Two dogs mauled an elderly woman to death in Oklahoma City on April 6 and in Edmond on April 10 the same thing could have happened again had two passersby not stopped to help a woman when two dogs knocked her down and were allegedly standing over her growling.
In both of these cases, the dogs in question were at large, which according to the Frederick City ordinance, means that the dogs were not securely confined by a fence or other means on premises under the control of the owner or not under the control of the owner’s immediate family over 12-years-old or an agent of the owner by leash, whether the owner is present or not.
Police Chief Joel Neely said that the ticket for a dog running at large is $70 for the first offense. There are additional fees if the dog is impounded.
“If the dog bites someone, it can get a whole lot more expensive,” Neely said. “If the owner can’t prove that the animal has had its rabies shot, it will be quarantined at the vet for 10 days which is a lot more than what it costs for a yearly shot.”
Neely also explained about Frederick’s pen ordinance.
“You cannot chain a dog up within the Frederick City limits,” Neely said. “If you have a dog that can’t be contained in a fence, it’s the owner’s responsibility to build something that the dog can’t escape. The pen ordinance in Frederick requires that the pen be 10 feet by 10 feet with adequate shade and a place for food and water.
The city ordinance states that no person shall at any time fasten, chain or tie any dog, cat or other house pets while the animal is within city limits unless authorized in writing by by the animal control officer, code enforcement officer or police officer.
“If someone has a dog that they can’t contain, they either need to build a better enclosure or remove the animal from city limits,” Neely said.
Neely said there is no specific law in Frederick regarding vicious animals at large, but if anyone should encounter one, it is best to call the police or animal control instead of trying to catch it or break up a fight.
According to chapter three of the Oklahoma Statute, it is lawful for a person to kill any animal found chasing livestock off the premises of the animal’s owner and the owner of any animal that kills or injures any livestock shall be jointly and severally liable to any person so damaged, to the full amount of the injury done and damages caused, including reasonable attorney fees and litigation expenses.
Gina Jarred recently had an issue with a loose dog killing her chickens.
“Well the first time my hen had gotten out and the dog killed her in the alley,” Jarred said. “I was upset, but it was my fault because she shouldn’t have been out there. The second time the dog got in my back yard and killed several more of my chickens. It’s not the dog’s fault because he’s a dog. It’s the irresponsible owners who don’t keep their dogs put up.”
The City of Frederick can seize any dog that is found running at large, and it is up to the owners to pay the fee to get the animal out of impound.
Reach Kathleen Guill at 580-379-0588, ext. 2602.