MIAMI, Fla. -- Miami-Dade County voters will decide Aug. 14 whether to keep a 23-year-old pit bull ban on the books.
The ban on pit bulls and pit bull-type dogs was set in 1989 after a 7-year-old girl was mauled outside her Miami home. The state prohibited breed-specific bans the next year, but Miami-Dade was granted an exemption.
Pit bull advocates say it's time to end the ban. County Commissioner Sally Heyman and the Miami Coalition Against Breed Specific Legislation are among the advocates who argue that the county's definition of a pit bull is too vague, and that the cost of enforcing the ban stretches limited resources.
The girl whose mauling prompted the ban is now a hospital administrator. She says the ban's critics are putting dogs ahead of public safety.