Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Turn the Tide on Laws That Favor the Beasts

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Turn the Tide on Laws That Favor the Beasts

Article excerpt

Pit bulls devastate lives or end them. On Oct. 9, 2016, those words became a part of our life story. My son, Nick, had just finished brushing our beagle-basset named Happy in the grounds of the Fieldpointe Apartment Complex in Maryland Heights and was turning toward home when two pit bulls escaped the dog park and mauled Happy to death. Pit bulls were not allowed on the property; the owner, a college-athlete and quarterback at Lindenwood University, had fraudulently brought them into the community as therapy dogs.

The pits were deemed dangerous by St. Louis County Animal Control but were eventually freed. In the months that followed, we discovered Allen Thigpen lied about whom he signed the pits over to; he dodged financial responsibility; he defied authority and did not follow through with the dangerous dog requirements. The police are unable to do anything without the specific dangerous dog ordinance that would enforce compliance.

Pit bull attacks have tremendously increased all over the United States. The National Pit Bull Victim Awareness website tracks media reports daily across the United States and Canada. In the United States alone, the site referenced 212 media reports, including four fatalities in the first 102 days of this year. This number does not include many attacks like Happy's that don't get reported in the news.

The lack of justice in our case is not unique. Many victims have given up trying. Animal Control has proved they have no control over dangerous dogs and content to allow a college kid outwit them. The district councilman simply shrugs it off.

We have neighboring Florissant with the perfect plan that has safeguarded their community for an entire decade through a pit bull ban emotionally manipulated to allow these maulers back into their city. We have numerous states year after year pounded by the introduction of bills that would outlaw breed-specific legislation when reports spanning from the media to the medical community clearly indicate pit-bull type dogs are the main perpetrators of severe attacks.

It is time for victims' voices to be heard. We have suffered losses in astronomical ways including developing PTSD following the attack, death, loss of limbs, severe disfigurements and financial debt. …

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