experts agree that the most effective way to keep communities safe from
dangerous dogs is to implement a community based approach that combines
enforcement of breed neutral dangerous dog laws, that target reckless
owners, with dog bite prevention programs.
Model legislation would include the following:
1-strict enforcement of leash laws with sufficient penalties to
ensure the laws are taken seriously, with even stiffer penalties for
2-enforcement of dog license laws with additional charges for
unaltered dogs that go directly to the funding of low cost spay/neuter
programs; stiff penalties for unlicensed dogs ensure a high license
3-widely available low cost spay/neuter programs with mandatory
sterilization of all dogs released for adoption through the pound,
shelters, or rescue groups
4-breed neutral dangerous dog laws that focus on behavior of
individual dogs and their owners (does not include typical puppy
behaviors). Dogs that exhibit dangerous behaviors are subjected to
increasingly more restrictive penalties as needed. These restrictions
include sterilization, microchipping, muzzling, confinement, training,
behavior evaluations, and mandatory owner education programs. When dogs
complete training/classes restrictions can be removed.
5-dogs that exhibit serious aggression towards people, or have
seriously injured a person may be subjected to euthanasia as a last
resort if evaluation by a "dangerous dog" committee determines the dog
poses a substantial risk.
6-owners must be held financially accountable for the behaviors of
their dogs. Stiff fines, as well as, legal prosecution must be pursued
against owners who allow their dogs to damage property, companion
animals, and injure people. (unprovoked aggressive incidents)
7-laws that prohibit chaining or tethering, for prolonged
periods, coupled with strict enforcement of animal cruelty and dog
8-formation of a dog bite prevention task force that includes a wide
variety of stakeholders from the community to periodically review the
effectiveness of the laws and the success of the educational programs
If your community does not have a breed neutral dangerous dog law, contact us. The Ohio Coalition of Dog Advocates is committed to helping responsible dog owners enhance public safety in their communities.
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