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L.A. $100 fines for barking dogs

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LA's all-bark, no-bite ordinance given teeth

From Staff and Wire Reports

Posted: 05/04/2010 09:18:37 PM PDT

Updated: 05/04/2010 09:23:43 PM PDT

Man's best friend is about to become a money-maker for the city of Los Angeles.

The City Council approved a plan Tuesday that will allow Animal Services officers to issue $100 citations to pet owners who violate Los Angeles' barking dog and leash laws. Habitual offenders will face even stiffer fines.

The 10-0 vote came after the council learned that Animal Services officers last year wrote nearly 20,000 "notices to comply" to pet owners who had violated city regulations. If each of those violations carried in a $100 fine, the city would generate $2 million, officials said.

The city's municipal code states that pet owners cannot allow a barking dog to bother their neighbors. It also prohibits owners from keeping dogs - as well as cats, rabbits and certain farm animals - more than 35 feet from their house or to allowing a dog to wander the streets without a leash.

Animal Services Assistant General Manager Kathy Davis has said such a program would be "an excellent method for reinforcing the seriousness of complying with laws relating to humane treatment of animals and human-animal safety."

The council's action is the latest in its effort to generate money for the city, which faces a budget deficit of $212 million this year.


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