Tuesday, August 19, 2008

September 18, 2008


HR6598 - `Prevention of Equine Cruelty Act of 2008' - To amend title 18, United States Code, to prohibit certain conduct relating to the use of horses for human consumption. Status: Referred to the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security.


Brookside - officials are considering an ordinance with constrictions for pit bull owners in the town would prohibit residents from owning or keeping dangerous dogs, require permits for those animals and levy penalties for violations of the ordinance. The proposed ordinance would require owners of dangerous dogs, including pit bulls, to register the dogs and pay a $50 fee. If taken outside, the dog must be kept on a four-foot leash and wear a muzzle. Dog owners would have to keep the dogs indoors or in a pen, post a "Beware of Dog" sign on property, and provide proof of liability insurance for $100,000 for bodily injury, death or property damage. The ordinance describes three kinds of dogs - the American pit bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier and the Staffordshire bull terrier.

Clay - (9/1/08) - The City Council is responding to complaints by passing an ordinance, which in effect, tells people in all residential areas except agricultural to keep it down. If they don't, they may be subject to a $500 fine or no more than 180 days in jail. The ordinance includes a section particular to animals. It says a person who owns or keeps any animal or bird which howls, barks, squawks or makes other sounds or noise that is long enough and loud enough to create "excessive and unnecessary noise across a residential or commercial property line" or within 500 feet from where a school, nursing home, or church is located, is prohibited. For dogs which make noise continuously for twenty minutes or intermittantly for 45 minutes, the owners will be in violation of the ordinance. (Ed Note: Councilman Ricky Baker said the ordinance is needed because it is forseeable that a dog could bark six hours, especially basset hounds. He said he had a dog that barked a lot, so he just opened the gate and let it go. )

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Jonesboro - (8/20/08) - Northeast Arkansans For Animals brought their plea to the city of Jonesboro's public safety committee Tuesday night (8/19/08). That ordinance would prohibit dogs from being chained up. The only option to this would be a dog being on a trolley, where they have more room to move around. Another provision in the ordinance creating some controversy, is a line that says dogs that are un-neutered must remain in an enclosed yard or indoors . Also in the ordinance, expand fence lines to 150 square feet. The proposed ordinance will be revisited next month before being sent on to the full council.

Rogers - (9/10/08) - Residents say the dogs are a nuisance. In Washington County, there is no law that limits the number of dogs a person is allowed to own. Animal control officers say even though they think Harp has too many dogs, legally, their hands are tied. There are no leash laws, either.


AB2427 - An act to amend Section 460 of the Business and Professions Code, relating to professions and vocations. This bill would make it unlawful for a city or county to prohibit that person or a group of those persons from engaging in any act or series of acts that fall within the statutory or regulatory definition of that business, occupation, or profession.

Anderson - City Council unanimously agreed last week to insert some additional teeth into the city's existing dangerous dog ordinance. The ordinance, as revised by the council's action on Tuesday, Sept. 2, specifies the minimum amount of liability insurance at $300,000 "against injuries or damages arising out of actions of such a dog."

Costa Mesa - (8/20/08) - A new animal law passed in Costa Mesa on Tuesday night may have dog owners barking at the City Council. The council, in a 3-2 vote, amended its laws to begin administering fines on owners whose dogs make excessive noise. Under the new law, a dog disturbance is defined as barking, banging, howling or crying that lasts for 30 minutes continuously or for 60 minutes over a 24-hour period. If the city receives a complaint, residents will first be notified verbally and then through a personal visit or registered letter. If the disturbance continues after a 10-day period, citations will be given with various penalties depending on the number of citations a person receives within a year. As part of a change to the law before the vote, the proposed first-time violation fine of $250 was reduced to $200. Fees increase after the first citation to $275, $303, $333, $366, and finally, $403. The fines are in line with other cities countywide. Santa Ana, Newport Beach, Laguna Woods and Laguna Beach have the lowest first-offense citation at $100, though most cities fine $250. For the sixth fine, most cities charge $403, but Laguna Niguel, Aliso Viejo and Mission Viejo citations come with a $550 penalty. In the case of a renter being cited, the property owner would be notified of the citation, but the animal owner would be responsible for the civil citation.

Elk Grove - (9/3/08) - City officials are looking to change the municipal code that deals with dangerous and vicious animals. The pit bull issue raised its head again on Aug. 20 when a pair of pit bulls went on the loose in a north Elk Grove neighborhood and chased residents, attacked and injured another dog, and confronted responding police officers. This incident comes at a time when the city staff is proposing changes to the Elk Grove municipal code regarding animal cases, including cases where animals are considered to be threatening or lethal.Under the possible changes mentioned at the Aug. 27 Elk Grove City Council meeting, the definitions of “vicious” and “dangerous” animals could be altered. Another possibility would allow police to have greater power in deciding whether or not to take an animal into custody.These changes will go before city council review during their Sept. 10 meeting.

Kern County - Board of Supervisors on Tuesday (08/26/08) will consider a new program to better manage animal overpopulation and reduce euthanasia rates. It will require additional funding for the county’s Animal Control Department. And that could be tricky in light of a budget shortfall this year that forced staff reductions and other cuts to many departments last month. Mandatory spay-and-neuter rules are off the table right now largely due to lack of community support and the resources to enforce them. "read more here"

Manteca - (8/19/08) - Update: Come mid-October if you live in Manteca and own a pit bull breed you either have to get it fixed, qualify as a legitimate breeder through a set of tight rules, or risk becoming a criminal and having the dog destroyed. The Manteca City Council on Monday (8/18/08) adopted the first reading of a municipal ordinance that would make spaying and neutering of pit bull breeds mandatory in the City of Manteca with one exception - for breeding under strict conditions that require a city issued permit. If a second reading passes in two weeks, the law would go into effect in mid-October.
UPDATE Pit bull owners have another month to have their dogs spayed or neutered before they face fines and possible jail time under a city ordinance that became official Tuesday night (09/02/08).

Los Angeles - (8/19/08) - The Los Angeles Department of Animal Services is poorly prepared to enforce its new mandatory spay and neuter law, a City Controller's office audit has found.
"Though Animal Services is charged with enforcing the mandatory spay and neuter law, it does not intend to do so," Chick said in releasing the audit Tuesday. "Instead, the department, as it does with the leash law and dog licensing, will rely on voluntary compliance," and that, is not good enough. Edward A. Boks, Animal Services general manager, said his cash-strapped department was given no money to enforce the measure when the City Council and the mayor approved it earlier this year. He said he has had to rely on "a wonderful group of volunteers" to help get the word out to pet owners. The law, which takes effect Oct. 1, requires that most dogs and cats be spayed or neutered by the time they are 4 months old. Owners who fail to comply will be given a warning and information about low-cost sterilization clinics. After that, scofflaws are subject to a series of increasingly stiff penalties, the most severe being a $500 fine or 40 hours of community service. Another article here.

Watsonville - City Council on Tuesday (08/26/08) rejected enacting regulations targeting specific breeds of dogs. Instead, the council directed staff to stiffen existing rules, develop an educational outreach program and explore having city or civil court authorities oversee vicious dog hearings.


Peetz - (9/11/08) - The Peetz Town Council approved adopting the Logan County Dog Ordinance at their last meeting. The ordinance prohibits dogs running-at-large and harboring a habitual and persistent barking dog in the unincorporated areas of Logan County.


Fairfield - (8/22/08) - The Parks and Recreation Commission voted on beach rule changes Wednesday, deciding to allow horses on the beach absent of paying a fee and tightening dog leash laws. The changes were first brought up at a public hearing on June 18 after numerous concerns and complaints came in over the last year to Parks and Recreation Director Gerry Lombardo. According to Ellery Plotkin, Parks and Recreation Commission chairman, there is now a stipulation formally in the regulations that horses are permitted on all Fairfield beaches between Oct. 1 and March 31, though only below the high tide line. It also has been formally established that owners clean up after their animals on the beach and in the parking lots. Another stipulation is that, while dogs are allowed on the beaches from Oct. 1 to March 31 as well, they are required to be leashed on all beaches, except Jennings where they may roam under voice command. Their owners are required to clean up after them as well.

Shelton - Board of Aldermen to look at what it can do to control ownership of dogs considered dangerous. The aldermen will review what they believe are the best state regulations and implement them as local ordinances at the next committee scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. Oct. 3 in City Hall.


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Collier County - County Commission unanimously passed a dangerous dog ordinance (09/09/08). Once a dog is declared dangerous, the owners must keep it in a six-sided enclosure; post signs at all entry ways stating the presence of a dangerous dog; install permanent identification on the dog, such as a tattoo or microchip; and pay $300 a year for a certificate of registration. The ordinance defines a dangerous dog as one that has aggressively bitten, attacked, endangered or inflicted severe injury on a human, domestic animal or used as a fighting dog. It also says that a dog can be labeled as dangerous if it has "when unprovoked, chased or approached a person ... in a menacing fashion or apparent attitude of attack." Exceptions to this rule may be made if a licensed veterinarian certifies that the animal is a breeding animal in good standing or that spaying or neutering could be harmful to the animal.

Ft. Lauderdale - Miramar - (9/12/08) - The owner of four Siberian huskies accused of killing a tiny terrier is taking on a new county law that may condemn them to death. Miramar resident Julie Roberts filed a lawsuit in state court last week challenging a law that cracks down on dangerous dogs and says they may be euthanized after just one attack. Before the ordinance took effect May 13, getting to that point required at least two attacks. Roberts is the first to challenge the Broward ordinance. The ordinance gives dog owners the right to appeal to a county hearing officer. If they lose, they can file a court challenge. Jason Wandner, the attorney for Roberts, said the new ordinance is unconstitutional for several reasons, such as vague wording and allowing personal property to be seized without clear and convincing evidence."Animal control will have to prove that all four dogs caused the death of this little dog," Wandner said. So far, Wandner has successfully argued the dogs could be held by a private party. Under a judge's order signed Monday, animal control officers released the huskies to an animal hospital in Deerfield Beach. Assistant County Attorney Karen Gordon said Thursday she could not comment on the lawsuit and noted the county had not yet been served.

Naples - (9/9/08) - Late Tuesday afternoon, the Collier County Commission unanimously passed a dangerous dog ordinance. They pushed through a first reading of the new rules in June, then the commission took its summer break. County employees used the time to tweak the ordinance. Once a dog is declared dangerous, the owners must keep it in a six-sided enclosure; post signs at all entry ways stating the presence of a dangerous dog; install permanent identification on the dog, such as a tattoo or microchip; and pay $300 a year for a certificate of registration. With very little discussion about the ordinance, commissioners unanimously agreed to impose harsher financial penalties for the owners and physical penalties for their pets: if an animal is impounded for being deemed dangerous, that owner must spay or neuter the animal.

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American Falls - City Council proposing new rules on pit bulls are under decision by the City Council, in hopes of cutting down on the number of vicious attacks. Police and community members are asking for new rules, including restrictions on sheltering and paying an additional $100,000 for homeowner's insurance


Carbondale - city leaders recently voted unanimously to add some extra teeth into their town's dangerous dog ordinance. The revised ordinance now requires owners of a dangerous or vicious dog to show proof of liability insurance in the amount of $500,000 per occurrence. Owners would also have to have their dog spayed or neutered and atracking chip implanted at the owner's expense. And whenever the dog is inpublic it would have to be on a leash and muzzled at all times. Carbondale's animal control officer will decide if your pet is dangerous or not.

Rantoul - (8/19/08) - A Rantoul village board member wants to ban pit bulls, Rottweilers and Doberman pinschers from the village and set limits on the number of other dogs residents will be allowed to have. Rantoul has no ordinance limiting dog ownership. I'd like to place a certain limit on the types of dogs that could cause physical damage to the residents of Rantoul," Smith said. "In addition, I'd like a complete ban on certain types of dogs within the city limits." This isn't the first time Rantoul has considered placing a limit on dogs. In 2002, the board proposed prohibiting residents from owning more than three dogs. The village board proposed limiting all households to a maximum of three animals, which were defined as "any vertebrate species other than man." The proposal drew national attention, including a film crew from the Jerry Springer Show. However, the board did pass an ordinance prohibiting people from taking animals to children's play areas, pools or public schools; penalties for animal cruelty; prohibitions against dog fighting and cock fighting; requirements for animal owners to pick up droppings from their pets; and prohibitions against having dogs while manufacturing, delivering or possessing illegal drugs. Last week the Rantoul Village Board directed Culkin and the Rantoul Police Department to consider banning or limiting dogs. Village attorney Ken Beth said the current ordinance includes provisions for the village to legally declare particular breeds of dogs dangerous.
Any dog declared dangerous on three separate occasions will be declared a vicious dog and must be humanely destroyed within seven days of that declaration, according to the current ordinance. "We could declare a certain breed a dangerous dog without regard to having a previous incident of being involved in a threatening action," Beth said. B. J. Hackler, past president of the Illinois Municipal League, said no records are kept on the number of cities and villages that have ordinances prohibiting specific breeds of dogs. Rantoul Village Attorney Ken Beth said he helped to draft a similar animal ordinance for the Potomac Village Board.
UPDATE: (8/19/08) - Rantoul Mayor Neal Williams said one of his closest friends was a Rottweiler dog named Otis. Williams opposes a plan by village board member Chuck Smith to ban Rottweilers, pit bulls and Doberman pinschers from Rantoul. "I will have no part of banning Rottweilers, and I am confident that Chuck's request to ban a certain breed of animal will meet resistance from the public," he said.

Springfield - (8/19/08) - The Springfield City Council tonight (8/19/08) is scheduled to vote on steep increases for violations of the city’s animal-control ordinance. But exactly what violations would be affected isn’t clear. The proposed amendment to the city’s animal-control code sets the fine for a first violation at $200, a second violation at $400 and all subsequent violations at $800 unless a different fine is specified elsewhere in the ordinance. And another section of the ordinance does establish a different fine for allowing dogs to run loose. Under a section in the existing ordinance titled “Restraint of Dogs and Other Animals,” owners of loose dogs are subject to $50 fines for a first offense and $75 penalties for every subsequent infraction. The penalty provision in the existing ordinance is, essentially, a catch-all that covers most violations of the law, specifying fines of between $100 and $500 for such infractions as failing to clean up after Fido does his business. Aldermen put the ordinance on the consent agenda for today’s meeting, meaning it will likely be approved along with other non-controversial measures.


Union City - (9/10/08) - Union City council members are considering enacting an ordinance that would require the annual registration of dogs and cats. There would be a registration fee charged, and owners would have to provide proof of rabies vaccination. The pets would be required to wear a durable tag. The fees would be: $5 for neutered animals and $10 for unaltered animals. The ordinance requires the officer to keep at an appropriate shelter animals for not less than three working days any animals he has picked up. After the three days, the animals may be placed in a suitable home, retained at the shelter or euthanized. Animals released to the animal control officer by their owner or impounded animals not claimed within the three-day time period become the property of the city and may be disposed of at the discretion of the animal control officer. The ordinance would require kennel or cattery permits required for anyone who owns or harbors more than three unaltered dogs or cats over the age of six months or who engages in boarding dogs or cats for compensation. There is a separate category for major and minor breeders. "Major breeder " registration would be required of anyone who intentionally or accidentally permits the breeding of a cat or dog or makes a cat or dog available for breeding purposes or offers for sale, sells, trades or gives away any litter of dogs or cats. Major breeders may not transfer a dog or cat without the appropriate vaccinations
"Minor breeder" registration would be required of any person who owns or harbors a dog or cat which has delivered a litter, and who chooses not to have the animal neutered.
Copies of the entire proposed pet registration ordinance are available at the City Building. The matter will be on the agenda at the next meeting, which is scheduled for 6 p.m., Monday, September 22.


Lisbon - A citizen´s concern about a lack of enforcement of leash laws in Lisbon was discussed at length by the city council last week, a leash law that states, "It shall be unlawful for any owner to allow an animal to run at large within the corporate limits of the city." Police chief Rick Scott said he wants citizens to call the police department (455-2452) or City Hall (455-2459) when dogs are loose. Council member Stephanie Kamberling said the law is "almost impossible to enforce," due to officers´ other duties and lack of personnel. Council member Doug Kamberling said there´s no simple solution and he does not want fees for people who have to retrieve their animals from a shelter to be prohibitively high. The council will research the issue further.

Sioux City - City Council pushes back discussion on a proposed pit bull ban. Council members say they want to make sure every member of the council can attend. Talks are now set for September 15th.
UPDATE: (9/15/08) - Sioux City Attorney Andrew Mai said Friday that the pit bull ordinance the City Council will vote on for final passage Monday (9/15/08) is the same as the original version which has already been approved twice.The law would impose a ban on pit bulls in the city, but would allow current owners to keep their dogs on the condition they are registered, licensed and hold microchip identification. They would not be allowed to replace their dog with another pit bull once it dies, however, and no new pit bulls would be allowed in the city. The ordinance would go into effect immediately, but pit bull owners would have six months to comply with the registration and other requirements. New pit bulls would also be allowed to be brought into the city during the initial six month period of the law. Violators' dogs would be impounded and be required to be put out of the city. If not removed, they would be euthanized. Mayor Mike Hobart said residents "of course" would be allowed to speak at Monday's meeting.
***SPECIAL ALERT sent 09/15/08***

Sioux City - (9/9/08) - Although poisonous spiders such as tarantulas are prohibited under Sioux City's ordinance, some similar-sized Siouxland cities allow them. Last week, Sioux City Animal Control seized 15 tanks filled with various species of venomous spiders after getting a tip from an anonymous caller. Tarantulas, which contain venom and are not indigenous to Iowa, are prohibited under the city's animal ordinance. Galen Barrett of Animal Control in Council Bluffs, Iowa, said tarantulas are allowed within the city limits. He said Council Bluffs' animal ordinance pertaining to "animals that are dangerous per se" is lengthy and consists of fur-bearing animals such as racoons, opossums and foxes. Pronghorned animals, such as moose and caribou, also are prohibited.Cedar Falls' animal ordinance allows residents to keep gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits, mice, birds, snakes, insects and lizards in their homes. An animal control officer for the Iowa city said tarantulas are allowed within the city. She said constrictive snakes are prohibited in Waterloo but allowed in Cedar Falls.According to Sioux Falls, S.D.'s city animal ordinance, "any wild, nondomestic animals, reptiles or birds" that are known to be "dangerous, poisonous, vicious or ferocious" in captivity in the city must be registered with the animal control officer, the police department and the humane society.Sioux City's animal ordinance lists the following as dangerous animals: bears, wolves, wolf hybrid dogs, foxes, coyotes, lions, tigers, panthers, lynx, bobcats, elephants, bison, poisonous snakes and spiders, alligators, crocodiles, anacondas, pythons, boa constrictors and piranhas. City Attorney Andrew Mai said the animal ordinance is up to the City Council's discretion and can be amended at any time.

