Animal Services Discuss Details on Controlling Dangerous Dogs
KREX News Room
MESA COUNTY, Colo. On Monday officials with the Mesa County Animal Services made a presentation to the Grand Junction City Council on how they want to get better control over dogs deemed dangerous. They discussed updates to the current animal ordinance that would allow them to do this.
Animal service officials say they need more tools in their toolbox when dealing with dangerous dogs
Director of the Mesa County Animal Services, Penny McCarty, said, "We've had a couple of instances where animals are deemed dangerous and unfortunately the people become complacent and no longer keep the animals confined like they were told to, and then we have another incident."
Under the current ordinance, after a dog is deemed dangerous by a judge, animal services has the jurisdiction to check in on it for only two years.
"While they intend for that animal to be confined like that forever, for public safety reasons, there's no means for us to enforce that. So what this does is it gives us the ability to go back and make sure people are confining their animal properly so we don't have a public safety concern," McCarty said.
Grand Junction City Council Member, Teresa Coons, said, "It helps heighten awareness about dangerous animals and how owners need to control those animals, and protects public welfare."
Owners with dogs deemed dangerous would also need to pay for a special $100 license each year.
McCarty said, "And as part of that application it will give us the authority to inspect your kennel and make sure it's still escape proof."
Changes to the ordinance will also help animal services control dangerous dogs coming into our county.
"So now we'll at a minimum be able to enforce the fact that they need to keep the dog confined in an escape-proof kennel and that the requirements that are required in our jurisdiction," said McCarty.
"I think the reality is any dog, no matter its size or breed, can be dangerous if it is trained to be dangerous or is abused," Coons said.
Officials say while the animal ordinance has been very effective over the years, these changes will make for a safer Mesa County.
This Wednesday, Grand Junction City Council members will vote on the ordinance updates.