‘Horrible’ dog attacks have skyrocketed since pit bull breeding rules relaxed – The Royal Gazette
Updated: August 02, 2022 4:45 PM
Pitbull type dog (File photo)
‘Horrible’ incidents of animal cruelty, abandonment and injury have increased since the government eased restrictions on the breeding of illegal pit bull dogs, a government minister admitted today.
And Walter Roban, the Home Secretary, also revealed that four cases of attacks linked to pit bulls could lead to prosecution.
Mr Roban called on those who have fought against restrictions on the breed to stand up to ensure the welfare of dogs in the wake of attacks and cases of neglect.
He said: “When the government suspended the legal breeding of pit bull dogs, there was a public outcry calling for the rules to be relaxed.
“Since the rules were relaxed, incidents of animal cruelty, abandonment and injury have increased, and those loud voices have gone silent.
“I now call on the voices who have advocated for legislative change to support the safe and responsible care of all animals.”
Mr Roban said a high-profile incident on Front Street on July 27, which resulted in the death of a pit bull and the injury to a police officer, was just one of many troubling issues linked to the dog breed over the past two weeks.
“On July 21, animal sitters recovered a stray black and white pit bull in Pembroke,” he said. “The dog had numerous large raw skin lesions along the back, from the head to the middle of the abdomen.
“The lesions looked like second-degree burn marks, and the dog was in so much pain that the veterinarian in charge decided to euthanize the animal.
“Unfortunately, because the dog had no means of identification, the owner could not be identified or contacted. It remains unclear whether the injuries were the result of intentional abuse, accidental burns or scalds. , but it is clear that this animal suffered from these wounds and suffered for several days.
“On July 20, animal sitters and police attended the bloody scene at a residence in Warwick, where two stray pit bull dogs entered a house and attacked the resident dog.
“In his defense and that of his dog, the owner allegedly stabbed one of the attacking dogs. The stabbed dog died of his injuries and the investigation is still ongoing.
Mr Roban said the photographs of the incidents were “too gruesome for public consumption”.
He added: “These issues highlight the increase in the number of illegal dogs, abused animals, unsocialized dogs and irresponsible owners.
“Irresponsible guarding has led to attacks on people, animals and neighbors living in fear. This has resulted in at least four active cases related to pit bulls that the Department of Environment and Natural Resources will present to the Department of Public Prosecutions for review.
He added that dog sitters continue to collect unclaimed, often euthanized animals, including 15 since May.
Kate Terceira, executive director of the Bermuda SPCA, earlier this year lamented “the devastating effect of irresponsible breeding, lack of care and throwaway attitude towards pit bulls and pit bull mixes.”