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County Taking Aim at Vicious Dogs

A 'Megan's Law' type website that documents vicious animals could also be on the horizon.

Vicious dogs are the subject of a proposed ordinance revision before county supervisors. Photo/Patch File
Vicious dogs are the subject of a proposed ordinance revision before county supervisors. Photo/Patch File


By City News Service

The Orange County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday will consider a revised ordinance changing how vicious dogs will be defined and dealt with, including the creation of a website that identifies dangerous canines.

The ordinance would define "provocation" in an incident involving a dog and "broaden the definition of a severe injury to include injuries with broken bones and multiple bite wounds," according to a staff report to the supervisors.

The ordinance would also allow for the release of some dogs back to their owners during an investigation, which would save the county money in boarding and caring for the animals.

Supervisors may also approve a new website that would act like the Megan's Law site bearing photos of registered sex offenders, said Ryan Drabek, director of Orange County Animal Care.

Dogs accused of being vicious would be labeled Level 1, 2, or 3, Drabek said. A Level 3 Dog could be euthanized, Drabek said.

However, the owners of a Level 3 dog would still have the right to ask for an administrative hearing, and, if it is still ordered to be euthanized then the owner could appeal to a judge in Orange County Superior Court, who would make the final ruling, Drabek said.

The board is being asked to consider a "first reading" of the proposed ordinance, meaning if it approves it, then it would have to vote on it again at a future board meeting.   

MFriedrich December 17, 2013 at 10:52 AM
Hardly a surprise. The negligence of dog owners in OC is getting worse. Is it bad enough that the county recorded some 2200+ dog bites in 2012? Nope! Congratulations OC! In 2013 we've already hit approx. 2400 dog bites, 270 of them from what are categorized as "potentially dangerous and vicious" dogs! Hurray??? Also know that 230 dogs in OC right now have been declared as "potentially dangerous and vicious" and are still in owner possession. To make it worse, there's so much denial. No mother out there likes being told how to raise their kids, even when they do a crappy job of it. Clearly not everyone can or should be a parent. Same is true with owning a dog. Most people I know are just not responsible enough to train and care for an animal like a dog. It's a sad commentary on the progression of modern American society, but some individuals should probably be banned from dog ownership.

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