"While the majority of pit bull owners are responsible and take appropriate measures to ensure that their dogs do not have unwanted offspring, there is a need to mitigate the large number of unwanted pit bulls in the City," a staff report prepared by City Manager Grant Yates states. "The proposed ordinance mandates the spaying and neutering of Pit Bull Breeds, with reasonable exceptions for certain cases, such as certified breeders or assistance dogs."
According to that staff report, county officials have found pit bulls make up a "disproportionately high number" of unwanted dogs in the area-- accounting for approximately 20 percent of all dogs in local shelters and 30 percent of euthanized canines.
"The Department of Animal Services for Riverside County has found that Pit Bull and Pit Bull mixes significantly impact the health and safety of residents and their pets," the staff report adds.
Yates referenced an attack last month on a man near Lake Elsinore, who was hospitalized with major injuries when he was attacked by multiple pit bulls.
If the council makes this ordinance law, then violators would be fined $100 the first time they are caught with unaltered pit bulls, up to $200 for the second offense, and up to $500 for the third and each subsequent offense.
In October 2013, the county of Riverside enacted a similar ordinance, requiring any pit bull over 4 months old to be spayed or neutered unless an owner can qualify his or her animal for one of five exemptions.