In response, San Bernardino County wants to castrate all Pit Bulls and Pit Bull Mixes.
My response would be - do whatever San Bernardino is doing, because hey! they only have 6 attacks every six months!!
Except that isn't true, of course. The Press-Enterprise is lying to you. True fact!
Actually, San Bernardino is lying to you. Here's what I assume is what the Press-Enterprise is using for their story.
First Claim: In the past five years, there have been four dog-bite related fatalities, ALL attributed to Pit Bulls:
* 2006, Phelan, San Bernardino County: A man who trespassed with his girlfriend onto the property of a meth lab was killed by the 8 Pit Bull Mixed breed guard dogs living there.
* 2007, Yerma, San Bernardino County: A woman walking was attacked by four dogs. The dogs were owned by a man who had multiple, previous complaints against him and these four dogs. Apparently, SB Animal Control didn't do much. The dogs are first identified as Pit Bulls, then Pit Bull mixes, then Pit Bull types, then breed isn't mentioned.
* 2010, San Bernardino A toddler was killed by a resident Pit Bull who had been with the family 3.5 months. The father had left the child alone with two dogs, he was killed by one. The dogs are not pets. They lived in a backyard their entire lives.
* 2010, Apple Valley, San Bernardino County, A toddler is killed by the family's Pit Bull after the child is left alone in the backyard together with the dog.
Second Claim: In the past six-months there have been a grand total of six vicious dog attacks, all by Pit Bulls:
* This includes the two fatalities.
* The other four attacks?
- See above - 5 mixed breed dogs, none of whom were Pit Bulls, several had merle coloring (not a APBT coloring) escaped and mauled three children.
- 1 dog-dog attack fatality
- 1 dog-dog attack
- 1 attack by 3-loose dogs, identified as Pit Bulls
But the heart of the claim is that there have only been six vicious dog attacks in San Bernardino County, and only by Pit Bulls.
From 2008-2009, there were 686 dog bites. 20% were from dogs identified as Pit Bulls, but as we have already seen, officials in San Bernardino county have a problem identifying Pit Bulls.
Apparently none of those victims qualify as "vicious enough" to be included in San Bernardino's attack on the testicles and uteruses of dogs who look a certain way. If only they had been bitten by possible Pit Bulls, then they too could have been in the news. As it stands, none of them got their chance at 15 minutes of fame. If it isn't a Pit Bull, it just isn't sexy enough to sell.
I'm not sure what San Bernardino is attempting to do with their proposed legislation. They are not going to reduce dog bites. They are not going to improve public safety. They are probably not going to put much of a dent in the Pit Bull population, either. Places with BSL, contrary to what certain anti-dog zealots might say, don't see improved public safety, don't see money well spent, don't see elimination of Pit Bulls or biting Pit Bulls. But places like Calgary do. Why emulate a systemic failure when there are paragons of success easily available?