Tenants react to dog restrictions - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Tenants react to dog restrictions


Some cities in Iowa stand behind what they call "vicious breed bans". Council Bluffs and Sioux City passed ordinances back in 2005 on pit bulls specifically.

In Des Moines, it's up to property owners to set their own pet policies. But is this the answer to preventing animal attacks?

Shelby Young owns a Rottweiler.

"If you raise them to be a teddy bear, they'll be a teddy bear! If Libby or Rottweilers in general wouldn't have been allowed to live here we would have left, no doubt. She's a dog, but she's a part of our family." said Young.

Chris McCallin lives in the same building and is also a large-breed dog owner.  McCallin owns a Mastiff.  The property owner recently notified McCallin and Young that their dogs would be "grand fathered" into a new policy. No other "dangerous dogs" or dogs above sixty pounds will be allowed to move in.

"There was no vote on this there was nothing! That really upset a lot of people. It wasn't a building-wide decision." said McCallin. 

McCallin fears he won't ever be able to relocate unless he surrenders his dog.

"With this size animal its hard to find a place to get into." said McCallin.

Even with limitations, the neighbors say they'll continue to be responsible pet owners and hope to lead by example.

"It really is a big misconception. My dog loves playing with the other dogs. That's one of the great things we love about this building!" said Young.

The Des Moines police department says building managers often adopt these policies to protect themselves. If a dog was to turn vicious on their property they'd be held accountable.

The Cedar Valley Humane Society in Cedar Rapids says breed-specific bans are hard to enforce.

"Most of the time people are to blame for the dog-bite problem." said Zach Melton of the Cedar Valley Humane Society.

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