City leaders should act on dangerous dog laws

As the new general manager of FOX 2, on occasion Greg Easterly will come to you with an editorial. For his first one he had planned to give a well-deserved ata boy on the vitality and progress of this great city. Pretty easy one out of the gate.

Then the tragic story of Emma Hernandez happened. A precious 9-year-old girl knocked off her bike and mauled to death by three vicious dogs, while they are father desperately tried to save her. The dog's owner is in jail charged with second degree murder and manslaughter. 

Now Emma's mother is asking all of us to use Emma's story as a wake up call. She's not asking for a ban on pitbulls or any other breed, but hopes the city will look at stricter laws and consequences for dog owners. Her plea includes a call for education and responsible dog ownership. 

So, city leaders: is there anything you can do? 

Let's not forget 2015, the fatal mauling of another Detroit child, 4-year-old Xavier Strickland. Talk happened then of the overhaul of the city's animal control ordinance. 

Now after this latest tragedy, city leaders say they will review the issue of dangerous animals loose on the streets in Detroit. It is the right thing to say. Now come up with solutions and take action; feels like you owe that to Emma's mother. 

And while stricter laws might encourage responsible dog ownership, it starts at home. We've never met a dog owner who would admit that they don't give their dog proper care, training or attention. So here's a challenge: if you know someone with an aggressive dog, ask them to be responsible. 

And then ask if they know Emma's story.