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11 thoughts on “2015 Dog Bite Fatality: Visiting Child Killed by Father's Pit Bull-Type Dog in Miami-Dade County

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  1. Parents are going to be jailed for not allowing their kids to visit family in court mandated visitation cases.. There needs to be acknowledgement of the public safety threats of these dogs so parents can deny visitation if a pitbull is present. Miami Dade needs to get sued by this mom and other victims as the government leaders are openly ignoring their responsibility to oversea animal services and make sure the laws are followed. They should not get a dime of their salaries as they are not doing their jobs.

  2. According to their own "About Us" page, Miami-Dade Animal Services was originally part of the Public Safety Department. In 2001, the Police Department took over. Then in late 2005 Animal Services was removed from police and made independent.

    Their stated 'core goals' are now: dealing with animal cruelty, "focused care for the County's animal population", "caring for animals in [our] custody", and "to reunite lost pets with their owners and find life-long homes for as many animals as possible, while providing proper care during their stay".

    Stop and think about this for a sec. This means that Animal Services is fulfilling its core function by obscuring the fact that this killer dog is a pit bull mix, thus protecting it from Dade's popular pit bull ban. If they try to reunite it with its owner or with some other life-long home, they will be doing what they are supposed to do.

    As the "About Us" statement indicates, Dade government has chosen to leave constituents without any agency dedicated to protecting the public from dangerous animals — not the Health Department, not police, and not this thing called 'Animal Services'. They handed what used to be Animal Control over to a crowd of pit bull fans, removing the public health and safety role as they did so. Miami-Dade Animal Services isn't supposed to protect human residents — it's officially supposed to protect the mauler that just grabbed your child.

    It's a sad state of affairs, and I hope Dade voters are soon outraged enough to put a stop to it.

  3. Equally as guilty are every single person that knew this dog was in this home. A successful Ban needs community awareness and involvement. Every relative, neighbor, mailmen, utility Workers, friends, even passersby that knew this dog was living there, should have reported this Pit Bull to A/C and the Police, so it would have been removed. Because they chose to look the other way, to ignore the law, ignore the ban, they all just killed a two-year old. Shame on all of them/

  4. Agreed Richard. Any DBF is terrible, but I'm especially upset when I hear of them in locations with well-known pit bans. Whatever shelter/breeder whoever sold this dog knowing of the ban is responsible for this child's death as well as the person who bought it.

    Miami-Dade needs to be much stricter with their pit ban. No shelter should have pits for sale and they all need to be regularly investigated to ensure that they're not pushing any dangerous dogs out in the public. Anyone seen with a pit needs to be reported immediately. There is no reason for there to be any deaths by pit in an area with a pit ban.

  5. Richard and Bailey — Yes, the public needs to be outraged and demand enforcement. But this will be difficult as long as Animal Services is in the hands of people dedicated to protecting above all pit bull type dogs.

    If the public calls police, police refer them to Animal Services. Animal Services is then responsible for deciding whether a dog is a pit bull as defined by the ordinance, which you can see here:

    Or the whole code here, scroll to the bottom of page 20:

    As this case illustrates, Dade Animal Services is quick to call a pit bull something else, even when owners, neighbors, and any reasonably intelligent citizen sees that the thing is a pit bull. This is blatantly illegal behavior on the part of Animal Services, as this section of the code indicates:

    Sec. 5-17.5. – Enforcement.
    It shall be the duty and responsibility of all Miami-Dade County Animal Control Officers to enforce the provisions of this article.

    You're right that citizens who look away and don't demand enforcement are guilty too. But the people with blood really dripping from their hands are first of all Animal Services and second of all lazy fat-cat politicians.

    The decisive voice of voters hasn't impressed Dade officials. It looks to me like the Dade ordinance does give room to sue the county for its deadly non-enforcement. I'm posting this information here in the hope that some readers will pick up on it and be encouraged to demand enforcement of the ban.

  6. But, if Animal Services don't acknowledge that it is a pit bull, then they don't have to do anything about it. They're saying it was a bull dog. No difference to you and I, but legally, if someone reported it, they could just play the name game and deny it's a pit. If Animal Services deny it's pitiness, then, even if the mom complained that it was dangerous, she would still have to let the child go there for visitation. Reporting does no good if the officials are protecting the dog.

  7. All the ownets have to do is say it's a bull dog not a pit and call peoples bluff. Many people don't realize there are typically caveats to legislation that state 'any dog of breed type or description is likewise restricted/banned'

    Its why I still see many pits here in Australia and combined with animal control and shelters that are blind (deliberately or not) to the reality of the pit type dogs then the owners just fly under the radar some having been told that the new pup they purchased is not banned because it's not a 'pit bull'.

    Meanwhile more kids and pets get hurt.

  8. If Miami-Dade found itself on the receiving end of some breed-specific LITIGATION, watch that breed-specific LEGISLATION. It will start being enforced to the letter.

  9. I'm sick and tired of this breed name game BS. Anyone with the slightest knowledge of dog breeds can tell if a dog has bully breed blood in it. They know exactly what they're buying when they walk out a shelter with a bulldog/boxer/terrier mix labeled pit. The only time they try to hide it when it's inconvenient for them.

    I saw a woman on a dog forum who was talking about how she was going through the process of buying a dog from a shelter. She also mentioned frequently how she loved bully breeds and that's what she was looking for. Eventually she gets the dog that's obviously part pit. Oh, but once her neighbors start complaining of a pit suddenly the dog is a "lab mix" because "that's what the shelter called it". But once she's back on the forums, she and the other members are cooing about her "sweet, little pittie". Disgusting.

    Miami-Dade and all other shelters around the world that are mislabeling pits should be ashamed of themselves. As well as the people that knowingly buy them and try to hide their breeds with the stupid "mix" label. This is ridiculous and needs to stop.

  10. I know way too many firefighters that say, if it looks like a pitbull, it is a pitbull. How is it that firefighters would have so much wisdom on this subject? Could it be that they witness first hand the horror and pain of pitbull domestication. If the bully was bred out, it probably wouldn't look like a Pitbull anymore.

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