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Angela Hunt Explains Her Pet Ordinance Vote

Per my (and commenter) request, City Councilwoman Hunt explains her "no" vote on the pet ordinance yesterday.

Per my (and commenter) request, City Councilwoman Hunt explains her “no” vote on the pet ordinance yesterday:

I will write more on my blog, but long story short, we’re not going to legislate ourselves out of our horrible stray dog problem.  I almost feel like this was a feel-good, “look at us, we’re doing something,” ordinance rather than a real plan to reduce the stray dogs. I’ve been pushing for a real education campaign (plus stiff penalties for violators) regarding stray dogs.  I got a map from code with all the 311 stray dog calls, and while there are calls from all over the city, most are clumped in specific areas.  I was pushing for a very concentrated, targeted education/enforcement/free spay neutering in those areas.  I think that’ll do more than this ordinance, which has some provisions that may actually discourage people from registering their pets with the city.

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Comments

42 responses to “Angela Hunt Explains Her Pet Ordinance Vote”

  1. Bethany says:

    Aren’t stray dogs, by definition, dogs of indeterminate ownership? How do you plan on penalizing violators if you can’t determine who they are?

  2. ROJ says:

    Once again Agela explains how she thought about something and then came up with a good idea to deal with the reality of an issue. Unlike the rest of the council. There’s a reason we in her district keep voting for her.

    And Bethany: You penalize the people who let their dogs run loose (I know who they are in my neighborhood, don’t you in yours?). The dogs that have no known ownership go to the shelter (hopefully a no-kill). If someone shows up to claim they pay the fees and a fine.

  3. TG says:

    wow, who knew angela had all these plans? not even those in her very own district. such a independent thinker. for some reason, i keep confusing her with someone who represents a constituency.

  4. Hot 4 teach says:

    If you follow the postings of eric celeste, you will see that he will be happy with nothing less than being able to shoot all animals on sight and ask questions later. This happens to a lot of men that suffer from SPS. So while you can educate owners and target those areas that are needed, you can not teach compassion. I hope Eric doesn’t live in our neighborhood. I don’t think he does, as we tend to look out for each other and if someone’s dog gets out, we make every effort to find the owner. It is what good neighbors do. Bethany, if you see a dog on the street that has tags, that dog is NOT a stray, so please refrain from having it put down. In your defense I must say that your blog lives up to the slogan of ignorant and snarky. You might add asshole to that. I will not be reading or replying to your arrogant retorts.

  5. Brack says:

    Props, kudos, etc. to Angela Hunt. Forward thinking and pushing for a solution to the problem rather than having, like she put it, a “feel-good” mentality. I just wish more public servants would be like that.

  6. Bethany says:

    Hot 4, please work on your reading comprehension skills.

    “I’ve been pushing for a real education campaign (plus stiff penalties for violators) regarding stray dogs.”

    Ms. Hunt’s words, not mine. I just pointed out that strays don’t have owners, so it would be hard to penalize them. You just agreed with me by saying animals with tags aren’t strays.

    Now, that out of the way, Dallas wouldn’t be the first city to have some sort of code that says, “You can’t have an animal larger than this, or more than this many animals, in a space smaller than this.” I’ve actually covered a city council meeting where such an ordinance was indeed adopted, much to the consternation of several 4-H kids, who were raising their projects in their backyards.

  7. Jack Jett says:

    Bethany

    All dogs should have tags and an ID implant. You do understand that sometimes dogs just get out. You know, like s**t happens. Sometimes when they get out they might loose their tags. We are dog lovers so when we see a loose dog with tags we take it in to return it to it’s owner. People who love their dogs do NOT want them roaming the streets for fear that they may get run over or run into to people with animal phobias from being molested by a poodle at a young age.

  8. Daniel says:

    Hot4teach,

    How quaint: If you’re eating ice cream cones by the town gazebo and Tramp happens by unattended, you return him to Ernie and Chip.

    Christ, I’d rather avoid the odd deadly, sore-speckled pit bull than live in your air-conditioned nightmare. And I know damn well you’re reading my “retort.” Now run along and grab a Caesar salad at Olive Garden. The rest of us in D — that stands for “Dallas” — will attend to our own ills, thank you.

  9. Bethany says:

    Ok – for the record: I do love animals. Not an animal hater here. I was merely pointing out that chipped and/or tagged animals are not strays, by the textbook definition.

