Keep Fido on its leash

Published 8:03 am Saturday, September 1, 2018

By Dawn Burleigh

The Orange Leader


An increase in reported animal bites shows animals are not being kept on a leash or within a fenced in yard.

A woman, attempting to exit her vehicle, was scared she was about to be attacked by large dog, which had charged at her, according to an affidavit for probable cause filed on Wednesday.

The woman stated this was an ongoing problem with the animal.

The cities of Bridge City, Orange, Pinehurst, and West Orange, along with Orange County, have ordinances against dogs roaming At Large.

At Large, according to ordinances passed by the Commissioners Court in 1991 and 1996, are dogs that are not on the owner’s property or owner’s control. To comply with the ordinance, a dog must be in a dog proof fence or on a leash at all times.

The ordinance covers all of Orange County.

The ordinance also requires owners of dangerous dogs to register the animal with the Orange County rabies and animal control authority within 30 days, and to restrain the dog at all times by leash or in a secure enclosure as well has having insurance or financial responsibility in the amount of at least $100,000 to cover damages from an attack by the dangerous dog.

Many times an owner is given a warning for the first offense but can be issued a ticket and fined for not complying with the ordinance.

The City of Orange has had the ordinances on the books since 1982, which reads: No owner of any animal shall permit such animal to run at large within the corporate limits of the City of Orange, Texas.

Sec. 2.203 allows for the impounding of cats and dogs running at large in Orange or not wearing a collar or harness with a tag showing the animal has been vaccinated against rabies.

According to ordinance Sec. 5-38 for Bridge City, it shall be unlawful for any person to permit any dog owned, possessed, kept or harbored by him to be at large on the streets, alleys or public places, or on private premises not under his control. A dog shall be considered at large if it goes or runs at large on private or public property outside a secure enclosure or not on a leash of sufficient strength to hold the dog.

The City of Pinehurst has its ordinance available on its website for the city’s animal shelter as well as the fees for picking up the animal and boarding it.

Pinehurst ordinance reads: It shall be unlawful for any owner or keeper to willfully permit any dog to run at large within the city. At any time such dog is at large, the Animal Control officer will issue a citation to the owner or keeper, followed up with the City Municipal Court.

West Orange has a similar ordinance which reads: Any dog or cat running at large or any dog not wearing a collar with a valid proof of rabies vaccination tag attached may be picked up by the animal control officer and impounded.

Within city limits or in the rural areas of the county, Fido must be on a leash or within a secured enclosure.