FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: July 30, 2008
Contact: Daisy Okas
AKC REPRESENTS DOG OWNERS IN
CHALLENGE TO DENVER BREED BAN
New York, NY - The American Kennel Club(r) (AKC(r)) will be joining
Karen R. Breslin of the Progressive Law Center, LLC of Lakewood,
Colorado and the Washington D.C. office of Kaye Scholer LLP in
representing dog-owning plaintiffs Sonya Dias and others who are
asserting that the Denver ordinance banning pit bulls within the city
limits is unconstitutional.
In March the United States District Court for the District of Colorado,
where the plaintiffs' 2007 lawsuit was originally filed, dismissed the
suit without granting a hearing. A brief is being filed today in the
United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit asking to reverse
that court's decision and grant the plaintiffs/appellants a hearing on
the unconstitutionality of the Denver breed ban. The original lawsuit
stated Dias and the other owners were forced to move out of Denver with
their dogs because of the ban which they asserted was a violation of,
among other things, their constitutional rights.
The Denver ordinance bans ownership or possession of the Staffordshire
Bull Terrier, the American Staffordshire Bull Terrier and the American
Pit Bull Terrier and/or any dog with a majority of physical traits of
one or more of these breeds within the city or county of Denver. Since
2005, as a result of this ordinance, several hundred dogs within the
city limits had been euthanized.
The AKC supports reasonable, enforceable, non-discriminatory laws to
govern the ownership of dogs. The AKC believes that dog owners should be
responsible for their dogs. We support laws that: establish a fair
process by which specific dogs are identified as "dangerous" based on
stated, measurable actions; impose appropriate penalties on
irresponsible owners; and establish a well-defined method for dealing
with dogs proven to be dangerous. We believe that, if necessary, dogs
proven to be "dangerous" may need to be humanely destroyed. The AKC
strongly opposes any legislation that determines a dog to be "dangerous"
based on specific breeds or phenotypic classes of dogs.
The American Kennel Club, founded in 1884, is a not-for-profit
organization which maintains the largest registry of purebred dogs in
the world and oversees the sport of purebred dogs in the United States.
The AKC is dedicated to upholding the integrity of its registry,
promoting the sport of purebred dogs and breeding for type and function.
Along with its nearly 5,000 licensed and member clubs and its affiliated
organizations, the AKC advocates for the purebred dog as a family
companion, advances canine health and well-being, works to protect the
rights of all dog owners and promotes responsible dog ownership. More
than 20,000 competitions for AKC-registered purebred dogs are held under
AKC rules and regulations each year including conformation, agility,
obedience, rally, tracking, herding, lure coursing, coonhound events,
hunt tests, field trials and earthdog events. Affiliate AKC
organizations include the AKC Canine Health Foundation, AKC Companion
Animal Recovery, AKC Humane Fund and the AKC Museum of the Dog. For
more information, visit http://www.akc.org.
AKC, American Kennel Club, the American Kennel Club seal and design, and
all associated marks and logos are trademarks, registered trademarks and
service marks of The American Kennel Club, Inc.