Wednesday, April 16, 2014
   
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Couple: Pit bulls difficult to insure

City law says Joseph and Krista Davis have a dangerous dog.

Although the ordinance doesn’t say pit bulls are dangerous dogs, the breed is if it bites someone.

Because their pit bull bit a neighbor who was trying to separate his dog from the Davis pet, the animal now falls into the dangerous dog category.

During open forum at the July 6 meeting of the Gothenburg City Council, the Davises said they had done everything in the ordinance to keep a dangerous dog except obtaining insurance.

“You can’t get it for certain types of dogs,” Joseph said.

City attorney Mike Bacon said the city council would have to amend the ordinance to help the Davises or post a surety bond in lieu of insurance.

“Check with me in my office to see what it takes,” Bacon told the couple.

Krista said she and her husband discovered that most states will not insure pit bulls, Rottweilers or chows.

Joseph said they don’t want to put their dog to sleep, noting she was chained in the yard when the neighbor dog appeared.

Under a law passed several months ago, owners of a dangerous dog must also:

insure and sign an agreement that the animal is properly confined as described in the law.

make sure the dog has a current rabies vaccination.

must pay an initial fee of $250 and a $100 renewal fee to the city each year—a requirement the council approved during the meeting.

On a related matter, the council raised registration fees for all dogs from $5 to $6 if the license is bought or renewed between Jan. 1 and 31 of each year.

After Jan. 31, the fee goes up from $15 to $16 annually.

Sewage dump fees for non-Lafayette Park campers who dump at the park were also added. That fee will be $15.

People with campers who don’t stay in Gothenburg will be charged $25 per 500 gallons of waste if they dump at the wastewater treatment plant.

In other business, the council:

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