Spencer - (8/19/08) - After lengthy discussions at two previous city council sessions, followed by a meeting with Dr. Tom Beall of Homestead Small Animal Practice, Monday night the Spencer City Council passed the final filing of an amended amendment dealing with unrestrained vicious animals in public. The key objection to the ordinance brought before the council initially in July was the listing of breed-specific animals, rather than a more general focus. Objectors also stressed that the irresponsible owners needed to be held more accountable as opposed to just looking at the animal itself. The Public Safety Committee met Aug. 12 to take into consideration the public comments that had been received during the first and second filings of the ordinance. It was determined that the ordinance should remain intact with the exception of removing any reference to a specific breed of dog; instead the ordinance gives a detailed definition of a "vicious animal," and also clarifies when an animal may be destroyed. Mayor Reynold Peterson said, "One other thing that came out of the meeting is that we need to review ordinances with animals to put more liability on owners." The new amendment passed on a 7-0 vote.

West Liberty - The Finance and Ordinance committee is meeting today (08/27/08) to discuss the possibility of drafting a breed specific ordinance. The committee will report back to the full council on September 2. ***SPECIAL ALERT sent 08/28/08***
UPDATE: City Council heard a report from the Public Safety Committee regarding a breed-specific ordinance at its regular meeting last Tuesday, Sept. 2. The ban was originally brought up at a council meeting last month as a result of several incidents involving pit bulls attacking or acting aggressively toward people. The committee agreed no grandfather clause for current pit bull owners would be put in the proposed ordinance.

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Cape Elizabeth - (9/13/08) - An unscooped dog poop in Fort Williams could lead to a $250 fine under an ordinance update approved Monday night by the Cape Elizabeth Town Council

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H5092 - AN ACT RELATIVE TO ANIMALS - Section 136 of chapter 140 if the General Laws, as appearing in the 2006 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting, after the definition "Adoption", the following 4 definitions: - Assistance and service dos, breed, competition dogs, currently vaccinated, etc.

* Mandate spaying and neutering of all dogs at age 12 months
* Create $500 annual "intact permits" for each dog
( Essentially eliminate the breeding or keeping of intact dogs that are registered with several major registries
* Limit intact permits only to dogs that have the physical appearance of the show dog standard
* Grant intact permits to dogs used in competition only if the local municipality approves the dog's registry
* Establish unreasonable nuisance definitions that will give complete discretion to animal control officers to order the seizure, destruction or banishment of a dog
* Ban the tethering of all dogs, except for brief periods
* Give broad powers to every municipality to ban or restrict specific breeds of dogs, and to seize, ban or kill any dog that can be deemed dangerous simply by briefly chasing another animal
* Require anyone who applies for an intact permit to attend training classes on "responsible pet ownership
* Require anyone who sells a dog or puppy to turn in the names, addresses and phone numbers of each buyer
* Impose fines and penalties, including possible imprisonment, for violations

Status: House Steering, Policy and Scheduling


HB 6395 - A bill to amend 1969 PA 287, entitled "An act to regulate pet shops, animal control shelters, and animal protection shelters; to establish uniform procedures and minimum requirements for adoption of dogs, cats, and ferrets; and to prescribe penalties and civil fines and to provide remedies,"by amending the title and sections 1 and 9 (MCL 287.331 and 287.339), as amended by 1997 PA 7, and by adding sections 5c, 5d, and 5e.
UPDATE: Rep. Caul will not reintroduce the bill next session. Instead, he's going to meet interested groups to draft something more reasonable.

Farmington Hills - officials are to vote Monday (8/25/08) on a dangerous animal ordinance after they heard numerous complaints about animals -- mostly dogs. The proposed ordinance sets up an animal review board to review complaints. Owners of dangerous animals must register their pets, keep them in enclosed areas and post signs warning others. They also must carry at least $1.5 million in liability insurance and attend a certified animal obedience class.***SPECIAL ALERT sent 8/24/08***

Grosse Pointe Park - (8/25/08) - At its Aug. 25 meeting, members approved a new ordinance that covers both dogs and the people who own them. Designed to give the public safety department the leverage and discretion it needs to deal with dangerous dogs, the ordinance bans any breed commonly referred to as a "pit bull." Included are any bull terrier breeds, Staffordshire bull terriers, American Staffordshire bull terriers, American pit bull terriers and any mixed breed dog that has the appearance or characteristics of a pit bull. A dog is considered dangerous if it "causes injury to a person or domestic animal, chases or menaces a person or domestic animal in an aggressive manner, or acts in a highly aggressively manner within a fenced or enclosed area, and appears to a reasonable person able to jump over or escape. The ordinance also sets minimum requirements for owning a dog in Grosse Pointe Park that include licensing the dog with the city, keeping it on a leash or in a secured area at all times when outdoors, and cleaning up any droppings left by the dog in public areas. The ordinance takes effect immediately and dogs currently living in the city are not excused from the ban. That doesn't mean that pit bulls must be out of town by sundown, either. According to Public Safety Director Chief David Hiller, the city can't simply go into homes and remove the animals."We will work with the city attorney on the best way to enact this," he said. "One of the first ways will be through the licensing process. All dog licenses must be renewed in December and we won't renew a license for a pit bull. By not having a licensed dog, the owner will be in violation of the ordinance and that will give us a starting point for removing the dog. The ordinance allows officers to ticket the owners of dogs that habitually bark, yelp or howl. Violations carry a graduated fine schedule that tops off at $500 and/or 90 days in jail. Several cities have similar bans on pit bull breeds, including Grosse Pointe Woods.

Hazel Park - City Council last week approved the first version of an ordinance that aims to regulate the ownership of dangerous animals, specifically pit bulls. The ordinance would require that anyone that owns a Staffordshire bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier or American pit bull terrier must register the animal with the city and meet certain criteria to house the animals. The dogs must be confined to a pen in the owner’s yard and must at all times be on a leash, and must be muzzled if ever taken out of the confinement, which must be locked and at least 6 feet high. The homeowner must also display a “beware of dog” sign on the home and kennel. Owners must report the death or birth of any pit bulls within the city limits, and the dog owner’s address must be current at all times with city records. UPDATE: (8/25/08) - City council members Tuesday voted unanimously to put tighter restrictions in place for those who own of pit bull-type dogs. Members also added a provision that would prohibit tying any breed of dog to an inanimate object, such as a tree, post, fence or building. The ordinance defines pit bull-type animals as the Staffordshire bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier and the American pit bull terrier. Under the amended law, owners of the three breeds of pit bull would have to keep their animals on a leash when outside of a fence and an adult person 18 years or older would have to be in physical control of the leash. Additionally, the dogs would have to be muzzled when outside of a house, kennel or fence; confined to the indoors or if outdoors, kept in a securely enclosed and locked six foot pen, kennel or fence, which has secure sides and a secure top for a kennel or pen. The dogs must be confined indoors, but not on a porch, patio or any part of a house or structure that would allow the dog to exit the building. Spiked dog collars are prohibited. Owners must post "Beware of Dog" on the kennel, pen or fence containing the animal. Owners must notify the city in writing about the removal or death of a pit bull, must report the birth of offspring and the notification of the new address if the owner moves to another address in the city. The city also is proposing new permit requirements and an annual permit fee of $50 for the breeds. Owners of pit bull breeds have six months to put in fencing to contain their dogs.

Romeo - (9/10/08) - Four to six months of research by the Bruce Township Planning Commission has culminated in the recommendation of more than two dozen amendments to various ordinances. Among the changes are accessory building regulations and adding new subsections for special land use requests, including dog grooming and training facilities. The amendments will not become law until the Board of Trustees approve and publish the changes. The changes were inspired by various instances the township has dealt with, from dog kennels to soil removal, as well as general clarifications to help establish credibility for the township. Along with dog-related amendments, a provision for farm animals in residential areas was amended to say two acres of land must be provided for the first animal, and an additional acre for every animal after that. Minimum of five acres for dog kennels.

Southfield - City Council considering pit bull ban. The item came before council because the city has been without an animal control officer for four years. City Attorney John Beras brought the recommendation that the city hire a new officer and discuss the issue of placing restrictions on the ownership of “dangerous dogs,” or banning them outright. Southfield’s former animal control officer retired in 2004 and was never replaced due to budget constraints. Council approved hiring a new ­ and this time armed with a gun ­ animal control officer 5-0. Pit bulls currently residing in the city would be grandfathered in, but subject to new restrictions. According to the restrictions, pit bulls already in the city must be registered and licensed as a pit bull; be kept on no longer than a four-foot leash and be muzzled when off the property; if the animal is kept in a dog pen, the pen must have a roof and a floor; and the owner must have liability insurance.


Columbus - (8/21/08) - Pet owners in Columbus may soon be required to register their dogs.
Additionally, a $10 annual fee, will be required and dogs must wear identification tags.
The Columbus City Council has approved an initial adoption of a new animal control ordinance for the city. After 30 days, including time for a public hearing on the matter, the City Council will be asked to issue final approval. If a dog is found without identification, the pet owner will be charged $10 for the first violation, $20 for the second offense and $40 for the third violation.

Greenwood - Owners of pit bulls in Greenwood soon will face new restrictions following unanimous action Tuesday by the City Council. The new law, which takes effect in 30 days, requires owners of pit bulls to register them with the Leflore County Humane Society. Owners of pit bulls also must obtain a $100,000 personal liability policy. In lieu of insurance, owners may post $100,000 cash bond issued through an approved bonding company. Proof of such insurance must be filed with the city clerk's office. The registration process shall include the name, address and telephone number of the dog's owner; where the dog is harbored; a complete identification of the dog including its sex, color and distinguishing physical characteristics; and a color photograph of the dog along with a "description of the method of compliance with the confinement requirements" of the ordinance. Only those 21 years and older may own, keep or harbor pit bulls or walk them on leashes in the city. The ordinance defines a pit bull as "any dog which exhibits those distinguishing characteristics which substantially conform to the standards established by the American Kennel Club for American Staffordshire Terriers or Staffordshire Bull Terriers, or which substantially conform to the standards established by the United Kennel Club for American Pit Bull Terriers."


Buckner - A ban on pit bull breed dogs in Buckner remains in effect, despite the opposition of prospective homeowners who own pit bull dogs. The Buckner Board of Aldermen voted 4-to-2 Thursday night (09-02-08) to retain the ordinance, following weeks of discussion and controversy. The board voted following a presentation by a dog advocate, who presented information about pit bull breeds, offering research to counter the contention that the breed is innately dangerous and vicious. Casey Martinez, who represents K.C. Dog Advocates, presented information about how pit bulls have been misrepresented in the media as being more vicious and dangerous than other breeds. She cited statistics showing that attacks by pit bulls are more often reported by the press than attacks by other breeds, leading to the public's belief that they're more dangerous. She said attacks by other dog breeds rarely are reported. Cases such as a pit bull attack that seriously injured an Independence man a few years ago, work to manipulate the public's perception of the breed, she said. "Because that's what the media puts in our face every day, that's what we perceive as reality," Martinez told the board and about 15 visitors who attended the meeting.

Springfield - (8/20/08) - City council has heard a presentation this week from leaders up in St Joseph on how they deal with animal owners in their city. Councilwoman Mary Colette says a good first step for Springfield would be adding permits for breeders plus a fee for anytime an animal has a litter of puppies or kittens. She says St Joe has had these ordinances in place for ten years and has seen a big decline in the amount of stray animals on the streets. She adds that these ideas are in their infancy for Springfield and will be looked at by a committee before anything is recommended to city council.

No Report


Omaha - (8/19/08) - The clock is ticking as a proposal to address dangerous dogs is set to go before the city council next week. A compromise is on the table, a possible law that doesn't' ban pit bulls but does address dangerous dogs in the city. Both sides are battling to find balance to a proposed city law. "We're seeing some compromise towards the position that if you're willing to mandate muzzling of dangerous dogs, maybe we can live without a ban," says Omaha City Council President Dan Welch. The council is expected to see the issue on the agenda August 26. The first public hearing will take place a week after that. It's still unclear how the council will vote. UPDATE: (9/8/08) - The Omaha City Council begins consideration of the dangerous dog ordinance on Tuesday, September 9th.


Clark County - (9/10/08) - Clark County Animal Control officials want the animal population regulated, and they will be seeking a law to ensure pets are spayed and neutered. At 6:30 p.m. Thursday,(9/11/08), the Clark County Animal Control Advisory Board will hold a meeting at the Desert Breeze Community Center to discuss a mandatory spay and neuter bill. If approved, all dogs and cats at 4 months old and older in Clark County would have to be fixed. Officials modeled the bill after a spay and neuter bill passed by North Las Vegas.
UPDATE: Removed from agenda, re-scheduled for October 16th.

Ely - City of Ely might soon address the issue in some form following the recent attack on a smaller dog by a pit bull. Kim Young is Ely's animal control officer. She would like to bring an ordinance to the city council that would ban pit bulls from the city unless the owner has a breeder's license.” ***SPECIAL ALERT sent 09/04/08***

No Report


Clifton Park - (8/19/08) - Questions were raised Monday (8/18/08) night at a public hearing for residents to respond to a proposed townwide leash law. Other residents asked the board to consider adding a requirement that dogs have obedience training before owners can get a permit, which would make it more likely that the dogs could be kept under control, and also limiting to three dogs that one person is allowed to bring off-leash into the parks at one time. The proposed laws tighten up other policies, including requiring owners to show proof of updated rabies shots and a current dog license when applying for a permit. Owners found breaking leash laws will also face larger fines of up to $250 for a second offense, and $500 for a third violation. Board members said while patrols of the parks will be stepped up, they are also asking residents to police the areas themselves and report any violators. There were no comments from residents about these additional provisions in the town laws. The Town Board took no action on approving the leash laws Monday night, and changes will be made in the document and posted on the town Web site soon. The board is expected to vote on a final draft next month.

Volney - (8/20/08) - Members of the Volney Town board adopted a noise ordinance during last week’s meeting. The purpose of the law is to prevent excessive, unnecessary, unnatural, or unusually loud noise within town boundaries. This is patterned after the noise ordinance in the City of Oswego. Specifically, the law addresses animals, alarms, emergency-vehicle devices, motor vehicles, outdoor power equipment, construction activities, parties, and outdoor social events. The law states that no one can own, harbor, or possess an animal that continuously or frequently creates an unreasonable sound. This includes a barking dog that barks continuously, specifically for more than a 10-minute period. Any one found in violation of the law will be subject to a fine of not less than $100 or more than $500 for the first offense. For the second and subsequent offenses, the fines jump to $500 to $1,000, imprisonment for a period of 15 days, or a combination of fine and imprisonment. The law will take effect immediately after it is filed with the New York State Department of State.


Brunswick County - Bolivia - (8/24/08) - The man wants his dogs back, and he doesn't want the word "dangerous" associated with them. Kirby is appealing a decision by Brunswick County's health director that his Doberman pinschers, Teddy and Nina, are "potentially dangerous" because they acted in a vicious and attacking manner. He and his attorney are also trying to get a piece of the county's ordinance, which states a dog can be declared dangerous just by barking in a vicious manner, overturned. Calley Gerber, an animal law attorney in Raleigh, filed the appeal Thursday in Brunswick County Superior Court. She hopes the case will go to a hearing Oct. 14. The county's dangerous dog ordinance requires owners to build a chain-link fence with an enclosed top. Houses are not considered proper enclosures for potentially dangerous animals. "That's a pretty crazy argument to say that your house is not a safe place to keep your dog," she said. Gerber said she is also challenging whether a county ordinance stating that houses are not considered proper enclosures is constitutional. "To me, it is just insane they've been identified as dangerous," he said. "No one has ever evaluated them, and that is just wrong."

Durham - (9/11/08) - By a 4-1 vote, Durham County Commissioners Monday night (09/08/08) passed several amendments to a local ordinance that outlaws the unattended tethering of dogs, effective Jan. 1, 2010. Tethering is defined as tying out or fastening a dog outdoors on a rope, chain or other kind of line; it does not include putting a dog on an attended leash. The amendments also cover physical space requirements: Dogs less than 20 pounds must have no less than 100 square feet of unobstructed space per animal, not including a dog house; dogs more than 20 pounds must have no less than 200 square feet.

No Report


Canton - (9/13/08) - Canton City Council is proposing to designate American bulldogs as dangerous or vicious animals. The city already includes pit bulls in the group, a change approved last year, requiring $100,000 in liability insurance for pit bull owners. Pit bulls also must be walked on a leash while muzzled. If approved by council Monday, the same requirements would apply to American bulldogs, including restricting the dogs to backyards with 6-foot fences when they are outside. The legislation is up for a vote at Monday's (9/15/08) City Council meeting at 7:30 p.m. at City Hall at 218 Cleveland Ave. SW in downtown Canton. Anyone wishing to comment on the issue must sign up no later than 7:15 p.m. Monday.
***SPECIAL ALERT sent 9/15/08***

Milford - (9/9/08) - A dispute between two neighbors over dogs unearthed possible zoning issues in regards to housing pets during Monday night's Milford Center Village Council meeting.
Council did not set a committee meeting date for the issue because the village solicitor will need to be contacted first.

