Warehousing active pit bull terriers like unwanted merchandise—as will likely happen if Mayor Paul Dyster's proposed pit bull shelter is built—is cruel and does nothing to address these dogs' overpopulation.
Locked in a cage day after day, dogs—especially extremely energetic and athletic dogs such as pit bulls—become depressed, withdrawn, hyperactive, and even aggressive. Many dogs who are kept constantly caged lose their minds and spin endlessly or slam themselves against the sides of their cage. Meanwhile, pit bulls who remain in the community continue to be neglected, fought, abused, and bred—creating even more unwanted dogs.
Instead of building facilities to store pit bulls, Niagara Falls should work at the root of the problem by passing progressive mandatory spay/neuter legislation. Such laws have made a lifesaving difference in other communities: In an August 2007 interview, San Francisco's Animal Care and Control director reported that the city shelter had impounded 21 percent fewer pit bulls since the city passed a mandatory pit bull sterilization law in 2006. The number of pit bulls euthanized had also reportedly dropped by 24 percent.
Pit bulls are abused based exclusively on their breed. Providing protections to and regulating them based on their breed is not only fair, but essential. To learn more, visit www.PETA.org.