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Denver Lifts 30-Year Pit Bull Ban

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MARCH 13: A Staffordshire Bull Terrier carrying a Winnie-the-Pooh toy in it's mouth arrives for the final day of Crufts 2016 on March 13, 2016 in Birmingham, England. First held in 1891, Crufts is said to be the largest show of its kind in the world, the annual four-day event, features thousands of dogs, with competitors travelling from countries across the globe to take part and vie for the coveted title of 'Best in Show'. (Photo by Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images)

Pit bulls have a place in Denver, Colorado again.

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In a reminder of the importance of down ballots, Ballot Measure 2J was passed by 64% of the vote on Tuesday, and the legislation will begin the start of a permitting system for pit bulls and includes the breeds American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, and Staffordshire Bull Terrier. It goes into effect in January according to Colorado Politics.

Denver’s pit bull ban was put into place following the death of 3-year-old Fernando Salazar in 1986, after the child wandered into a Denver neighbor’s yard and was killed by a pit bull. Following that, in 1989, Rev. Wilbur Billingsley, 59, was mauled and left with more than 70 bites and two broken legs.

Pit bulls have a reputation for being violent, but according to The American Pit Bull Foundation, “It is reported on temperament tests conducted by the American Temperament Test Society that pit bulls had a passing rate of 82% or better — compared to only 77% of the general dog population.”

From a non-pit bull-connected organization, the Canine Humane Organization, the breeds “are not inherently aggressive.” However, because they are strong, large dogs, it is important that people who keep them as pets take the time to understand and train their dogs. All of the breeds can be loving, co-exist, and just be the best snuggle buddies, but it is important that the owner is taking the time to actually make sure they are well behaved. All dogs require that kind of work, but especially when you have a large dog.

Residents will now be allowed to own up to two pit bulls per home. “If no violations for the dog are recorded for three consecutive years, pet owners will be allowed to register their pit bull like any other dog in Denver,” reporting said.

This comes nine months after Denver’s City Council voted 7-4 in February to end the ban, but that measure was vetoed by Mayor Michael Hancock. After they failed to override his veto, Councilman Chris Herndon, who sponsored the bill, brought it to a public vote. Hancock told CBS Denver he would not get in the way of the voter decision.

Hancock stated that he favored retaining the ban because of “Denver’s experience with pit bulls,” whereas Herndon has reinforced that bad or just poorly experienced owners are the ultimate issue when it comes to how pit bulls act. Time will tell how the dog owners and pit lovers of Denver act now that the ban is set to end come 2021.

(via Colorado Politics, image: Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images)

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Princess Weekes
Princess (she/her-bisexual) is a Brooklyn born Megan Fox truther, who loves Sailor Moon, mythology, and diversity within sci-fi/fantasy. Still lives in Brooklyn with her over 500 Pokémon that she has Eevee trained into a mighty army. Team Zutara forever.

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