Pit bulls allowed back in city limits

CINCINNATI - Since 2003, pit bulls have been considered vicious dogs and banned in Cincinnati's city limits.

That's changing now that Cincinnati City Council approved a motion during a Thursday meeting that will remove pit bulls from the language of the ordinance that defines a vicious dog.

The motion also created a task force that will review all of the city's animal policies.

"It's honestly all in how you raise them," said Eric Ogletree, a dog trainer who has worked with thousands of dogs.

Ogletree owns two pit bulls and is a strong believer that it's not the breed, but the owner who determines if a dog becomes vicious.

"I say the same thing about people owning guns, you have to be educated to use it correctly, it's the same thing that goes with these dogs," said Ogletree.

Jim Tomaszewski is a Cincinnati SPCA board member and attorney who has been working closely with city council to make changes to the current ordinance.

"I think the research is going to tell us what's going to change, what we're going to bring to the table this time is the science, and the research, and the studies, and the legislation in other cities, and the understanding of what's been effective and not been effective," said Tomaszewski.

Tomaszewski says even if all pit bulls were vicious, the ordinance banning them wasn't working. He says the SPCA was consistently taking in around 500 pit bulls each year. While only 22 pit bull ordinance violations were prosecuted in 2011.

"We're going to make sure that Cincinnati becomes the leader in humane treatment and public safety with respect to animals and people living together in a community," said Tomaszewski.

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