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India Bans Pit Bulls and Dangerous Dog Breeds – Will the U.S. Follow?

ANIMAL WATCH

ANIMAL WATCH - An increasing number of attacks by Pit Bulls and other dangerous dogs breeds has caused India to follow the recommendation of the Centre (the federal level of government) and ban “25 ferocious breeds,”,”  in an effort to stop the damage to  innocent victims all over this vast country, and calling the dogs “a threat to human life.”

“The Times of India also reports this follows PETA’s expert involvement, which allows existing owners of these breeds to comply with certain requirements in order to keep their pets.” However, they must comply with licensing, sterilization, and vaccination requirements.

The first three breeds banned are listed as: Pit Bull Terrier, Tosa Inu, and American Staffordshire Terrier. Other large breeds; such as American Bulldog, Rottweiler, and Boerboel Kangal are included also. The ban goes into effect on March 12, 2023. and thereafter. (Read a list of the breeds here.)  

This decision by India follows a recent ban imposed on Pit Bulls, XL Bullys, by Great Britain, Wales  and Scotland to stop an overwhelming number of similar devastating attacks. (See:  XL Bully Ban Becomes Law in UK: Dangerous Dog Reports Could Double, Police Say)

The ban in India has also left many owners and breed advocates furious, and causing them to pose the challenge: “The central government has written to the states asking them to ban the import, breeding, and sale of certain dog breeds, which are termed ‘dangerous’ — but are they?”

HOW MUCH HAVE DOG BITES IN INDIA INCREASED?

A breakdown of the rise of dog bites in the country shows, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, that India has seen a 26.5 per cent year-on-year increase, from 2.18 million incidents in 2022 to 2.75 million incidents in 2023,” according to Business Standards. (See breakdown by area here.)

Other countries, states, cities and territories all over the world have enacted restrictions or bans on certain dog breeds, but the United States of America (U.S.)—with horrendous attacks occurring almost daily, has followed the propaganda of wealthy animal -welfare organizations and interests which assert these breeds of dogs are  merely friendly, loving pets, and the power of politics has overridden the need for safety.

THE NEED TO UNITE ON TECHNOLOGY AND HUMAN SAFETY

 

A 2023 article  “The U.S.- India Relationship is Key to the Future of Tech,” by the Harvard Business Review emphasized that “as the U.S. becomes more concerned about China, its relationship with India will become more important—particularly in the need to invest in creating a technology corridor between the two countries.”i

India  is now the world’s most populous country, according to the HBR article, with a population of more than 1.4 billion people. It has enjoyed a “robust economic growth for the past three decades, with GDP per capita having risen by 245%.”

Yet, as recently as 2019,” the study found that “more than 600 million people in India live on less than $3.65/day—indicative of the potential for economic growth, and improvements in human welfare.”

As China poses increasing concerns to the U.S., India shines as a promising alternative in supply chains, innovation hubs, and joint-ventures,” it states.

While India is also the world’s largest democracy, with an increasingly open economy, in 2023 this progress was marred by an alarming and unaddressed reported upswing in attacks and deaths by Pit Bulls and other dangerous dogs, with many occurring in remote areas with limited medical response. 

However, with these attacks becoming a major deterrent to physical and community safety, and considering the rapidity with which this tragedy is increasing, it has become obvious that as major developments are planned, this destructive pattern must be stopped and something done to assure physical safety from dogs? 

ECONOMICS OF PIT BULLS AND DANGEROUS BULLY BREEDS

Dogs ostensibly bred to provide “protection,” such as Pit Bulls, XL Bullys, XXL Bullys are selling for up to $2.4 million, according to the owner of “Hulk,” a giant-sized Bully that has found worldwide acclaim, and  XL and XXL puppies by backyard breeders are being advertised on-line for $2,500-$5,000 each and exported/imported worldwide, creating a seemingly unrelated, but insidiously imminent and rapidly growing impact on safety and health of residents--and thus, eventually on entire economies, if not addressed.

While companies are planning major technological partnerships, it is obviously equally important to both the U.S. and India that personal safety of residents and visitors can be reasonably insured.

An updated list of dogs banned worldwide according to country is shown here and is an indication that this is an industry, not just a hobby.

Dog attacks by vicious breeds is a serious enough problem worldwide that 49 countries are named as having a total or partial ban and yet, recently organized opposition to bans has been promoted by such major humane organizations as Best Friends Animal Society (BFAS), the Humane Society of the U.S. (HSUS), and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).

