Pit bulls aren’t bad
Re “We know how to keep pit bulls on a leash, but homeless campers aren’t going to like it” (Editorials, May 9): It’s not just homeless campers who don’t appreciate the solution proposed in your recent editorial.
All dogs owned by all Sacramentans are required to be on leash in public, unless off-leash activity is expressly authorized, such as at a dog park. In my Elmhurst neighborhood, I witness dogs owned by my neighbors running off-leash regularly, often creating unnecessary risks for those dogs, our neighbors, motorists and other animals.
And, unfortunately, it’s the majority of Sacramento dog owners who don’t license their dogs or keep up with rabies vaccinations in accordance with state law.
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There is no evidence that our homeless neighbors own certain dog types or violate the leash and licensing laws at any greater rate than the rest of us. Pit bull-type dogs are among the most popular dogs because they often make excellent family pets. There are also, sadly, too many turned in to area shelters. I checked in with my friends at the Front Street Shelter today and learned that of the 2,083 dog bites reported to the city of Sacramento in the last three years, only 17 of them occurred on the parkway involving homeless people.
The way to keep people and dogs safe in Sacramento is to continue to mete out even-handed and appropriate enforcement of our leash and licensing laws, and to respond promptly and fairly to concerns about potentially dangerous dogs in our midst – wherever they live and whoever they belong to. Taking disproportionate and mean-spirited actions against the most vulnerable pet owners in our community is not the solution.
Jennifer Fearing, Sacramento
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