Officials in Riverside, Alabama are contemplating passing a leash law after a child was killed by an unleashed dog last week. During Tuesday’s city council meeting, the floor was open to the public, allowing anyone to voice their concerns about the city’s potential plans.
A resident brought up the issue of banning vicious dogs, specifically naming “pit bulls,” and citing inaccurate information about the breed, and it would appear that all suggestions brought up at the meeting are currently on the table.
The mayor acknowledged that city leaders have to sift through many details before bringing an ordinance to the table, and he wanted to hear from people on both sides of the issues – including enacting a leash law and banning specific breeds of dogs. He added that the law will include steep fines for anyone who violates it.
The mayor hopes to have an initial reading and vote on a proposed ordinance by the first city council meeting in May.
Residents of Riverside need to reach out to their city officials NOW, before an ordinance is introduced, with their suggestions and input. Encourage them to pass and strictly enforce a leash law, and hold reckless and irresponsible dog owners accountable for the actions of their dogs. In addition, let them know that breed specific legislation will only create more problems for the city while, at the same time, instilling a false sense of security for residents.
An excellent reference to share with city officials is the NAIA’s Guide to Constructing Pet Friendly Ordinances which will lay the groundwork for an ordinance that will enhance the safety and welfare of ALL the members of the Riverside community, people and animals alike.