Another California town targets pit bulls
Pasadena, CA - Following in the footsteps of San Francisco, Pasadena wants to mandate sterilization of pit bull type dogs. City Council staffers are writing the ordinance now. Penalties for dog owners violating the law would range from a citation to a misdemeanor, according to city documents.
The law takes advantage of SB 861, a state Senate bill passed in 2005 that allows cities to regulate dogs based on breed. The law was proposed by state Sen. Jackie Speier, D-San Francisco, after the pit bull mauling death of a 12-year-old Bay Area boy Scott Fabish.
Pasadena's new ordinance was prompted by last summer's incident in Bungalow Heaven, where four pit bulls ran loose until police officers shot two of the animals to death. Many residents around Mountain Street and Michigan Avenue, the scene of last year's pit bull escape, expressed support for the new law.
Despite mandatory sterilization being affirmative for the dog and the community, groups still oppose it. The Coalition for Human Advocates of K9s and Owners (CHAKO), is suing the city of San Francisco over its pit bull sterilization law. The lawsuit says it lacks an exemption for disabled owners of service dogs. Pasadena's proposed ordinance also does not exclude service dogs.
Glendale Councilman Bob Yousefian said he hopes Pasadena's actions will spur similar laws in neighboring cities. In 2005, Yousefian tried unsuccessfully to enact a breed-specific sterilization law in his city following the highly publicized mauling death of a 2-year-old Glendale girl by her grandparents' Rottweiler.
"Maybe, if Pasadena passes this, then my colleagues on the council will get the courage to do the same," said Yousefian.