DNA tests conducted on dogs believed to be pit bulls after attack

Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Thoko Didiza has received numerous complaints regarding pit bulls’ attacks on children.

A list of complaints includes the most recent incident of a five-year-old boy who was mauled to death by two dogs believed to be pit bulls.

The attack took place in Dyamala in Alice, Eastern Cape over the Easter weekend.

The department said in a statement on Tuesday that it is conducting a DNA analysis of the two dogs to help identify them. Pit bulls are a crossbreed between a bulldog and a terrier.

“Among the work under way is the comprehensive DNA analysis of pit bull and pit bull-type dogs to assist with correct identification of problem animals unique to South Africa,” said the department.

“This exercise will also investigate aggressive behaviour and assist in identifying the pit bull and pit bull-type dogs that may be developed through indiscriminate crossbreeding.”

The DNA analysis was as a result of Didiza meeting with the Sizwe Kupelo Foundation, which has compiled a petition to ban the pit bulls.

More than 139 000 signatures have been collected to date. 

Many deaths and injuries inflicted by the pit bulls have hogged media headlines in recent months.

In March Olga Grill, an elderly woman from Cape Town, was allegedly mauled by her neighbour’s pit bulls who had gained entry to her Bonteheuwel home.

The 88-year-old woman died after the dogs allegedly jumped over her high fence and started attacking the pensioner.


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