You can now own pit bulls in Denver as city ends its 30-year-old ban on 'umbrella breed'

The new code was passed with 7-4 vote and it will take effect in 90 days

                            You can now own pit bulls in Denver as city ends its 30-year-old ban on 'umbrella breed'
(Getty Images)

In a massive win for pit bulls in Denver, the City Council has ended a three-decade-old ban on the dogs in a welcome move. The new code was passed on February 11 with a 7-4 vote. The new law will take effect in 90 days. 

Now, to own a pit bull in Denver, the residents have to register the dog with the Denver Animal Protection (DAP) and get a breed restricted license. To get the license, they have to provide an accurate description of the dog, name, and address for the dog along with two emergency contacts, the Council said in a tweet. Along with this, the animal has to have its rabies vaccination up to date, have to be microchipped and spayed or neutered. There is also an annual fee to be paid for the license.

Residents can have up to two pit bulls per household. ASPCA has welcomed the move saying in a statement, "All dogs, including pit bulls, are individuals. Treating them as such, providing them with the care, training, and supervision they require, and judging them by their actions and not by their DNA or their physical appearance is the best way to ensure that dogs and people can continue to share safe and happy lives together." They added, "laws that ban particular breeds of dogs do not achieve these aims and instead create the illusion, but not the reality, of enhanced public safety."

“Breed-specific legislation has a track record of not only not working in other cities, but actually making it more dangerous. You tend to have more dog bites in cities with BSL because there’s this false sense of security that’s built up by owners of other breeds,” Shira Hereld, the co-founder of Replace Denver BSL said while speaking to CBS Denver.

The earlier code considered pit bull, which is not a breed, as an umbrella term to refer to the American Staffordshire Terrier, American Bully, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and any mixed breed dog with similar traits. The ban against these dogs has been slammed by animal welfare organizations for years. The new law was tweeted by the official City Council handle.

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