Pet Professional Guild releases position statement on Breed Specific Legislation
This new statement reflects alarm at the number of dogs being seized or banned purely because of how they look with no regard for individual behavior, living environment, or owner suitability
Scientists, canine behavior and training professionals, animal welfare associations and veterinary behavior bodies worldwide have all contributed to the debate, and much literature is available detailing the reasons why BSL is ineffective in dog bite prevention and does not improve the safety of the public at large. In its position statement, PPG announces its opposition of any law or regulation that discriminates against dogs purely because of their breed or appearance, stating that a neutral approach should be taken to evaluate dogs on an individual basis, focusing on behavior and environment rather than appearance. PPG also states that "[s]ingling out specific breeds as dangerous provides the public with an unfair perception of those dogs while potentially creating a false sense of safety as far as other dogs are concerned." In fact, studies have shown that a lack of appropriate care, supervision and mistreatment of a dog are key components in many dog bite occurrences, regardless of breed. PPG holds that, in place of BSL, a combination of educating the public, dog owners, shelters, and rescue organizations;
"BSL is intended to improve public safety and reduce the number of dogs bites, yet the practice includes little, if any, assessment of individual behavior or environment, owner knowledge of canine behavior and training, and/or owner suitability as a dog guardian, not to mention the fact that many dogs are inaccurately labeled simply because of the way they look," said PPG founder and president, Niki Tudge. "PPG's role is to educate and engage more pet professionals and pet owners, promoting the science-based, result-based force-free message, philosophy and training practices. I believe that this same goal should be applied to all pets and this is why this position statement is so important. Research shows us that all animals learn in the same way and that each animal is an individual regardless of its breed. Many of our professional members interact, either personally or professionally, with many, if not all, of the breeds affected by BSL and will bear witness to the fact that animal learning is not breed specific. BSL does not address this at all."
PPG's position statement includes a host of quotes from canine behavior and training experts, veterinary behavior associations, canine research scientists and international animal welfare bodies who all agree that BSL is ineffective and outline the many reasons why this is so, backed up by professional research and scientific studies. Read the complete statement here.
About The Pet Professional Guild
The Pet Professional Guild is a 501(c)6 member organization founded on the principles of force-free training and pet care. Its membership represents pet industry professionals who are committed to force-free training, pet care philosophies, practices and methods. Pet Professional Guild members understand force-free to mean: no shock, no pain, no choke, no fear, no physical force and that no compulsion-based methods are employed to train or care for a pet.
About Breed Specific Legislation
Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) is a law or legal ordinance that restricts or prohibits the ownership of certain breeds (or types) of dogs. It usually affects "pit bull" type dogs, although the breeds targeted vary in different countries, states or counties. American pit bull terriers, American Staffordshire terriers, American bulldogs, Staffordshire bull terriers and English bull terriers are often included in the "pit bull group," wherein the term "pit bull" is used generically for a number of closely related breeds such as these. In many cases, dogs who are thought to be "pit bull" type because of their appearance are inaccurately labeled. Other breeds that often find themselves the target of BSL include the Rottweiler, mastiff, chow chow, German shepherd, Doberman pinscher, filo Brasileiro, dogo Argentino, presa Canaria and Japanese tosa.
Page Updated Last on: Aug 02, 2016