Reading - following the defeat of a previous proposal to ban vicious dogs, city council is now considering passing a law that would require owners of vicious dogs to have the animals electronically registered with an implanted microchip and covered by liability insurance. The previous vicious dogs proposal was defeated by a 4-3 council vote this year. The defeated proposal would have banned vicious dogs, as defined by the Ohio revised code. "It was not breed specific," Nordin said. The new proposed law, vicious dogs will continue to be allowed in the city but their owners would be required to have a minimum of $100,000 worth of liability insurance on each animal. The new ordinance would also require vicious dog owners to provide proof of electronic registration of their animals.
**Note** Ohio Revised Code defines a vicious dog as one that, without provocation, has killed or injured a person or another dog, and or a dog that belongs to the breed that is commonly known as pit bull.


Oklahoma City - City Council Meeting (09/09/08) the Mayor and Council members received a report from the city manager concerning spay neuter ordinances.


No Report


Harrisburg - (8/22/08) - Animal-rights advocates were unhappy last month when the bill sponsored by Rep. James Casorio, D-Westmoreland, languished at the Legislature’s summer break. Now they’re frothing mad over the recent shooting of 80 dogs at two Berks County kennels. House members return to session Sept. 15, and they are under increased pressure to move Casorio’s bill. If it does not pass before the 2007-08 term ends in November, it will have to be reintroduced in the term that begins in January. Casorio’s bill would also double the minimum floor space for dogs at kennels and require solid flooring rather than wire floors in which a dog’s feet can get stuck. It would also eliminate cage stacking at commercial breeders, require access to an outdoor exercise area. UPDATE: (9/13/08) - House Democratic leaders plan a vote soon on legislation to improve conditions in Pennsylvanias puppy mills now that lawmakers are returning to session. The Rendell administration is pushing high-profile legislation to strengthen enforcement of the states dog laws, require state licensing of many kennels and set minimum standards for commercial dog breeders. However, House Minority Leader Sam Smith, R-Punxsutawney, questioned making the dog law a top priority given a limited number of session days this fall. In a memo to his caucus, Smith suggested the bill is a pet project of a popular TV talk show host."Instead of dealing with MCare or (electric) rate cap mitigation, we will probably be dealing with Oprah Winfrey's dog legislation, which is opposed by veterinarians, professional dog breeders, Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (pet stores and breeders) and the Pennsylvania Federation of Dog Clubs", wrote Smith. Additional information & article here.

No Report


Spartanburg - (9/8/08) - Spartanburg City Council passed a first reading on a newly revised animal ordinance. It will take a second reading to make it official. The ordinance went through one more change tonight. The fee for animals that have been spayed or neutered has been dropped to $6.00 an animal, down from $25.00 for those who have not been spayed or neutered. The plan requires cat owners to license their pets. People who have multiple animals would also have to get a special permit. Animal control officers tell us for breeders, this law would allow officers to come into your home or property and inspect it for sanitation and safety. Monday’s meeting begins at 5:30 pm at Spartanburg City Council Chambers on 145 West Broad Street. Read the complete ordinance in pdf form here. UPDATE: (9/15/08) - The proposal has been altered significantly to reflect the desires of the people, and plenty of time has been allowed for various and sundry arguments to be brought to light. The tethering restriction is not in the ordinance that was approved on first reading. The changes first brought before council also included steep increases in pet licensing fees, up to $10 annually for spayed animals and $40 each year for fertile animals. The current version does not include the increase. Cat owners are now required to license their pets and provide proof of vaccination to the city. Owners of six or more cats or dogs aged four months or older must obtain a multiple-animal permit, and code enforcement officers can inspect such owners' homes, upon 24 hours notice, if they receive complaints. Council will vote on second and final reading of this ordinance Sept. 22, and at that same meeting, before the vote is taken, the public will be given one more chance to comment.

Rock Hill - (9/14/08) - In the coming weeks, the county plans to hold a workshop where staff members will outline plans for updating the county's animal policies, which they say are outdated because of the county's explosive growth. No specific changes have been recommended, but officials expect to analyze everything from vaccination requirements to animal control fees. They also plan to look at a tethering policy. Leaders plan to look at what other growing counties have done, while trying to gauge their future needs.

York County - (8/19/08) - Monday night, (8/18/08) the York County Council heard a presentation from animal rights activists pushing to strengthen laws against animal abuse and neglect. Several animal rights groups joined together to encourage council leaders to ban dog tethering. They're pointing out similar laws from other counties where chaining dogs is now illegal. York County Council members were presented with a plan to ban dog tethering and require dog owners to build a fence, a kennel or install a runner line that allows dogs more freedom and movement. Council chairman Buddy Motz said it's a complex, often passionate issue, but there's good points on both sides of it. "We're getting a lot of e-mails, correspondence and data saying that you should tether dogs, and some that you should not tether dogs," Motz said.


Brookings - (9/13/08) - Brookings city councilors have decided that citizens here cannot keep more than six pets in their residences at one time. Its creators say the pet limit is a new tool to help authorities deal with animal-related complaints approved by city councilors on Tuesday. The recently passed Ordinance No. 32-08 makes it unlawful for any person or caretaker to have or keep more than six domestic pets over the age of 4 months (except birds and fish) on any lot or premises in the city. The number of animals within households would be evaluated on a by-complaint basis. The new ordinance will be helpful when city officials get complaints about barking dogs or a strong smell of animal feces at a residence. Another complaint the department has dealt with is a high number of "at-large" cats in one neighborhood , allowed to roam free, defecate in sandboxes, yards and gardens and get into garbage cans. The new ordinance also: - Makes it an offense to keep stray animals - Makes it an offense to leave pets unattended in vehicle in a manner that endangers the health of the animal - Makes it a requirement for animals in vehicles that are parked in public areas to be confined to the vehicle. The ordinance includes a new section that deals with vicious or biting dogs. Once a pet has been declared a biting, dangerous or vicious animal by officials, the owner will have to register it with the city as such and follow certain regulations, like reporting how and where it's kept and its health and ownership status.

Sturgis - City Council will address pitbills at a future meeting. Sturgis resident Russell Keeton is urging members to approve an ordinance that would help to protect citizens from pit bulls. Keeton feels the city should require pit bull owners to register the animals, keep liability insurance on them, and keep the animals restrained at all times. City Manager David Boone said an ordinance has been prepared and will be presented for the council's consideration during the Sept. 15 regular city council meeting. UPDATE: (9/12/08) - According to Sturgis’ top police officer, an ordinance the Sturgis City Council will address on Monday is not an attempt to completely ban pit bulls from Sturgis streets. Instead, Sturgis Police Chief Jim Bush said the ordinance will protect not only the community’s residents, but the dogs themselves. The Sturgis City Council meets at 7:30 p.m., Monday, Sept. 15. ***SPECIAL ALERT sent 9/15/08***


Edinburg - Hidalgo County - (9/13/08) - Pitbulls and their vicious attacks have become a "serious problem" in Hidalgo County. Justice of the Peace Charlie Espinoza said he believes the government needs further control over pit bulls so they cannot attack innocent bystanders or children."I would like to get some kind of serious ordinance or legislation or anything we might get," he told the Hidalgo County Commissioners Court on Tuesday. Espinoza said he and other county leaders, together with other justices of the peace, would sit down in the coming weeks to consider drafting a resolution to lobby the state to impose even greater restrictions on pit bulls and vicious dogs.

Henderson - Rusk County - (8/20/08) - Rusk County Judge Sandra Hodges said the county does have the authority to create a leash law for county subdivisions and unincorporated communities. Hodges spoke Monday night ((8/18/08) to a group of about 50 residents — many from the Elderville subdivisions of Airport Gardens and Ranchette — who packed the county commissioners' courtroom to voice their opinions about a county leash law. Hodges said residents from affected communities can petition county commissioners for a leash law in their area. Fines and specific provisions for the leash law have not been developed, but Hodges said a committee is being formed to consider a law in the Airport Gardens and Ranchette community.

Killeen - (8/20/08) - Animal control has been a hot topic for the city in recent months, and the item will be on the agenda once again at the council's workshop today. Members of the Killeen City Council are scheduled for a busy day as three committees are scheduled to meet throughout today in addition to the 5 p.m. council workshop. The city's animal control ordinance is on the agenda. In addition to the animal control ordinance, the council will be discussing a request to be removed from Killeen's extraterritorial jurisdiction (ETJ). Councilman Larry Cole said the city is anxiously looking for a workable solution. "The vicious dogs – we've got to find a solution to that. "We're getting weekly complaints from citizens that they can't walk their neighborhood without getting accosted by some large dog. We have to find a way to make the owners more accountable."

San Angelo - (8/20/08) - The San Angelo City Council has decided that now is not the time to decide whether City Hall should regulate how many dogs an owner can keep. The proposed ordinance called for limiting owners to no more than six dogs, prohibiting animal rescuers from taking in more than nine dogs and requiring owners whose dogs have puppies to find new owners within 12 weeks. After listening to the residents, District 6 Councilwoman Charlotte Farmer withdrew her earlier motion to approve the proposed ordinance. Instead, she requested the animal services board look into other ordinances that require spaying or neutering pets and having people register as breeders if their animals reproduce. She kept the option of limiting the number of dogs open.


No Report


Clarendon - (9/1/08) - Officials recently spent more than two hours at a workshop reviewing and amending a draft ordinance for the control of nuisance domestic animals. Health and safety issues, property damage and nuisance claims are among neighbors' concerns. The town has decided to use Mendon's animal control ordinance as a guide with some amendments. The board is expected to further review the document at an upcoming meeting.


Hampton - City Council considers permits for "hybrids". The ordinance would require the owner of a hybrid canine to apply for a special permit. A hybrid is a crossbreed of a dog and any other canine species, such as a wolf. The proposal, which will be discussed at Wednesday's Hampton City Council meeting (09/09/08) , would limit residents to owning no more than two hybrid dogs at any time. Each dog would be required to have a separate permit. In addition, the animal would have to be muzzled and kept under control of a "competent adult handler, on a leash, rope or chain whenever it is not on the property of its owner," according to city documents. ***Special Alert sent 09/06/08 ***


Bingen - (8/21/08) - Considering banning pit bulls. Public hearing September 2, 2008.

Seattle - (9/8/08) - Rumblings of a Seattle-wide ban on pit bulls have "bully breed" owners preparing for a political dogfight. Anti-pit bull activists in Seattle floated a package of proposals, including a breed ban, to City Councilman Tim Burgess earlier this year. The council opted not to pursue the proposal for now, but the action has sparked an organizing effort by dog owners concerned that the city will move against the much-maligned breed. The proposal would force pit bull owners to register their dogs and ban new pit bulls from the city. Similar bans have been enacted in other Western Washington cities, including Enumclaw, in an effort to reduce dog attacks. Responding to the effort, a handful of pit bull owners have created an interest group of their own, Families Against Breed Bans, and are sponsoring events aimed at defeating any future ban.

Spokane - (9/11/08) - A group of concerned citizens are pushing for a Spokane city ordinance banning pit bulls from Spokane. There has been a lot of controversy and reaction, but would banning pit bulls even make a difference? Spokane's city council says it's researching state law and city code before making any decision. A group is also circulating a petition around town against the ban.


Charles Town - Mayor Peggy Smith told Charles Town City Council members Tuesday night (09/02/08) a law prohibiting dangerous and vicious animals but the law has weaknesses, including a lack of penalties for keeping such animals. Smith wants the council’s ordinance review committee will review the vicious dog law.

Martinsville - (8/9/08) - Martinsville City Council heard concerns from Southside area residents about dogs during a community meeting Tuesday evening. Residents are concerned with animal issues and dogs getting loose in the neighborhood and a problem with people chaining dogs in their backyards. Residents stated that they bark more and get meaner when they are chained up. A request was also made for the city to require pets to be spayed or neutered to cut down on animal overpopulation. City Attorney Eric Monday said he is not sure if the city has legislative authority for a spay/neuter ordinance. He also said there is a limit on how many dogs a person is allowed to have adjacent to a residential structure in the city. Monday was not sure of the number at the meeting but will be looking into it. Council member Gene Teague wants council to look at the issue of dogs because four pit bulls seems like a lot and some houses have more then that in their yards. Another request was made to enact a limit on the number of vicious dogs or make owners carry a certain amount of liability insurance. Monday said the General Assembly has consistently declined to declare specific breeds of dogs as vicious and a dog essentially has to attack somebody before it's considered vicious. Another resident added that cats are a problem in the neighborhood.Another comment was made regarding dogs keeping residents awake at night with their barking and also asked what could be done about the odor from dogs.


Baraboo - Council considers revising pet policy whether local residents should be able to have more than two dogs or two cats sparked a Baraboo committee's appeal for public comments on the issue. Sauk County Humane Society Animal Control Officer Justin Huelsemann suggested allowing a maximum of four animals per household, with any combination of dogs and cats. Chairman Gene Robkin encouraged the public to send comments to city officials so the committee can look them over and continue discussion about changing the rules at a later meeting.

Clintonville - (9/11/08) - Residents making a stink about messy dog-walkers will get help from the local police. The Common Council picked up on the subject at this week's meeting in the Waupaca County community. It's illegal to walk a dog in the city and not pick up after the pet. Anyone seeing someone not cleaning up after their dog was asked to report it to the police department. According to the city ordinance, a warning is issued for a first violation. After that, a violation carries a fine of $109.


No Report



(8/24/08) - THE State Government is pressing racing authorities to stop the industry from killing thousands of greyhounds and racehorses deemed too slow or too old to race.
Racing Minister Rob Hulls told The Sunday Age he expected the industry to focus on animal welfare after a report by retired County Court judge Gordon Lewis raised concerns about treatment of unwanted horses and greyhounds. Judge Lewis believed the issue was so important he went outside the terms of reference in his inquiry into the integrity of the state's three racing codes to condemn the practice of culling animals that could not win races.
The judge estimated that of the more than 7500 greyhounds born each year in Victoria, only 1000 would not be destroyed as young dogs. Most would be put down because they were too slow to race. He had no doubt "similar problems exist with the welfare of horses". Judge Lewis called for further investigation.

Wollongong - (9/10/08) - Sumo the Alaskan malamute attacked and killed a free-range chook but his owner does not believe it makes him a danger to the community. Figtree's Walter Duran is set to fight for his dog's reputation by appealing a Wollongong City Council decision to categorise him a dangerous dog. "He did wrong but it wasn't serious enough to put him in a muzzle - that would kill him," Mr Duran said. He pleaded guilty in Wollongong Local Court yesterday to being an owner of a dog which attacked another animal. It was alleged Sumo on April 24 this year got out of his yard and attacked and killed a chicken in the yard in Mary Ave, Figtree. The chicken owner restrained the dog to a tree until Mr Duran arrived, the court heard.
Since the attack, Sumo has been declared a dangerous dog, which imposes a number of conditions on ownership, including the need to muzzle the dog in public and house the dog in a metal enclosure in the back yard. Magistrate Paul Johnson fined Mr Duran $100 considerably less than the $550 local government fine. Mr Duran was happy with the result but still wants to appeal the dangerous dog classification. "I admitted in court that Sumo did the deed, but he has never touched a human and gets on great with kids," Mr Duran said. "I think the classification is an over-reaction.


(8/21/08) - AUTHORITIES have admitted they are powerless to stop exotic pets being smuggled into Bahrain until the country's animal trade laws are overhauled. Wild animals such as cheetahs are being illegally brought into the country, where animal rights activists say they are exploited and subjected to horrific conditions. Sources have claimed some smugglers hide cheetah cubs in special compartments underneath exotic bird shipments from Johannesburg, while others pass them off as kittens. Crocodiles are allegedly imported when they are only a few inches long, hidden underneath bags of tropical fish. However, Bahrain is one of just 22 countries that have still not signed the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) - an international trade agreement aimed at eliminating the import of exotic animals.
Animal lovers are now concerned over the amount of illegal exotic animals entering the country and contributing to the multi-billion dollar trade. They are also aggrieved that authorities are not taking action against exotic animal owners. But Public Commission for the Protection of Marine Resources, Environment and Wildlife vice-president Dr Ismail Al Madani said there was no law against wild animals being sold or bred once they enter the country. He added the government could not seize exotic animals from owners with proper documentation. The GDN has visited one farm in Bahrain where a caged cheetah, a hyena and other animals such as reindeer are being openly kept. However, animal wealth director and quarantine officer Dr Salman Abdulnabi Ibrahim confirmed that no cheetah or hyena had gone through quarantine in the past five years. "The very fact that wild animals are being tied to chains in the heat is appalling," said Bahrain Society for the Protection of Animals (BSPCA) committee member Tony Waters. "Something has to be done by the government to educate people to stop treating animals like that.


Nanaimo - (8/22/08) - Licensing breeders could help the SPCA crack down on puppy mills, says the officer who investigated a Nanaimo breeder who allegedly failed to properly treat 14 sick cats in his care. New changes to animal cruelty laws in B.C. allowed Tina Heary to compel the breeder to get care for the cats, and when he didn't, he handed them over to the SPCA. Heary now says municipalities should make licensing mandatory for breeders to ensure regular inspection of the animals' living conditions. While many legitimate breeders supply healthy animals to good homes, Heary said it's difficult controlling the few who give animal breeders a bad name.
She proposes a bylaw requiring breeders to provide a permit number to do business. Failure to do so would spark a visit from a bylaw control officer, and the SPCA could be brought in if the breeder is found to be violating standards of care. "If people are required to have a breeding licence then any type of advertising they do would need to display their permit number," Heary said. Regulation would only affect reputable breeders, said Walter Brown, who has been breeding Labrador retrievers at Casadelora Kennel in Cedar for 35 years. "It's like gun control," Brown said. "It's backyard breeders and puppy mills causing the problems and you have no way of getting them."


