TORONTO -- Outrage over a spate of vicious pit bull attacks across Ontario this summer has prompted the province to ban the breed with a bad reputation.
''Pit bulls - banned,'' Attorney General Michael Bryant said Friday as he announced that legislation would be introduced within a month, the first such provincial law in Canada.
''We are banning pit bulls in Ontario.''
If passed, the proposed legislation would allow current owners of the fierce, squat dogs to keep their pets, but they will face ''severe restrictions.''
''They will be muzzled, they must be leashed and they must be neutered or spayed,'' Bryant said.
Under the new law, fines would double to $10,000 and jail sentences of up to six months would be allowed for irresponsible owners of all dog breeds.
The move follows months of informal meetings between Bryant and groups on either side of the pit bull debate.