Veterinarians and Pit bull owners react to proposed ordinance - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Veterinarians and Pit bull owners react to proposed ordinance

ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

Dr. Carie Wisell often treats pit bulls here at Companion Animal Hospital. 

"I love them personally, I have very few bad ones here, and the ones that are bad the owners know they're bad, and we just muzzle them and go on with business," said Dr. Carrie Wisell, Companion Animal Hospital.  

She says a muzzle on a pit bull would prevent the dog from hurting anyone.  She doesn't agree with the ordinance Albany City Commissioners seem poised to pass.  

"Being primarily military we lived in a lot of states and a lot of towns where they pretty much require basket muzzles, that's a cheap alternative," said Wisell.  

The current proposed ordinance would require pit bull owners to have a six foot fence, with a covered pen that is at least 25 feet from their property line.  It would also require owners to have 100,000 dollars of liability insurance. Dr. Wisell says many pit bull owners can't afford that.  

"Well personally I think it's going to make it unaffordable, I feel like the people who are responsible pet owners, they are going to end up having to pay out of their pocket, and a lot," said Wisell.  

Wisell believes the ordinance will lead to some dangerous unintended consequences.  

"Here is what's going to happen, you are going to have a flood of pit bulls being relinquished," said Wisell.  

Joanne Hawkins has a pit bull named Max. She spent more than $500 dollars to comply with rules for pit bulls in Lee County.  

"We have the kennel, we have the six foot privacy fence, so our dog have freedom to roam," said Joanne Hawkins.  

Hawkins says she doesn't believe pit bulls are dangerous and she doesn't think their owners should be singled out. Dr. Wisell says pens like the ones that would be mandated by the ordinance can be extremely expensive. 

She spent more than $3,000 for an enclosure for her pets. Only one city commissioner voted against the pit bull ordinance Monday night. It must pass a second vote in February to become law.

Copyright 2014 WALB.  All rights reserved.

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