1st Pitbull Adopted in Denver Since 1989 After City Lifts Ban on Breed

Gumball was the first pitbull to be adopted in Denver since 1989.
Denver Animal Shelter

For the first time in over 30 years, a pit bull was adopted in Denver, Colorado. The citywide ban was first enacted in 1989 after 20 people were attacked by pit bulls in five years leading up to the ban.

For over three decades, pit bulls were banned from being adopted in the city of Denver. The citywide ban was first enacted in 1989 after a spike in attacks by the dog breed in the five years prior to the vote, KMGH reported. In those years leading up to the ban, 20 people had been attacked, including a 3-year-old who died from an attack in 1986, according to the outlet.

Now, for the first time in over thirty years, a pit bull named Gumdrop was adopted in the city.

"We are so excited to celebrate the first Pit Bull adoption since the new breed ordinance!" the Denver Animal Shelter wrote on Facebook. "Gumdrop was so happy to go home with his new family! Today is a day of celebration!"

The lucky dog was adopted by a family based in Colorado Springs. The 3-year-old dog was scooped up by the shelter on Dec. 17 after it was found as a stray, according to the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment spokesperson Kyle Wagner told People Magazine.

Gumdrop was placed for legal adoption on Jan. 2.

Denver residents voted in an overwhelming majority to Ballot Measure 2J to lift the ban. The ballot passed with 64.5% in favor of bringing the misunderstood breed back to adoption shelters, the Denver Post reported.

Opponents of the ban said that it has cost the city more than $5.8 million. 

Despite the achievement, the new vote comes with several regulations. Dog owners are still required to microchip their pitbull and ensure that they comply with additional requirements set by Denver Animal Protection.

Several other areas of the state including Aurora, Lone Tree, Louisville, and Commerce City, have kept the ban in place.