New Michigan Senate bill targets dangerous dogs, but not breeds

Senate Bills 1231 and 1232 aim to provide framework to determine if a dog is dangerous

New Michigan Senate bill targets dangerous dogs, but not breeds
New Michigan Senate bill targets dangerous dogs, but not breeds

LANSING, Mich. – The bills introduced in the Michigan Senate aim to prevent a dangerous dog attack before it happens.

State Senator Sean McCann (D-Kalamazoo) is proposing bills that take aim at dog behavior, not specific breeds.

“To judge an animal by their behavior, rather than the breed is so much more pragmatic,” said Detroit Dog Rescue Executive Director Kristina Millman-Rinaldi.

The bills offer a mechanism for people to file complaints over concerns of a dangerous dog. Local animal control agencies would investigate and if the behavior is deemed dangerous, it goes to a judge. That owner would then have to contain the animal and local utility workers and postal workers would be made aware. If the owner fails to comply, it’s a felony.

Millman-Rinaldi thinks the bills need some refining. For example, set standards on what qualifies as dangerous behavior and training for animal control officers to recognize it.

“I think when you have bills like this, you need to make sure you have enforcement for it,” she said.

That means money for animal control and training. Right now, these bills aren’t looking to appropriate money. McCann said he’s open to the idea.

“This is as good a time as any,” McCann said. “There’s more resources available to the state than there have been for decades.”

More: Michigan Senate news


About the Author: