About us ::
National Pit Bull Victim Awareness Day Event, October 24, 2019 at the Michigan State Capitol.
Who we are
DogsBite.org is a public education website about dangerous dog breeds, chiefly pit bulls. We are the primary 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to putting the safety of humans before dogs and the principal source of information on this topic that is not owned, controlled, or funded by dog breeders, dog advocacy, veterinarian or animal welfare groups. We do not receive government or corporate funding; we rely on donations from the public and our supporters -- people like you.
Our compassion for dog mauling victims and communities, our courage to stand up to multi-million dollar animal organizations in the battle to save human lives and our outrage that barbaric maulings on public streets and within residential alleyways by recognized dangerous dog breeds continue to be tolerated by policymakers, including the CDC, is what defines us. The CDC abandoned this issue in 1998. Hundreds of fatalities inflicted by pit bulls have occurred since.
We educate and advocate"We champion the rights of victims through our research, education and advocacy."
DogsBite.org is a research and education nonprofit organization dedicated to conducting research on the growing, but underreported, public safety issue of severe and fatal dog attacks inflicted by well-documented dangerous dog breeds. We educate the public, law enforcement, journalists, attorneys and policymakers on the results of our research to prevent new life-altering attacks and to improve local, state and national policies to help protect the health and safety of human beings.
DogsBite.org advocates on behalf of dog mauling victims and their families to advance preventative policies through amicus brief filings and by providing written testimony and high quality research analysis at city, county and state-level legislative hearings. We also advocate by sharing state-of-the art knowledge and best practices we've documented in other jurisdictions with other advocates, organizations or initiatives that operate under a similar mission as our own.
Dog breeders, dog owners, veterinarian and animal welfare organizations have lobbyists in all 50 states. Victims of serious and fatal dog maulings, families and friends, health and public safety officials and the concerned public need advocates too. We advocate for you.
We champion the rights of victims through our research, education and advocacy. Our statistical data has been cited in multiple peer-reviewed scientific journals1 and over a hundred reports from local, regional and national newspapers. Our advocacy helped move the highest court in Maryland to issue the seminal ruling in Tracey v. Solesky (2012), declaring "pit bulls inherently dangerous" and to modify state liability law to ensure a compensation remedy for pit bull mauling victims.2
Our extensive research base of over 2,200 web pages enables new nonprofits and foundations with a similar mission to get organized more quickly -- prior to DogsBite.org, no research base had been established. Our extensive research base also plants seeds in all 50 states and in countries as far away as Australia. Serious injuries and fatalities disproportionately inflicted by dangerous dog breeds is a worldwide problem. Countries across the globe are struggling with this issue.3
We are needed more than ever
DogsBite.org is also the primary whistleblower combating well-funded animal “expert” groups that manipulate the truth about dangerous dog breeds, primarily pit bulls. As maulings, maimings and deaths inflicted by a distinct group of dog breeds continues to accelerate4 and more communities seek solutions, DogsBite.org is needed now more than ever. We are the public's countervailing force to these well-funded animal groups that have no mission or duty to protect human lives.
Policies we support
- Pit bull ban
A breed ban is the most proactive policy that can be undertaken concerning the pit bull problem. A ban saves the most human lives by preventing attacks before they occur. By prohibiting pit bull breeding, a ban also saves countless pit bulls from euthanasia. In 2014, Aurora released data showing the dramatic success of their ban -- a 73% reduction in pit bull bites and a 93% reduction in pit bull euthanasia.5
- Mandatory spay/neuter
Cities and animal advocates that truly seek to address the overpopulation of unwanted pit bulls must enact a mandatory pit bull sterilization policy. In 2014, over 700,000 pit bulls were projected for euthanasia by Animals 24-7.6 Roughly 14 months after Beaufort County adopted a pit bull sterilization ordinance in 2015, the number of pit bulls spayed and neutered free of charge jumped from 285 to 691.7
- Identification and liability insurance
Breed-specific legislation regarding pit bulls should always have the inclusion of mandatory micro-chipping and liability insurance, we recommend $300,000 at minimum. If a dog is unidentifiable, its owner cannot be identified for civil or criminal recourse. If an owner holds insufficient levels of liability insurance, the victim’s medical bills, loss of income and rehabilitation expenses cannot be recovered.
