Breed specific legislation has been debated in Parliament this past week. Evidence was put forward for politicians to consider whether or not the law introduced hastily in 1991 should be kept or overturned.
A panel of experts gave their considered opinions on the legislation, particularly the element that makes certain dogs illegal on looks alone, regardless of whether they’ve actually done anything dangerous or not.
A huge number of dog experts have condemned breed specific legislation as a cruel, ineffective law that has seen many lives ruined and innocent dogs killed by the state. Dogs who, it has been openly admitted by the very people seeking to kill them, have never shown aggression or acting in a dangerous way at any point.
Well it would appear one particular organisation not only thinks breed specific legislation should be kept, they actually want MORE dogs added to the banned list.
In written submission to the committee Elisa Allen on behalf of PETA (People for the ethical treatment of animals) is keen to add your Staffy terrier to the list of breeds to be caught up in the BSL killing machinery of the British state.
“The failure to include Staffordshire terriers and American bulldogs, both pit bull–type dogs, in the Act has resulted in continued severe incidents of mauling by dogs of these breeds in the UK. It also creates a loophole that can lead the owners of prohibited breeds to misidentify their dogs as Staffordshire terriers or American bulldogs – or mixes of these breeds – on purpose. ”
She then goes on to cite an incident of a Staffordshire Bull Terrier that was involved in a high profile attack on a person as well as a report of a Staffordshire Bull Terrier that attacked and killed another dog.
You will need to read the entire piece for yourself before you make your mind up:
BSL has failed. It has failed to protect the public. It has failed to protect dogs. It has lead to deaths of people and deaths of innocent dogs and it costs the tax payers MILLIONS of pounds. The state is routinely seizing people’s dogs because of what they look like.
So PETA’s position is that more dogs should be added to the list?
Staffordshire Bull Terriers, in fact all well socialised, properly cared for dogs from the bullbreed family are some of the most loving, loyal and even tempered dogs on the planet. A call to have them all banned is, quite frankly, astonishing. Millions of people own these dogs. Millions of good people who love their dogs dearly.
Banning dog breeds neither works in practice or theory. The reasons are well known and we’ve had more than a quarter of a century of breed specific legislation to learn whether or not this cruel law solves the problem of irresponsible dog ownership or not. The answer is, unequivocally NO. Adding more breeds to a ban list would create carnage. Carnage for police, the courts and total devastation to the lives of the people who own, love and care for these dogs.
PETA clearly has the opinion that Pit Bulls are an inherently bad, dangerous dog breed. That much is obvious. And now they would like the Government to come for your Staffies too.
The Kennel Club disagrees with BSL.
The RSPCA disagrees with BSL.
The Dogs Trust disagrees with BSL.
The BVA disagress with BSL.
Up to now it’s been very, very difficult to find any credible voices who support the legislation. And let me totally clear about this, PETA is NOT a credible voice. They are a voice, yes. A loud one. But for an organisation that kills as many healthy animals as they do, true animal welfare advocates all over the world have raised serious concerns about what PETA actually stands for.
If you care about dogs. If you care about YOUR dog. Write to your MP today and ask them to listen to the experts on BSL. Online petitions, polls and the like are all well and good but you need to write to your MP and tell them that this is a subject you care about, that it matters to you what your MP does in terms of animal welfare legislation.
In super simple terms, we only need to ask ourselves one question: is it right that dogs should be seized, locked up and potentially killed purely because of what they happen to look like? If you think the answer to that is no, then PETA is not your friend and your MP owes you an explanation as to where they stand on the issue. Write to them today. Do it now. Please.