(See: Pit Bull Attacks are Not 'Accidents)

 And, while the U.S. lolls in the lucrative illusion of “No Kill” (See: Preventing Pit Bull Restrictions),  India has bravely joined England, Wales, Scotland and other countries worldwide and announced a major step to stop the bloody carnage and the suffering of innocent children and other victims in its vast populated areas.

England, Wales and Scotland just passed bans on certain Bully breeds. (See:  XL Bully Ban Becomes Law in UK: Dangerous Dog Reports Could Double, Police Say)

WORLDWIDE ECONOMICS WILL INVOLVE DANGEROUS DOGS 

In the U.S., the best indicator of the severity of the impact of dog attacks can be estimated not only by deaths and debilitating injuries, but the cost to the insurance industry (and thus individual policy premiums) and the impact on health-service providers.  India must rely on numbers of reported injuries and deaths which often take place in remote areas in a vast country but are attributed primarily to certain breeds (10 of which are reported most significant in numbers of bite incidents.)

INDIA’S POPULATION IS NOW GREATER THAN CHINA’S 

According to an April 24, 2023 report by The Guardian, “the most significant shift in global demographics since records began,” has occurred and according to UN census date calculations, “India now has a population of 1,425,775,850, surpassing China for the first time” and, for the first time since 1950, “China has been knocked off of the first spot.”

This is more than symbolic, the report states. While the “One Child” rule limited population in the 1980’s, it has resulted in a country “now grappling with an ageing population in steep decline.”  And, because of the country’s preference for boys, ‘men now outnumber women by about 32 million.”

In India, the population has grown by more than a billion since 1950, with an average of 86,000 babies born each day in India, compared to just 49,400 in China, according to this report.”

“STREET DOGS” A TRADITION IN INDIA – ARE ALSO LIVING A NIGHTMARE

Street dogs are plentiful in India, which has a longtime policy of allowing stray, unwanted dogs to roam and multiply —and the number of these dogs is now estimated to be as high as 70 million.

 According to Humane Society International, “they present a variety of health and safety challenges--including “malnutrition, infectious diseases and injuries caused by collisions with vehicles.” It is also estimated that most puppies live a short, brutal, painful life, dying before they reach the age of 12 months, the organization states.

Street dogs also pose a threat to human health. India accounts for almost 70% of the world’s rabies cases in humans, and post-bite vaccine are rarely available to residents of the many smaller towns or villages.

ALARMING INCREASES IN DOG BITE COSTS IN U.S. INDICATES RISKS

However, the U.S. has a more significant measure of the monetary affect of these incidents on homc/personal insurance claims.

In an updated report on October 2, 2023, Forbes Advisor reports under “Dog Bite Settlement Statistics for 2024, that the “average payout in a dog bite claim is now $64,555 –a cost that is rising annually.  This is a 31.7% increase from 2021. Also, in 2022, home-insurance providers spent an estimated $1.136-billion on dog-bite related claims.

Graph provided by AnimalHealthFoundation.org

 

DOG FIGHTING IS ALIVE WORLDWIDE

Another tragic and barbaric aspect that has deterred bans on Pit Bulls is the underground world—and economy--of dog fighting, which is abject cruelty to animals, but still motivates and sustains major criminal activity.

See:  Pentagon Official Faces Up to 5-Years in Prison for Charges Related to Dog Fighting, Gambling Ring)

Dog fighting is a pervasive industry that is also sometimes protected by ostensibly “humane” organizations and even animal shelters which encourage re-adoption to those who take breed/train and take pleasure in the pain to the dogs. 

Major future focus worldwide needs to be on law-enforcement and limits on Pit Bull-type breeds that, while they can seem to be loving pets, suddenly attack and kill—even their owners. Any dog breed--including those in India’s top 25 list--that can be advertised and sold specifically for aggression must be banned--or require specific restrictions--for a growing society’s safety, and this must be a priority.

Dog attacks should not be headlines internationally on an almost daily basis as we seek to develop safe, thriving economies worldwide.

In 2024 and the future, a shared worldwide technology that can send humans into space can certainly develop safety devices to electronically protect people, as well as property—and allow dogs to just be pets.

(Phyllis M. Daugherty is a former Los Angeles City employee, an animal activist and a contributor to CityWatch.)