- Prohibit felons from ownership
Pit bulls were selectively bred for an activity that is now a felony in all 50 states: dogfighting. Pit bulls are the "chosen" breed for drug dealers, gang members and other violent offenders and as such, make up the vast majority of dogs shot by police officers.8 Convicted felons do not have the right to own a firearm, nor should they have a right to own a dog breed easily deployed as a "deadly weapon."
- Mandatory bite disclosure to adopters
After a rehomed pit bull killed a grandmother within hours of being adopted in 2017 -- the rescue failed to disclose the dog's bite history to the adopter -- Virginia legislators passed a law requiring releasing agencies to disclose the "bite history" of all animals to adopters. One lawmaker was stunned by the bill, and asked, "You mean they don't do that?"9 In 2019, California legislators passed a similar law.
- Legislative support
Many small municipalities struggle in responding to the sudden loss of an innocent life or a horrific mauling inflicted by a pit bull. Families of victims, emergency first responders, medical professionals, law enforcement agencies and elected local, county and state officials seek reliable sources of information and model drafts of legislation that will provide answers and viable solutions to prevent further tragedies.
DogsBite.org strives to be the most reliable source for this information.
- Litigation support
Municipalities that have taken action to protect their citizens are often harassed by a flood of well-organized, artificially created telephone calls, letters, and emails by aggressive "breed activists" located in outside jurisdictions.10 These municipalities are also threatened with lawsuits by pit bull owners, breeders and animal groups. However, well-written pit bull ordinances enjoy a 100% success rate in litigation.
DogsBite.org strives to facilitate communication between small jurisdictions and the leading legal experts in the nation, so the leading scientific evidence and the winning legal research and writing can be easily obtained.
About the founder
Colleen Lynn resides in Austin, Texas and operates Lynn Media Group. On June 17th, 2007, she was attacked for approximately 5-seconds by a leashed pit bull while jogging in her former Seattle neighborhood. She was hospitalized for two days at Harborview Medical Center after undergoing surgery to repair a severe bone fracture. Four months later, she launched DogsBite.org. Learn more about Colleen Lynn by reading her four-year anniversary blog post about her attack.
Read what parents, dog attack victims and advocates say about founder Colleen Lynn »
- In April 2014, the Maryland legislature abrogated the landmark appellate decision, Tracey v. Solesky. Lawyers and judges across the United States, however, will still be able to refer to the decision as the seminal case declaring pit bulls "inherently dangerous" for years to come.
- Including, but not limited to (Bini et al., 2011), (Golinko et al., 2017) and (Abraham et al., 2018)
- Estimated U.S. Cities, Counties, States and Military Facilities with Breed-Specific Pit Bull Laws, by DogsBite.org, December 20, 2018
- Level 1 Trauma Center Studies Characterizing Dog Bite Injuries Across Major U.S. Geographical Regions (2011-2019), by DogsBite.org and U.S. Dog Bite Fatalities: Breeds of Dogs Involved, Age Groups and Other Factors Over a 13-Year Period (2005 to 2017), by Dogsbite.org
- Rachel Sapin, City Lawmakers Uphold Aurora's Ban on Pit Bulls, Aurora Sentinel, March 4, 2014 (aurorasentinel.com) (Archived by WebCite at https://www.webcitation.org/6NpRs4GAp)
- Record low shelter killing raises both hopes & questions, by Merritt Clifton, Animals 24-7, November 19, 2014 (animals24-7.org)
- Lucas High, Required spay and neutering helping take bite out of pit bull overpopulation, Hilton Head Island Packet, December 6, 2016 (islandpacket.com) (Archived by Archive.is at http://archive.is/OEQZt)
- 11 Years of Police Gunfire, in Painstaking Detail, by Al Baker, New York Times, May 8, 2008
- After fatal Virginia Beach mauling, law would require bite histories for adopted pets, by Ryan Murphy, Virginian-Pilot, December 13, 2017 (pilotonline.com) (Archived by the Wayback Machine) and SB 571 Animal bite history; disclosure of information. The bill passed both chambers unanimously.
- There may be no better example than Denver City Council Members who have a history of being flooded with emails from out-of-state activists seeking to remove the city's pit bull ban. The problem was so bad in 2009 (chiefly organized by California-based, DenverKillsDog.com), council members had to screen the avalanche of "spam" from real messages from their own constituents. One screening method used was to ignore all emails that failed to state the jurisdiction in the subject line.