Pit Bull Laws in Florida

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Pit Bulls can be a controversial breed of dog to own, as some people consider them a dangerous animal. One county in Florida outlaws the breed altogether.

Unwelcome in Miami

Miami-Dade is Florida's only county with a specific ban on pit bulls. The law applies to Staffordshire terriers or any dog having traits similar to those of a pit bull. You'll end up paying a substantial fine and you must remove the dog from the county. Pit bull dogs found running at large are taken to the pound and held for 5 days. The owner may claim the dog, but will receive a citation and an order to remove the dog from the county. Unclaimed animals get euthanized.

No Other Bans

This ban was controversial enough to lead to a state bill that does not allow other counties to enact bans on specific breeds of dogs. Other counties can, however, outlaw or put restrictions on dogs that are considered either dangerous or aggressive. In Alachua and Polk counties, for example, a dog is considered aggressive if it has injured or killed another animal while not on its owner’s property. A dog is considered dangerous when it has killed another animal while not on its owner’s property more than once, if it has seriously hurt or killed a person, or if it was trained for dog fighting. This law can apply to any breed of dog and holds the owner responsible for any damages caused by the dog. Dangerous or aggressive dogs may be confiscated and put to sleep should they maim a human being, and their owner is charged with a felony.

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