Auckland - (8/19/08) - An Auckland dog owner is up in arms after animal control officers broke into his fenced backyard and took his dog. The family pet was seized because its registration had expired but the owner believes the council overreacted. Jamie Broderick, the dog owner, says he had no idea Animal Control could seize your pet pooch just because of an expired registration. Animal control officers seized the family pet Stanley from the back yard while he was out. "We were essentially 18 days overdue and it seems like a really radical step," says Broderick. Animal Control actually went to great lengths to capture the dog. They came down the side of the property and reaching the gate, which is locked from the inside, neighbours said they then jumped the fence and dragged Stanley away.


Taipei - (9/13/08) - The nation’s only round-the-clock animal rescue service may come to a halt next month owing to a shortage of funds, dealing another blow to the country’s underfinanced efforts to care for stray animals.“The growing number of rescue cases referred by the central government and the Taipei City Government and a fall-off in public donations in recent months have made it difficult to continue the service,” said Tiger Tung (董冠富), chief executive of the Taipei-based Life Caring and Animal Rescue Organization Taiwan (LCO). If the rescue service comes to an end next month, under existing law, cats or dogs saved by government workers such as firefighters will be killed if no one adopts them within seven days.


Croydon - (8/16/08) - Laws giving extra powers to councils to control dogs could be used in Croydon to nip aggressive behaviour encouraged by their owners in the bud. Cllr Steve O'Connell, the council's cabinet member for safety and cohesion, is concerned about "an emerging problem" across London in which mainly youngsters are using dogs to intimidate people. And while Cllr O'Connell says he is not aware of a particular problem in Croydon he wants to look at ways of taking preemptive action to stop it occurring here. The council is likely to examine powers it has to issue dog control orders and it is expected a report on policy options will be issued in the autumn. The orders can be used to take action on a range of issues ranging from dog fouling to keeping dogs under control. Under the orders councils can ban dogs from specific areas like parks and limit the number of dogs allowed onto a piece of land at any one time. Cllr O'Connell said he needed to study the powers available and take advice before coming to any conclusion about how to use them.

AND, as always, for your entertainment, some Crazy Animal Laws ! (After all the other stuff, you could USE a laugh !)

• Bear wrestling matches are prohibited in Alabama

• It is considered an offense in Alaska to push a live moose out of a moving airplane.

• Donkeys cannot sleep in bathtubs in Arizona

• Alligators may not be kept in bathtub in Arkansas

• In Hollywood California, it is illegal to drive more than two thousand sheep down Hollywood Boulevard at one time.

• In Sterling, Colorado, cats may not run loose without having been fit with a taillight.

• In Connecticut, any dogs with tattoos must be reported to the police.

• If an elephant is left tied to a parking meter in Florida, the parking fee has to be paid just as it would for a vehicle.

• In Quitman Georgia, it is illegal for a chicken to cross the road.

• In Boise Idaho, residents may not fish from a giraffe's back.

and our very favorite in this pile is:

• It is against the law for a monster to enter the corporate limits of Urbana, Illinois.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Part II of "the Report" - August 18, 2008


The U.S. District Court, District of Columbia, ordered the Department of Agriculture to suspend its plan to identify and document every animal in the U.S. The National Animal Identification System (NAIS) was to have beenfully implemented by June 9, 2009. It is now on hold indefinitely. The ruling came as a result of a lawsuit. Opponents believe it would lead to more government regulation and less personal freedom. NAIS was never legitimized by Congress. USDA just proceeded to shove it down an unwilling publics throat. Several state cattlemens associations have also accused USDA of registering premises without the consent of the owners, helping themselves to states agriculture databases and harassing young 4-H kids. These groups have formally requested leaders of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs and the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform to stop NAIS and hold oversight hearings on USDAs movements. The Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund filed suit July 14, 2008, inthe same federal district court (with the same judge presiding that suspended NAIS in June) to stop USDA and the Michigan Department of Agriculture to cease and desist any further implementation of NAIS. The suit also charges USDA has never published NAIS rules, a violation of the Federal Administrative Procedures Act, has never performed an Environmental Impact Statement or Assessment and is in violation of religious freedoms guaranteed by the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. Increasingly, federal and state bureaucracies are blatantly trying toforce unpalatable programs on citizens without bothering to follow the laws. This victory should be a reminder to the higher-ups that this is a nation of citizens, not subjects.



- (8/6/08) - With one of the nation's weakest laws against cockfighting - which in Alabama has a maximum punishment of a $50 fine - the state attorney general is pushing to strengthen the law with prison sentences. Attorney General Troy King said he and the Humane Society of the United States will encourage the Legislature in February to make the law more severe. "Animal fighting is a horribly cruel practice and anyone who participates in it should pay a price for their crime," King said at a news conference Wednesday at the Statehouse.
Mindy Gilbert, the society's Alabama director, said the society rates Alabama's cockfighting law as the nation's weakest because the $50 fine is the maximum punishment. That fine hasn't been increased since the law was passed in 1896. Despite that, at least Alabama has such a law - the practice is still legal in Louisiana, which will become the last state in the country to outlaw cockfighting on Aug. 15. It has been illegal since last year to gamble on cockfights in Louisiana.
King said he would like to make the cockfighting law similar to Alabama's dogfighting law, which provides up to 10 years in prison for people who organize and attend dogfights. Gilbert said the society ranks that law as one of the nation's third toughest. During the news conference, the society announced that it will provide $5,000 rewards for information that leads to arrests and convictions for illegal animal fighting.

- (8/7/08) - City Attorney Steve Kennamer said at Scottsboro's city council work session Monday (8/4/08) that he has drafted up a proposal to make changes in the current animal ordinance. The council is expected to vote on the proposal at next week's regular meeting. Kennamer said he drafted the proposal after meeting with council members Josephine Smith and Matthew Hodges and Police Chief Ralph Dawe, a committee formed by Council President Keith Smith back in May. Josephine Smith first brought it to the council's attention that several residents were complaining about dogs running wild in neighborhoods. A dog in a commercial area or hunting will not be required to be on a leash as long as it remains under verbal control, Kennamer said. Kennamer said another change in the ordinance will require pet owners to obtain a tag or license for their pets so many days after the pet has had its rabies shots."There are minor changes throughout the ordinance," Kennamer added.


Pima County - (8/6/08) - An investigation is underway after three dogs died in the hands of Pima County Animal Care. Animal Control was responding to a residence on the East Side Saturday, after getting calls for dogs on the loose. Once at the home, animal control decided to take five dogs into custody, citing welfare concerns. After talking to the owner at the scene, they decided to give the dogs back. When animal control employees opened a van, to let three of the dogs out, they were dead. It's a day Cynthia Matthews and her family won't soon forget.
Three of her dogs, including a foster dog and two of her own, died in a Pima Animal Care Van. Pima Animal Care officials say they've turned the investigation over to the Tucson Police Department.

- (8/5/08) - Humane Society Seminar - The Humane Society of Southern Arizona will hold a seminar to inform residents about state and local laws regarding animals on Friday, September 26. “Animal Law For Laypeople” will educate pet owners about little-known laws, explain how a case is investigated, tried and prosecuted, and explain how pets can be protected from harm. According to the Humane Society, lack of knowledge often leads to a violation of a law. Examples include the fact that it’s illegal to chain a dog in your backyard in Tucson and Pima County, and that you are required to remove animal waste from your backyard every 24 hours. The seminar costs $10 with pre-registration required, and will be held from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Companions for Life Center at 3456 East Kleindale Road. More information is available at the link.


- (8/5/08) - The Greenwood City Council tabled indefinitely a controversial proposed animal control ordinance Monday, choosing instead to schedule a study meeting on the issue for next week.The study meeting will be 6 p.m. Aug. 11 in City Hall, Mayor Kenneth Edwards said. It will include the Council, City Attorney Mike Hamby, two area veterinarians and possibly a woman who was mauled by a pit bull last week on Denver Street, Edwards said. To an audience member who asked if it would be a public meeting, the mayor said yes. Meeting attendance Monday was standing room only, with attendees spilling out of the council chamber into the lobby area. Opposition at the meeting included dismay at the draft-proposed limit of four dogs and/or cats per household; disagreement with the proposed livestock prohibitions within city limits; the banning only of pit bull breeds and dismay at the detailed requirements for pet care.Some news coverage took the process out of context, Edwards insisted.“We don’t care how many animals you have. If the Humane Society doesn’t care, we don’t care. We don’t care if you have chickens in your yard,” Edwards said.Edwards said the city would start over from scratch at the study meeting.

Little Rock - (8/5/08) - Support is strong among legislators for making cruelty against animals a felony in Arkansas, Gov. Mike Beebe said Friday. Beebe made the comment on his monthly call-in radio program "As the Governor" on the Arkansas Radio Network. A caller to the program urged Beebe to "start a fire" under legislators to get a felony animal cruelty law passed in 2009. Two bills that would have made some acts against animals a felony failed in the Legislature in 2007."I'm not sure it's going to be necessary this time to build a fire under them," Beebe said. "I think the pressure is mounting to the point that there is a greater degree of support in the Legislature."Beebe did not site a specific measure he would support, but he predicted that some type of animal cruelty legislation will become law. State Sen. Sue Madison, D-Fayetteville, and Attorney General Dustin McDaniel have said they are working separately on animal cruelty measures for next year's legislative session.

- (8/11/08) - A public hearing was held Aug. 11 at the City Hall Courtroom to discuss the proposed banning of pit bulldogs from the Malvern city limits. The hearing was called to order by Mayor Steve Northcutt. Concerned citizens had five minutes to discuss the ordinance.After the citizens were all allowed to speak, a short question and answer session was allowed for the Aldermen. Alderman C.E. West asked the Pit Bull owners if they were willing to take out $100,000 libility insurance on their Pit Bulls. The response from the owners present was that once again, there was the issue of targeting Pit Bull dogs and not all vicious dogs, such as Rottweilers and Doberman Pinchers. Gay Birch stated, “We can pass all the laws we want but they need to be enforced. We need to enforce the ones that we already have and maybe we won’t need the new one.” After everyone had a chance to speak, Northcutt allowed each speaker the option to speak for one additional minute. Northcutt stated that he would appoint a committee consisting of the Council members and of volunteers to address this issue.

Backers of a farm animal rights measure on California's November ballot have sued agriculture officials, saying they illegally approved $3 million in spending by an egg board to defeat the measure. The federal lawsuit, filed Wednesday by Californians for Humane Farms, says the U.S. Department of Agriculture approved the $3 million in spending by the federally supervised American Egg Board, an egg producers' trade group, despite a law prohibiting the board from using funds to influence government policy. The measure, Proposition 2 on the Nov. 4 ballot, takes aim at so-called "factory farms" and would be the most comprehensive farm animal rights law in the country, its supporters say. The law would ban cramped metal cages for egg-laying hens, metal gestation crates for pregnant sows and veal crates for lambs — industry standards that confine animals so that they can barely move. But a recent UC Davis study said that if the measure passes, the state's $330-million egg industry will be so heavily restricted it would face "almost complete annihilation."
AB815 - the state is solely responsible for the regulation of hunting and fishing, not local authorities. The legislation would prevent the possibility of local governments placing unreasonable restrictions and outright bans on hunters and anglers. It also prevents sportsmen from becoming victims of a patchwork of differing fish and game laws that could change from one township to the next making it impossible to know what's legal and what's not. PASSED 08/11/08

AB1634 -The new AB 1634, which makes spayed and neutered pets the status quo, with no exceptions, no due process and no protection from harassing neighbors or vindictive civil servants, was amended yesterday without addressing the state’s Department of Finance objections that the increase in shelter population and shelter killing forced spay-neuter laws bring would cost the state money. If you’re a California resident, call and fax your state Senator today to tell him or her that you don’t want more pets to die, and especially not on your tab. Forced spay-neuter regulations have increased shelter populations and shelter killings everywhere they’ve been tried, as people who can’t afford either spay-neuter or fines dump their animals and get new ones from people who ignore the law or are outside the jurisdiction — or are exempted, as in the case of ”licensed breeders” — a/k/a puppy mills — and their Internet or retail outlets. Instead, we get more legislation that kills more pets, at tax payer expense. And, as a bonus, we lay the groundwork for the destruction of our heritage breeds and allow the government one more area of control over our lives, by making them the decision-makers for what should be an informed decision by a pet-owner after a discussion with a veterinarian.
Call. Fax. This is bad public policy. Speak up and stop it. 8/18/08 (Monday) UPDATE: Today's Senate Floor Session is in recess until 2pm. The Democrats are currently in caucus. At the opening of today's session, Sen. Perata informed us that because there are a number of members that are delayed in transit, measures at this time would be "on call." Prior to the recess, the Senate Floor Session was on File Item #328 followed by three Senate Resolutions (taken up by Wyland). AB1634 is File Item #340 today.

AB2999 - (8/5/08) -A bill sponsored by Marin Assemblyman Jared Huffman and now signed into law aims to put a halt to roadkill dumping grounds such as those discovered in Sausalito and other parts of the Bay Area last fall. In violation of the California Department of Transportation's own policy, some road crew members disposed of carcasses in remote sites apparently to save time rather than drive to a rendering plant or an animal shelter. Under AB 2999 - which was signed into law last week by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger - Caltrans must:
- Develop procedures for the removal and disposal of animal carcasses.
- Notify owners of domestic animals that are killed on the roadway.
- Dispose of animal carcasses more than 150 feet away from waterways or drainage ways.
- Keep a record of disposal sites.
"We are pleased with this," said Huffman, D-San Rafael, chairman of the Assembly's Committee on Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials. "It mandates the proper handling and prevents the dumping we saw." In Sausalito, a site near Rodeo Avenue that was used for deer that had been hit and killed on Highway 101 was discovered last October. About 20 to 25 carcasses were at the site in various states of decay. The practice raised anger from Huffman and others who termed the sites rogue "pet cemeteries" and voiced concern about the pathogens and disease that can come from rotting carcasses dumped near creeks or other waterways. Caltrans had guidelines for dealing with dead animals, but Huffman said they were ignored for years in some instances.

Kern County
- (8/15/08) - Kern County is struggling to deal with people who keep large numbers of animals on their rural county land. Debate about solutions will start Wednesday (8/20/08) at a meeting of the Kern County Animal Control Commission. Without constant diligence and care, animals living in rescue shelters, kennels and breeding operations can suffer from illness, injury, starvation and death. County Resource Management Director David Price III said the county’s relaxed enforcement stance isn’t cutting it. Price has drafted an ordinance that would require operators of commercial and non-commercial “animal facilities” to obtain a permit and submit to annual inspections. Permit holders would be exempt from individual dog licensing. But it would give animal control officers the right to inspect the operation once a year — or if there is a complaint of improper behavior against the operator. “Who knows how many more are out there, that’s what keeps me awake at night,” Price said. The ordinance also outlines fees for redeeming animals from Kern County Animal Control. The fees are sharply higher if the animals have not been spayed or neutered. Commissioners will struggle with the issues in the new ordinance, revise it and send it to the Board of Supervisors for approval.

- (8/15/08) - The Manteca City Council may no longer assume pit bull owners will act responsible. That's why on Monday (8/18/08) they are entertaining a municipal ordinance that would make spaying and neutering of pit bull breeds mandatory in the City of Manteca with one exception - for breeding under strict conditions that require a city issued permit. The result is an exhaustive eight-page ordinance that lays out how the city can demand the neutering and spaying of pit bulls that are within the city limits. California law prohibits local ordinances from placing a ban on specific breeds. It does, though, allow breeds to be regulated including requiring them to be spayed and neutered. Highlights include:
• Pit bull refers to any dog that is a Bull Terrier, Miniature Bull Terrier, American Pit Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, or any other dog displaying the physical traits of any one or more of the previously mentioned breeds or any dog exhibiting those distinguishing characteristics that conform to specific standards established by the American Kennel Club or the United Kennel Club for any of the listed breeds.
• Owners unsure whether their dog is a pit bull that requires neutering or spaying, can make an appointment with the Police Department for a staff member to make a determination. There is an appeal provision.
• The only reasons a person may have a pit bull that isn't fixed include the pit bull being under eight weeks of age, if there is a high degree of suffering serious bodily harm or death due a physical abnormality based on a veterinarian certification who must also say when the operation can take place, the pit bull has been in the city less than 30 days, the owner has obtained or submitted an application for a breeding permit, the pit bull is a show dog but must include proper registration papers, or if the pit bull's status is under appeal.
• The first violation may result in the department impounding the pit bull and disposing of the pit bull in accordance with municipal ordinances or the owner may reclaim it by paying fees including the department's cost of having a veterinarian spay or neuter the dog. The owner will be required to make a $100 deposit and then cover the balance of the actual bill before reclaiming ownership.
• The second violation is a misdemeanor publishable by imprisonment in county jail for a period not to exceed six months or a fine not exceeding $1,000 or both. The second violation may result in impounding and destroying the pit bull.
• Breeding permit application fees are $100 and come with a list of stringent rules that must be followed.

