HSYC POSITION ON BREED SPECIFIC BANNING
The Humane Society of York County (HSYC) is an independent non- profit no kill facility focused on the humane treatment of domestic dogs and cats. Our goal is to place each pet that enters our rescue in a suitable home.
The HSYC is not aware of credible evidence that supports breed specific legislation. Such legislation claims to make communities safer for people or pets. In reality, evidence shows that breed specific legislation unfairly targets responsible pet guardians and well socialized dogs. Breed specific legislation does not address the root cause of safety issues.
The theory underlying breed-specific legislation implies that some breeds bite more often and cause more damage than others, thus a ban on specific breeds will decrease bite incidence and severity. In practice, breed-specific legislation has been an ineffective approach towards improving community and pet safety.
Any breed of dog may show aggression. Below are contributing factors that increase this risk:
- Lack of Socialization - isolation from people and other dogs
- Lack of Training - dog owners do not invest appropriate time in training including socialization of the dog
- Abuse and Neglect - physical abuse and mental abuse in addition to lack of sustenance, shelter, veterinary care and exercise will cause emotional and physical duress hence animal may become aggressive
- Unaltered Animals - dogs that have not been spayed or neutered may exhibit more aggressive behaviors
- Inhumane Treatment - Chaining and tethering that restrict movement and natural activities
Additionally, according to the National Animal Control Association “…breed specific legislation may create an undue burden to owners who otherwise have demonstrated proper pet management and responsibility. Agencies should encourage enactment and stringent enforcement of dangerous/vicious dog Laws.”
In summary, the Humane Society of York County does not support dog breed specific legislation. Aggressive behavior exhibited by dogs in our community stems from inhumane treatment by pet guardians; lack of compliance and enforcement of current animal protection laws in the State and County; and the lack of progressive animal protection legislation that supports a healthy and safe community. The following are examples of legislation that we support:
- Dangerous Dog Laws
- Anti-tethering Laws
- Leash Laws
- Breeding License Laws
- Dog License Laws
- Mandatory Sterilization