INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — An Independence, Missouri man is fighting to keep his dogs but a pit bull ban in the city may force him to move or get rid of his family pets.
The ordinance banning pit bulls in Independence has been in force for nearly two decades.
“Mace is 2-years-oldold and Diamond is 12,” Charles Ray said about his two dogs.
Ray is battling to keep his two dogs. He said they aren’t even pit bulls but look like the breed. The ban covers this breed but also any dog with majority physical traits of a pit bull.
He received a letter in the mail telling him he had 10 days to relocate the dog.
“Devastating for all of us. We opened it on Saturday. We were home as a family. We were all devastated,” Ray said.
Instead of just wanting to keep them, he is stepping up and acting. Creating a petition, he even went and plead his case to the city council.
“It feels like you’re trying to take away part of our family, just because it resembles something that may have a ban on it my dogs never gotten out my yard. My dog has never hurt nobody,” Ray said at the city council meeting.
The ban was put into to place n 2006 after several dog attacks involving pit bulls. At the time Lucy Young was a councilwoman and she voted against the ban.
“I don’t and till this day believe it’s in the breed it is in the owner’s responsibility to control you dog and it could be any breed of dog that is viscous,” Young said.
The city has reviewed the ban several times, but it remains in place.
KC Pet Project takes in every case in Kansas City when a dog bites a human their data shows that pit bulls are not more prone to biting humans or being violent compared to other breeds of dogs.
“These ordinances are very misguided and it’s not just these ordinances in place that restrict them. It’s housing restrictions like weight or we see apartment complexes this breed and others,” said Tori Fugate, the chief communications officer for KC Pet Project.
“I’m willing to move I’m not going to let my dogs go like I said it’s a part of our family,” Ray said.
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FOX4 reached out to Independence Mayor Rory Rowland who says the future of this ban is not something that should be left up to the city council. Instead it should be on a ballot for voters to decide.