San Francisco
- (8/8/08) - San Francisco supervisors will decide next month whether to turn the city's zoo into a facility for rescued animals, a move that could cost the public park its accreditation, after a supervisors' committee decided today to send the matter to the full board.
The action to move the measure forward was praised by animal-welfare advocates who have long pushed for more oversight of the San Francisco Zoo. But zoo officials warned that the legislation would stymie their fundraising abilities and all but kill the institution. Supervisor Chris Daly proposed the measure six months after a tiger escaped from its compound at the zoo Dec. 25. Daly and Supervisor Tom Ammiano voted to move the measure forward, without recommendation, while Supervisor Bevan Dufty opposed the move. The measure would make animal welfare a priority at the zoo, and require that any future acquisitions be rescued animals, including those that were abused or those confiscated by law enforcement authorities after being illegally owned or imported. It also would bar the zoo from acquiring new animals "unless the needs of all animals currently at the zoo have been met," and would create an oversight body that reports to the Board of Supervisors. Some breeding programs for endangered animals would be allowed to continue. Thursday's action after a three-hour debate came three weeks after another contentious hearing that ended with commitments from both sides - zoo officials and city leaders, who oppose the legislation, and advocates who helped draft the measure - to work toward a compromise. On Thursday, Deniz Bolbol of In Defense of Animals, an animal rights group, called the committee's vote "a good first step." Zoo officials and many volunteers have been outspoken in their opposition to the legislation, pointing out that 100 of the facility's more than 700 animals were rescued from various situations and warning that passage of the measure could cause the zoo to lose its accreditation from the powerful Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

Santa Barbara
- (8/7/08) - Spay/Neuter Panel Planned - Finding volunteers to sit on a Spay/Neuter Task Force in Santa Barbara has hit a slight snag, but soon will be implemented.
“It was the Gap fire,” said William Boyer, County Communications Director. The board of supervisors issued a call for volunteers to serve on a newly created Spay/Neuter Task Force, with an original deadline of July 25. The Gap Fire interfered with the deadline, so now the supervisors are just beginning to evaluate the applicants, Boyer said. A decision on who will be appointed is expected sometime in September, Boyer said. The 11-member task force will help address the problem of pet overpopulation. Those selected will be empanelled for three to five months and will meet on a biweekly basis. Members will meet in various parts of the county, and will also tour animal shelters. Its mission is to draft an ordinance on pet overpopulation and present it to the supervisors for consideration.


- (8/9/08) - Benton is proposing the city adopt the same language as in the county ordinance regarding differential licensing.

Brevard County
- (8/9/08) - Cats are getting spayed and neutered by the dozen in Brevard County. A Space Coast group, pushing Brevard Animal Services to make its shelters no-kill, said this is the first step. This fall, volunteers will take their no-kill proposal to the county.

Ft. Pierce
- (8/5/08) - Commissioners will move forward with a proposal that cracks down on pet owners who don't spay or neuter their animals. The commission will hear from the public at a meeting in September. Pet owners in city limits currently pay $15 a year for a license if their animal is not spayed or neutered. That fee would increase to $75 if the plan is approved.
Owners whose pets are spayed or neutered would pay $10 annually or a one time $25 fee that's good for the lifetime of the animal. St. Lucie County adopted the tougher licensing laws last year. Commissioners hope the fees will encourage pet owners to get their animals spayed or neutered and reduce the population of unwanted pets. Money raised from the fees funds the free spaying and neutering services offered by the St. Lucie County Humane Society. UPDATE: (8/9/08) -Last week, Fort Pierce Mayor Bob Benton, who has been advocating the licensing program in the city for the past year, got the go-ahead to conduct a public hearing on the program, probably in September. Critics — and there likely will be many — will claim the licensing program is just another attempt by the city to raise revenue following the passage of Amendment 1 earlier this year. However, discussion began long before passage of that tax reduction measure. It's just more government intrusion in personal decisions, some critics may claim. But, those personal decisions by irresponsible pet owners are costing other taxpayers a lot of money. As Fort Pierce moves toward adoption of the new program, Port St. Lucie should, also, to make the program truly countywide.

Land O'Lakes
- (8/8/08) - Land O'Lakes, Florida - Raymond Griggs got his companion Ginger, a Shar-Pei Hound, after a heart attack eight years ago. But Griggs admits Ginger accidentally got out recently and barked at a man with a dog on the sidewalk. He heard it was the Suncoast Meadows Homeowner's Association President. "And he didn't like it and that's what started the whole problem," said Griggs. In an e-mail to the homeowner's association property manager, Griggs apologized for the incident. She wrote back, please make sure your dog doesn't get out without a leash in the future. But then four days later, the property manager sent Griggs a letter ordering him to remove the dangerous dog from his home within 48 hours.
Homeowners Association President Gil Livingstone refused an on-camera interview but says the 48-hour notice was a mistake. So Griggs will get another letter saying he has two weeks to make sure it doesn't happen again. But as both Griggs and the homeowner's association president gave us different accounts of the confrontation with a barking dog, we wondered, is it a case of mistaken identity? Pasco County Animal Services is also looking into the matter.

Madeira Beach
- (8/9/08) - Many municipalities in Pinellas County limit the number of household cats or dogs, but commissioners here want to take this beach city off that list.
"People do not understand why there have to be restrictions on the number of animals in their homes," Commissioner Sarah Nichols said at Tuesday's workshop session. Currently, the city prohibits residents from having more than four dogs or four cats. Unincorporated Pinellas County, Belleair Beach, Belleair Shore, Indian Shores, Seminole and Treasure Island do not limit the number of cats and dogs that can be kept in a home. Other cities south of Ulmerton either have specific restrictions or limit the number of pets through kennel regulations.
Nichols said this creates a hardship for families. She said the city could eliminate the restrictions on pets and still keep all other safety, noise and nuisance rules governing dogs and cats.
Nichols told the commission that Pinellas County Animal Control euthanizes most animals in its care. "I think it is a pretty neat idea. People should be able to have as many pets as they want," Mayor Pat Shontz said. But some residents were not so enthralled. In the end, the commission directed its attorney to draft a revised ordinance removing the restriction on the number of pets in residential areas. The commission will have to vote twice on the issue before it can go into effect. No date was set for those votes.

Limit Restrictions at a glance:
GULFPORT: Prohibits kennels, defined as having three or more dogs (no mention of cats), in residential zoning districts. No animal sales, grooming or boarding in residential areas.
INDIAN ROCKS BEACH: No restrictions on number of pets, but kennels are prohibited in homes. Kennels are defined as a place housing more than three dogs. Household pets may have litters as long as the breeding is not a "business enterprise."
INDIAN SHORES: No restrictions on number of pets in homes.
MADEIRA BEACH: Prohibits keeping more than four dogs or four cats at any one residential unit.
PINELLAS COUNTY: No restrictions on number of pets in homes. Zoning regulations prohibit kennels in residential areas. Kennels are defined as "the business of boarding, breeding, buying, letting for hire or training for a fee dogs or cats."
PINELLAS PARK: Restricts number of cats and dogs by prohibiting kennels in residential districts. Kennels are defined as where more than five adult domestic animals such as dogs or cats are raised, bred, boarded or groomed.
SEMINOLE: No restrictions on number of pets in homes, but commercial kennels, defined as where domestic animals are bred, boarded, sold or treated for profit or public service, are prohibited in residential districts.
SOUTH PASADENA: Prohibits more than four dogs or four cats more than 3 months old in a residential unit. Pet dealers are prohibited in residential districts.
ST. PETE BEACH: No restrictions on number of pets in homes except by prohibition of kennels, defined as raising, breeding, boarding or grooming more than five domestic animals, or keeping more than five adult dogs or 10 adult cats.
ST. PETERSBURG: Restricts the number of pets in homes by prohibiting kennels from residential zoning districts and defining a kennel as "keeping of more than five adult (1 year old or more) dogs or 10 adult cats on site." Combined number of cats and dogs on any one site cannot exceed the maximum number of dogs.
TREASURE ISLAND: No restrictions on number of pets in homes, but prohibits kennels (an establishment where domestic animals are bred, boarded or sold) as a home occupation.

Palm Beach
- (8/9/08) - Volunteer patrol workers will soon help Palm Beach County's animal control department enforce laws designed to reduce the number of unwanted pets killed at the county's shelter. The uniformed volunteers will be responsible for educating the public on the county's new spay-and-neuter regulations. They also will report animal-cruelty cases to the department and respond to minor complaints, such as dogs running loose. The "citizens animal patrol" is modeled after neighborhood watch programs at local police departments. Volunteers will have limited power but will be authorized to issue warnings to residents with unlicensed pets. County commissioners approved the program in January as part of the controversial spay-and-neuter regulations. The rules require owners who have not spayed or neutered their dogs and cats to pay higher licensing fees and say hobby breeders must get a county permit.
Volunteers will go through a weeklong training course and will spend about 40 hours riding along with an animal control officer. The program will cost the county little. Volunteers will drive their own cars and will get used uniforms. The only expense will be the cost of embroidering a logo on the uniforms.

Tarpon Springs
- (8/9/08) - A group of business entrepreneurs inspired the city to look into relaxing restrictions in a city ordinance regulating dog boarding. Attorney Michael Kouskoutis told city commissioners it is unfair that the current ordinance only permits veterinarians to board pets overnight. Dog day care business owners should also be given that right under conditional use permits, he said. Danielle and Matt Steingraber and Mike Murray raised the issue. They want to offer overnight boarding in a proposed dog day care business at 1011 E. Lemon St., in the highway business district. Danielle Steingraber said a dog day care without overnight boarding would not be economical feasible. Interim City Manager Mark LeCouris voiced fears about noise complaints that might emanate from a business boarding pets overnight near residential neighborhoods. There is no reason veterinarians should be given the exclusive right to board dogs, especially when there is a great need for this service during tropical storms, Kouskoutis said. Planner Renae Vincent said she would research the request and report to the city commission as soon as she can.
Walton County - Santa Rosa Beach - Three-quarters of all dog owners in Walton County tether their dogs for at least part of the day, Walton County Animal Control Officer Lois Marwalt said. And if their leashes are too short, they often have no way to protect themselves in case of an attack. Other topics addressed Wednesday were among six issues county commissioners asked the committee to research. Topics previously addressed include a feral cat program, a spay/neuter program and standards of care/sheltering. But before any changes are made, residents will have a chance to voice their opinions, committee member Victoria Barnard said. "Every citizen has the opportunity to show up and support or not support the recommendations," she said. Barnard said the committee "has received some inaccurate press," and that none of the members are extremists as some seem to believe. Barnard emphasized that a mandatory spay/neuter program has never been and never will be on the group's agenda.


Dublin - Laurens County
- (8/1/08) - If your dog or cat roams and does not have tags and proof of rabies vaccinations, you could be cited. The Laurens County Commissioners decided in a workshop Thursday (7/31/08) night to ramp up enforcement of the county's leash law and state required rabies vaccinations. We're encouraging everybody if you haven't gotten your dog's tags and vaccination - please do so, said Bryan Rogers, County Administrator. If the owner can be identified, they'll be ticketed.Rogers said the Dublin City Council has requested the county crack down on animals at large. Both Dublin and East Dublin municipalities have contracted with the county for animal control management. We looked at a lot of statistical information, Rogers said of the workshop, we saw that 90 percent of the animal control calls the county received comes from Dublin or East Dublin. So we're going to focus on those statistical areas. Stray dogs that are not fenced in, or dogs and cats that are roaming will be picked up.The next Laurens County Commission meeting will begin at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug 5th at the County Commission boardroom, located in the courthouse annex at 101 N. Jefferson in Dublin.

Fannin County - (8/6/08) - A new animal control ordinance for Fannin County was still not available for review online Thursday (8/7/08) morning, as Commission Chairman Howell Bruce Jr., said it would be. The extensive ordinance covers duties of the animal control officer, nuisance animals, impounding of animals, immunizations and sterilizations, and a wide range of other animal control topics. Public hearings are being scheduled to allow citizens to comment on all the rules. As of press time, the recommendations from the K9 Care Fannin committee remained posted on the county's website and the draft of the ordinance itself was not available. Residents can request a copy of the proposed ordinance in person at the Fannin County Board of Commissioners office. There is also a section on the county's website where the public can leave comments for the board of commissioners on the issue. The first of three public hearings is scheduled for 5 p.m., Aug. 12, just prior to the board of commissioners regularly scheduled meeting at 6 p.m. A copy of the draft ordinance, obtained by hand from the board of commissioners, shows changes that were recommended by the K9 Care Fannin committee and other changes the committee never discussed. The first change of note can be found in the first section of the draft ordinance in which the ordinance states definitions for the rest of the ordinance. At press time, Commission Chairman Howell Bruce Jr. had not responded to multiple requests for comment on both the proposed ordinance or the confusion as to when the hearing would be held. You can read the contents of the draft ordinance here.

- (8/15/08) - Mean or not, the city of Homerville is considering an ordinance to ban pit bulls from the city limits. Homerville City Manager Albert Thornton says the city council is only discussing options as of now."We decided we'd look at it, see what needs to be done and at a future date, we'd make a decision on where to change the existing ordinance or to draw up a new ordinance." City Council will meet again on Thursday (8/21/08) to discuss the issue, but no action will be taken.


- (8/7/08) - The Kaua‘i County Council Parks and Recreation Committee on Wednesday again deferred three bills that would allow leashed dogs on the Eastside multi-use path, toughen the animal nuisance laws and create a new dog park.But the committee’s chair, Councilman Tim Bynum, said the bills found some footing and will likely pass out of committee to the council floor at the next meeting. “I see an end in sight,” he said yesterday.Council members agreed to take up the proposed legislation as the first business item at 9 a.m., Aug. 20, at the Historic County Building, according to interim Council Chair Jay Furfaro.Furfaro, who is an ex officio committee member, said at the next meeting they are expected to merge the proposed amendments to the bills into one cohesive piece.Interim Mayor Bill “Kaipo” Asing, who introduced the proposed ordinance to create a new dog park when he served as council chair, presented a compromise package to the council that he said was “fair and reasonable.”


Cass County
- (8/8/08) - The Cass County Board approved a resolution to control dangerous dogs. The document says any stray dog deemed dangerous under the Illinois Animal Control Act will cost the owner $500. Repeat offenders can pay up to $1,500. The board hopes this will help cut down on the amount of strays. The ordinance took effect August 1.

Springfield - (8/4/08) - The price of letting dogs run loose in Springfield is about to go up, two aldermen say. An ordinance introduced at Monday’s meeting of the Springfield City Council public affairs and safety committee would increase fines from $100 to $200 for a first violation of the city’s animal-control code. A second violation would bring a $400 fine, and any further offenses would cost $800.Ward 1 Ald. Frank Edwards and Ward 6 Ald. Mark Mahoney said they want to hit irresponsible dog owners in the pocketbook and prevent dog bites. However, paperwork presented to the committee by the city’s legal department isn’t clear on exactly what would be covered by the steeper fines.

- (8/17/08) - After months of work, the Animal Control Commission presented its revised ordinances regarding animals to the Anderson City Council on Thursday (8/14/08)night. The ordinance passed only one reading, witAfter months of work, the Animal Control Commission presented its revised ordinances regarding animals to the Anderson City Council on Thursday night. The 12 pages of amendments and additions recreates the Animal Control Commission, renames the animal shelter to Animal Care and Control, and increases fees for licenses, adoptions and surrenders at the city facility. It also elaborates on animal cruelty and adds fines for multiple offenses that result in impounding the animal. The ordinance must pass three readings to become part of city codes.


Sigourney - Keokuk County - (8/5/08) - In recent months, the Sigourney City Council, Keokuk County Public Health and area law enforcement officials have faced some difficult decisions as numerous dog bite incidents have surfaced in the County. Every pet (dog, cat, etc.) owner has a responsibility to ensure their pet does not cause a nuisance to others. This means that as pet owners, certain laws must be complied with; most of these are straightforward and are in place to ensure people and pets live happily and safely within the community. The Code of Iowa 351 outlines the ground rules for counties, cities, public health and law enforcement to follow with regards to pet ownership. In Code section 351.38, pet owner duties are defined with regard to bites. It shall be the duty of the owner of any dog, cat or other animal which has bitten or attacked a person or any person having knowledge of such bite or attack to report this act to a local health or law enforcement official. The main duty for the Keokuk County Board of Health is to protect the community. Pursuant to Iowa Code, the KC Board of Health is obligated to ascertain vaccination status for any animal reported and/or to ensure the vaccinations (rabies) are current (owner financially responsible), which may include confinement when a bite has occurred (skin is broken due to bite). The City of Sigourney has taken the Iowa Code and expounded upon it in the City of Sigourney Ordinance IV, Chapter 1: Animal Control (available at the City Clerk's office). The "At Large Prohibited" ordinance takes the state code a step further by defining the term "at large" to mean: "any licensed or unlicensed animal found off the premises of the owner and not under the control of a competent person, restrained within a motor vehicle, housed in a veterinary hospital or kennel, on a leash or "at heel" beside a competent person and obedient to that person's command."Sigourney City Ordinances also go into detail about dangerous animals and keeping vicious animals. 4-1-9 Keeping a Vicious Animal states: a vicious animal is deemed so when it shall have attacked or bitten any person (without provocation), or when the propensity to attack or bite persons shall exist and such propensity is known or ought reasonably be known to the owner thereof. There is also a lengthy definition of Pit Bull Dogs, which is prohibited within the corporate city limits of Sigourney. According to Sigourney Police Chief, Allan Glandon, after an animal is deemed vicious and ordered to be removed from the city limits, the Keokuk County Sheriff's Department is notified as well as the Keota Police Department. As per Iowa Code, medical, veterinary, law enforcement officials as well as residents of Keokuk County are obligated to report pet (dog) bites to ensure the safety of the victim. Local officials also encourage parents to caution young children on approaching unknown pets to avoid a bite or attack. Many pet owners believe their pet couldn't or wouldn't bite, but recent unprovoked dog bites in Keokuk County prove any animal is capable.

