Officials in League City, Texas will be discussing potential changes to the city’s animal control ordinance at a city council work session tonight, Monday, May 12, 2014.
We learned in late April that the city planned to crack down on dangerous dogs after a toddler was attacked by a dog. At a council work session on April 22, city officials talked about introducing stiffer regulations such as mandatory microchips, fluorescent ID tags and sterilization of “dangerous dogs.”
In addition, Councilman Todd Kinsey suggested tougher measures specifically for owners of pit bulls, stating he was “in favor of making it difficult for people who want to own pit bulls in our community.” He proposed restrictions that would include higher registration fees, extra security fences, and requiring owners of pit bulls to have special liability insurance.
In response to Kinsey’s proposal, Police Chief Kramm advised the council that Texas law prohibits the banning of specific breeds, but it would be possible to increase regulations for pit bulls.
Fortunately for dog owners, Chief Kramm is wrong.
Texas state law prohibits municipalities from passing any type of breed specific ordinance. Specifically, Chapter 822 of the Health & Safety Code states:
§822.047. LOCAL REGULATION OF DANGEROUS DOGS. A county or municipality may place additional requirements or restrictions on dangerous dogs if the requirements or restrictions:
(1) are not specific to one breed or several breeds of dogs; and (2) are more stringent than restrictions provided by this subchapter.
The city’s current ordinance addresses dangerous and vicious dogs, and deems them as such according to their actions and behaviors. We’re certainly in favor of any changes to the current ordinance that would serve to ensure the safety and welfare of all who reside in League City, however, any regulation that singles out a specific breed of dog is not only against state law, but would give residents a false sense of security, thus creating a community that is more vulnerable to truly dangerous dogs and their problematic owners.
Residents of League City are encouraged to attend tonight’s council work shop which takes place at Johnnie Arolfo Civic Center 400 West Walker and begins at 6:00 p.m.
Previous alert for League City, Texas: