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January 15, 2009

‘Vicious Dogs’ Future Unclear After Attack Kills Third Animal

A pair of canines is facing euthanization under the city’s vicious dog ordinance. The two animals, currently in custody at the city dog pound, reportedly were running at large on Christmas Eve when they entered private property and killed a third canine, which was chained up at the time of the attack.

Law enforcement officers responded to reports of the two dogs running at large. A complaint was filed regarding the animals chasing horses at a property on the southwest edge of town. Officers eventually had to use a tranquilizer gun to sedate both animals so they could be captured.

According to City Marshal John Myers, the animals’ owner has contacted the city and made inquiries into having the dogs returned to her custody. Two summons were issued for dog at large and vicious dog.

Myers informed the city council, that under the vicious dog ordinance, the animals could only be maintained by the owner if they were kept in a locked kennel or other enclosed facility, with warning signs posted. The animals could not be outside of this secured site unless they were muzzled and restrained.

“Regardless of whether or not those stipulations are met, I’m not sure we want to release these animals back into the community,” said Alderman Chris Feeney. “What if the next time they escaped it wasn’t another dog they attacked?”

Alderman Lucas Remley pointed out that the animals had been impounded beyond the ordinances mandated seven-workday waiting period, and that under that law the city had the right to euthanize the animals.

Myers indicated the animal owner’s property currently did not meet the ordinance requirements, so the animals could not be released.

If all stipulations of the vicious dog ordinance were met and the owner paid the $25 impoundment fee and $10 daily maintenance fee for the period of impoundment, under the current ordinance, the animals would be released to the owner.


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Memphis Democrat
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Memphis MO 63555
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