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Proposal To Remove Breed Labels From L.A. City Animal Shelters To Increase More Pit Bull Adoptions

LOS ANGELES ( — The Los Angeles Board of Animal Services Commissioners Tuesday discussed whether to remove breed labels from city animal shelters.

The proposal, introduced by two commissioners, is meant to encourage more people to adopt pit bulls.

"There is a stigma against pit bull terriers and breeds of that nature," said Michelle Sathe of Best Friends Animal Society. "Best Friends believes every dog, every pet is an individual, and it's not based on breed or looks."

Phyllis Daugherty, Director of Animal Services Movement, opposes removing breed labels on kennels, especially for pit bulls.

"Pit bulls have a very high rate of attack and high rate of killing people and animals. We cannot dispute that," Daugherty said. "The problem is they are an unpredictable breed. They are genetically geared and wired to attack. That's what they were bred for."

Sam Spirer disagreed. He and his wife adopted their third one from the shelter Tuesday night.

"If you have a nice family and the dog is raised right, they're going to behave correctly; they're going be friendly. But if they're in a bad environment, they're being used for fighting or anything like that, then that's kind of where they get their bad rap."

The Spirers have no problem with a pit bull being identified as a pit bull.

"Even though a pit bull is a mix of all bully breeds, it's still kind of good for them to have a name. It doesn't have to be a bad thing," Spirer added.

The issue will be visited again at City Hall on Sept. 26.

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