AUSTIN (KXAN) - Dozens of dog lobbyists came to the Capitol Monday afternoon totestify against a bill that would put more restrictions on biggerdogs.
The proposed legislation would mandate any dog that lives in amajor metropolitan city and weighs more than 40 pounds either be ona leash at all times or in an enclosed area.
"This would be disastrous for show dogs," said Tina Neville, whoshows big dog breeds in shows. "Texas would lose dog showcompetitions if owners were worried about restrictions on theiranimals when they came to town."
The bill revises the definition of a "vicious" dog to one whophysical nature would give it the capability to inflict harm. Italso prevents people under 21 years old from owning a dangerous orvicious dog and prohibits those types of dogs from going on thegrounds of a primary or secondary school, even if it is on aleash.
It would also make the dog owner responsible if a child under 15is injured by the animal, even if the child trespasses onto the dogowner's property. Currently, the owner is responsible if the childis under 8 years old.
Rep. Trey Martinez-Fischer, D-San Antonio, said
"This is a decision that would be made by animal control or thesheriff's department," said Martinez-Fischer. "But, if a pet ownerknows that their dog is capable of vicious attacks, we need to beable to regulate that behavior."
Recent Pit Bull Attacks
Two recent pit bull attacks could help Martinez-Fischer pass hisbill. On March 31, a
On March 26,
Still, opponents of the bill said those situations can not bethe basis of a bill that would affect thousands of dog owners.
"Those situations happen for one of two reasons," said JeffShaver, an owner of 14 rescued Rottweilers that participate inshows. "Either the child is not being supervised or because ofloose dogs."
Specific Pit-Bull Legislation
Another bill that is garnering some attention from pit bullowners is
What do you think about this proposed bill?
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