[Toronto filter] Realities of BSL and Pit Bulls?
February 10, 2014 5:49 PM   Subscribe

What does Ontario's breed specific legislation look like in reality for (non-grandfathered) 'pit bull' owners? How strict is this law? Please tell me your real-life experiences here.

Hello Torontonians! I have a wonderful dog who falls under the pit bull catch-all term. She's a cross-breed whose paperwork all says variations of Staffie-cross. Some folks say they "see the pit bull", others swear they can't see it. I have an interest in living in Toronto. Obvious conflict here, because the dog and I are a package deal.

My question to Torontonians: What does this legislation look like on the ground? Do you know people with non-grandfathered 'pit bulls'? Please tell me your real-life experiences here.
posted by tamarack to Pets & Animals (3 answers total)
It is a provincial ban, not just Toronto. I know people with pit bulls that are younger than 6 years so there does not seem to be a mass scoop-up of them. I think most seizers (sp? I can't figure the right one) are complaint based; you can minimize complaints by not looking threatening yourself and not using a studded collar on the dog. If the dog is seized there is the option to release it to an out of province rescue group (and I assume, a person too) so it isn't like the dog is immediately put down.

You may have difficult renting however. Once you have signed a lease you can't be kicked out for having a dog (unless the landlord makes the argument the dog is a threat) but they can refuse to rent to you for having a dog. If you don't tell them you have a dog though, and sign the lease they may pull out the pit bull card. So I would recommend a small-time landlord, disclosing the dog, and making some kind of assurance there will be no damage (pet deposits or pet rent is illegal as far as I know).
posted by saucysault at 7:18 PM on February 10, 2014 [1 favorite]

You do realize that it would be illegal for you to bring your dog into Ontario, right?

From what I hear, you will not find a vet who will take your illegal dog, because their insurance will not cover that dog while it's in their care.

If your neighbours notice your dog and complain, it will be seized. I imagine you know that. I don't know how common those sorts of complaints are, but as a data point I know that if someone moved in down the street with a pit bull I would report it. If you were walking around with the dog without a muzzle, I'd call 911. And I like dogs.
posted by Dasein at 2:41 PM on February 11, 2014

thanks for the feedback, folks.

@saucysault appreciate knowing there are some folks with pitties, and i didn't know about the release out-of-province. very interesting, and good to hear.

@Dasein yep, i realise it is illegal. i didn't know about the vet issue, though. good point. regarding your other comments, if you "like dogs" i urge you to take some time to read more fully about pit bulls -- it may affect your beliefs. these breeds are regularly tempered dogs, not monsters. i can tell you anecdotally that my dog is lovely, and the data can tell you that it breed bans are a false solution to a problem of bad owners and circumstances.

to clarify: thread prompted by ongoing frustration that i can't go to the grad school i would like because of this faulty legislation. was just wondering if it went unenforced, but sounds like no. overall tragic law. sighs.
posted by tamarack at 12:07 PM on February 12, 2014 [1 favorite]

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