Thursday, June 24, 2010

Council actions send zero tolerance

Council actions send zero tolerance message to local dog owners

By Deb Kunkle
Thursday, June 17, 2010 2:06 PM CDT
OELWEIN — Three local dog owners came away disappointed with council rulings following vicious dog hearings Monday at City Hall. The hearings were appeals made after police reports were filed on two animals of the commonly referred to pit bull classification (American pit bull terrier/Staffordshire terrier breed). The police officers involved in the incidents determined the animals to be vicious dogs and in violation of Section 19-26 of the Oelwein City Code.

In the first instance, police were summoned to the 10 block of Seventh Avenue NW shortly after 5 p.m. on May 18. Two pit bulls had cornered and were scaring an elderly couple in their garage. When the officer arrived, the animals fled the area. A second call to police referred to two brown dogs in the backyard at 124 Seventh Ave. N.W. Police arrived and observed two brown pit bulls harassing the resident’s animal, which was tied and secured in the backyard.

According to the report, the larger of the two pit bulls, “Dozer,” showed aggression, growled and barked at Patrolman Jesse Paul. The smaller pit bull approached and allowed the officer to pet him. However, the officer was nipped by the smaller dog when he latched onto the animal’s collar — an act, Paul said that was out of fear after being caught and did not hurt him.

The aggressive behavior of Dozer did not cease until his owner Timothy Kaylor came into sight.

Officer Paul reported the same dog has been cited previously and been the subject of a vicious dog hearing four years ago and Kaylor has also been cited for animal at large violation.

Kaylor told the council his dogs are not vicious and have been raised around his four children ages 10 months to 7 years. He said his dogs are family pets – indoor dogs - and have never so much as growled at his kids. In his letter of appeal Kaylor said he didn’t contest the fact that his dogs were at large, but insisted they are not vicious.

The council moved to deny his appeal. Officer Paul was directed to explain compliance requirements, but Kaylor told the council he would be moving out of town rather than lose his family pets.

The second hearing involved a pit bull named “Otis” attacking another dog as it was being walked by its owner. In this case, the 70-pound pit bull was on a leash controlled by a nine-year-old boy.

Chris Bergeson was walking her blind, seven-year-old Chinese shar-pei, also on a leash. Bergeson told the council she saw the boy and pit bull and tried to avoid contact with them but the dog charged and attacked her dog, biting and growling in an aggressive manner. She also fell to the ground as she separated the two dogs.

Then the pit bull came at the shar-pei a second time and Bergeson said she had to kick the animal in the face and scream at it before it stopped. She said the boy had no control over the animal.

The boy apologized to her and pulled the dog away, taking it home.

Sounds to me like someone needs to keep his dogs from running loose and a parent somewhere needs their head examined for not supervising a 9 year old walking a pit bull— a 70lb pit no less. Idiots!

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