  10. Daniel says:

    P.S. Angela Hunt is absolute tops. And I adore animals.

  11. Barbara says:

    All a no-kill shelter does is shift the euthanasia responsibilty to the city animal shelters. The no-kill shelters are portrayed as doggy saviors, when in reality they are picking and choosing who gets to live and who will face the inevitable needle. An overburdened city shelter does not have that luxury.

    I think it is a fair ordinance. The animal limit has a good chance of being enforced. At least neighbors sick of smelling cat urine will have some legal recourse. Ms Hunt’s solution of an education program is unrealistic. Even the educated people on this blog refuse to believe that neutering a male dog is a good thing.

  12. Topham Beauclerk says:

    I don’t understand her reasoning on “focused” enforcement in lieu of passing the ordinance. Won’t it be more effective if the general rule is that all dogs are typically spayed or neutered? Paying attention to high-violation target areas makes sense too, but the two approaches aren’t mutually exclusive. Unfortunately, I have little confidence that the targeted program would have any staying power, which is why passing an ordinance is at least making some effort to address the problems.

  13. Jack Jett says:

    I think we all may be on the same page but for different reasons. As a dog lover, I cringe when I see a dog running around without a collar. It may be lost or abandoned, neither of which is the dog’s fault. While other fear or despise them and just want them off for personal reasons. We all agree that “stray” dogs on the streets of Dallas is not cool.
    We can agree that not every dog that is loose is a menace to society.
    So how do we teach irresponsible dog owners become more responsible? Low cost spay/neutering has probably helped more than we realize. Outlaw puppy mills, serious penalities for animals used for sports, including greyhounds that are discarded at a young age. Better background checks for those who adopt, by explaining that dog ownership is a long term committment. Don’t let people impulse purchase animals. Teach people the joy of taking in a dog from a shelter or pound versus purchasing a full breed from a store.
    Obviously we need to hire more animal control agents. In the interim, since I assume they are overwhelmed with calls (from what I gather here) only call the control agents if you think the dog might be vicious.

    We are all wanting the same solution yet for different reasons. Should be easy for a brilliant chick like Angela Hunt to figure out.

  14. Daniel says:

    Jack et al,

    I have an uncanny ability to befriend strange animals, St. Francis-like, and I am disinclined to fear or loathe stray dogs.

    But. Spend some time in East Dallas sometime — let alone South Dallas — and let me know what you think of many of these strays. Around half of them seem capable of viciousness. I’ve been attacked by two of them. These dogs are no good, fault for which lies with the owners; still, these dogs are no good.

    People who live in Pleasant Valley really don’t know what they’re talking about. These ain’t family pets, people — they’re monsters.

  15. Jack Jett says:

    Daniel

    If that is the case then there must be a whole world of loose evil dogs that I have never been made aware of. Life is sweet and kind in my little neighborhood bubble.

    If it is that out of control then I wouldn’t know where to begin. Sounds like Eric et al have some amunition to buy and some hunting to do. Beware of the calico kittens though as they like to fight..puss on wuss.

  16. Dallasite says:

    I’m starting to think that certain FB’ians should have tags and an ID implant.

    That way when their dogs get loose, we can put the owners to sleep.

  17. Daniel says:

    Jack,

    Well, maybe I was being a bit lurid, although I’m led to believe it really is that bad in parts of Southern Dallas.

    Being attacked twice in the span of a few years is bad enough for me.

    And dammit, I’m going to come out and say it: It’s mostly those immigrants one might reasonably suspect of being undocumented. They raise their dogs country-style, which, in the city, equates to “junkyard-style,” and then they allow the beasts to roam around free as bees. Most of them are benign, of course, but it’s still civically irresposible.

    Take nice long walk around the Kalachandji’s neighborhood or the neighborhoods abutting the Fiesta on Ross. Odds are slim you’ll get attacked, but it’s virtually assured you’ll see some skanky, stupid, mean-looking dogs — the canine equivalent of rednecks. And who knows, you might even get attacked.

  18. Daniel says:

    P.S. Not implying that I wish that on anyone here.

  19. AmandaX9362 says:

    Why has no one asked why the city is not hiring more Animal Control Officers? This seems to be a big enough problem that they could justify the expense?

