Review & Update the current PA Dangerous Dog Law

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Review & Update the current PA Dangerous Dog Law

This petition had 514 supporters
Crystal Schaefer started this petition to Pennsylvania Dangerous Dog Law

The PA Dangerous Dog Law is outdated and gives 0% chance for not only the dog in question to live a normal dog life but the owner as well. 

Requirements of having a "Dangerous Dog"
[Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement]

A dangerous dog is one that has attacked, inflicted severe injury to, or killed a human being or a domestic animal without provocation while off an owner's property.  A dog is also considered dangerous if it was involved in committing a crime. It is unlawful for an owner or keeper of a dangerous dog to permit the dog to be outside the proper enclosure unless the dog is muzzled and restrained by a substantial chain or leash and under physical restraint of a responsible person. The muzzle shall be made in a manner that will not cause injury to the dog or interfere with its vision or respiration, but shall prevent it from biting any person or animal or from destroying property with its teeth.

Dangerous Dog Provisions:

The Act does not apply to police dogs , guide dogs for the blind, hearing dogs for the deaf, aide dogs for the handicapped, or farm dogs (under certain circumstances).
The Act does not apply where a person attacked, provoked the animal, or was committing willful trespass or another unlawful act for which civil suit can be brought.
If a dog attacks a person, the person (or anyone acting on his/her behalf), the state dog warden or a police officer may file a complaint with a magisterial district justice charging the owner or keeper with harboring a dangerous dog.
Responsibilities of Dog Owner:

If the dog is deemed dangerous by the magisterial district justice, the owner must:

Register the animal with the Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement and re-register on an annual basis
Registration fee is $500 per calendar year for the life of the dog plus an additional amount as set by the Department to cover administrative cost
Confine the dog in a proper enclosure
-Proper Enclosure is considered inside the home with all doors locked or an outdoor kennel that is dug 2 feet into the ground so dog cannot slide under.
-Fenced in backyard is NOT considered a proper enclosure.  If you do not have a proper outdoor enclosure the dog MUST be muzzled and leashed.  The dog is not allowed to run free in a fenced in backyard.  You can walk the dog but must be muzzled/leashed.  Dog must wear a purple tag on collar at all times. (Purple tag is a picture of a dog showing it's teeth)
Post a warning sign with a symbol that warns children of the presence of a dangerous dog (The sign is bright yellow with a picture of a dog showing it's teeth and says Warning Dangerous Dog)
Keep the dog muzzled and leashed when outside the proper enclosure
Spay or Neuter the dog
Microchip the dog
Be compliant with court ordered restitution
Post a bond or purchase and maintain liability insurance in the amount of $50,000 to pay for injuries inflicted by the dog
Agree not to cancel the liability insurance during the license period unless he/she disposes of the dog
Sign a statement providing that he/she will notify the Bureau of Dog Law Enforcement, state dog warden and local police if the dog is loose, attacks a human or an animal, dies or is sold/donated
Requirements and Responsibilities Prior to October 8, 2009 (Act 119):

The law that applies to the dangerous dog is the law in effect on the actual date a judge has declared a dog dangerous. (i.e. the dog is declared dangerous on or before October 7, 2008, Act 225 will apply, if the dog is declared dangerous on October 9, 2009, Act 119 will apply)

*NOTE: If a dangerous dog is transferred to a new owner, the new law (Act 119) will automatically supersede the old law (Act 225).
-Transfer of ownership within the state of PA cost $500

Enforcement:A dangerous dog could be confiscated under certain circumstances (i.e. the dog is not properly registered or not kept in a proper enclosure)
The owner could be found guilty of a criminal offense to a first degree misdemeanor
All known incidents of dog attacks by dangerous dogs must be reported to the state dog warden, who must investigate all reports
Article V, Dangerous Dogs overrides all local ordinances relating to dangerous dogs

Why have I started this petition?
Our family has been through h*ll and back due to the PA Dangerous Dog Law and I pray that no one has to go through what we have.  This current law makes it very difficult for the owner to keep their dog.  A lot of owners end up putting their loved one down because the requirements are overwhelming.  Not only financially but emotionally for both the dog and owner or the dog "disappears".  

How can you make a difference?
Educate yourself on the current PA Dangerous Dog Law.  There is no winning with this law.  These cases are not ruled on a case by case basis.  They will tell you, I didn't write the law I just follow it. 

The current PA Dangerous Dog Law needs to be reviewed and updated.  Each case should be ruled on individually, instead of confinement for the rest of the dog's life the owner should be given the chance to exhaust all avenues to prove the dog is not a danger to society at the owner's expense.
-Approved  Behavioralist
-Approved Trainings
There is no benefit to confinement.  The stress of being confined day in and day out would make any dog a more aggressive dog.

Petition Closed

This petition had 514 supporters

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