My friend and coworker recently rescued Sadie from abuse and neglect. Like many dogs in her situation, she'd had a good start in life, but had fallen into ignorant and non-dog-savvy hands the last couple years. Hands that hit her and threw her against walls when she acted too "hyper".
Not able to keep her herself, my friend put up an ad in Craigslist. Like many dogs in her situation, Sadie still, for some reason, loved all people she met, especially children. Within a few hours, she had an email from a family that sounded perfect. Big fenced yard, kids to play with, a mom who had grown up with pit bulls and loved the breed (who had, in fact, been searching Petfinder and Craigslist for months looking for just the right pit bull for her family). My friend arranged a meeting and it went wonderfully. Sadie loved the kids, the kids loved her; the mom said this was exactly the dog they were looking for.
A perfect, happy ending for a nice family dog, right?
Two days later the new owner, being a responsible pet owner, took Sadie in to get licensed by the city. It was then she was informed by an animal control officer that the city she lived in has special rules for dogs with short hair and big heads. The family was required to post a "dangerous dog" sign in front of their house. Sadie would have to be muzzled at all times when outside the home. Including in their own, fenced, yard. They are also never allowed off-leash; even in her own yard, she'd have to be muzzled and leashed or in a kennel not to exceed 6'x6'.
"And yes," the ACO told her, "we do keep tabs on them."
"Maybe," he added, "you shouldn't keep a face-biter around your kids anyway."
The mom called up my friend in tears and asked her to take Sadie back and find her a different home.
"I just can't stand the thought of confining her all the time like that. She can't even play in the backyard with my kids."
Good work, breed specific legislation. I'll sleep better tonight knowing I'm safe safe from a friendly family dog.