Identification Issues

Writing effective letters to officials
Preparing for BSL meetings
BSL Studies
Alternatives to BSL
The Calgary Model
Guardianship v. Ownership
Dispelling the myths
Organizations against BSL
What Pit Bulls Can Teach Us About Profiling
A Message to the Media
Fight the Good Fight - New BSL Presentation
Pit Bull 101
Identification Issues
Discounting the CDC Report
Helpful Facts and Statistics

Among the many problems associated with breed specific legislation and its enforcement against pit bulls are the issues associated with identification.  "Pit bull" is not a breed, but rather a generic term used to describe the American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier and Staffordshire Bull Terrier.  However, the physical traits and characteristics shared by "pit bulls" are also shared by approximately twenty-five (25) other breeds that are not typically classified as bully breed dogs.  Obviously, this causes great difficulty in identification and allows for discriminatory and subjective actions by animal control officers.
Find the Pit Bull is an excellent tool to demonstrate the difficulty of identifing a purebred American Pit Bull Terrier.  Click here to take the test yourself. 
A former Ohio dog warden, Tom Skeldon, who was called as an "expert" on behalf of the City of Toledo in the matter of Toledo v. Tellings testified that there is really no way to tell if a dog is or is not a pit bull, and the determination is made by animal control officers' subjective judgment.  Toledo v. Tellings, 2006 WL 513946 (Ohio App. 6 Dist) March 2006
[Breed bans] carry with them too much potential for arbitrary or improper enforcement:  inaccurate breed identification by officials and difficulty enforcing breed bans against mixed-breed.  Source:  AnimalLaw
[W]e conclude that the subjective identification of pit bulls may often include both non-pit bulls or dogs which are not vicious...[laws] based upon that identification process, we conclude that they are unconstitutionally vague.  Toledo v. Tellings, 2006 WL 513946 (Ohio App. 6 Dist) March 2006