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|05-04-2004, 08:44 AM||#1|
YT 6000 Club Member
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Seattle, WA
[News] After Yorkie Death, Town Requires Microchips
Poor lady lost two dogs to vicious attacks!
But I don't particularly see the point of requiring a microchip. Don't wild dogs just run off after an attack? I highly doubt that lady was able to catch the dog that attacked her Yorkie and keep it at bay until animal control came...
Prior to passage on Monday night of a tougher animal control ordinance for Freeport, City Council members growled about some of the new rules it creates, including a requirement that all dogs registered in the city receive an implanted microchip or tattoo identification.
Sixth-ward Alderman Shawn Boldt, in particular, took exception to that requirement, and proposed an amendment eliminating the ID rule. But his proposal died for lack of a second.
After some debate and public comment, the ordinance - which also includes higher penalties for offenses like allowing animals to roam at large and a process for declaring offending dogs vicious or dangerous - passed 7 to 1, with only Boldt voting against.
However, First-ward Alderman George Gaulrapp was among those who voted for it despite voicing some reservations.
"I'm opposed to the idea of a microchip," he said at one point.
Fourth-ward Alderman Mike Clark said that while he had reservations about aspects of the proposal early in its creation, he felt the "lengthy" process leading to approval had provided for plenty of perspectives. The second ward's Nickee Bender sought to reassure those concerned, saying that "right now we need to pass this ... in the future we can go back and change it."
Cats weren't immune from the city's tougher stance on animals. The ordinance, which includes new rules pertaining to cats, doesn't go far enough to control the behavior of errant felines in Freeport, said citizen Jim Kantor, who spoke prior to the vote.
"The only reason you're not overrun by cats is that the humane society is harboring about a 100 or so cats," he said, adding that "cats bite."
The animal control ordinance gained momentum last year following a Freeport woman's second encounter with a vicious dog. A Rottweiler attacked 57-year-old Janet Gale in her driveway in January, killing her Yorkshire terrier and leaving her with cuts and scratches. In the 1990s, Gale lost another small dog in an attack by a stray pit bull.
She was a frequent presence at City Hall as the ordinance was being discussed.
Suzanne Cook, a citizen who spoke prior to Monday's vote, said she feared that city officials were punishing law-abiding dog owners for the actions of a few irresponsible dog owners.
"Possibly the ordinance needs to go back and be looked at again by people who know dog behavior," Cook said.
But Jim Dawson, who represents the 5th ward, said the city had been working on the ordinance long before the second attack on Gale.
"This is a good ordinance," Dawson said. "Now we have something to work with."
Alderman at large Dean Wright responded to another citizen who questioned whether the city was resorting to "Gestapo" tactics to rein in dangerous dogs. He and several other alderman said the ordinance isn't designed to target the city's responsible pet owners, but those who run afoul of the law and common sense.
"It's not like there are going to be jack-booted thugs who will take Scruffy away for barking," Wright said.