500 Pit Bulls Sterilized
San Francisco, CA - On August 28, 2007, the SF Gate reported the first results of the pit bull sterilization law. Prior to the passage of the law, pit bulls occupied three-quarters of the dog kennels at San Francisco's Animal Care and Control shelter. 18 months later, they only filled about one quarter. Since the new law, the number of pit bulls euthanized by the city has also dropped.
Animal Care and Control Director Carl Friedman said the city has impounded 21 percent fewer pit bulls since the law passed than during the previous year and a half. The number of pit bulls euthanized has dropped 24 percent. Friedman says fewer pit bulls are being abandoned to the pound because fewer are being born, thanks to the spay and neuter requirement.
Animal control officers have confiscated 38 pit bulls from owners who refused to comply with the law, Friedman said. About 500 pit bulls have been spayed or neutered in San Francisco in that time, he said. Animal Care and Control does the operations, as well as the SPCA and a free mobile clinic from the Peninsula Humane Society that visits the city twice a month.
Animal control officers issue a fix-it ticket to noncompliant dog owners, requiring that the pit bull be sterilized within two weeks. Officers also hand out information on low-cost and free surgeries. Officers follow up with visits to the owners who have not complied. A first violation can bring a $500 fine; more than one citation can put an owner in jail and result in the city seizing the dog.
Pit Bulls by the Numbers
Between February 1, 2006 (when the law took effect) and August 25, 2007:
- 250 fix-it tickets have been issued
- 204 citations have been issued
- 38 pit bulls or pit bull mixes have been seized
- About 500 pit bulls have been spayed or neutered
- Pit bull euthanizations dropped 24 percent
- Shelter occupany rates dropped from 3/4 to 1/4
09/01/08: Most Recent Pit Bull and Fatal Dog Attack Statistics
09/19/08: Snip the Pit Ordinance in Manteca Being Considered