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« Why wouldn't you try it? | Main | Is it the dogs? Or the Owners? »

September 25, 2008



Those laws are stupid because so many dogs look like a "pitbull," especially to people (including law enforcement officers) who do not know a lot about dog breeds. I mean, I hear people call bulldogs pitbulls all the time. What about a lab/boxer mix? A bull terrier/pointer mix? Someone could easily mistake so many mutts as "pitbulls." Poor Nikko.

Me too

My city uses the 'breed standards' to determine the 'predominance' of pit bull characteristics. Actually, they have selected 13 breed characteristics and if a dog has more than 6 of them, it is determined 'predominantly pit'.

Caveat's points are great and soooooo important! How come, so far, people are not able to strike down these laws as unconsitutional based on the subjectivity and arbitrarity? (another made up word)

But, thinking like a defense attorney, I believe there's even more to knock down these determinations. First of all, because these characteristics are used to describe SHOW QUALITY dogs, there's a bunch of pit bulls out there that they'd really like to get rid of, but which would be disqualified by this test because they don't meet these high standards.

Furthermore, it can be argued that none of these listed characteristics are unique to only this breed. Therefore, they do not prove that a dog is predominantly pit.

It is completely nonsensical!

KC KS Kills Dogs

PB bans are unenforceable period.

ACO's, cops, and judges that usually end up enforcing these laws on the general public don't want to admit they are pounding a round peg into a square hole.

Think how few people know much about dog breeds, mixed breed dogs, let alone genetics, and DNA. Now how many ACO's, cops, and judges are experts on those subjects?


Oh I don't know. I think Nikko looks fairly bully in that picture. But it shouldn't matter. It shouldn't matter if he's the best example of an American Pit Bull Terrier as described by the UKC breed standard that ever walked the planet. If the dog didn't do anything wrong, there should be no problem.


Thanks for the link, Brent.

If a dog isn't a registered purebred, his ancestry can't be determined, so he isn't a banned 'breed'. He's a mutt. Period.

In Ontario, the law is more evil than that though.

A dog only has to be 'substantially similar in physical characteristics' to ONE of the banned purebreds, ie, not a bit of this and that banned breed as some of the ACOs think, not that they understand the law either.

There is nothing in the ID section about perceived 'pit bulls' having to be actually related to the purebreds, in other words.

My point is, a poorly bred Boxer or Vizsla, even if registered as a purebred, is not necessarily safe the way the law is written, if somebody feels like putting the owner through.

The onus is on the owner to prove a dog is not a 'pit bull'. There is no indication of how that would be achieved. There is no indication of what constitutes 'substantially similar'. There is no size or age restriction.

And breed standards are absolutely useless for anything but checking off desirable qualities of grown (min. 6 mos of age) dogs entered into shows as purebreds.

These morons didn't think any of this through or do any serious research though. That stuff is hard. It's obvious when they state right out of the gate that there are 'dangerous breeds' that they don't know anything about dogs at all.

That's why they think breed standards are something they aren't. They aren't blueprints, man, and dogs aren't manufactured. Dig?

Why they write these obscene laws despite their complete lack of knowledge is a mystery. Why they insist on going ahead in order to save face despite tremendous opposition is a greater one.

PS If I had to guess and I hate doing that these days, I'd say Nikko could be a rott/hound type, randomly bred for more than one generation. But I'd never testify to that in court.


I followed Nikko's case and it was an important one, thanks to Kansas City Dog Advocates. Subjectively and objectively, Nikko does appear to have some characteristics of what is defined to be a 'pit bull'.

However, I have not yet seen that language (ie; 'SOME characteristics' of) used in an ordinance to ban a dog. The usual language in the ordinances I have read has stated 'having the appearance or characteristics of being PREDOMINANTLY of these (sic named breeds)'.

Nikko clearly did not fall into this catagory, plus his DNA test did not prove him to be 'predomiantly' pit.

By definition (and I have the agreement of my city's attorney), 'predominantly' would, by definition, mean at least 51%.

This would not describe Nikko. This case is closed, is it not?

KC KS Kills Dogs


Yes the case on Nikko is closed. All criminal charges were dropped against the owner and Nikko's DNA evidence was the deciding factor.

In Nikko's DNA test he only had 1/12th American Staffordshire terrier and other breds such as King Charles Cavalier, etc.

If viewing Nikko in person, he looks like he could be a Rhodesian Ridgeback mix. His ridge is not as pronounced as many Rhodesians, but it is slightly there.

Try talking to some of the people that write this legislation, the city councils, Mayors,city legal teams, judges, ACO's and ask them their backround on dogs. It's zero, zilch. Someone has convinced these yahoos that identifying breeds of dogs is as easy as identifying makes and models of cars.


I get that determining these dogs are not pit bulls is what is currently saving them, so I'm obviously not discounting that aspect; but to me it's ridiculous that these discussions are even necessary regarding whether or not they are able to properly identify dog breeds. It's as if the results of a dna test are going to somehow change a sound dog into a dangerous dog or a dangerous dog into a sound one.

To me it's like saying that the cops really shouldn't have pulled that person over and hassled him simply for DWB, because, afterall, he is actually from South America.

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