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Denver overturns ban on pit bulls

heidiho
June 30th, 2005, 02:03 PM
Denver City Council member Rosemary Rodriguez shivers at the sight of American pit bull terriers.

"Yesterday I was at the park and I saw a guy walking two of them and I just got a little scared," Rodriguez said. "I think that they're different, their bodies and jaws are different so if you train them to be mean they're dangerous and there are people training them to be mean."

Fifteen years ago a child was mauled to death in Rodriguez's district, and ever since, Rodriguez has been in favor of Denver's Pit Bull Ban. The ban was overturned last week when Gov. Bill Owens signed legislation that held owners of specific dogs accountable for their dogs' actions, not owners of specific breeds.

Cary Rentola, marketing and community events manager for the Larimer Humane Society, said Fort Collins is lucky never to have dealt with any specific breed bans.

"We definitely favor the overturning of the ban in Denver. Many times it's the owner and the way the owner raised the dog," Rentola said. "There are bad dogs in every breed but in general the pits that we see have very good dispositions. Each dog in each breed is different."

Rentola said when the Denver ban was in effect, the Larimer Humane Society would often receive dogs transferred from Denver to avoid euthanasia, or putting the dog to sleep.

Rentola said Larimer Humane Society euthanized a total of 816 dogs in 2003, usually because of behavioral problems, food aggression, aggression toward a gender, medical condition or due to court order, but never because of the dogs' breeds.


Jesse McLain/The Collegian Chris Schmidt shows the strength of his two-year-old pit bull, Kalua.

Chris Schmidt thinks his dog disproves all the stereotypes.

Schmidt has owned 2-year-old Kalua, an American Pit Bull Terrier, ever since he found the more than a year ago east of Fort Collins.

"She was really scared and timid," Schmidt said. "I called the pound and the guy who owned her had a bad history with the humane society so I got to keep her."

Schmidt learned that Kalua's original owner intended to breed pit bulls and take them to Mexico to fight, but Schmidt hasn't seen a fighting side of Kalua since he has owned the dog.

"I think the news is singling out pit bulls as the terror of all breeds and that is kind of ridiculous," Schmidt said. "I've got a pit bull and it's never bit anybody. My neighbor has a blue heeler and it's bit someone twice."

However, according to dogbitelaw.com, pit bull mixes and Rottweilers are the most likely to kill and seriously maim, but Schmidt said the only time Kalua has ever shown aggression is when someone tried to hit Schmidt.

"Somebody took a swing at me and she nipped up just to let him know she was there," Schmidt said. "We take her to the dog park all the time and see no aggression whatsoever. My mom dog-sits and she breeds miniature dachshunds and she has no problems with her."

Kalua had one litter of two puppies, and Kalua's daughter Kaya still lives next door with Schmidt's neighbor Eligh Formanek. Formanek said he has never encountered a discipline problem with Kaya either. Schmidt believes that no matter what the dog's breed is, the owner is responsible for its behavior.

"If you don't train a dog it will turn out bad, I don't care what kind of dog it is," Schmidt said. "(Kalua) is very smart and very protective."

Although Kalua is not aggressive, the dog's strength and the strength of the American pit bull terrier breed in general, is undeniable.

"If they bite something they don't let go, it's not that they can't let go it's that they want to hold on," Schmidt said. "Pit bulls have a lot of upper-body strength, too."

Just the mere presence of 45-pound Kalua has sent at least one person running in fear before, but for the most part Kalua has befriended everyone with whom she has come into contact, Schmidt said.

"I did have a UPS guy take off running on me before," said Schmidt, who had told the mailman that Kalua was cool and harmless. "He said, 'I've been bitten three times before by dogs who were supposedly cool.'"




Denver overturns ban on pit bulls
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05/04/2004 I also own an American Pit Bull...

sammiec
June 30th, 2005, 02:09 PM
This is a really old story I think. The ban was overturned and is now in effect again... :confused:

heidiho
June 30th, 2005, 02:22 PM
So They Are Banned There???????????

sammiec
June 30th, 2005, 02:33 PM
They banned them in the 90's and then overturned the ban last year I think, now they are banned again... I am almost positive about that...

heidiho
June 30th, 2005, 02:36 PM
wHAT HAPPENS TO PEOPLE THAT ALREADY HAVE A PITBULL THEN??

sammiec
June 30th, 2005, 02:38 PM
In Denver, they have had to get the out of the city limits. There was an article here a bit ago about the Pitbull Underground railroad.

heidiho
June 30th, 2005, 02:45 PM
wowwwwwwwwww/// I WILL HAVE TO READ THAT//////////

Angeleyes1437
June 30th, 2005, 03:14 PM
Wow... I actually got happy for a second :(

heidiho
June 30th, 2005, 03:32 PM
oops sorry..................

Angeleyes1437
June 30th, 2005, 03:35 PM
lol... don't be sorry. Now I know a little about how I will feel when we overturn BSL in general! :)