Royal Oak Regulating Stricter Dangerous Dog Ordinance | Dog Bites & Attacks

In response to the high number of dog attacks and injuries, Royal Oak is looking into enforcing stricter laws on dogs that are considered dangerous.  In 2012, 32 dog bites and 21 vicious dog incidents were reported in Royal Oak. Royal Oak defines dangerous animals as an animal that has a history of biting, attacking or damaging property.

Of these 32 reports, two pit bulls were shot and killed by police officers after they escaped from a yard and attacked a rat terrier on a walk with its owner.  The terrier died from wounds sustained during the attack. Royal Oak may label pit bulls as dangerous dogs, but they do not plan to go as far as banning any breed like Hazel Park did a year ago with pit bulls.

The City Commission discussed that the main focus is holding owners of dogs deemed dangerous to higher and stricter standards that may include: padlocking their gates and using muzzles on walks.  Dogs labeled as “Bully breeds” were also discussed in great depth.  “Bully breeds,” defined by City Commissioner Pat Capello, consist of: the American pit bull terrier, American Staffordshire bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier and the American bulldog. The City Commissioner would like to hold these owners to the stricter regulations mentioned above.  She states that last year 10 of the dog bites and 11 of the vicious dog incidents involved “bully breeds.”  Royal Oak has about 3,600 licensed dogs and 240 are recognized as a “bully breed.”

Dangerous Dog Breeds

A breed of dog is defined as: a group of dogs that have similar or almost identical characteristics in their aspect or behavior, or generally both. Statistics show that some breeds of dogs are often more violent than others. According to a Vet Med Special Report the top five breeds responsible for 64.9% of all dog bite fatalities in the recent years are:

1.) Pit bull (26.95% of dog bite fatalities)

2.) Rottweiler (15.6% of all dog bite fatalities)

3.) German Shepherd

4.) Husky

5.) Malamute

More recently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that from 2006-2008 pit bulls were found responsible for nearly 60% of deaths and violent injuries in the United States. Other dangerous breeds include:

  • Dalmatian
  • Pres Canario
  • Doberman Pinschers
  • Boxer
  • Chow

Even though studies have shown that certain breeds of dogs are more dangerous than others, that does not mean that every dog of that breed is violent. A Dog’s disposition depends on two things, their breed and their owner. A dog is more likely to be dangerous if the dog’s owner encourages aggressive behavior.

Risks Of A Dangerous Dog

Dogs do provide a sense of security for people and property. If you own a dog, there are precautions you should take to make sure others do not get attacked or injured by your dog and to make dog ownership safe for you.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest the following items:

  • Owners should carefully choose their pet dog by evaluating the environment and lifestyle
  • Potential owners should speak with a professional to determine the appropriate type of pet
  • Dogs should be neutered to reduce aggressive tendencies
  • Never leave infants or young children alone with a dog
  • Be sensitive to cues that a child is fearful or apprehensive about a dog
  • Children should be taught basic safety around dogs and reviewed regularly
  • Dogs with histories of aggression are inappropriate for families with children
  • Owners should not play aggressive games with their dogs
  • If bitten, the bite should be reported immediately

Contact a Michigan Dangerous Dog Breeds Attorney

If you or a family member has been injured by a dangerous dog in Michigan, you should contact our Buckfire & Buckfire, P.C. dangerous dog breeds attorneys. Our experienced Michigan dog bite law firm will hire specialized investigators to document the incident, supplementing any evidence you have been able to collect.  For more information about your legal rights, call us now at (800) 606-1717 to speak with one of our Michigan dangerous dog breeds lawyers. We will discuss your case with you and explain your legal rights.


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