  20. Catatonic says:

    ” neighbors sick of smelling cat urine will have some legal recourse.”
    I love animals, so does my neighbor. The “Cat Lady” on my street has several dozen cats. In the winter all the “outside” cats crawled between the walls of her home to the extent of knocking the bricks off the walls, its frame and tarpaper now. Her yard is covered in feces and kitty litter. Six of them were pregnant in the spring, where do guess all the offspring sprung to? Code departments have been working on it for years, they have tried to catch the strays. I hope the new limit will allow them to remove some of the infested inbred three toed one eyed fleabags
    from her premises.

  21. monkey god says:

    I’ve been visiting this web site for about 2 weeks and most of the people on this site complain about city leaders and the city of Dallas.If I had this many complaints about the city I live in I would move.

  22. Daniel says:

    monkey god,

    Where do you live that you have no complaints?

  23. Dallasite says:

    “Why has no one asked why the city is not hiring more Animal Control Officers?”

    I’m too busy asking why there are so many Amandas on this blog…

  24. monkey god says:

    I have copmplaints where I live but not about everything.I know many people who have moved out of Dallas just because they were tired of dealing with the way they do things.My father used to live in Duncanville (when it was rural)and he raised exotic doves as a hobby.When the city moved in they told him since his doves were considered exotic he had to have a paper signed by the 4 houses around him.One person didn’t sign so they told him he would have to get rid of his doves.My dad moved.

  25. cheryl says:

    There are only 8 animal control officers because the city doesn’t & will not pay anything. I live close to Ross & Fiesta & have almost been attacked while walking my leashed, vaccinated, micro-chipped, licensed ($30 because she is an unaltered show dog) & on heartworm preventative. Now I’m going to have to pay an additional $70 (NOT!). I’ve called animal control on two dogs in particular (1 pitbull) who run at large at least 8 times since last Dec. & they are still running loose. But I’m being penalized! How many ticket do you see being written for the violation of the pooper scooper ordinance? I pick up after my dogs daily but I really resent seeing someone letting their dog take a dump & not picking up after them. This is a daily occurance & that law did nothing. Also, check out the Dallas Morning News classifieds. There are over 200 “dogs for sale” ads. Some ads advertise 4 or more breeds. Check out how many have 214 area codes. Yes, I know some areas of Dallas have 972. These people are nothing more than puppy mills. How many of them offer a health certificate from a vet with their new puppy? Responsible breeders do & responsible breeders are not responsible for the stray problem. Irresponsible owners are. As long as you allow people to keep pets that don’t have shots, are allowed to run loose, & face no consequences, we’re going to have a stray problem. Do you think the DMN is going to ask advertisers to provide proof of a breeders permit? This law is a joke. we need enforcement not more ordinances. Angela Hunt has the right idea.

  26. wakeup says:

    Bethany:
    A ton of people, especially in my Oak Cliff neighborhood, let their dogs run loose. It’s sort of like the way people let their cats run around the neighborhood. Most of us who keep our dogs on leashes know exactly who owns which stray dog. And it makes us very angry, because those poor dogs are in danger of getting sick, hit by cars, picked up by the city, etc. Many of these dogs do not have tags. _Those_ are the pet owners that Hunt and others are trying to target. But good luck. In my neighborhood, they’re also the people who blare Tejano music _all_weekend_long_. Not exactly the sort of families who value citizenship and neighborliness.

  27. twisteddog says:

    The animal issue is over and done with. Hello? Quit treating Hunt like she’s some kind of deity and hold her accountable for the other things she’s promised, but hasn’t delivered on. Where’s recycling for apartment dwellers, for example? She’s a politician for god’s sake.

  28. Daniel says:

    cheryl,

    Can’t help but ask. The two two beasts to which (whom?) you refer — they don’t happen to live near Summit and Alta, do they? If so, I’ve “met the fockers.” I’ve seen them terrorize many.

    I’ve had to come up with a new route when I walk to Louie’s.

  29. John Charles McKee says:

    “Where’s recycling for apartment dwellers, for example? She’s a politician for god’s sake.”

    Correct me if I am wrong but I believe apartment complexes are required to have waste removal by a private company, not the city of Dallas. I would think that recycling would be the responsibility of the complex, not the city.

  30. cheryl says:

    Daniel,

    That’s them. They run the entire neighborhood but live at Euclid & Sears. Iwas rescued by two guys driving down the street. they were after me & my 7 month old puppy. They are very dog aggressive. Do not use pepper spray. It doesn’t work on some dogs. I now carry a bat.

  31. Daniel says:

    I knew it!

    I’m not sure if hot4teach or Jack E. And His Jetts really understand what it is to be set upon by aggressive, deadly pack animals. They seem to think it’s possible to tenderly return these monsters to their aw-shucks owners. They would surely opine that carrying a bat makes you an animal hater. I’d like to kill the bastards myself — “and you can print that!”

    P.S. The dogs, not Hot4teach, Jack E., or His Jetts.

  32. GMOM says:

    Eww, I love Louie’s. I guess you all have not watched the Animal Planet and the different cities (Houston, Vegas, Phoenix, LA, etc) Animal Rescue series. All of these cities have a whole department for Animal Rescue and they drive around and do same. We can’t afford the same?

  33. Daniel says:

    You’re right, GMOM, decent resources — or more accurately, decently allocated resources — would be preferable to vigilante justice. Just venting.

  34. Jack Jett says:

    Daniel

    If you read my post, you will see that I have given up. Go beat all the dogs you feel you need to beat.

    If you would really read what I have to say, I was trying to point out that we are all on the same page but just for different reasons

    You have made this decsion that whatever I say must be wrong and I must be bashed for it. There is no winning with you.

    I don’t think I said anything that was outrageous or unfair. Just looking for some answers, and some solutions. So go get ’em.

    And I assume since I am one of the bastards that you want to kill (dogs can’t be bastards)then we will just have deal with that in another forum. Teach can deal with it how he/she wants.

    You are right, I don’t know what it is like to be set upon by a deadly pack of animals, but I do now know what it is liked to be threatned to be shot.

  35. diahh says:

    Stray/loose dogs are a problem in East Dallas. I’ve come to associate springtime as much with the return of the dog packs as with return of green grass. They usually travel in 2’s or 3’s, but there’s always loners too. It’s basically second nature to keep a look out for loose dogs once the weather gets warm because there’s so many of them and most of the ones i’ve encountered won’t bark, they’ll just run up on you.

  36. AmandaX9362 says:

    So I have a question for all of those that have had loose dog problems.

    If the city had a volunteer program for animal control, would you sign up to help catch them?

  37. Daniel says:

    If you don’t already know what it’s like to be called a “drama queen” — unlikely — it’s my pleasure to provide you that experience, as well.

    Threatened to be shot. Sheesh.

  38. cheryl says:

    Daniel – Don’t misunderstand me. I carry the bat to protect myself & my dog. I would really prefer to use it on the owners! Not to kill but to seriously maim because this has been going on for months. When animal control does finally appear they disavow ownership. It’s one extended family living in 3 houses in one block. I also completely support Angela Hunt’s view on this new ordinance.

  39. cheryl says:

    Amanda – If the city of Dallas paid Animal Control officers anything remotely resembling a decent wage, I would become one. I rescued three 7 wk old puppies that belong to that pack that was terrorizing East Dallas last year. They had never been touched by a human before. I took them down to the SPCA who REFUSED to take them because I “didn’t have a reservation”. I asked the girl if I could just set them down in the middle of Industrial and she said that would be animal cruelty. So I explained to her that the SPCA had just taught me to ignore animal pain & suffering & the next time I saw an animal in trouble I would walk on by. I was furious! The puppies ended up at Operation Kindness.

  40. Daniel says:

    I understood that, Cheryl. I think I already elucidated that I was just venting when I said “kill the bastards.” Also I was doing Jack E. Jett a favor by providing fodder for the persecution fantasies his psyche craves.

    Why doesn’t animal control take those dogs away? I don’t understand. They’re the very definition of “public menace.”

  41. cheryl says:

    Because they are not out when they come out & everyone involved goes “what dogs”?

  42. Mary says:

    What causes strays are people dumping off puppies, maybe it’s not even Dallasites doing it, and then a lot of good that spaying and neutering will do, it won’t, it will all be done needlessly. Those puppies multiply, and so on. And over time, you have lots of strays. Of course, there may be a small percentage of other reasons for strays. So provide a place for people to drop off their puppies, no questions asked, and then maybe we can do something constructive about the strays. You have to get them while they’re still puppies. It’s not the confined pets that are being taken care of that are contributing to the stray problem, though. And then if some don’t register, our city could see rabies cases increasing. Yes, I congratulate you on voting no. Now if only the others would listen to this. Amend the law to what really needs to be done.