May 16th, 2012 By Hannah McCartney | News | Posted In: City Council

Cincinnati Pit Bull Ban Repealed

Breed-specific legislation repealed after nine years

Pit bulls can legally put their paws on Cincinnati ground today for the first time in nine years. After a long, arduous battle for dog lovers and Cincinnati animal welfare advocates, success has arrived. Today, Cincinnati City Council voted 8-1 to officially repeal the breed-specific language in Cincinnati's vicious dog ordinance, which previously made ownership of pit bulls within city limits illegal. Read CityBeat's coverage about the old ban here.

"It's fantastic. It's been a long effort, but we've had some great supporters from all across the country ... that's had an overwhelming affect on Council. Dog owners, of pit bulls or not, have flooded Council with requests to change the law," said Jim Tomaszewski, SPCA Cincinnati trustee and one of the main forces lobbying for the removal of the breed-specific language.

The amendments to Section 701-1-V of the Cincinnati Municipal code completely remove breed-specific terminology, meaning today marks the first day since 2003 in which ownership of pit bulls within Cincinnati city limits is officially legal.

Today, City Council also assigned the following members to the Task Force for the Humane Treatment of Animals, which will recommend future amendments and strategies to further promote responsible animal care and humane animal treatment in city limits:

• Veterinarian - Dr. Tamara Goforth, Veterinarian for the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA)

• Representative from SPCA Cincinnati - Jim Tomaszewski, SPCA Cincinnati Trustee

• Representative from the animal rescue community - Elizabeth Johnson, Executive Director, Ohio Alleycat Resource & Spay/Neuter Clinic

• Representative fro the City Prosecutor's Office - to be chosen by John Curp, City Solicitor

• Representative from the Cincinnati Police Department - to be chosen by Chief James Craig

05.16.2012 at 05:42 Reply

Congratultions to all involved!  Wonderful news!  Now please help us do the same thing in Ontario! :) !


05.16.2012 at 06:52

Let the maulings begin!


Seriously, for every nice pitbull friendly nerd out there that wants to look tough by having a pitbull there are 40 thugs that are going to perpetuate the exact problem that created the ban. whos going to regulate the owners?


Chihuahuas may bit more frequently but pitbulls kill. Annihilate the species!


05.16.2012 at 06:59

This is excellent!! I am so freaking happy!!!!  This keep this movement going and have this move towards Denver!!!!! As for Tyrone Wheatly, maybe you should do some research before you open your big mouth and look like a complete jackass infront of the world for something you no nothing about.


05.16.2012 at 07:59

Congratulations to Cincinnati. It seems as though, little bit by bit, people are beginning to realize that BSL does not work and that humans are the primary issue.


05.16.2012 at 08:18

Tyrone, I'm sorry you feel that way. However, you have your numbers completely switched around. Based on simple google searches (puppies for sale), looking at petfinder, and looking at humane/animal control organizations' estimates on how many they euthanize every year (roughly 2.5 million) that means there is a HUGE population.

Considering there's such a large population and dog bites are actually pretty uncommon, we can safely say the majority will never attack anyone.


05.16.2012 at 08:25

I also have a very large number of articles on Pits saving lives, and none on Pits hurting anyone...ty, and come again please.


05.16.2012 at 11:29

About time. I live in NKY, and I am finally able to take my puppy to some of the nice areas in downtown, and do not have to worry about the police department, or a fine and having my dog taken away.


05.17.2012 at 05:02

And any dog big enough can kill. Not just pits. Now you're just throwing old fashioned archaic fear into the equation. The idea was to get over this rediculous and outdated mentality. Trigger happy cops kill more than these dogs and it's growing more and more common.  I fear the cops more than any breed of dog. 


05.17.2012 at 07:57

Tears of Joy for all of you and fur friends alike here from Markstay, Ontario, Canada.  We are trying hard to repeal same here  in Ontario...please help us win same battle here..with  many places all over the world starting to repeal this very unfair and unjust law ...hopefully Ontario will follow suit.


Again Congrats !!!!!   now everyone including Pitties can rejoice :)


05.17.2012 at 10:28
Tyrone, that is the most ignorant response I have seen! It is clearly you are NOT dog person! It is clearly that you do not know the breed and it is CLEARLY that you let your judgement be highly influenced by the media! Shame on you!


05.17.2012 at 12:04

What a huge victory in the fight against BSL and the fight supporting responsible dog ownership!!! 


05.17.2012 at 12:04

What a huge victory in the fight against BSL and the fight supporting responsible dog ownership!!!  Come on Miami and Denver!


05.17.2012 at 12:32



05.17.2012 at 01:08

Hey Tyrone, Go back to living in your bubble with your stuffed animal.  A friendlier breed does not exist.  It is the morons (thugs) that cause the problem.


05.18.2012 at 08:28

Being that 1/3 of fatal dog killings are by pit bulls that only make up 2% of dog population(CDC study). This is a step back. The way these dogs were bred and how many owners say there pit is different and they thought they could train them, then a little kid is mauled or killed. Of course other dogs bite, but most do not kill or maim. Its like walking a shark around and saying you can control it.


