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Kudos to McDonnell for smart move on dog bill

Date published: 4/22/2010

Kudos to McDonnell for smart move on dog bill

Pet lovers everywhere should express their gratitude to Gov. Bob McDonnell for his progressive leadership in refusing to accept the status quo--the longstanding, sordid practice of killing dogs because of their looks.

During the current bill-review period, his amendment to HB 281--championed by Del. David Albo--has put the state in a strong position to move to the forefront of progressive animal welfare reform as it pertains to dogs at risk.

Especially gratifying is the fact that Gov. McDonnell is no Johnny-come-lately in his effort to protect dog breeds unfairly put under the microscope.

Back in 2006, he tried to stop the inhumane practice of killing dogs in shelters simply because of their breed. This time, he continues his good work on behalf of animals, and dog lovers everywhere should thank him for it.

All dogs have teeth, and all dogs, if not properly socialized, can bite. Statistics show that unsterilized dogs and dogs tied out in yards for long periods of time are more likely to bite.

Gov. McDonnell's amendment, in effect, obligates lawmakers to address the actual causes of dog aggression--owner neglect and irresponsibility--rather than the meaningless bracketing of dogs by appearance, which, sadly, still goes on in many states.

Best Friends Animal Society congratulates Gov. McDonnell on his humane approach to animal welfare.

Francis Battista

Kanab, Utah

The writer is co-founder, Best Friends Animal Society.