Spencer - (8/2/08) - A full agenda will greet the Spencer City Council when it meets for the first of two regularly scheduled council sessions in the month of August beginning at 6:30 p.m. Monday night in council chambers at City Hall. Among one of the more discussed items publicly, the Vicious Animals Ordinance which will be a focus on the council again on Monday. The ordinance gives a detailed definition of a "vicious animal." The ordinance also lists certain breed specific dogs that would meet the definition of a vicious animal. They are as follows: A Staffordshire Terrier breed, American Pit-bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, or any dog which has the appearance and characteristics of being predominantly of the breeds of Staffordshire Terrier, American Pit-bull Terrier, or American Staffordshire. The ordinance also clarifies when an animal may be destroyed. During the first filing there was lengthy discussion on removing the reference to breed specific dogs. If the council so desires, modifications to the ordinance can still be made.
Monday's (8/4/08) meeting would constitute the second filing of the ordinance. UPDATE: (8/16/08) - The Spencer City Council will consider a more defined ordinance to deal with vicious dogs as part of its 6:30 p.m. meeting Monday (8/18/08) in council chambers. But committee work suggests specific breeds won't be singled out in the ordinance language. "The Public Safety Committee met on this item on August 12, and determined that the ordinance should remain intact with the exception of removing any reference to a specific breed of dog," said Spencer City Manager Bob Fagen."For the most part, the ordinance gives a detailed definition of a vicious animal. The ordinance also clarifies when an animal may be destroyed. The Public Safety Committee is recommending that the reference to breed specific dogs be removed from the proposed ordinance and that the third and final filing of the ordinance be adopted."
Spirit Lake - Fences blocked the Spirit Lake City Council from making a decision on the ordinance regarding dangerous dogs and prohibition of wild animals. Councilmembers have agreed that they would like to allow pit bulls within the city limits with certain restrictions. All dangerous dogs, not just pit bulls, cannot be allowed to exit their kennels, pens or other enclosures without being on a leash no longer than four feet long. The dog must also wear a properly fitting muzzle. When the animal is not leashed it must be securely confined indoors or in a confined, locked pen which must meet certain standards. The structure must have secure sides and top, or if there is no top, the sides must be eight feet tall. The structure must have a permanently attached bottom or the sides must be embedded at least one foot into the ground, and the structure must be made of such material and closed in such a manner that the dog cannot exit the enclosure on its own. Other conditions include posting "Beware of Dog" signs with lettering no less than two inches tall. The owner must prove that liability insurance or a surety bond has been purchased for no less than $100,000. All offspring of a dangerous dog must be registered with the city within six weeks of birth. If the dog escapes, the owner must immediately alert the police department.

Bowling Green
- (8/15/08) - Bowling Green’s city Web site has been updated to specify that both cats and dogs within the city limits must have license tags issued by the Bowling Green-Warren County Humane Society. Mike Grubbs, Citizen Information and Assistance director, said the changes were made within 24 hours of hearing about the discrepancy. Previously, various portions of the site were unclear as to whether all pet animals or just dogs had to be licensed. Dog and cat licenses are valid for one year, starting July 1, and are only available at the humane society. They cost $10 for pets that have been spayed or neutered, and $40 for those that have not.
Worthington - City council members voted unanimously to approve an amended version of an animal control ordinance Monday evening (08/11), angering some and appeasing others. The ordinance prohibits city residents from owning any dog defined as "vicious" according to Kentucky law, and requires owners of "potentially vicious dogs," including specific canine breeds, to be registered with the city. Vicious dogs include any dog in the city "that has attacked or attempted to attack a human being or other domestic animal without provocation" and "any dog with a known propensity or tendency, or disposition to attack unprovoked" a human being or domestic animal, or cause injury to property. Potentially vicious dogs are defined as the bull terrier, Staffordshire bull terrier, American Staffordshire, Rottweiler, chow chow, mixed-breed dogs known as pit bulls and "any dog which has the appearance and/or characteristics of being predominantly of any of the breeds of dogs listed above or a combination of any of those."


- (8/7/08) - Nearly 200 cats and dogs at an animal shelter in Hammond, La., were euthanized after a viral outbreak, officials said. On Monday, the cats and dogs at the Tangipahoa Parish Animal Shelter were showing symptoms that included vomiting and bloody diarrhea, according to parish officials. An area veterinarian examined the animals and determined that half of them appeared to be infected. The veterinarian recommended that all cats and dogs be put down and that the shelter be completely cleaned, sanitized, and closed for several days to follow, parish officials said. Parish President Gordon Burgess consulted with a second veterinarian, as well as the State Department of Health and Hospitals and the Department of Agriculture and Forestry, and it was determined that the original veterinarian’s plan would be followed. “While the parish is certainly disappointed that this course of action had to be carried out resulting in the euthanasia of over 170 animals, it must also be clearly pointed out that Tangipahoa Parish Animal Control is primarily a population control and abuse investigation agency, not a rescue organization,” according to a statement released Thursday by the parish.
The parish is conducting an internal investigation to determine if there were any shelter policy violations that may have led to the outbreak. Two kennel staff members have publicly announced their resignations. The facility remains under quarantine. Shelter staff could not be reached for comment


Allen Park - (8/6/08) - UPDATE - City officials, considering outlawing pit bulls, reviewed Melvindale's similar ordinance and heard form people on both sides of the issue Tuesday (8/5/08) night. Approximately two dozen residents and pit bull owners from other municipalties attended the city council's Legal Affairs Commmittee meeting that lasted almost an hour and a half. Among those who addressed the group were city councilwoman Beverly Kelley. Allen Park may opt to restrict loose dogs in general, rather than pit bulls -- and pit bull mixes.
Southfield - city became the fifth in the state to ban pit bull ownership after the Southfield City Council gave the go-ahead Aug. 11. Pit bulls currently residing in the city are grandfathered in, but are subject to new restrictions. According to the restrictions, pit bulls already in the city must be registered and licensed as a pit bull; be kept on no longer than a four-foot leash and be muzzled when off the property; if the animal is kept in a dog pen, the pen must have a roof and a floor; and the owner must have liability insurance. The item came before council because the city has been without an animal control officer for four years. Council approved hiring a new - and this time armed with a gun - animal control officer 5-0.

/Redford - (8/9/08) - An uptick in violent dog attacks in some Wayne County communities has officials taking action, enacting stricter regulations for dogs deemed vicious and their owners. Allen Park has formed a committee to study a pit bull ban; Wyandotte and Redford Township are set to take up ordinances this week. On Monday, (8/11/08) Wyandotte's City Council will look at requiring owners of pit bulls, Staffordshire terriers and pit bull mixed breeds to leash, muzzle and microchip the dogs or face up to $500 in civil fines. If the new proposal moves forward, current owners will have 60 days to comply. Requirements include notification to the city animal shelter or police if the animal escapes, attacks or has died. Redford Police Chief John Buck said his township also is dealing with a recent surge in attacks -- six in June alone. Now officials intend to approve Tuesday (8/12/08) - an ordinance that will require owners to obtain liability insurance, keep dogs confined in secure pens and in some cases obtain special $100 licenses for dogs deemed vicious, Buck said.
Redford - first draft of the "vicious dog" ordinance has no breed specific language. The so-called 6 attacks in June, mentioned in the article, was also incorrect and misleading. In the article, the reporter insinuated that these were all "attacks" by pit bulls. According to Redford Police, these were "bites" caused by various breeds, including dog-on-dog bites and dog-on-person bites.


(8/10/08) - Minnesota animal welfare rights groups say they are continuing the fight for tighter regulation of the state’s numerous puppy and kitten mills through new legislation, despite some hesitation from lawmakers and large-scale breeders. Last year, Sen. Don Betzold, DFL-Fridley, and Rep. Frank Hornstein, DFL-Minneapolis, introduced the bill, known as the “breeder bill,” which would require state inspections, licensing requirements and standards of care. The bill didn’t pass in 2007 or 2008, but Betzold hopes to reintroduce it again in the upcoming legislative session. Minnesota is among the top producers of puppies and kittens in the United States, according to the Second Chance Animal Rescue organization.
The bill’s regulations have made it an unpopular choice among breeders, who fear government interference and overly strict guidelines, Betzold said. But the only way to get rid of the bad breeders is to have standards that apply to all of them, he said. “I would think good breeders would welcome that, if we could get rid of bad breeders through inspections,” he said. “It would give consumers confidence about the animals they are purchasing.”

- (8/9/08) - As urban agriculture booms in the Twin Cities area, Minneapolis residents are pressing their city to let them expand their backyard farms beyond chickens to bees and hoofed animals. "Why [these animals] can exist on one side of [Hwy.] 280 and not on the other is beyond me," said Willcutt, assistant manager at the Mill City Farmers Market.
Willcutt is an urban agriculture activist who raises chickens on Nicollet Island. But his Nigerian Dwarf goat, Vera, is in exile at a farm outside the city. St. Paul issues permits for hoofed animals and beehives, with the written consent of 75 percent of neighbors within 150 feet. But not Minneapolis. Hoofed animals there require special permits that can last no longer than 21 days and cost from $50 to $150, depending on the type of event. And don't even think about bees. Honeybee keeping is singled out for prohibition in the city code.

- (8/8/08) - After considering confining off-leash dogs to an enclosed dog park, it now looks as if the city will continue to allow canines to roam free in natural areas under their owners' voice command. But they will probably have to wear a "pet in the park" license.
The license is one part of a revised park ordinance scheduled for approval by the Minnetonka Park Board in October. Board members heard the proposal Wednesday and indicated they don't want to let a few irresponsible dog owners spoil privileges for everyone.


Calhoun County
- (8/5/08) - Four Calhoun County mayors gathered in Bruce last week to rekindle an old practice of regular meetings to share ideas, problems, and possible solutions. Bruce Mayor Robert Edward Oakley, Calhoun City Mayor J.R. Denton, Vardaman Mayor James Casey, and Derma Mayor Dock Gabbert met last Friday in Bruce where they exchanged thoughts on issues such as dog ordinances, property maintenance regulations and various other economic development related issues.“It was an exhibit in great spirit and positive countywide attitude in regards to improving our county,” Bruce Mayor Robert Edward Oakley said. “It was an opportunity for us to talk about a lot of things and see how we could work together on some issues.”Vardaman Mayor James Casey said the mayor meeting was “extremely informative.”“It was an extremely good meeting,” Casey said. “It was nice to sit down and discuss common problems and new ideas – possible solutions I haven’t thought of.”“We’re going to try and get on the same page with property and dog ordinances,” Calhoun City Mayor J.R. Denton said. “We want to come together and support the county’s effort in putting together a vicious dog ordinance and see how else we can help one another.”“We talked about everything from zoning to bulldogs,” Derma Mayor Dock Gabbert said.

Greenwood - LeFlore County
- (8/6/08) - Greenwood should adopt a tough ordinance restricting pit bulls and Rottweilers to prevent their migration into the city limits, Leflore County Humane Society's president said Tuesday. Leflore County's ordinance does not take place in municipalities. All they're going to do is start bringing them into the city, said Aubrey Whittington, president of the Leflore County Humane Society at Tuesday's (8/4/08) meeting of the Greenwood City Council. Unless we make it difficult for someone who is not responsible to have these dogs, it's going to get worse.The Leflore County Board of Supervisors passed the restriction on pit bulls July 28, and Whittington said it is a good starting point. The city has an ordinance against vicious animals, but it doesn't specifically name pit bulls or Rottweilers, she said. Council President David Jordan said the council would act quickly on amending the city's ordinances to cover pit bulls and Rottweilers.


St. Louis - (8/5/08) - State legislators who have proposed tighter exotic animal laws in the past expect they'll work for reforms in the wake of two tiger attacks this week in Missouri.
State Senator Tom Dempsey of St. Charles and State Representative Mike Sutherland of Warrenton both have tried unsuccessfully to strengthen exotic animal laws in Missouri. They call it unfortunate that two tiger-related tragedies should bring the issue to the forefront.


Grand Island/Hall County
- (8/9/08) - Add Hall County to the growing number of Nebraska communities considering some sort of limits on pit bull dogs. Hall County officials have not used the word "ban" regarding pit bulls, but do say they want the animals regulated in some way. The Hall County Supervisors plan to take up the issue at their next meeting after consulting lawyers.

- (8/8/08) - The city council has defined what it means to be a "pit bull" in Minden. City clerk and treasurer Dick Young said Thursday that an earlier city ordinance had banned dogs with some pit bull in their family backgrounds. But he says it was tough to determine the exact percentage in a particular dog. The new ordinance defines pit bulls as any of the dogs "commonly referred to" as pit bull dog, the American pit bull terrier and American Staffordshire terrier. Young also says visitors can bring their pit bulls to town but for only a maximum of 7 days. And the dogs must be leashed. The ordinance goes into effect next week. In June, the city of Osceola banned pit bulls along with seven other breeds.

Omaha - (8/5/08) - UPDATE - A local animal advocacy group calls a pit bull ban a "dangerous dog ordinance." The American Pit Bull Rescue Association spoke out Friday, asking Omaha to take its time before considering a pit bull ordinance. The group brought out a pit bull owner and pit bull named Sammy to show how properly trained pit bulls behave. It says the city should hold more public meetings during the next two months before even considering a ban. City leaders say they've already heard the group's concerns and have already planned to meet at least one more time before a committee makes any recommendations. Committee members say several options are on the table including a ban or a law aimed at dog owners, but it could be several weeks before it makes a decision. UPDATE: (8/15/08) - Omaha Mayor Mike Fahey delivered a detailed amendment list to Omaha's dog ordinance Friday morning. In the proposed amendments:
The Nebraska Humane Society has the authority to designate dogs as "dangerous" based on their behavior. Dangerous, in this case, includes any animal that inflicts injury on a human; any animal that injures another domestic animal; any animal that chases or approaches a person on the streets, sidewalks or public ground in a menacing fashion; and any animal with a known disposition to attack when unprovoked. A mandatory spaying or neutering and microchip identification is required upon a dog's designation as dangerous.
Required classes. Owners of dangerous dogs must attend a responsible pet ownership class within 90 days of a designation.
Leash and muzzle requirement for pit bulls. It is illegal for any person to permit a pit bull out doors unless confined in a securely fenced yard or unless the animal is under the control of a person 19 or older, restrained securely by a leash and properly muzzled.
A pit bull is defined as any dog that is an American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Dogo Argentina, Presa Canario or Cane Corso, or any dog displaying the majority of the physical traits of any one of those breeds.

Omaha - (8/1/08) - Why is it that when one pit bull attack occurs, an attacking epidemic sweeps the nation? Is there something in the dog food? Are irresponsible owners simultaneously agitating their dogs? Or is the media to blame for sensationalizing the attacks? As a member of the media, I have no answers. But I do have some suggestions for this ridiculous wave of dog crime.In the past month, the Omaha-metro area has seen numerous attacks, the most serious being an attack on a 15-month-old who lost part of her scalp from a pit bull's bite. Now an Omaha committee is exploring possible restrictions on the breed. The City of Omaha already has dangerous-animal and menacing-behavior laws, which allow individual animals to be labeled dangerous, or even euthanized, if they attack without provocation or have been trained to fight.While this looks good on paper, is this approach really solving anything? Clearly not. And the reason why is, like so many other problems in the world, the real issue behind the pit bull attacks is being swept under the rug. And the real issue, of course, is the owners.
Reno, Sparks and Washoe County - proposed at the Animal Control meeting (8/12/08) is that anyone...no matter who....that owns 4 dogs, could be your 90 year old granny with 4 deaf, dumb and blind dogs .....is considered a "kennel" and requires a kennel permit...and not only that, this 'kennel' must pass through a maze of county or city agencies, such as planning, zoning, building permits, business licenses, etc.. The public was not invited. Breeders were not invited. The person who attended the meeting was told to be quiet, it was not a public discussion! No link - no report in the Reno Gazette-Journal - *ED NOTE- some body might want to tell Washoe County Animal Control that they haven't updated their meeting minutes since January,08.


(8/15/08) — After hearing public comments at a meeting on Wednesday evening, the Town Board unanimously voted that it was in the best interest of the public to pass a dog control law effective within the town of Argyle. Dog control officer Ed Holland agreed that having a leash law would help him take action when incidents occur. The law states that all dogs must be restrained by a leash or be under the full control of the owner whenever they are on public property.A dog will be in violation of the law if it continually makes noise for 10 minutes, causes property damage, repeatedly defecates or urinates or otherwise creates a nuisance.The law also states that a dog 4 months old or older must wear a valid dog license tag and rabies tag while off the owner’s property, whether or not it is restrained by a leash. A violation of the law would result in a $25 fine for a first offense, a $50 fine for a second offense and a $250 fine for a third offense, or a term of imprisonment not to exceed five days. The law will take effect 20 days after being adopted by the Town Board and after its filing with the Secretary of State.

- (8/14/08) - The village of Herkimer has a new, stricter animal control law which includes harsher penalties for repeat dog-at-large offenders.The law had a last minute update before the board voted in the new law at Tuesday’s Herkimer Village Board of Trustees meeting. Initially the law called for a $10 redemption fee to claim a lost animal, but Trustee Tina Cirelli thought the charge should increase for repeat offenders after talking to village animal control officer Jim Hawkins. Now a first offense redemption fee is $25, the second is $50 and the third is $100. Penalties for the first offense is a civil penalty of $100. The second offense within a two year period is $150 and the third offense within a two year period is $250. The law restricts the number of animals to no more than five dogs or cats combined, six months of age and older, to be kept on any single premise, regardless of the number of owners. It also contains sections regarding other animals besides dogs and cats, such as ferrets, iguanas, livestock animals and prohibits wild animals from being kept as pets. Other sections include leash and pooper scooper ordinances, both of which are required.
The law took effect immediately.

- (8/10/08) - Recently, notices have been posted along the riverfront at Memorial Park concerning the dogs who play there "off leash" in the morning. An old village ordinance has been brought up, saying all dogs have to be leashed on Nyack streets, etc. Not to play with semantics, but the riverfront is not the "street." We do not want to break the law, but Nyack, which is a dog-friendly town, provides no public space for our dogs to run around. Where can we take them? Dogs need socialization and exercise the way humans do. Therefore, we propose a substantial dog run be built at Memorial Park. The fence that is alongside the tennis court can be expanded. Fencing will not be costly, the area around there is muddy but can be seeded. We propose a dog run that will be open daily.


8/10/08 - Citing increasing complaints from landowners, game department officials in Virginia and North Carolina have been looking at ways to regulate the use of dogs by hunters. Virginia initiated its "Hunting with Hounds: A Way Forward" study that has incorporated various stakeholders who have identified problems and made proposals. At the heart of the debate is a conflict between hunters who use dogs and landowners who don't want hunters or dogs on their property. Virginia has released preliminary recommendations and a report. Next are a series of public hearings. The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries is expected to act on several proposals in November. Using dogs to help hunters track deer, raccoon, bear and other animals is a longtime tradition in the South. But many states, including Florida, Georgia and South Carolina, have instituted strict rules governing the practice. North Carolina game officials are studying rules adopted in other states in an effort to come up with their own solutions. "We're hearing more and more complaints. So we have to do something about it," said Wes Seegars, chairman of the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission Board of Commissioners. North Carolina officials are considering a special license for each hunting dog and forbidding dogs on land where hunters and dogs do not have permission to be. If a dog is captured on such property, the hunter would be fined $250 for each violating animal. Continued violations could result in termination of hunting licenses.

