When Braydon Deru adopted a dog from the Davis Animal Shelter he thought he was saving man’s best friend. Instead he found himself getting a visit from the Morgan Animal Control officer. The officer informed Deru that it is not legal to own a pit bull in Morgan and that he would either need to get a DNA test to prove that the dog is not a pit bull or get rid of the animal.
Deru informed the officer that the dog is only a Pit Bull mix and declined to allow the officer to take the dog. He was informed that he would need to appear before the council if he wished to be able to keep the dog.
Deru appeared before the council and appealed to be able to keep his dog. When the statute against pit bulls was passed that was a provision to grandfather existing dogs that required the owner to be over 21, have an annual visit to the vet, ensure the dog has its shots, keep at least $100,000 in liability insurance and other restrictions. Deru communicated his willingness to adhere to these requirements if the county approved him keeping the dog.
County Attorney Jann Farris informed the council that he had recently received information in one of his legal journals that indicated that the term pit bull does not have a clear definition and is not the name of a particular breed. Farris indicated that it would be very difficult to enforce the legislation on pit bulls given the lack of a clear definition of the breed. He further recommended to the council that they come back in a month with a revised dangerous animal ordinance. The council approved this unanimously and allowed Deru to keep the dog until the issue is resolved.