Sporting Group genetically created to retrieve game/fowl from the field without damaging it back to the Hunter. Hounds hunt/track by sight or scent etc. Pit Bulls are from the Fighting Breed group GENETICALLY bred/designed to be most powerful in grip/hold to never release victim/prey until its death. Created by 2 different breeds of Terriers both possessing high, intense prey drives and tenacious attitudes coupled with extreme bone and muscle density. Pain receptors are transferred asa stimulant to their brain further releasing endorphin to spur attacks despite any physical trauma. Once this highest level of prey drive is triggered (which is never predicted/known) NOTHING stops the carnage it unleashes. This is plainly evident in the recent killings of 2017 by Pits alone and not including the mauling,, maiming and killing of innocent pets and people. Those that believe stiffer Leash Laws Anti Tethering,, better fencing/enclosures need to be installed/implemented most if not all Cities have those Laws/Ordinances in place but yet there’s still an attack on a pet or person at least every 3 days by Pits. Sadly, this situation has become a Pandemic and humans and other pets are literally being held hostage by these dogs which is utterly ridiculous! Fighting breed Dogs serve ZERO use/purpose in today’s Society and I think humans have shed enough blood for this breed far too long!

    • csunbean

      I agree 100 percent. The newborn child killed last Summer in Grand Rapids was adopted out from the Kent County Animal Shelter and showed no signs of aggression before it killed the newborn. Children deserve to be protected. Everyone deserves to be protected. The pediatricians and doctors that attend to human victims are all for bans, just as they were against big tobacco. Unfortunately CEO’s of big unscrupulous nonprofits make six figure salaries taking in donations for dogs and they spend it on humans. Because pitbulls are spayed and neutered at the lowest rates of all dogs, they need the pitbull craze to continue to keep themselves living high off the hog. They don’t care about pitbulls.

  • G

    Its owner training and owner behavior with the animal. My Mother n laws cat is 10 times more vicious then any of the Pitbulls I know! Just like your kids, Raise them right and let them experience the world and they will be alright with society!

  • Ann Marie Rogers

    Pit Bulls are the #1 canine killer of people, pets and livestock. More human fatalities have been attributed to pit bulls attacks than all other dog breeds combined. In 2017, 39 people were fatally mauled by pit bulls. Over 35,000 beloved pets were savagely mauled to death. Public safety should be the priority of legislators. We NEED BSL in every city and township in the state of Michigan to keep our communities safe from these horrific attacks. Pit Bulls were bred for a purpose and that purpose is illegal in 50 states. Wise up Michigan.

  • GGWG

    NO! This is a load of crap. People don’t need government telling them what kind of dog they may have.\
    The fact you waste so much of OUR time ( That’s right, YOU are OUR employees ) on stupid, unnecessary issues proves you have too much time on your hands. So please get busy on something real, something needed.
    Remember, we can make that part time gubment thingy come back to haunt you any time we the people care to.
    Thank you.