Dobermans in Military Housing

Dobermans are intelligent and loyal companions

In January, the Department of the Army released a memo stating a new breed specific ban for all on base housing. The ban targets Pit Bulls (including American Staffordshire Terriers and Staffordshire Bull Terriers), Rottweilers, Chow Chows, Wolf-Hybrids, Dobermans and crosses of these breeds. This ban also includes other dogs that demonstrate a propensity for dominant behavior such as:

Unprovoked barking, growling, or snarling at people approaching

Aggressively running along fence lines when people are present

Biting or scratching people

Escaping confinement to chase people

Every military branch has this same policy. So far it is ONLY the Army who has decided to add Dobermans to their list. Dobermans have played a major role in our military's history and the Army apparently couldn't care less.

Dobermans are very loyal, gentle and docile creatures. They are excellent with children, seniors, and everyone in between. I have done my research and can't find a single bite incident regarding a Doberman on a military installation. My grandmother (who dislikes all dogs) has even commented on how well behaved and good natured my DOBERMAN is over all the other dogs she has been around. So why is my girl banned? She is not just a pet, she is my child. Why is it that my neighbor's German Shepherd is allowed on post? Every time I go out into my own yard, I get barked and growled at by that evil thing. Myself, and a lot of people I know, are more afraid of Chihuahuas than Dobermans. The banning of a dog should be based on individual temperaments, not a specific breed.

When my husband and I recently moved into base housing, due to money issues, I was told, not asked, to get rid of my Doberman or live off post. No exceptions. It did not matter that my husband has dedicated the last six years of his life to the Army, spending one tour in Korea and two in Iraq. It didn't matter that he is actually employed by the Army as an explosive dog handler. It didn't matter that he spent 800 training hours at Lackland AFB becoming the excellent dog handler that he is today... nothing mattered.

How are current military families expected to want to reenlist if they cannot even be trusted with their own animal? Until recently, we had planned to stay Army until retirement. Now, we're giving serious thought to rejoining the civilian world. When weighing the options staying in no longer makes much sense. We can't afford to live off post, and we certainly won't be giving up our silent family member.

I'm writing this petition in the hopes of opening some new eyes to this subject. I am not only writing this for myself, but also for the other families that have been hit with this ridiculous policy, and for the potential future military families. I can only hope that my cause will be taken seriously by my politicians, and others. I'm asking you congress, to please help me keep my family and others together.