Greetings:
 
For many years, I owned Staffordshire Bull Terriers (one of the breeds to be affected by this new law) and showed frequently in the eastern US in Obedience and Agility with my Staffords for a number of years. Although I don't currently own Staffords at the moment (I instead have a young Field Spaniel) I remain active in the Stafford AKC parent club as Health Chair, and "support the cause" against all Breed Specific Legislation (BSL). I therefore make it a point to avoid travel and dog showing in major areas where BSL exists, and I encourage all other dog owners - no matter what their breed - to act likewise (many do, realizing that - no matter what their breed - the sad fact is that "their breed may be next", since there is no end once BSL is started.)
 
You must realize the economic cost should such a measure pass. The typical dog show entrant, besides show fees, will spend $75 - 100 per night per lodging, $20 - $40 food per person per day, plus gasoline, sightseeing, and miscellaneous expenses. Your city has several dog show "clusters" that are exceptionally noteworthy and which I attended a number of times in years past with my Staffords. Those would be off my list with my Spaniel should this new ordinance past, and many others dog owners - with or without "bully breeds" - would likewise not attend.
 
Multiply the above figures by many hundreds or even thousands to get the full economic picture. Therefore, if passed, this ordinance would have a huge negative impact on your community.
 
I urge you instead to consider strict enforcement of leash laws as a way to enhance public safety.
 
BSL is simply not effective in reducing dog attacks. I'm sure you've already been sent the statistics by others illustrating this, but I wish to add my own personal observations. I recently spent my two-week summer vacation in Michigan's UP, where leash laws are lax. My sweet young Spaniel boy, who I always kept on leash, was attacked twice by off-leash dogs: a Lab and a Shih Tzu. I myself had my ankles snapped at by an off-leash Pomeranian while walking on a public fishing pier one evening without my dog (the Pom's owner made excuses that his dog is "just a little possessive", illustrating this was not a new problem with this dog.) None of these three breeds are typical BSL target breeds, yet these three dogs were a public menace. This underscores the need for strict leash enforcement rather than BSL as a way to effectively control problem dogs of all breeds.
 
Thank you for your consideration.
 
Margo Milde
Glenview IL