A Waterbury alderman is working to toughen local laws after two pit bulls attacked an 88-year-old woman in March and severely injured her.
Alderman Ernest Brunelli said the proposal to be reviewed during a public hearing is not breed specific, but is geared toward dogs with a history of aggressive behavior.
A special meeting of the board of aldermen will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday in the Aldermanic Chambers on Grand Street.
Brunelli wants owners of aggressive dogs to be required to use two leashes on their pets. One would be for the collar. The other would be for the harness and be used when out walking in public.
The proposal also calls for the dogs to be required to wear a muzzle.
"The first thing they want to do when they get out is bite,” Brunelli said. “So were proposing a double gate, where as you enter the enclosure, but you're away from the dog."
Alex Tyson, who owns a 2-year-old pit bull, said the proposed regulations go too far.
"You just need to have one leash on the dog and you have to train your dog," Tyson said.
Pit bulls get a bad reputation and are often the targets of strict city ordinances, according to Tyson.
"It's like any other dog. They will bite, just like a pit bull, but because they're more vicious, they say that because they're strong dogs," Tyson said.
Brunelli said any dog can become vicious under certain circumstances.
“But you know your dog and what we're proposing is education,” he said. “When you have a dog like this, you have a responsibility."