Jasper City Officials propose ordinance prohibiting Pit Bulls

JASPER, Tenn. (WDEF) – City officials in Jasper say they are concerned about dog attacks, so they drafted an ordinance that would prohibit pit bulls, with some exceptions.

According to the ordinance, pit bulls currently living in the city would be grandfathered in and be able to stay. But pit bull owners say they are not happy about it.

Jessica Huggins enjoyed an evening outside with her foster dog Mikki.

“Mikki is just goofy, she is so full of personality. She just wants to be with you. She doesn’t care if you are in the house cleaning and she is laying in the floor watching, or you are outside and she is on the deck lounging in the sun. She just wants to be with you. She just wants companionship,” Huggins said.

Mikki is a pit bull mix. For more than 12 years, Huggins has fostered 25 to 30 pit bull type dogs. An ordinance in the works in the city of Jasper has her worried.

“I wish everyone that hears anything about it would read the entire ordinance. It has been stated it is not a ban, however if you read the ordinance in its entirety the breed pit bull will be no more within the city of Jasper within 10 to 12 years.”

The ordinance states no new pit bulls would be allowed. Pit bulls currently living in Jasper would be grandfathered in. They would have to be kept in a kennel. If the dog has a puppy, the puppy would only be allowed in Jasper for six weeks.

“That is an extremely isolated way of living, which will contribute to more problems. A dog needs to be socialized.”

The Mayor of Jasper Paul Wayne Evans didn’t want to appear on camera but says, “We have been having issues with pit bull dogs. The board felt it was something we needed to discuss.”

He also cited recent incidents with pit bulls across the country that lead to his decision. Huggins feels this will make matters worse.

“It feeds to the negative image that people already have. I haven’t seen one fact or statistic based or coming from the city that would call for such an ordinance,” Huggins said.

If it passes, Huggins says she will leave the city of Jasper. There will be a public hearing about this issue on June 12 at the Jasper Annex Building.

Categories: Local News

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