- (8/6/08) - While Clayton is the first city in Johnston County to ban tethering, anti-tethering ordinances are part of a growing tend. Durham County Commissioners will consider outlawing the practice next month, while animal rights advocates are pushing for a similar law in Orange County. In Clayton, Bridges said the city will work to educate pet owners before enforcing the new law. “We want to be sure to have the opportunity to let residents become familiar with the ordinance and give them time to comply,” he added. According to Councilman Alex Harding, Clayton's anti-tethering ordinance doesn't take effect until early October. While penalties for violating the rules are still being decided, Harding said at the minimum, anyone caught tethering a dog will receive a fine.

- (8/6/08) - Durham County commissioners will hold a public hearing at 7 p.m. Aug. 25 on a proposed ordinance to ban the tethering of dogs. For more than two years, animal advocates and the county have discussed implementing such a law, based on the premise that chaining or otherwise tethering animals outside is cruel and inhumane and that the practice contributes to constant barking and even causes dogs to become overly aggressive. At a work session Monday, commissioners scheduled the public hearing for the end of the month, to be held in the commissioners' chambers at 200 E. Main St. A draft of the ordinance prepared by the county's Animal Control Advisory Committee will be available for public comment. If necessary, commissioners could hold a second public hearing in September, just before the board votes on the final proposed ordinance. If commissioners approve the new law, it would go into effect after a 15-month education campaign by the county. The ordinance would be enforced by the county's animal control department in the entire county, including inside the Durham city limits.

- (8/1/08) - Cumberland County officials are trying to decide how many dogs are too many for county residents. The legal limit is three dogs per household. But that rule was challenged when a man violated the limit by taking in two dogs from his son, who is serving in Iraq. When Cumberland County officials found out he had five dogs living at his home, they told him he was over the limit. No one seemed to mind until a neighbor filed a noise complaint. A Cumberland County spokesperson said the issue is being worked on right now. A recommendation will be made to a planning board and then to commissioners. The Cumberland County planning director said they may make a recommendation of six dogs per household. UPDATE: (8/3/08) - County officials decided Friday to recommend using temporary permits for cases where someone violates the dog ordinance by keeping pets for a friend or family member. County planners met with county attorneys Friday afternoon to discuss changes to the ordinance, which allows residents to own no more than three dogs. “What we’re going to recommend is a temporary permitting approach,” Planning Director Tom Lloyd said.
Friday’s meeting was the first step for temporary permits to become an official county rule.
The recommendation must next be approved by county management. After that, it moves forward to the planning board. If that board approves it, the county Board of Commissioners has the final say.

- (8/2/08) - Now that the towns of Angier, Coats, Erwin and Lillington have approved a Municipal Animal Control Ordinance for the transition of animal control services to the county, the ordinance is up for a public hearing and a vote at Monday (8/4/08) morning's Harnett County Commissioners meeting. The ordinance, which will provide for one Animal Control Officer to patrol the four towns, makes it unlawful for any person to keep more than three dogs and three cats within town limits. Dogs and cats less than four months old are exempt from the ruling. Assistant County Manager Tony Wilder said the ordinance was typical for most municipalities and that numerous other ordinances were consulted in preparing the county's plan. "What we're doing," he continued, "is trying to work together with the towns to try to make (the ordinance) work for everybody." UPDATE: (8/5/08) - Harnett County Board of Commissioners - With Vice Chairwoman Beatrice Bailey Hill absent, the board Monday approved by a 4-0 vote a municipal animal control ordinance that will be used only in the towns and extraterritorial jurisdictions of Angier, Coats, Erwin and Lillington. Why it matters: The ordinance provides and defines authority of Harnett County Animal Control within those four towns. “It just lets us take charge,” Tino Medina, supervisor of the animal control department, said after the meeting. “We will be able to go in those towns and enforce the laws.” According to the ordinance, animal control will have “charge of protecting citizens of those towns from rabies transmitted by unconfined, uncontrolled or un-immunized animals, to regulate animals that may be a nuisance, to insure that all animals are treated in a humane manner, and in the promotion of responsible pet ownership and animal welfare.” Under the new regulations, it will be unlawful to hunt, trap or kill any animal within the territorial limits of the towns. Trapping may be done only with permission from the Harnett County Animal Control Department. What they said: “The towns had leash laws but no way to enforce them,” Assistant County Manager Tony Wilder told the board. “Police officers will still be involved.” The police in the four municipalities will make first contact and issue warnings when necessary, Wilder said.


Morton County
- (8/5/08) - I attended the planning and zoning commission and two county commission meetings in Morton County concerning a proposed feedlot. Since it involved animal agriculture, it was of interest to me, as a rancher and feedlot owner. I also am vice president of the Independent Beef Association of North Dakota, board member of Burleigh County Farm Bureau, active in R-CALF USA and the United States Cattlemen's Association. I would like to recognize all the people who are members of each commission for the public service they do. The decision they made was not an easy one, the room was full of people and emotions on both sides. The decision made was much bigger than one feedlot in one county in North Dakota. With activists from the East and West coasts wreaking havoc on animal agriculture, a decision made in the heartland was an important one. I believe the decision made in Mandan approving animal agriculture in an area zoned agricultural was the right decision.


Cleveland - (8/6/08) - The State of Ohio labels pit bulls as "vicious" and requires pit bull owners to carry $100,000 in liability insurance, securely constrain the dog when on-property and to use a chain-link leash when off-property. Many Ohio cities add to the state restrictions such as Toledo, which limits each household to one pit bull and Cincinnati, which bans new pit bulls. The City of Cleveland also adds to state restrictions by requiring pit bull owners to secure the dog in a 6 foot pen with a roof, microchip or tattoo the animal, wear a muzzle when off-property and limits ownership to people 18 years and older. Unfortunately for pit bulls, many of their owners do not abide by the rules. Authorities then confiscate the dogs and often euthanize them. If pit bull owners followed the law, hundreds of pit bulls would not be impounded and killed. In the meantime, the Cleveland dog warden is busy picking up non-compliant pit bulls.

- (8/8/08) - Village Council agreed to pay part of the cost of preventing the multiplication of a colony of feral cats. The council voted Wednesday to spend up to $750 -- half the estimated cost of spaying and neutering 20 to 30 stray cats that live on South Main Street near the Granville Milling Co. Jean Hoyt, who is organizing an effort to control that cat population, said she fears the colony might multiply if action isn't taken quickly. Once the cats are spayed and neutered, Hoyt said, the colony gradually will die out. Feral cats often are victims of disease and have short lives, she said.

Lucas County
- (8/8/08) - A group of animal rights activists is gathering signatures to get a number of things changed including firing Dog Warden Tom Skeldon. The group is called 4 Lucas County Pets. Members are not happy with the warden's office. Their web site describes who members are and what they want including a public education campaign to make people better pet owners with a low cost spay and neuter program and better access to the animal shelter by all local rescue groups. The organization says it's tired of paying the highest registration fees in the state. The group also strongly opposes the vicious dog ordinance focusing on pitbulls championed by Dog Warden Tom Skeldon. Members feel vicious dogs should be defined by their actions rather than their breed. The group has established an online petition on its web site.

Douglas County
- (8/8/08) - Douglas County commissioners on Wednesday (8/6/08) tabled a proposal to raise the cost of licensing dogs. Commissioners Doug Robertson, Marilyn Kittelman and Joe Laurance said they wanted the opportunity to discuss the matter more fully before deciding whether to charge more than the current fees of $6 for a dog that has been spayed or neutered and $25 for an unaltered dog. A public workshop will be announced at a later date. At a hearing two weeks ago, sheriff’s Sgt. Dave Marshall, who oversees the county’s animal control program, presented a proposal asking to raise fees for licensing — required by law for all dogs — to $9 and $30. An increase is needed, he said, to keep the county’s spay and neuter program afloat.


- (8/9/08) - If you’re walking your dog on Monday, you might want to make sure Fido is properly licensed because there’s a good chance that the officials who enforce the state’s dog laws will be checking.The Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement, which is part of the state Department of Agriculture, will visit some of Beaver County’s larger towns as part of an annual sweep to make sure the dogs are properly licensed and have up-to-date rabies vaccinations.While that aspect of the bureau’s activities is probably the most visible, there is plenty of other stuff to do through the year for the bureau’s employees. It is also responsible for licensing and inspecting dog kennels across the state, and its officials are in the midst of ensuring that an updated version of state laws governing dogs makes it way through the Legislature. Residents of Ambridge, Aliquippa, Beaver Falls, Freedom and Rochester may notice state dog wardens on Monday, as they stroll through each town, knocking on doors or checking dogs they meet on the street. Beaver County Treasurer Connie Javens, whose office is responsible for issuing dog licenses in the county, said wardens perform the sweeps here once a year. West said the bureau tries to do the sweeps in each county once a year. They’re important, because revenue from the license sales is one big source of the bureau’s income.

Berks County
- (8/15/08) - The recent shootings of 80 dogs at a pair of kennels near Kutztown in Berks County is shining the spotlight on proposed legislation (HB2525) to reform Pennsylvania's dog laws. Governor Ed Rendell is planning to to address the proposed reforms at the Schuylkill River Dog Park in Philadelphia tomorrow afternoon. (8/16/08). He'll be joined by Sue West, director of the Department of Agriculture's Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement. Representative Tom Caltagirone, (D) Reading, is a sponsor of House Bill 2525. He says it would allow only veterinarians to euthanize dogs in commercial breeding kennels and make it illegal for anyone who is not a veterinarian to perform practices like debarking, ear and tail cropping, cesarean births.

- (8/6/08) - Robinson commissioners don't want residents keeping cougars or wolves as pets. But what about snakes? Frogs? Piranhas? Falcons? "We may have a problem here," Dan Tallon, commissioners' chairman, said Monday night after hearing that a proposed ordinance would prohibit carnivorous wild animals. "It sounds like that definition would include snakes, and people do have snakes as pets." Township Manager Rich Charnovich said the ordinance was written to address concerns about crowing roosters and dogs that are overly aggressive or bark too much. The section on carnivores was intended to address large, dangerous predators. "But if we pass this with this language in there, we'll have every snake owner in the township down here complaining," Mr. Tallon said. "I think we ought to get it right before we approve it so we don't end up going back and amending it later," Mr. Shiwarski said.
After the meeting, he said he thinks the best solution is to let pet owners apply for waivers if they want to own wild carnivores. But the commissioners were not swayed. "Fix it," Mr. Tallon said. And when Mr. Charnovich asked what the commissioners wanted it to say, he repeated, "Fix it."


- (8/7/08) - The Cheraw Town Council held a special meeting during briefing on July 30 to review the town’s Animal Control Ordinance to determine if any amendments were necessary. Town Administrator Bill Taylor presented a comparison of animal control ordinances in Cheraw and the city of Mauldin.One issue the town is looking at is the leash law. Cheraw’s ordinance currently allows a 10-foot leash. Mauldin has an ordinance of an eight-foot leash.
Mayor Scott Hunter and Town Administrator Bill Taylor recommended that the council review the current ordinances and suggest any amendments necessary. An update was to be brought to the table on Aug. 6. No decisions will be made until council has completed it reviews. The current Animal Control Ordinances include topics as follows: Duties of the animal control officer, restraint and confinement, concealment of pets, displaying animals, limitation of the number of animals, animal care, registration of animals, keeping of reptiles or dangerous wild animals, squirrels and songbirds protected, dead animals, transporting of animals, vicious animals, restraint of guard dogs, animal wastes prohibited in certain areas, noisy pets prohibited, condition of animal pens, impoundment of nuisance animals, redemption of impounded animals, rabies control, animal cruelty, animal nuisance, penalties, dogs prohibited in parks, animal bites and quarantine. Cheraw Home Page w/Council emails can be found here. UPDATE: (8/15/08) - During Tuesday’s meeting a public hearing was held regarding proposed changes to the town’s animal control ordinance. The animal control ordinance changes are as follows:* Removing the “Strict Voice Command” and the length of a leash is reduced from 10-foot to eight-foot.* Limitation of the number of animals and the age limit is reduced from one year to not being older than six months.* Squirrels and songbirds-the word “song” is being removed thus resulting in all birds being protected in the corporate limits.* Impounding of animals-removes the section that states:After seven days or sold by the animal control officer at acost covering all impoundment fees and penalty charges, and Including that after that same period the animal will betransported to the county animal shelter for adoption of disposal.* The redemption of impounded animals - Owners reclaiming an impounded animal will have to pay $8 per each day the pet is left in the shelter. In addition, the owner will now pay a $25 fee for the first redemption in the one calendar year, and $50 for any second or subsequent redemptions of the same animal within the year. If the animal is picked up without a rabies tag in addition to the $20 assessment, the owner will now be required to pay to have the animal vaccinated and will be issued an appropriate certificate that the pet owner has paid the fee, and will be honored by the local veterinarian.* Complaints and animal nuisances - Individual who suspects someone’s animal is being a nuisance, will now be allowed to report that information to the animal control officer, in addition to remaining anonymous.* The increase of penalty fees for anyone who violates the animal control ordinance now ranges from $200-$500, which is now the standard under state law.


- (8/6/08) - Lebanon City Council postponed hearing an amendment to the city code which would have defined two levels of dangerous dogs and set requirements for the control of such animals as well as consequences for owners who do not comply.
Rockwood - Breed specific legislation is BACK on the agenda to target more breeds. (1) Bull Terrier; (2) Staffordshire Bull Terrier; (3) American Pit Bull Terrier; (4) American Staffordshire Terrier; (5) Chow Chow; (6) Doberman Pinscher; (7) Rottweiler; (8) German Shepherd; (9) and ANY other breed commonly known as one of the above breeds or any combination of the above breeds. Current ordinance clearly identifies a "dangerous dog," and there is no need to add the breed specific language contained in the proposed amendments

Breckenridge - City commissioners approved a revised animal ordinance at the regular monthly meeting Monday, Aug. 4. The ordinance, which became effective Aug. 9, includes some changes regarding the sale of puppies and dogs, transporting dogs and proper restraint. According to the revised city animal ordinance, dogs will no longer be able to "ride" freely in the back of a pickup truck. Section 4-19 of the ordinance makes it "unlawful for a person to leash a (dangerous) dog on a chain, rope or other type of leash outside of its kennel or place of enclosure to an inanimate object such as a tree, post, building or truck." According to Section 4-10, "any dog carried in the open bed of a pickup truck must be securely restrained in such a way as to prevent the dog from exiting from or reaching outside the bed of the pickup." The revised city animal ordinance also identifies what constitutes a dangerous or vicious dog. If a dog is considered a dangerous or vicious dog, the owner must register the animal within 10 days of the dog entering the city or exhibiting any behavior that would constitute the dog as dangerous or vicious. Owners of such animals must pay a $50 registration fee, prove that the animal is vaccinated, has an identification microchip implanted and has been spayed or neutered. The owner also must carry public liability insurance of at least $250,000 for personal injury or death and $50,000 for property damage.

EL Paso
- (8/9/08) - Call it animal politics. El Paso is once again getting serious about no-kill animal shelters. El Paso's Animal Services held a seminar at the Main Library Downtown on Thursday to educate the community about what exactly needs to be done to get this mission accomplished. Case studies were presented from other communities that have tried to implement a no-kill policy, along with a presentation by UTEP officials. The no-kill initiative would end the killing of homeless pets by increasing the adoption demand for shelter animals and reducing the number of unwanted animals through proactive spay and neuter programs.
Officials said approximately 18,000 animals are euthanized each year in El Paso and that's a number they'd like to see decrease. But this isn't the first time the city has put forth this idea.
"In December 1999, the city passed a resolution to make El Paso a no-kill community, however, the planning wasn't laid out," said Carla Alvarado, a Health Education Specialist with El Paso's Public Health Department.

- (8/9/08) - When Kent Robertson clears out his desk at the director's office of the city animal shelter, he will leave behind many who depended on him, including the city's tireless animal welfare volunteers — people like Sherry Nassar, a longtime volunteer and animal rescue activist. But the most bereft will be the tens of thousands of abandoned or mistreated animals that Houston produces in wildly increasing numbers. It's critical that city officials seize this moment to hire the best replacement, using the best advice available. Many concerned for animals, though, think he might have been frustrated by the low budget and relentlessly irresponsible behavior that have made Houstonians' treatment of domestic animals a national embarrassment. Robertson's goal had been to transform the Bureau of Animal Regulation and Care into a no-kill shelter. He warned the job wouldn't be done overnight. Now that Houston has an unexpected opening at BARC — and an animal welfare crisis on its hands — the Health and Human Services Department needs to make the search part of the solution. First, it should launch a nationwide search to fill the job. And though it will have to pay this time, the city ought to invite Winograd to make an assessment. The new BARC director must be an adept lobbyist. He or she has got to know how to make private donors write checks and will also have to lobby fiercely for a statewide ban on unregulated sales of pets.


- (8/10/08) - A proposed pit bull ordinance may go before the Mapleton City Council within a month. Mapleton city manager Bob Bradshaw said a proposal will likely be put before the City Council for a vote in early September, or possibly late August. The proposal would include the same fencing requirement as in Springville, plus a roof for the animal's enclosure. Pit bull owners would need $100,000 in liability coverage for their dogs.

