A Denmark man reportedly made the decision to end his own life after being separated from his best friend, a pit bull named Zanto, when authorities seized the dog for being the "wrong" breed.
Heartbroken over the loss of his pet, 27-year-old Dan was said to have overdosed on pain pills after failing to prove his dog was not on Denmark's "banned breed" list. There are 13 banned breeds in Denmark, including pit bull terriers and American Staffordshire terriers. The Examiner reported that Dan had just eight days to prove Zanto was not one of these breeds.
This tragedy has fired up the internet. The Facebook page Foreningen Fair Dog Fan Side posted the following about the incident:
"Zanto (the dog) was ripped out of Dan's arms because he looked like one of the now banned dog breeds, or mixture of both. Zanto had (done nothing wrong), he is a good, devoted and happy dog and he has never done a fly mischief. The owner had 8 days to prove Zanto's creator, but we all know that it is not a possible task. It ruptured Dan's heart and he chose to take his own life."
The 13 banned breeds were first introduced to Danish legislation in 2010, although pit bulls and tosa inu (and their cross-breeds) have been banned since 1991. This ban was reviewed in 2013, but no amendments were made. The Act also requires police to euthanize any dog that has attacked a person or another dog.
To learn more about Denmark's dog policy, you can read about it here.
People are available to talk, 24 hours a day, at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.