Pit Bull Terrier Initiatives

Pit Bull Initiatives

Pit bull terriers experience everything from media bias to legislation designed to exterminate them. Best Friends' pit bull terrier initiatives work to restore these pets to the love and dignity they deserve by changing their image, battling breed discrimination, speaking out for the victims of animal cruelty, and supporting programs to decrease the high number of pit bull terriers languishing in shelters.

We draft and lobby for laws that protect communities from reckless owners and dangerous dogs. Best Friends opposes breed-discriminatory legislation (also called breed-specific legislation, BSL), which arbitrarily targets particular dogs because of their appearance or breed. Canine profiling is not only ineffective at improving community safety, it is extremely expensive to enforce and a waste of tax dollars and lives.

Best Friends works nationwide with local groups and government officials to draft laws and policies to ensure canine victims of dog fighting are treated as individuals and given the opportunity to be adopted or placed with appropriate organizations rather than automatically killed.

Twenty-two of the dogs confiscated from NFL player Michael Vick's dog-fighting operation were welcomed to our Sanctuary. Care, training and TLC have allowed them to overcome their past and help change America's perception of former fighting dogs. Nine of them have been adopted and live with other pets.

Recent legislative victories include spearheading Ohio House Bill 14, repealing the only statewide breed-discriminatory law in the nation, as well as drafting and lobbying for Florida Senate Bill 722, which removed the stigma that all dogs seized in fighting busts are "dangerous" and allows shelters to evaluate and adopt them out or place them with rescue groups.

Additionally, Best Friends hosts Neighborhood Pit Bull Days, where free vaccinations, microchips and sterilizations are offered for pit bull terriers.

All dogs, no matter their appearance or heritage, are individuals and deserving of love and compassion. Help us to Save Them All by joining us in the effort to end breed discrimination.