By Jamie Leary


DENVER (CBS4) – Mayor Michael Hancock isn’t rushing his decision on whether to lift Denver’s ban on pit bulls. On Thursday, those who’d like to keep it in place submitted more than 100 signatures to let him know.

“We are very very threatened by the possibility of this ban being lifted. Just yesterday we witnessed two pit bulls in our community of Montbello, just strolling and roaming freely,” said Pam Jiner.

Pam Jiner

Pam Jiner (credit: CBS)

Despite the fact that pit bulls have been outlawed in Denver since the 1980s, Jiner says there are hundreds in Montbello.

Jina worries if the ban is lifted, it will mean even more irresponsible owners.

“Pit bulls attack the fences, they’ve eaten holes in the fences some of ’em can jump so high that you see the head,” she said.

(credit: CBS)

It already makes her nervous walking around her neighborhood. She worries if the ban is lifted, not only will she not be able to enjoy her walks, she says it marginalizes a community already struggling to maintain the current law.

“My community’s health is more important to me than a pit bull’s freedom to roam.”

The change would allow pit pulls in Denver under specific licensing requirements, including the dog must be micro-chipped, vaccinated and spayed and neutered. It would also limit the number of pit bulls per household to two and owners would have to notify animal protection if the dog escapes or bites.

(credit: Xavier ROSSI/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

Hancock spoke to CBS4 Thursday ahead of the decision. While he has never vetoed a vote by the city council, that doesn’t mean he can’t.

“This is a very important decision to make and I want to make sure I’m thoughtful about it,” he said.

Mike Strott, Deputy Director for Mayor Hancock’s Office, told CBS4 Thursday that Hancock has five days from receipt of ordinance to either sign or veto; that would be early Sunday morning.

If he does not sign or veto, then the ordinance becomes law without a signature.

The Friday deadline is to ensure council has enough time to update their agenda if the mayor were to decide to veto. Nine council members would need to vote to override the Mayor’s veto.

Council will meet Tuesday because of the holiday on Monday.

Jamie Leary

Comments (6)
  1. JRT says:

    We have an American Bulldog since they are legal in Denver. Almost everyone thinks he is a pitbull, and we even had an encounter with animal control, but we always carry our vet’s letter stating that he’s an American Bulldog to alleviate any problems. The ban is ridiculous and what the pro-ban advocates don’t understand is that there are many bull breeds that are still 100% legal in Denver and so basically, the only thing that the ban does is that it prevents pitbulls from being adopted out in shelters. The ban is terrible and it will be my #1 issue, above all, during the next local election cycle. Not only that, I have many friends that agree and they have agreed to make this their #1 issues as well – the next time Denver votes, we will want to know where each candidate stands on this issue. I cannot tolerate any more discrimination against these wonderful dogs.

    Also, I’ve read in other comments to articles here on CBS Denver about several other Denver residents that will be adopting breeds such as Dogo Argentinoo and Cane Corsos because of the ban since they like bully breeds but can’t adopt pitbulls.

    The ban is entirely nonsensical.

  2. John Zolis says:

    100 signatures of fear mongering idiots who are puppets for misinformation while almost 150K sign to repeal and 12K from Denver —

  3. Kerri says:

    The pitbull ban is very old school legislation based on breedism and there are much better legislative models that are used to keep communities safe. It’s about time Denver lifts this unfair ban!

  4. Julie W in Denver says:

    I FULLY support the amended ordinance that the City Council worked diligently on. Mr. Mayor, please side with the science, experts, and responsible owners and SUPPORT this legislation and finally get rid of the discriminatory ban! BSL is ineffective, obsolete, and is not supported by best practices for public safety that focus on relevant factors related to incidents such as behavior, aggression, and irresponsible ownership.

  5. Ashton Day says:

    This is great, I hope these ladies and their signatures are heard. Often, pit bulls are the most concentrated in neighborhoods that aren’t the most economically advantaged. Giving green cards to pit bulls just makes safety a further barrier for these communities. Many will not have the funds or time to voice their concern. Pit bulls are also starting to invade higher economic areas due to the badge of honor for rescuing a dog. Decision makers need to tread lightly with citizens safety. It’s no one’s right to use their dogs a a weapon, and pit bulls are weapons that can go off on their own.

    1. John Zolis says:

      Stupid comment furthering biased ignorance – BSL has been proven the world over to be ineffective –

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