U.S. Marine Corps pit bull, Rottweiler, & wolf hybrid ban is now in effect

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, September 2009:

Virginia–Residents of U.S. Marine Corps base
housing worldwide have until October 11, 2009 to
meet new requirements for keeping any pit bull
terriers, Rottweilers, or wolf hybrids they
already have. No resident of Marine Corps
housing has been allowed to acquire any new dog
of these breeds since August 11, 2009.
Signed by Major General Edward Usher,
deputy commandant of installations and logistics
worldwide, the Marine Corps order was finalized
nine days after Trista Talton of the Marine Corps
Times published excerpts from a draft version and
predicted that it might take effect in September.

The Marine Corps order closely parallels
an order issued by the U.S. Army on January 5,
2009, covering Army base housing worldwide.
“Pet ownership for service members and
their families,” wrote Usher, “provides a real
and tangible benefit, and contributes to quality
of life for resident families. However, the
rise in ownership of large dog breeds with a
predisposition toward aggressive or dangerous
behavior, coupled with the increased risk of
tragic incidents involving these dogs,
necessitates a uniform policy to provide for the
health, safety, and tranquility of all
residents of family housing areas.
“Pit bulls, Rottweilers, canid/wolf
hybrids, or any canine breed with dominant
traits of aggression present an unreasonable risk
to the health and safety of personnel in family
housing,” Usher assessed. “Con-sequently, full
or mixed breeds of pit bulls, Rottweilers and
canid/wolf hybrids are prohibited aboard Marine
corps installations.”
Stipulated Usher, anticipating possible
disputes over breed identity, “In the absence of
formal breed identification (e.g. certification
by a civilian organization such as the American
Kennel Club), a determination of ‘majority
breed’ will be made by a Veter-inary Corps
officer or a civilian veterinarian.”
Banned breeds who already live in Marine
Corps housing may remain, under a “waiver and
grandfather clause,” but “must pass a nationally
recognized temperament testŠSuch tests include
Canine Good Citizen,” administered by the AKC,
“and the Delta Test,” administered by the Delta
Society. “These animals will be required to
certify every two years,” wrote Usher.
As in U.S. Army base housing, “There is
no requirement that dogs or cats be spayed or
neutered,” the Marine Corps order continues,
“but owners are encouraged to pursue this
procedureŠThe choice to spay or neuter a pet is a
responsible and prudent measure which ultimately
benefits all residents.”
Like the U.S. Army order, the Marine
Corps order restates all of the rules applying to
keeping dogs and cats in base housing worldwide.
“This policy does not address feral
animals, which are covered under installation
pest management plans,” says a paragraph of
The U.S. Army, Navy, and Air Force have
global policies against allowing feral cats and
dogs to live on bases.

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