State Prohibits Breed-Specific Laws
Pauls Valley, OK - A pit bull attack last week has galvanized a local group of citizens who want to see pit bulls banned from Pauls Valley. Doris Belicek was walking her small dog, Rufus, when three pit bulls snatched him from her. Belicek attempted to rescue Rufus but retreated when one of the pit bulls became aggressive toward her. Police officers responded and found the dogs with one of them still carrying Rufus.
The pit bulls were owned by Sabrina Briley, who has been cited for having loose dogs before. The officers retrieved Rufus and returned his body to Belicek. The incident has brought Martin and others in the community together to ban pit bulls. "We’re going to do whatever it takes to get these dogs out of our town," Martin said. "They are vicious animals and no one is really safe as long as they are in our community."
PV City Manager James Frizell states that Oklahoma Statutes prohibits cities from specifically banishing a breed of dog. According to Pauls Valley City Ordinances, a dog can be declared a nuisance, but not banned. Briley was given Animal at Large and Public Nuisance citations at the time of her arrest that day. Briley claims someone tampered with the gate on her fence which led to the dogs getting loose.
Last year State Rep. Paul Wesselhoft filed House Bill 1082, which would have returned the right to ban certain dogs to cities and towns. Unfortunately, the bill never made it to the House floor for a hearing.
09/22/08: Oklahoma: One State's Struggle with a Breed-Specific Prohibition