Lover of All Creatures, in our experience a well-loved, well-trained pit bull is the gentlest of gracious creatures, the epitome of loyalty, albeit perhaps a bit shy. You could hardly have given us any better companion. So we were stunned and saddened last week to learn about a new instance of breed-specific legislation against pit bulls.

Article: On September 27, 2016 the Montreal City Council voted to ban residents from owning or adopting any pit bulls and "pit bull-type" dogs. According to the ASPCA, the trend in recent years has been "more progressive, well-rounded 'dangerous dog laws' that address individual (emphasis ours) animals and owners" and that these "are more effective public policy than blanket breed bans," which in recent years have increasingly been repealed. The ASPCA says that what is needed is to prevent neglect and foster responsible dog ownership, regardless of breed.

People aware of the pit bull crisis that causes them to be considered "disposable" dogs go to creative lengths to help us see them differently. The photos by Sophie Gamand of pit bulls with flower crowns are a wonderful example.

And so we pray this news . . .

O You who have given us pit bulls,
You know their playful spirit and the gentle concern with which they nudge people with their noses just to say "I'm here if you need me."
In Your great compassion, you also know the sore mistreatment of pit bulls and other dogs that leads to their desperate behavior.
At the other end of the spectrum you greet with joy all kindness to animals that springs from recognition of our kinship with them.
We ask you to build in us clarity of thought and common sense in how we raise and train dogs. May we be responsible companions.
We ask for freedom from fear and prejudice, including the kind of bias that leads to breed-specific legislation.
We thank You for everyone who gives pit bulls the honor they deserve and who reminds us of their gentleness.
We pray that we may each find a way to be instrumental in helping pit bulls and other animals in shelters who deserve a chance at a full, loving life.
You who give life to all creatures, please hear our prayer.

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