05.18.2012 at 09:57

I.....really wonder where everyone keeps getting the "2-5%" estimate on the population, when it really is obvious they make up a much larger chunk of the population.

One problem with attempting to track population numbers is that most dogs are not registered with breed/kennel clubs or otherwise officially tracked. The Humane Society estimates approximately half the dog population are mutts, but solid numbers are difficult to prove. Numbers drawn from the AKC are only good for tracking dogs registered to them.

However, based upon how many are picked up as strays, how many are euthanized every year (major cities average 1000 - 3000), how many are offered for adoption on sites like Petfinder (nearly 20,000 as of yesterday) and how many are offered for sale in classified ads or online sites.....the 2-5% estimate really doesn't hold water.

Beyond that, most statistics on dog bites classify them as a type or group, rather than the individual breeds: American Staffordshire Terrier (#72 in popularity according to the AKC), Staffordshire Bull Terrier (#76), American Pitbull Terrier (not AKC recognized), and the newer American Bulldog.

For perspective on AKC rankings, the breeds ranked alongside them are the Dalmatian and the Irish Setter.


05.18.2012 at 11:42

The 2% statistics are based from CDC(Center for Disease control) by people that can read a post properly. If you don’t believe the 2%, then the dog bite related fatalities statistics over 20 year period should open your eyes to pitbulls.


05.18.2012 at 11:50

There's no reason to be rude, Jason. You mention the CDC, but what particular study are you citing for that number?

As I mentioned, the CDC themselves state: “There is currently no accurate way to identify the number of dogs of a particular breed."

Here's one easily verified piece of information that suggests the population is much larger than a mere 2%.

Nextdaypets, a website that advertises puppies for sale, currently has 498 ads selling Pitbull puppies. There are 489 Golden Retriever ads and 665 Labrador Retriever ads on the same site at this very moment.


05.18.2012 at 12:14

I apologize, the CDC study is under pit-bull special report, I just searched it. I don’t have a dog and haven’t been affected by one. All I see is in the news a lot is some little kid or older person being bitten in the face and mauled for life or killed by what they classify as a pit bull. If this happened to your loved one (god forbid) I am sure your outlook would change, The fact that they attack without provocation, high pain tolerance, biting power, and weight. I just see these dogs as dangerous and needing more laws against the breed.


05.18.2012 at 12:29

Thank you, Jason. I think the one thing you need to know is to always take anything you hear on the news with a grain of salt.

Having read into the attacks reported on the news, in all but the tinest percentage, the attack (regardless of breed involved) was a result of the owner's care of the dog. Many were abused, kept on chains, or allowed the run wild in the community. There is, unfortunately, some VERY stupid or violent people out there keeping the breed.

On the other hand, I myself have owned Pitbulls for 12 years now and know others with similar levels of experience. The consensus of animal professionals is that these dogs are not actually prone to attacking without provocation. Our first Pitbull was an accident, as we'd been told she was a "Lab mix" when we adopted her. So I spoke to many professionals (vets, shelter staff, trainers, behaviorists) about Pitbulls because I, too, had heard all the bad stories.

Currently, Pitbull-type dogs are involved the most fatalities. A large part of this is because of gang violence and dogfighting, as was the case of a coworker's mother who was mauled last year. After it, I spoke at length with him about it because....well...it was terrible. The owners of the dog were suspected of dogfighting and had sent the dog to attack her, when she confronted them about harassing her own dogs (a Pitbull-mix and a Rottweiler-mix who are super-sweet).

And believe me, in my experiences the high-pain tolerance thing is primarily a myth. They're tough, certainly, and very strong. But the majority are not vicious and live quiet lives without incident.


05.18.2012 at 12:44

I am also reading many court cases that say " Genetic traits of pit bulls have identified: unpredictability of aggression, tenacity ("gameness" the refusal to give up a fight), high pain tolerance and the pit bull's "hold and shake" bite style. According to forensic medical studies, similar injuries have only been found elsewhere on victims of shark attacks. So even the courts are seeing many cases and agree genetically the a huge threat.  I get the pain tollerance from videos i watched of people hitting/stabbing them when they are attacking someone without pause.


05.18.2012 at 01:05

Gameness is a trait, yes. It's actually one of the defining traits of the Terrier group, and shared across all breeds of that class.

In terms of the aggression/unpredictability, that really is a matter of breeding. Some lines out there are, yes, prone to temperament issues. This is a result of backyard breeding or even some who PURPOSEFULLY breed for those issues. The AKC, UKC, and American Dog Breeders Association all agree in their breed standards that stable temperament is a primary trait of the breeds.

Hold-and-shake is actually not a particularly unique behavior for dogs. If you have ever seen one play, they will often shake a toy from side to side. Likewise, many species employ this behavior. Herding breeds are more typically nippers, and professionally-trained attack dogs will hold without shaking.

