Fighting Dogs No Longer Dangerous?

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

Tallahassee, Florida - May 5, 2011 -

A bill designed to make animals trained or used for dog fighting more adoptable is going to Gov. Rick Scott.

The House voted 99-17 for the measure (SB 722) on Wednesday. It
previously passed the Senate.

Fighting dogs no longer would be automatically classified as
dangerous.

Existing law puts special requirements on dangerous dogs. That
includes being registered and confined in securely fenced areas
posted with warning signs.

The bill also would let shelters adopt out dogs without
informing new owners of their fighting history.

Rep. Charles Van Zant, a Keystone Heights Republican, argued
against the bill. He said it makes no sense and "needs to die the
death of the fighting dog."

Supporters said the dogs would be evaluated for safety before
being adopted out.


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  • by I'M NOT SURE on May 5, 2011 at 03:03 PM
    i'm not sure if I would adopt a dog who had a history of fighting. One they get a taste of blood they always want it. That's my opinion only because I have seen two dogs maul another dog to death then actually start to eat it as if it were normal. I'm sure had they been raised as family pets like normal then the incident of them mauling something or someone would have been less likely. I have a mutt I got from the loal shelter and if she mauled something or became increasingly aggresive I would have to give her up not only for the safety of my family but for the safety of my guests as well. I would feel guilty and I wouldn't want to be stuck with someone else's medical bills.
  • by Punish the Deed Location: Florida on May 5, 2011 at 09:11 AM
    The bill removes from the automatic designation of "dangerous dog" any dog that was part of a dogfighting ring. This would include females who are used solely for breeding and any puppies that are being prepped for fighting, but have never been fought. Further, if you read "The Lost Dogs" about the Vick dogs, many of these "fighting" dogs refused to fight and were killed in horrific ways. These dogs deserve a chance at a normal life, but only after a comprehensive individual evaluation by behavioral specialists (which from what I understand this bill contemplates). This isn't some secret plan to infiltrate shelters and rescues with dogs that are actually vicious. It it to sift out the dogs who had no choice in the matter and would actually be much happier in a loving home. I have rescued one pit who was rescued from an abusive situation (had his ears cut off with scissors-or some other sharp object-was starved and kept on a logging chain) and he is sweet and, more than anything else, grateful. This bill asks us to stop doing to dogs what we shouldn't do to people--judge by appearance or circumstance.
    • reply
      by Agree on May 5, 2011 at 10:01 AM in reply to Punish the Deed
      Agree
    • reply
      by Voice of Reason on May 5, 2011 at 11:55 AM in reply to Punish the Deed
      I don't know how it works with other animal shelters, but our local won't adopt out certain breeds no matter what their history. They consider it too great a liability.
    • reply
      by DogMom on May 5, 2011 at 12:16 PM in reply to Punish the Deed
      Thank you so very much for your articulate response. Where the Vick dogs are concerned, only two of the rescued dogs had to be put down. All the rest either went to a refuge or were reformed and adopted to families. These dogs should be given the chance at a new life, not put down.
  • by Voice of Reason Location: Florida on May 5, 2011 at 07:57 AM
    And when shelters get sued by people who are injured by dogs they weren't told had a fighting history, will the Legislature pony up the money to cover the expenses?
  • by Matthew Location: Mayo on May 5, 2011 at 07:54 AM
    You have to be kidding me! A fighting dog is no longer dangerous? I suppose Charles Manson isnt either. Once a killer always a killer.
    • reply
      by Truth on May 5, 2011 at 10:01 AM in reply to Matthew
      probably not dangerous to humans just other animals
      • reply
        by Matthew on May 5, 2011 at 12:28 PM in reply to Truth
        I would agree to an extent that other animals are in more danger, but humans are as well. Especially children.
  • by RealDogOwner on May 5, 2011 at 07:52 AM
    they def need to let people about the dog's history that could be disaster. Inform them so they are able to take the necessary precautions to keep the animal away from situations of risk.
    • reply
      by Steve on May 5, 2011 at 08:42 AM in reply to RealDogOwner
      Totally agree
  • by Wilhem Location: Tallahassee on May 5, 2011 at 07:46 AM
    I agree, this will be a huge problem if someone receives a dog and it mauls them. Bad policy. But in Missouri Republicans are fighting a law that prevents breeders from selling sick dogs.
  • by AB Location: Ga on May 5, 2011 at 06:56 AM
    I agree that some dogs that have been fought can be adoptable, but it is wrong to conceal that history from the people taking it into their home.
    • reply
      by anon on May 5, 2011 at 09:20 AM in reply to AB
      I agree it shouldn't be concealed. but it doesn't say that shelters CAN'T tell the new owners. My guess is that they will share the history 99.9% of the time...it just isn't a requirement.
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