Is a Czechoslovakian Vlcak on the Restricted Breed List?

by Kat Walden
    Ownership of dogs with wolf ancestry is facing ever increasing restrictions.

    Ownership of dogs with wolf ancestry is facing ever increasing restrictions.

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    As of the end of 2012, there were 91 Czechoslovakian Vlcaks living in 24 different states in the United States. The breed received recognition from the American Kennel Club through its Foundation Stock Service (FSS) in 2001 as a working breed. Despite the Vlcak's expansion into the United States, his wolf and German shepherd ancestry potentially could land him on a restricted breed list.

    Some states, municipalities and even homeowner's associations restrict dog ownership based upon the breed of the dog. While the Czechoslovakian Vlcak is not listed specificallyon these lists, most include a restriction for wolf dogs or wolf hybrids. Most also include restrictions on German shepherds. Since the Vlcak was developed by mixing the German shepherd with the Carpathian wolf, there is a good change the Vlcak would be subject to restriction under these guidelines. If you are unsure whether your Vlcak would be banned, you need to check with your local animal control office or homeowner's association.

    Rather than banish a specific breed, many states or municipalities impose dog ownership restrictions based upon the characteristics of the dog. Even military bases regulate the types or characteristics of dogs that may live in government housing. One of the most common characteristics restricted is "dominant traits toward aggression." When a dog is not banned specifically by breed, an evaluation process takes place involving the dog, his owner and a regulatory agent. The dog's temperament and behavior are evaluated before the owner receives permission to house the dog. If allowed, other regulations may be imposed on the owner, such as the number of animals allowed within the residence, or the type and height of fencing required around the yard.

    More and more frequently, insurance companies are imposing regulations regarding dog ownership. Some insurance companies will refuse to insure homeowners or renters who possess a particular breed of dog, or they charge greatly increased rates for coverage. Some will allow the home owner or renter to sign a waiver releasing the insurance company of any liability in the event the dog causes injury to someone else. Other insurance companies will cancel policy holders if they learn the homeowner or renter possesses a dog on their company's restricted breed list.

    In August 2013, the White House officially denounced breed-specific bans. Other organizations, such as the Centers for Disease Control, the American Veterinary Medical Association and the American Bar Association, agree that breed-specific bans do not promote responsible dog ownership, prevent dog bites or increase public safety. In fact, many unintended negative consequences arise from such bans. Owners restrict their dog's outdoor activities or limit veterinary visits for fear of discovery, both of which are detrimental to a dog's mental and physical well-being.

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    About the Author

    Kat Walden, a native of San Diego, Calif., began her work in the animal industry at Sea World in 1986. After years of working with animals large and small, she combined her expertise from the pet industry with her love of writing, and began her career as a pet writer in 2006.

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