Fighting preemption laws ::
State preemption laws prohibit local governments from enacting breed-specific safety ordinances to protect their citizens and pets. Below are materials for advocates fighting state preemption bills.
Background and support materials
Overview and arguments
Begin by reading our overview that explains the history and current status of these state preemption laws. Then review the untruths often voiced by preemption bill backers.
- Overview: A Primer on State Preemption Laws That Bar Local Governments from Enacting Breed-Specific Ordinances
- "Pit Bulls Can't Be Identified" is a Dated False Myth. High Courts Have Ruled That a Dog Owner of "Ordinary Intelligence" Can Identify a Pit Bull
- Untruths to Expect by Preemption Bill Backers - Transcribed Testimony, Annotated by DogsBite.org
- Ongoing Deceptions by Lobby Group Pushing Preemption Bills About Early Preemption States (1988 to 1997)
- Our BSL FAQ Contains More Untruths Often Voiced by Preemption Bill Backers (See: Constitutionality and the Sham BSL Calculator)
Download support materials to use in communications with state legislators. The 8.5 year trend showing that legislators are largely rejecting these bills is a great start.
- 8.5 Year Trend: State Legislators Largely Reject State Preemption Bills that Prohibit Local Governments from Adopting Pit Bull Laws (2012-2020)
- 2020 DogsBite.org Written Testimony - Opposition to State Preemption Bill (House Bill 4035) in Michigan
- Level 1 Trauma Center Studies Characterizing Dog Bite Injuries Across Major U.S. Geographical Regions (2011-2019)
- 40 Years of U.S. Fatal Pit Bull Attacks in 5-Year Periods (1980-2019)
- U.S. Dog Bite Fatalities: Breeds of Dogs Involved, Age Groups and Other Factors Over a 13-Year Period (2005 to 2017)
Annual BSL estimate
Since 2011, we have maintained an estimate of breed-specific laws across the United States, including cities and counties, military housing policies, Indian reservation policies and countries worldwide with breed-specific laws. Read our 2019-2020 estimate and 2018-2019 estimate.
Charts and graphs
40 Years of U.S. Fatal Pit Bull Attacks in 5-Year Periods (1980 to 2019)
This 40-year chart portrays 5-year periods of U.S. fatal pit bull attacks since 1980. Deaths inflicted by pit bulls have increased by 670% since the 5-year period of 1995 to 1999 | Download PDF
States that Protect Local Control vs. States with Preemption Laws (1998-2019)
This U.S. map shows states that protect local control, allowing local breed-specific ordinances, and states with preemption laws. Please see a state-by-state breakdown of this map.