Dog lovers fight back against city wide pit bull ban

EUREKA, MO - Dog lovers in Eureka are fighting back against a citywide pit bull ban.

Several advocates voiced their opposition Tuesday night asking the city to repeal the ban.

One Eureka dog owner did not want to be identified because she feared that her 10-year-old pit bull mix puppy may get taken away.

“There’s no way I would have moved here,” she said, “and I would move before I would give up my dog.”

Advocates said that the city’s current ban ordinance is too vague.

It bans ‘the American Pit Bull Terrier and any American Pit Bull Terrier crossbreed thereof.’

“We want the leash laws enforced a little more,” said Mandy Ryan, President of the Missouri Bully Alliance. “We just want them to hold irresponsible owners accountable instead of deeming dogs aggressive just by the way they look. Usually, breed-specific laws have a lot more restrictions listed and a lot more breeds listed and that’s such a vague ordinance that it’s not enforceable.”

Laurie Phillips who fosters animals including pit bulls and pit bull mixes said that she almost bought a house in Eureka until she did her research and instead chose to live in Wildwood.

“There were a few houses that I liked but the minute I found out that there was a ban how could I possibly?” Phillips said.

“I just stopped looking. I wasn’t going to move to Eureka. How anybody could think that a pit bull ban or any kind of a dog ban is appropriate in our society today?”

Mayor Kevin Coffey said that there’s a reason why the ban went into place several years ago.

“The ban was put in after several complaints about aggressive pit bulls and attacks on other people’s animals,” Coffey explained, “our number one duty to our residents is safety.”

Two aldermen voted to repeal, but a motion was approved to meet with the alliance and work on the wording of current laws including a repeal.