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Do pit bulls have a fighting chance in Michigan?

Dog bites can cause serious injury and sometimes even death. There have been numerous stories across the country of pit bulls maiming young children and adults. Tragically, the stories about pit bulls have gotten worse, including numerous pit bull-related deaths. In an effort to protect Michiganites from dangerous pit bulls, a bill was recently introduced into the House of Representatives that would ban pit bulls from residing in the state.

Wyoming, Michigan is the location of one of the most recent pit bull attacks. Sources have reported that a 60-year-old man was attacked as he took his trash out. He was hospitalized with two broken arms and numerous bite marks. The dogs had allegedly escaped from the garage in which they were kept. WZZM 13 reported that Wyoming officials are considering a pit bull ban.

The threat to Michigan residents is a real one. Over the past three years, pit bulls were responsible for more bites in Muskegon County than any other breed. These bites also happened in all types of situations. Pit bulls have bitten people in city streets and rural roads. Pit bulls have also attacked humans in neighborhood backyards. One of the most shocking pit bull attacks, however, was on a school bus as children were on the way to school.

The numbers also support a call to action. The past three years have shown a drastic increase in pit bull bites. From January through June of this year, there have already been 41 pit bull bites reported, which could mean 2011 will see even more bites than the 75 recorded in 2010. There were 59 pit bull attacks in 2009.

It was State Representative Timothy Bledsoe who introduced the Michigan-wide pit bull ban into the House. The representative says he likes dogs, but he doesn't want to risk Michigan citizens' safety or lives by allowing dogs bred to kill bulls to remain in the state.

Source: WZZM 13, "Lawmakers looking at pit bull bans," Bob Brenzing and Jessica Puchala, July 27, 2011

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