If you live in Wheeling and you have a dog that someone has deemed “dangerous/vicious” you may soon be getting a visit from the city police. It’s that city’s newest way to target certain breeds of dogs for city-led harassment. According to an article in the Intelligencer & Wheeling News-Register:
City Manager Robert Herron last week said he was preparing to compile a list of addresses where breeds or mixed breeds of dogs deemed dangerous/vicious” by city council may be located. He said two or three people had called the city to report such addresses. Upon completion of the list, a city police officer will visit the addresses and inform the owners they must register their dogs with the city.
We want to make sure those who don’t know about (the ordinance) have a chance to register their dog,” Herron said. They need to come in within a day or so.
And WHY do they want this information?
An ordinance approved Jan. 17 by city council required residents with certain breeds and mixed breeds of dogs to register their animals between April 1-15. Dogs targeted by the city’s ordinance include pit bull terriers, canary dogs, American bulldogs or a dog that is mixed with any of those breeds. Also, a dog of any breed that is found to be dangerous or vicious through a city-led investigation will have to be registered.
Owners of such breeds, mixed or otherwise, or other dogs found to be dangerous or vicious are required to show proof of liability insurance of at least $100,000. However, homeowners or renters insurance policies with liability amounts equal to or greater than $100,000 also will suffice.
Is the next step to raise the taxes on these breeds? What about deny them insurance all together? Sounds to me like this is the start of a round ’em up kind of breed specific legislation (BSL) that starts small and has bigger things in mind. Dogsters in the Wheeling area, let the rest of us know how it goes.
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