Riverside County Considers Sterilizing Pit Bulls - New York News

Riverside County Considers Sterilizing Pit Bulls

Posted: Updated:
Riverside, CA -

(FOX 11) Three pit bull attacks in just three months was enough for the Riverside County Board of Supervisors to consider ways to mitigate the problem.

One idea? Spay and neuter all pit bull and pit bull mixes in the unincorporated areas of the county.

It's worked to reduce bite reports after a similar ordinance passed in other areas like San Francisco and San Bernardino counties.

And the chief vet at the county animal shelter says it may help reduce the pit bull population in the shelter.

Dr. Allan Drusys says more than 4,000 pit bulls we're in the shelter last year, most were not adopted and ultimately euthanized.

More On The Story:

(CNS) Riverside County supervisors today authorized the Department of Animal Services to proceed with drafting a proposed ordinance requiring owners of pit bulls to sterilize their dogs, with some exceptions, for the sake of public safety.

"We're not asking you to ban the breed," Animal Services Director Robert Miller told the Board of Supervisors. "We're asking for reasonable regulations to help us encourage people to do the right thing."

Animal control officers are called out to capture and impound all manner of vicious dogs, Miller said, but pit bulls are by far the worst type.

In just the first three months of 2013, at least three serious pit bull attacks have been reported countywide. One of the victims was mauled to death. All of the victims were women over 75 years old.

Supervisor John Tavaglione said he urged the Department of Animal Services to draw up proposed regulations targeting pit bull owners after an 84-year-old Jurupa Valley man was killed by a family pit while sitting in his wheelchair last year.

"I have no doubt there are many responsible dog owners," Tavaglione said. "But there are many in our communities who are not responsible with their dogs. Those are the ones we need to go after."

Miller said the pit bull population countywide ranged into the tens of thousands, while the total number of pit bulls licensed in the county is around 120.

"The population is out of control," he said. "Twenty percent of the dogs we impound are pit bulls and pit bull breeds. We deal with a lot of powerhouse' breeds. But pits do the worst damage."

He noted that the dogs are "over-muscular" and typically have "over-developed broad jaws" that allow for clamping down on a object or person for "a half-hour or hour."

According to Miller, the adoption rate on pit bulls in county shelters is the lowest of any breed. The vast majority are euthanized.

Beaumont City Councilwoman Brenda Knight told the board she had been attacked by pit bulls in two separate incidents.

"Something that doesn't get mentioned enough is that these dogs bite differently. They're like sharks," Knight said. "They rip, tear and shred. The attacks can be brutal."

Riverside-area resident Michelle Randall recalled how her Aussie shepherd was savaged by a neighbor's pit bull, which inflicted permanent injuries from which the woman's dog suffered for months before dying.

"Pit bulls are genetically engineered to fight," she told the board. "They may be `just the sweetest thing,' but at their genetic heart, they're bred for one purpose."

Pit bull owners countered that the dogs can be trained to be more aggressive, and it was unfair to broad-brush the breed as inherently vicious.

"You can sensationalize any breed," said Riverside resident Aurora Chavez. "It's not right to blame an innocent dog. Go after the owners. It's their responsibility to control the dog's behavior."

Michelle Chavez of Riverside, a pit bull breeder, said imposing mandatory sterilization would "promote underground dogs."

"People will hide the dogs or they'll dump the dogs," Chavez said. "We understand there's a problem. But there needs to be more education."

Each supervisor indicated he was amenable to an ordinance aimed at controlling the pit bull population. However, several supervisors insisted that any proposed regulation contain language specifically exempting some pit bull owners from a mandatory spay/neuter requirement, including individuals who use the canines as service dogs to cope with disabilities.

Supervisor Marion Ashley sought a "model ordinance" that cities might follow. A county ordinance would only apply to unincorporated communities.

"We'll come up with it and then go sell it," he said.    

Any proposed ordinance would be the subject of at least two public hearings before the board.