In terms of potential damage, absolutely they can do considerable harm. In terms of bite force, they're actually average according to a National Geographic study (Humans: 100 - 120, Pitbulls and German Shepherds: 220 - 250, Rottweilers: 350).

My point is not that they cannot do horrific damage should they attack. My point is merely that the majority of these dogs are not particularly prone to biting or attacking.

If we go with there only being 5% of these dogs, that equally roughly 4 million dogs.

CDC 2009 report: 885,000 bites requiring any medical attention

If we run with the 40% - 60% of all bites being caused by Pitbulls, that means 95,980 - 531,000 bites by this type of dog. 14 fatalities in 2009 were attributed to this type. 

If they number around 4 million, that means roughly 14% of the population bit someone and 0.00036129% killed someone in 2009.


05.19.2012 at 06:52

congrats 2 eveyone involved in the campaigne. can u plz help us do the same thing in trinidad and tobago



05.22.2012 at 12:34

Congratulations to Cincinnati!!
I am proud that the council has decided to take a stand against irresponsible dog owners, and not pinpoint the problem to a breed of dog! A dog is a dog - however, it is the owner that needs to be held responsible for Their actions 0r lack there of that would make the public unsafe!
Tyrone- The Officials of Cincinati will be the ones to regulate the owners. Which is how Laws are supposed to work. You don't blame a brand of Car for the Drunk Driving deaths, you don't blame a type of gun for the shooting deaths - Why would you hold a Dog liable for the dog issues in your community? That just doens't make any sense. Finaly the issue of caring & restraining your pet is the Sole responsiblility of the Owner. If they don't adhere to the law then there are consequences for their actions. No dog should die because they have a irresponsible, lazy or stupid owner!


06.21.2012 at 11:51

I'm so thankful that this has finally happened!  And to everyone reciting bite statistics, Scottish Terriers have the highest pound per square inch bite force of any breed.  Yes, the little 20 pound black dog that's printed on black and red plaid blankets.  NOT a pitbull, Rottie, or other dog usually associated with being big and fierce.


05.16.2012 at 06:38 Reply

Wonderful news! Common sense actually lives in Cincinnati!


05.16.2012 at 11:42

This is good news, but 9 years??? We don't have nine years for the entire state of MD. We need this overturned now. 84k families are being affected by this, including mine, and that's just because we are in temp housing due to a house fire. We are having a hard time finding temp housing for our pit, and she isn't getting put down for anything. She was a rescue, and we aren't deserting her now. She is licensed, has all her shots, we are rsponsible, that is the whole point. WE are responsible. Not her. Just like every other responsible pet owner in MD...Just not fair...


05.16.2012 at 11:53

This is good news, but 9 years??? We don't have nine years for the entire state of MD. We need this overturned now. 84k families are being affected by this, including mine, and that's just because we are in temp housing due to a house fire. We are having a hard time finding temp housing for our pit, and she isn't getting put down for anything. She was a rescue, and we aren't deserting her now. She is licensed, has all her shots, we are rsponsible, that is the whole point. WE are responsible. Not her. Just like every other responsible pet owner in MD...Just not fair...


05.18.2012 at 12:01

Tyrone....  The fact that you don's seem to understand the difference between species and breed underscores the idiocy of your entire comment and is a reflection of your complete and total ignorance.  Just so you know, and don't make a total fool of yourself again, ALL dogs are the same species, whether Chihuahua or Pit Bull.


05.16.2012 at 06:57 Reply

Is it just me or is that a white boxer? 


05.16.2012 at 10:01

No, it really is a pitbull.


05.17.2012 at 11:40

Definately a white boxer. I have one so know.


05.17.2012 at 11:53

Definitely not a Pit Bull. I have to agree that it looks more like a boxer. 


05.17.2012 at 12:01

Actually, that is the rapper Pitbull.


05.18.2012 at 04:53

Thank you Laurie, could not have said it better myself. All dogs are born innocent and ready for those that have them to love them or destroy them. When any dog is loved and treated well, they are wonderful dogs. When those abuse, train to fight or anything else, you totally mess that baby up. The same goes for people. People become scared for life and many of our abused animals are also. Treat Gods creatures the way he intened and non of this would be happening. Tyron, I hope you learn more regarding this breed many of us advocate for. If it were any breed being put down due to its breed along, even if a lab or chi, we would be fighting for them. Take care and I do hope you learn more on how special this breed is when no one ruins for financial gain. Have a blessed day.


05.16.2012 at 07:17 Reply

Here comes the Bsl pushers. *rolls eyes* Educate yourself, BSL is a failure; it does not address the real issue that is irresponsible pet ownership. Only rules that apply to all pet owners work.


05.17.2012 at 05:48

This is precisely one of the reasons that BSL is a failure - even dog savvy people have a hard time identifying a "pit bull"!!


05.16.2012 at 07:24 Reply

Conngrats Cincinnati! its narrowminded ignorant people and bad owners that need banning! :D