Boris Johnson today squashed his Deputy's proposals to wipe out all breeds of bull dog, saying that the last thing he wanted was to see "harmless pooches being slaughtered."
The comments came after his Deputy Mayor for Policing Kit Malthouse called for all bull dog breeds to be "phased out" within the UK.
The proposals were modeled on a scheme in Ontario, where owners who refused to have their dogs neutered, had them taken away and killed instead.
The plans sparked a letter writing campaign with at least 18 breed clubs believed to have written to the Deputy Mayor.
Such was the anger that one dog owners magazine went so far as to call Mr. Malthouse "The Biggest Moron in Britain."
Asked by the leader of the Conservative group Roger Evans to calm these fears, Boris replied:
"Obviously what you don't want to get into is a return to the dangerous dogs kind of legislation where you have harmless pooches being slaughtered in the name of allaying public panic. That is not what we want. We want to see a whole hearted assault on those who are using dogs as weapons and are deliberately setting out to intimidate people in their neighbourhoods with these dogs."
For some reason Kit Malthouse did not sit in his chair during the session but instead watched the exchange from the gallery.
His colleague Roger Evans, who raised the issue with the Mayor today, had already spoken out against Kit's plans earlier this week.
Commenting at Dave Hill's blog Roger wrote that:
"I'm not in favour of banning things - deprived of 'status' dogs, the owners would just find another way to make a nuisance of themselves. We need legislation which targets those few antisocial individuals and removes them from circulation."
Sensible advice, very wisely taken.