- (8/15/08) - It isn't always the breed of the dog that determines its behavior. It's often the owner. Animal advocates say teaching dogs to be "good citizens" isn't that hard to do.
Advocates staged a demonstration Thursday partly in response to a proposed ordinance in Sandy that would have placed restrictions on certain dog breeds. The ordinance was not approved. The demonstration included three pit bulls who had recently earned the "Canine Good Citizenship" certification from the American Kennel Club

- (8/10/08) - Orem is looking at a number of possibilities, including breed-specific regulations for pit bulls, or tougher laws for dogs in general. City manager Jim Reams said no decisions have been made about when or if any proposed ordinance will go before the City Council. "We've been looking at it. We have not decided if there will be a course of action yet," Reams said. Orem city officials have received dozens of e-mails, but most of them have been from people who live outside of Orem, and even outside Utah, who oppose laws targeting pit bulls.

- (8/10/08) - Provo city staffs is studying the issue of pitbulls and working on potential ordinances. Provo's Municipal Council has spent much of the year considering a proposal that would regulate all dogs that are considered vicious. The proposal being considered would create classifications that describe dogs as "at risk" or "dangerous." If approved, the proposal would require owners of at-risk dogs -- those that menace or threaten people -- to keep their dogs fenced while at home and on a four-foot leash while on a walk. Owners would have to implant microchips in their dogs and provide a photo of the animal to the Provo Police Department.
Dogs that injure people would be considered dangerous, and owners could be required to muzzle them while in public, or even turn them over to animal control authorities to be euthanized.
"At least one of the concerns that's been raised about the proposed ordinance is maybe our existing laws are adequate, and so one thing we're going to do is evaluate the enforcement of the existing laws to see if there's anything we should be doing differently with the laws that we have," said Provo city spokeswoman Helen Anderson.


(8/10/08) - Citing increasing complaints from landowners, game department officials in Virginia and North Carolina have been looking at ways to regulate the use of dogs by hunters. Virginia initiated its "Hunting with Hounds: A Way Forward" study that has incorporated various stakeholders who have identified problems and made proposals. At the heart of the debate is a conflict between hunters who use dogs and landowners who don't want hunters or dogs on their property. Virginia has released preliminary recommendations and a report. Next are a series of public hearings. The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries is expected to act on several proposals in November. "The stakeholders committee has done a fantastic job of identifying all the issues involved," said Bob Duncan, director of Virginia's game department. Using dogs to help hunters track deer, raccoon, bear and other animals is a longtime tradition in the South. But many states, including Florida, Georgia and South Carolina, have instituted strict rules governing the practice. North Carolina game officials are studying rules adopted in other states in an effort to come up with their own solutions. North Carolina officials are considering a special license for each hunting dog and forbidding dogs on land where hunters and dogs do not have permission to be. If a dog is captured on such property, the hunter would be fined $250 for each violating animal. Continued violations could result in termination of hunting licenses.
Virginia will hold a public hearing for southeastern Virginia hunters and landowners Sept. 4 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at King's Fork High School, 351 King's Fork Road, in Suffolk.

- (8/14/08) - PETA has learned that Wesa-A-Geh-Ya--the exotic-animal menagerie in Warren County where a man was mauled by a tiger earlier this month--plans to relocate all of its remaining animals. In response, PETA has sent an urgent appeal to the Warren County Commission and Sheriff Kevin T. Harrison. The group is urging the officials to ensure that the animals do not further contribute to the overpopulation of exotic animals in the U.S. In order to prevent future maulings and deaths, PETA is asking Warren County to mandate that all the animals be spayed or neutered before they are sent to other menageries or roadside zoos. The group has offered to foot the bill for the surgeries. "More tigers are kept captive in the U.S. than remain in their native habitat," says PETA Director Debbie Leahy. "Breeding for greed has resulted in an overpopulation crisis among captive big cats, leading to the sort of abuse and neglect that these animals have suffered at Wesa-A-Geh-Ya." (see also under EXOTIC NEWS)


Fairmont - Marion County
- (8/7/08) - The county commission passed a vicious dog ordinance, Wednesday (8/7/08) morning, following a public meeting on the subject. Commissioners say the ordinance is modeled after similar regulations already on the books. It requires owners to restrain their dogs and to provide notice to the public. It also enforces strict penalties for not complying. Commissioners say the ordinance is a way to protect the public. Commissioners say the ordinance does not target any one specific breed of dog. It goes into effect immediately.

Lewis County
- (8/2/08) - A proposed Lewis County ordinance would essentially make a dog's bark worse than its bite. If passed, owners whose dogs create a public nuisance by barking could be fined up to $500 and could spend as much as 90 days in jail. Magistrate Dan Moody, who forwarded the proposal to the County Commission, said dogs who bite can cost the owner a $100 fine and 30 days in jail. "We're going to work with these people," Moody said. "We're not just going to take their dogs and put them in jail. First, we are going to talk to them, tell them there has been complaints. We are going to give them all the options in the world to stop it."
Moody said there has been a number of complaints to the magistrate court regarding constantly barking dogs. The proposed ordinance states that at least two different people must make a complaint in writing to law enforcement officers against the same owner before the authorities will investigate the matter. If the nuisance is determined to be in violation of the ordinance, the owner could be fined up to $500 and jailed for 10 days on a first conviction. A second conviction would result in fines between $100 and $500 and up to 90 days behind bars. Probation of up to one year could also be levied. Commissioner Sam Hicks said he believes the law would create more problems than it could solve. Commissioners also expressed concerns that the proposal could lead to neighbors using the ordinance to harass those living nearby they do not like or to complain about those legally operating kennels. "I think you could see a lot of misuse of that ordinance," Queen said.

New Haven - (8/7/08) - New Haven Town Council met Monday (8/4/08) evening at 7:00 at Town Hall to discuss, among other business, a proposed Animal Ordinance which included the banning of Pit Bulls and Rottweilers. mayor tabled a proposed ordinance until further notice after asking the council if they believed the ordinance should be voted on as it was originally proposed. Four of the Five members agreed it should be reviewed and probable changes made. There were six town residents in attendance, two were there in regard to the Dog Ordinance, one opposing and one favoring. Information provided by Jodi Preis, who attended the meeting and stayed afterward to discuss the proposed "ban" with council. They were very receptive and will keep in touch with Jodi. Thank you, Jodi ! (no link available)
Chetak - Training and restraining certain breeds of dog-especially pit bulls and rottweilers-will become a legal issue when the city adds a vicious-dog ordinance to its city codebook later this year.


- (8/5/08) - Cheyenne Frontier Days officials met with members of an animal rights group to hear its concerns that certain events at the rodeo are cruel to participating animals.
While nothing definitive came of the meeting Wednesday evening, Frontier Days officials said they are looking into one of the group’s concerns. Both sides described the meeting as cordial.
SHARK, or Showing Animals Respect and Kindness, advocates banning steer roping from rodeo and wants Frontier Days to change its calf roping event by eliminating so-called jerk-downs, in which a calf is pulled straight back when roped around the neck by a rider on horseback.
The Illinois-based activist group earlier this year presented videos showing horses being shocked with hand-held devices to make them buck at the Cheyenne rodeo. Frontier Days banned the use of the devices before this year’s rodeo, and SHARK officials said they saw no horse shocking over the nine-day rodeo in late July. Mike Kobliska, an investigator with SHARK, said both sides listened to the other’s positions and arguments.



Queensland - (8/5/08) - FOUR Queensland councils will trial mandatory desexing of dogs and cats in a bid to reduce the tens of thousands of stray pets put down each year. Queensland and the Northern Territory were the only jurisdictions without compulsory registration and identification of cats and dogs. Should all pet dogs and cats be desexed? Have your say
Gold Coast, Moreton Bay, Townsville and Logan councils will each receive $380,000 for the initiative and a new code of practice for pet shops is being developed.
"In addition to trialling different methods of encouraging identification and desexing, they will also collect baseline data to monitor the numbers of levels of animals being euthanased," Mr Pitt said. Moreton Bay Deputy Mayor Greg Chippendale said 3000 dogs and cats were dumped at its pounds each year, which was why he backed mandatory de-sexing, except for animals owned by breeders. Logan City Council impounds more than 3500 animals each year. Brisbane City Council would not release its pound figures and Lord Mayor Campbell Newman refused to comment. Opposition leader Shayne Sutton said the killing of stray animals was a big issue.
"No one wants to see the large numbers of cats and dogs put down every year and we should be doing all we can to reverse it," she said.

S. E. QUEENSLAND - Calls for a ban on pet dogs - (8/6/08) - A report has found south-east Queensland's koala population could vanish within 20 years, sparking calls for a ban on pet dogs.
The survey by consultants GHD for the Environmental Protection Agency and Moreton Bay Regional Council showed the urban koala population in that area had declined 46 per cent over the past six years. The State Government has announced a task force to recommend drastic measures to Cabinet within four weeks. Those measures could include banning dogs in new residential areas, phasing out dog ownership in existing residential areas, and mandating koala-friendly fences for homes. Premier Anna Bligh said today tougher action was needed immediately. "I understand that there will be a big debate about some of these issues, but I'm not going to stand by and watch the koala population of south-east Queensland simply dwindle into oblivion," Ms Bligh said. "These are icon species - the koala is one of the great symbols of our country." Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) executive director Greg Hallam said preservation of koala habitat, rather than controlling dogs, was a better solution to south-east Queensland's dwindling koala population. Mr Hallam said dog ownership was a complex issue involving their role as companions, protectors and other factors. "Dogs are an issue up to a point, but the bigger issue is that we're taking away the koalas' habitat," he told AAP.


- (8/1/08) - As reported in the Chicago Tribune, A prohibition went into effect on Wednesday (7/30/08) that bans selling cats and dogs and walking dogs in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. This was decided because men and women often use their dogs as an excuse to strike up a conversation. In this strict Islamic country, they want to keep the human sexes apart. Violators will get their dogs confiscated by agents of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, the official name of the religious police, tasked with enforcing Saudi Arabia's strict Islamic code. "If a man is caught with a pet, the pet will be immediately confiscated and the man will be forced to sign a document pledging not to repeat the act," al-Othman told the Al-Hayat newspaper. "If he does, he will be referred to authorities." The ban does not address women. According to the article, part of the reason for the new rule is to curb the corrupting Western influence of pet ownership and fast food. So what will now happen to all the dogs in Saudia Arabia that need regular exercise and socialization? UPDATE:
(8/10/08) - The Saudi-owned Al-Hayat announced the ban, saying it was ordered by the acting governor of Riyadh province, Prince Sattam, based on an edict from the Council of Senior Islamic Scholars and several religious police reports of pet owners harassing women and families.
The prohibition might not have much of an effect in Riyadh. It's rare to see anyone in the capital walking a dog — much less carrying a cat in public — despite authorities' claims of flirtatious young men luring girls with their pets in malls. The religious police patrol streets and malls throughout the kingdom, ensuring unmarried men and women do not mix, confronting women they say are not properly covered or urging men to go to prayers. They also often make attempts to plug the few holes that innovations can cause in the strict gender segregation. In 2004, for example, they tried to ban cameras on cell phones, fearing that men and women would exchange pictures of each other, though the prohibition was revoked. There was no word on whether commission authorities intend to expand the dog and cat ban beyond the capital.
The prohibition could be more of an attempt to curb the owning of pets, which conservative Saudis view as a sign of corrupting Western influence, like the fast food, shorts, jeans and pop music that have become more common in the kingdom. Although it has never been common to own pets in the Arab world, it's becoming increasingly fashionable among the upper class in Saudi Arabia and other countries such as Egypt. In Islamic tradition, dogs are shunned as unclean and dangerous, though they are kept for hunting and guarding. In large cities around the Middle East, stray dogs are considered pests. The ban on cats is more puzzling, because there's no similar disdain for them in Islamic tradition. A number of traditional stories of the Prophet Muhammad show him encouraging people to treat cats well.


Within weeks
, Spain is likely to go beyond laws that protect animals and be the first country to give rights to nonhumans, specifically great apes – gorillas, chimps, bonobos, and orangutans. If other governments follow, a line between mankind and animals will be crossed. Will such an action be a step up for humans? Not if it diminishes the essence of what is a right.
The possibility of such a risk is why a parliamentary panel in Spain recommends only a few rights for these species that are close to humans in evolution and that can display certain humanlike behavior. Spain's proposed law might help bolster rules on humane treatment of animals. Its action would elevate great apes in captivity to more than property. They would have standing in court, much as children or unconscious patients do. They could be given a guardian or lawyer. The law would grant apes a right to life. No human could kill them except in self-defense. They would have a right to be free of abuse. They couldn't be used in medical experiments, circuses, movies, and TV commercials. And so forth. To grant only a few rights to only a few animals is to go down a slippery slope of moral relativism. If some animals are treated in law like humans, that gives ammunition to some humans who see some types of humans as animals. History shows – in the Holocaust and in African slavery – how that ends. Because rights are unique and absolute to humans – who have the potential to grasp their meaning – they are a protection to humans. At the least, Spain's action may help ignite a useful debate on the origins and uses of rights. Even as it weighs this law on ape rights, Spain is not moving to ban the cruel sport of bullfighting or the run of the bulls at Pamplona. There's a lesson in that: Let human rights remain in the human realm while mankind works on improving its treatment of animals.


Bull Breed Discrimination is Clogging up Rescue System

The plethora of Staffordshire Bull Terriers and type dogs currently in local authority holding kennels is placing a strain on the rehoming system in general. There also seems to be reluctance by some rehoming agencies to take these dogs after they have completed their seven days with local councils. The popularity of the breed has resulted in some stray dog holding kennels having exclusive areas of their kennel lines being turned over to almost 100% Staffordshire occupation now. What must be asked however is if the dogs are so popular, why are so many being seized as stray dogs by councils and not being reclaimed by their owners? One senior kennel worker with a managerial role who has worked at a major holding kennels for several years has become disillusioned with the amount of SBT dogs coming into the kennels and claims that many of these dogs will never have an opportunity to be re-homed. It is felt that instead of moving forward with animal welfare we are moving back to the bad old days of the 1960’s and 1970’s.
The kennels that home many dogs through a number of major league as well as smaller sized rescues see many non-SBT types getting a place with a rehoming agency whilst the SBT’s are left languishing in kennels which is not good for the dogs in the long term as many will agree.

Haverigg Beach
- (8/15/08) - A campaign has been launched to clean up after pets on Haverigg beach. The beach comes under the jurisdiction of Copeland Borough Council. Open spaces manager for the borough council, Tony Magean, said: “On the enforcement side of things the act currently in place only allows us to enforce laws in town centres and not on the beach. “The laws currently in place are under the Dog Fouling Act. “However, the council is reviewing a Dog Control Order. Once this is agreed, following consultation across the area, the Dog Control Order will enable the enforcement of beaches. “We are hoping to introduce the order in the next four and five months. This will replace the Dog Fouling Act.”

South Tyneside
- (8/16/08) - Council chiefs have launched a consultation exercise to seek views on the introduction of new legislation. If given the go-ahead the changes would include a new order for owners to keep dogs on leads at all cemeteries in South Tyneside and in South Shields' South Marine Park. In addition, an order would be introduced requiring people in control of a dog to immediately remove dog mess. It is proposed that a new Fixed Penalty Notice of £80 for an offence of dog fouling be brought in. That amount would be reduced to £50 if paid within a specified number of days.At a series of consultation roadshows over the summer the public has been invited to share their views on the proposed changes.A spokesman for South Tyneside Council said: "It is intended that these new laws will replace existing legislation. The current laws are outdated, confusing and complicated as different rules apply to different areas."The laws do not reflect the cleaner society we live in. The new legislation allows the council to determine specific land to which each dog control order will apply. Essentially this will make the law of dog control much clearer, easier to understand and applicable to a wider area."The moves come as a result of the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005. This enables the council to implement five offences for those in control of a dog.The final consultation roadshow is to staged for East Shields residents at St Margaret's Church at The Nook on Thursday, August 21, from 10.30am to 6pm, but people have until the end of October to express their views on the changes.


, like most other less conventional pets, may be subject to a range of laws regulating the ownership of exotic animals. Although it's legal to keep ferrets in most places, there are a few exceptions, such as New York City and California. But David Gaines, director of the legislative and legal affairs committee for the American Ferret Association, says in recent years most places have made the pets legal."Minneapolis and Dallas have recently legalized them," he says. "I'm not aware of any major municipalities that have gone in the other direction." But animals are subject to a patchwork of laws at more local levels that which may not always be consistent with one another. For example, ferrets are legal in Salt Lake County, but that's overridden by a law that prohibits them in Salt Lake City. So you need to check carefully before acquiring a ferret, or before moving if you have one.


- (8/14/08) - PETA has learned that Wesa-A-Geh-Ya--the exotic-animal menagerie in Warren County where a man was mauled by a tiger earlier this month--plans to relocate all of its remaining animals. In response, PETA has sent an urgent appeal to the Warren County Commission and Sheriff Kevin T. Harrison. The group is urging the officials to ensure that the animals do not further contribute to the overpopulation of exotic animals in the U.S. In order to prevent future maulings and deaths, PETA is asking Warren County to mandate that all the animals be spayed or neutered before they are sent to other menageries or roadside zoos. The group has offered to foot the bill for the surgeries. "More tigers are kept captive in the U.S. than remain in their native habitat," says PETA Director Debbie Leahy. "Breeding for greed has resulted in an overpopulation crisis among captive big cats, leading to the sort of abuse and neglect that these animals have suffered at Wesa-A-Geh-Ya."
And last, but certainly not least .....

This Month's Stupid Award....
undeniably FIRST PLACE, top of the heap, without fail, BEST IN SHOW goes to the Breed Identification Experts !!!!

Identity of Montauk Monster is Finally Revealed

Despite the UK's leading breed identification experts getting into a heated exchange over whether the animal dubbed the Montauk Monster was a Pit Bull or not, it turns out it wasn't even a dog.

It was a Raccoon.

So - all you so called "Pit bull ID experts" - there you have it. If YOU can't determine what a pit bull is, how can you continue to "ban" or "restrict" something that you don't even know what it is ?????

UK pit bull ID experts - and all those "experts" from elsewhere - ain't what they're cracked up to be.

Looks like you'll be busy putting restrictions on raccoons now, er..... PitCoons.