 

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Connecticut man charged in Yale hoax threat

    Connecticut man charged in Yale hoax threat

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 3:33 PM EDT2014-04-23 19:33:11 GMT
    New Haven police say they have charged a Westbrook with making a hoax call in November to say an armed man was heading to shoot up Yale University.
    Police say they have charged a Connecticut man with making a call in November in which he falsely claimed an armed man was on his way to shoot up Yale University. New Haven police said Wednesday that 50-year-old Jeffrey Jones, of Westbrook, has been charged with falsely reporting an incident, threatening, reckless endangerment, misuse of the emergency 911 system and breach of peace.
  • Camilla's brother dies in New York after head injury

    Camilla's brother dies in New York after head injury

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 3:10 PM EDT2014-04-23 19:10:58 GMT
    The brother of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, has died after sustaining a serious head injury following a fall in New York, British royal officials said Wednesday. Clarence House said that the 62-year-old Mark Shand died in the hospital Wednesday after falling late Tuesday.
    The brother of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, has died after sustaining a serious head injury following a fall in New York, British royal officials said Wednesday. Clarence House said that the 62-year-old Mark Shand died in the hospital Wednesday after falling late Tuesday.
  • Port Authority could rescind $1 NJ Transit lease

    Port Authority could rescind $1 NJ Transit lease

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 2:57 PM EDT2014-04-23 18:57:07 GMT
    NJ TransitNJ Transit
    The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is holding its monthly board meeting, two days after it heard from a panel on what it needs to do to improve its accountability and efficiency and restore public trust.
    The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey could rescind a $1-a-year lease for a park-and-ride lot near the Lincoln Tunnel. The agency's chief of real estate and development told a committee Wednesday that it should change a deal made in 2012. Published reports have alleged that former Port Authority chairman David Samson voted to approve the lease even though his law firm did business with New Jersey Transit, which operates the park-and-ride lot.
  • Share ThisMore>>

  • NYPD Twitter hashtag #myNYPD backfires

    NYPD Twitter hashtag #myNYPD backfires

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 11:12 AM EDT2014-04-23 15:12:14 GMT
    An NYPD plan intended to better connect with the community seems to have backfired. The police department asked its Twitter followers to share pictures of themselves with New York City police officers using the hashtag "myNYPD." Some did share nice pictures, but others decided to not "play nice, " sharing beating photos and more.
    An NYPD plan intended to better connect with the community seems to have backfired. The police department asked its Twitter followers to share pictures of themselves with New York City police officers using the hashtag "myNYPD." Some did share nice pictures, but others decided to not "play nice, " sharing beating photos and more.
  • Teen Okay after Hiding In Wheel Well Of Jet Bound For Hawaii

    Teen Okay after Hiding In Wheel Well Of Jet Bound For Hawaii

    Teen Okay after Hiding In Wheel Well Of Jet Bound For Hawaii

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 10:21 PM EDT2014-04-23 02:21:57 GMT
    Officials say a 16-year-old boy is "lucky to be alive" and unharmed after flying from California to Hawaii stowed away in a plane's wheel well, surviving cold temperatures at 38,000 feet and a lack of oxygen. "Doesn't even remember the flight," FBI spokesman Tom Simon in Honolulu told The Associated Press on Sunday night. "It's amazing he survived that." The boy was questioned by the FBI after being discovered on the tarmac at the Maui airport Sunday morning with no identification, Simon said...
    Officials say a 16-year-old boy is "lucky to be alive" and unharmed after flying from California to Hawaii stowed away in a plane's wheel well, surviving cold temperatures at 38,000 feet and a lack of oxygen. "Doesn't even remember the flight," FBI spokesman Tom Simon in Honolulu told The Associated Press on Sunday night. "It's amazing he survived that." The boy was questioned by the FBI after being discovered on the tarmac at the Maui airport Sunday morning with no identification, Simon said...
  • Anaheim's Wonderful WonderCon

    Anaheim's Wonderful WonderCon

    Monday, April 21 2014 10:58 AM EDT2014-04-21 14:58:42 GMT
    It was Easter weekend and while some Angelenos spent their time at Mass, there was a group of passionate people who showed up in mass to celebrate their favorite superheroes at the Anaheim WonderCon.
    It was Easter weekend and while some Angelenos spent their time at Mass, there was a group of passionate people who showed up in mass to celebrate their favorite superheroes at the Anaheim WonderCon.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices