Pit bull lovers sign petition

Published: Jan. 14, 2012 at 10:32 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 18, 2012 at 11:01 PM EST
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FITZGERALD, GA (WALB) - Concerned pit bull lovers in Fitzgerald are working towards abolishing a pit bull ordinance that just went into effect.

A pit bull attack on a 5 year old boy in September led the city to vote for a pit bull ordinance in November.

The strict new rules for pit bull owners went into effect on January 1st, causing an uproar in the pit bull loving community.

Now, pit bull owners are coming together to get signatures on a petition, calling it unfair to single out a certain breed.

After a dangerous dog ordinance went into effect on January 1st in Fitzgerald, many pit bull lovers came together to get the word out that not all pit bulls are bad.

"She is a big baby, she lays on the couch, my son can jump on top of her, pull her ears, grab her tail, she just lays there," says Whitney Powell, Pit Bull owner.

Whitney Powell has a 5 year old pit bull names prissy that she says is as sweet as can be.

She is helping get signatures on a petition to fight the pit bull ordinance.

"Probably have about 400 signatures, with signing the petition and since we started the petition we have had lot of more people helping with it," says Powell.

She says not all dog attacks are pit bull related.

"It is not only pit bulls that attack, it is other dogs," says Powell.

Pamela Steverson has two pit bulls and blame the owners, not the dogs, for their aggressive nature.

"Pit bulls are not aggressive and vicious unless they are raised up to be," says Pamela Steverson, Pit Bull owner.

The ordinance requires a pit bull be muzzled when they are on a leash and being walked.

All pit bulls must be registered and have liability insurance of up to $50,000.

"All people have their own attitudes and personalities, so does dogs, and just according to how you treat that dog, and raise that dog, that is how they are going to be," says Steverson.

The law also requires that the dog must be kept in a pen, at least 6 feet long by 6 feet wide and 6 feet tall, with a secured roof and floor.

"If a dog has never been in a pen, and once you keep them in that pen and they stay there, it is going to make them aggressive," says Powell.

The group will be back at the Walmart parking lot on January 28th to try to get more signatures.

A similar ordinance was just passed in Dawson after two pit bulls attacked a flock of sheep, killing 30.

The Dawson City Council amended an ordinance that makes chaining a pit bull in a backyard illegal in just 90 days.

Owners will also have to erect a locked pen, at least 10 feet long by 10 feet wide and 8 feet tall, with a secured roof and floor.

In Dawson, a potentially dangerous dog must now also require a 100 thousand dollars security bond, a lot higher than what state law requires.

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