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Amend the Proposed Dangerous Dog Ordinance

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The Orange County Board of Supervisors is amending its dangerous dog ordinance and the changes would adversely affect victims of cruelty seized in fight busts. It would arbitrarily label as “Level 2: vicious” “any dog that has been used primarily or in part for the purpose of dog fighting or is a dog trained for fighting.”

As we have seen in the Michael Vick case, many of these puppies and dogs go on to become wonderful pets and some have even become therapy dogs.

The ordinance would also deem any dog as a “Level 1: potentially dangerous” dog if that dog injured or caused any injury to a domestic animal. So, if a bird, rabbit, dog or cat came onto the property of the dog’s owner and the dog reacted by injuring the animal, that dog would be labeled as “Level 1: potentially dangerous.” This provision should only apply when dogs are off their owner’s property.

In addition, innocent dogs who did not even participate in an attack could be held responsible. In a situation when multiple dogs are present at the time of an incident, the proposed ordinance declares that if “it could not reasonably be ascertained which of the dogs so acted, than all the dogs may be declared to be Level 1, 2, or 3 dogs.”

Please sign our petition to ask the county board supervisors to amend the proposed dangerous dog ordinance to protect dogs who act out on their own property, victims of cruelty seized in fight busts, and innocent pet dogs who simply reside with a dog who was involved in an incident.

 Representatives from Best Friends Animal Society, the National Canine Research Council, legal professionals, and local non-profits and animal advocates have ALL spoken out against this ordinance.  We do not support it as it is currently written OR with the minute changes proposed at the meeting January 28th.  It remains too vague, too sweeping, and lacks a clear protocol for evaluating dogs as indeed "dangerous".  It will effect family pets and responsible owners instead of the irresponsble owners and criminals involved in dog fighting it was intended toward.  In addition, it will create an additional burden on an over-taxed shelter system by forcing owner surrenders, creating a new class of unadoptable dogs, and increasing the euthanasia rate in Orange County.

If you can, please attend the hearing on February 4th at 9:30 a.m. at the Hall of Administration, 333 W. Santa Ana Blvd., Santa Ana.   

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