Delaware was already mostly free of breed-specific legislation before HB 13 came into effect. Patrick Carroll, executive director of the Delaware Humane Association, told The Dodo he thinks it's still an important piece of legislation.
Aside from discriminatory laws, pit bull type dogs face challenges in many communities — for example, many landlords won't rent to families with pits.
Housing problems are a major reason that dogs are given up to shelters, and prevent some people from adopting them once they're in the shelter.
Carroll thinks that HB 13 might help change that. The new law, he says, "does set a tone" that may encourage Delaware's landlords to rethink their own breed restrictions. It could motivate families, too, to think less about breed when they look to adopt, in favor of factors like the dog's personality.
All these shifts would lead to the happiest outcome: more shelter dogs getting into the homes they deserve, and more families living with pups they love.
Carroll doesn't expect these shifts to happen instantly, overnight. But perhaps over time, the outlook will change, so "all the dogs are seen in the same way," he said. "Seen as equal regardless of their breed."