A dangerous dog is basically described as an unattended animal that threatens serious injury, while a vicious dog causes serious injury or death. The proposed changes would charge the owners of vicious dogs a $1,000 fine and owners of dangerous dogs would pay about $600. Lauren Malmberg is the Director of Peoria County Animal Protection Services. She says the changes would also create a new “Reckless Dog Owner” category for owners whose animals commit three or more violations over a three year period. She says that can help stop animal problems before they happen:
“We don’t have to wait for someone to be seriously injured, or for someone to be mauled or any of those things, we can identify them early on in the process. And it wouldn't necessarily have to be tied to one particular animal, because we find that people who behave this way with one animal tend to behave this way with their next animal and so on,” Malmberg says.
Malmberg says Reckless dog owners could be charged up to $750 depending on the violations and would be banned from owning any dogs for three years. Also the new rules would require new ways to better tether dogs to help reduce aggression. The County Board takes up the proposed issues next month.