A string of recent dog attacks involving pit bulls is reviving the debate over banning the breed in Mississippi. MPB's Jeffrey Hess reports that both sides of the debate blame the the same problem....dog fighting.
At the Mississippi Animal Rescue League in Raymond, dogs wait to be adopted.
The facility is also the site where 8 pit bulls from a single home in Simpson County where a four year old girl was attacked were euthanized last week.
The shelter's executive director Debra Boswell says the evidence is clear, pit bulls are dangerous and pose a higher risk of deadly attacks than other breeds, and they will not adopt the breed out.
"The problem is when they do attack, the possibility or probability of that attack being severe and fatal are so much greater. The statistics remain of fatalities involve dog attacks is still around 60-65% pit bulls. And you just can't ignore those statistics," Boswell said.
Boswell's says the state needs a state wide regulations, not just on pit bulls, but on all aggressive dogs.
She blames dog fighters in the state for over breeding and training the dog to fight.....which is something that pit bull rescuers Cindy Metzger and Don Tullos agree with.
"It all boils back down to the breeds and the people that are fighting them. We need to stop it," Tullos said.
The couple, who owns two pit bulls and rehabilitates dogs, say the breed has gotten an undeserved reputation for aggression.
Metzger and Tullos believe it is wrong to single out pit bulls for bans saying the real focus should be on dog fighters.
"What you see mainly in MIssissippi is this coming from dog fighting rings and that's what needs to be stopped right there. A slap on the wrist is not going to stop them. A ban is not going to stop them," Tullos said.
Eleven Mississippi communities have a ban on pit bulls, but others could be joining them after the two high profile attacks.