The first item of “old business” on the agenda for the Village of Waunakee Board Meeting on Monday, November 4, 2013 is to discuss and take action on amending Chapter 14 of the Code of Ordinances related to “vicious dogs.”
At the Village Board meeting on October 7, staff was directed to work with the Village Attorney in drafting revisions to the Chapter 14 animal ordinances for consideration at a future meeting.
The Village’s current code includes an ordinance that specifically prohibits residents from owning a pit bull. A resident recently challenged the ordinance and asked that the Village consider revisiting the ordinance to remove the breed specific language. Village records indicate that the current language was put into effect in the mid-80’s, and in their research, staff has discovered that since that time, many communities have favored more generic vicious dog language as opposed to breed specific bans. They also determined that such ordinances present legal difficulties in pursuing enforcement (as the Village is currently experiencing).
In the opinion of the attorney and staff, the proposal on the table more thoroughly addresses vicious animals in general, and unacceptable animal behaviors are specified and parameters for punishment are established. The attorney and staff agree that the amendment removing the breed specific language strengthens the Village’s approach in addressing vicious animals and protecting residents. Moreover, they have recommended the motion on the proposal be passed.
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