The debate, which began with the attack on 4-year-old Asiye Ateş by pit bulls in Şahinbey district of Gaziantep on December 22, continued with the debate over the law requiring the registration of dog breeds. dangerous.
According to the regulations, dogs of the American Pitbull Terrier, Dogo Argentino, Fila Brasilerio, Japanese Tosa, American Staffordshire Terrier and American Bully type must be sterilized and registered.
This deadline for dog owners expires on January 14. After this date, unregistered dogs will be confiscated and the owner will be fined.
Is the breed dangerous?
So, is a dog dangerous just because of its breed?
There is no data on this in Turkey. But according to a study carried out in England, only 3% of experts affirm that the aggression of the dog towards humans is linked to its breed.
Dog trainer Burak Başeğmez believes that as dog breeds become popular, the margin for error and cases of death or serious injury increase.
Stating that different types of dogs appear from time to time, Başeğmez says:
“In the 70s, it was the Doberman. It was very popular as the Devil’s Dog. There were the same Pitbull stories for them. Turns out it has nothing to do with Dobermans. In the 90s, Rottweilers appeared.In the 2000s, Pitbulls appeared on the news.They were told to run away from these dogs.
Başeğmez said the media is very biased on these issues and said, “Dogs whose right to self-defense has been taken away are pit bulls. They are constantly treated as alcoholic drivers.”
İlker Örkmez, board member of the Federation of Canine Breeds and also a veterinarian, said that it was the people who caused the breeds to be banned and those who called the breeds dangerous, and defends the idea that ‘”No breed of dog does anything willfully or knowingly. It all depends on the education of the owner.”
Başeğmez, who supports this view, said, “If my dog gets out of my control and bites you, I’m 100% responsible.”
Veterinarian Örkmez says there is no scientific basis for identifying dangerous breeds.
So is it a solution to ban “potentially dangerous” breeds?
For this, let’s look at the example of England.
Pitbull attacks became the number one agenda in the country after a 6-year-old girl was attacked in 1991.
And a law prohibiting 4 types was quickly passed by parliament.
Similar to this process that took place in England in 1991, a pit bull attack on 4-year-old Asiye in Gaziantep is also happening in Turkey.
By law, dogs designated as “dangerous breeds” must be neutered and microchipped. The deadline for this is January 14. Those who do not respect the rule will be fined, their dogs will be confiscated and taken to shelters.
But statistics in the UK show that despite the law dog attacks have not decreased, in fact they have increased by almost 200% in the past 20 years.
Experts say the law has led people to mistakenly believe that all dogs other than the banned breeds are safe.
Dog trainer Başeğmez says that two things happen with the law in question:
“Those who couldn’t afford it or were afraid of being punished started giving up the dogs. At the same time, people started adopting pit bulls. But if they don’t know how to take care of them, the People should work with a professional. They They shouldn’t look the other way. They shouldn’t take that risk. That doesn’t just apply to pit bulls either. It applies to the dog. You shouldn’t either. more watch Kangal.
Veterinarian Örkmez, meanwhile, calls for the problems encountered in practice to be taken into account and recommends that the deadline given to dog owners be extended until at least April.
If we take the example of England, the ban does not provide a solution.
Başeğmez states that what must be done as a precaution against all these events is simple:
“There are international testing standards. You can test dogs. You can test trainers. It can be done by the ministry. Unlicensed guns are still banned, but they still exist.”
According to experts, the most important point is to raise awareness of the responsibility of owning a dog.
In this way, the breed’s needs of the dog can be met and it can be ensured that he leads a docile life.
In addition, licensing strong and large dogs considered dangerous and the people who own them can be a solution.
Veterinarian Örkmez says he considers the “dangerous breeds concept” somewhat objectionable:
“These breeds are prone to aggression, so when it comes to saying they need to be rehabilitated and tested, and some decisions made accordingly, that’s my opinion.”
“Even if pit bulls disappear, people will turn to another breed”
Instead of understanding the nature of all dogs, only certain breeds being labeled dangerous lead to new risks.
According to Burak Başeğmez, it is impossible for pit bulls to disappear. Because, “as these animals will be prohibited, they will fall to hand and their production will continue in underground places”.
Instructor Başeğmez is of the opinion that this will lead to another danger:
“Cases will increase as they are kept away from breeders and trainers. Other dogs will be banned unless other dog owners know how to care for their own dogs.
“So now the pit bull population is completely gone. There won’t be any more pit bulls in Turkey. A brand new dog is forbidden. Because people will turn to another breed and they won’t be able to cope with it and their attacks will be on the agenda.”
As in the rest of the world, efforts to regulate the relationship between dogs and humans continue in Turkey. However, the controversy does not seem to be over.
News-Video: Ege Tatlıcı, Esra Yalçınalp
Graphic: Selim Büyükgüner, Osman Kaytazoğlu
Donor: Ceren Salamar