January 18, 2012
City Clerk Co-Sponsors Resolution to Address Serious Dog Issues in Chicago
Resolution Calls on Council to Review Ordinances Regulating Animals Following Recent Vicious Dog Attacks.
Following a string of high-profile vicious attacks by dogs, Alderman Robert Fioretti, 2nd Ward, and City Clerk Susana A. Mendoza co-sponsored a resolution introduced at today’s City Council meeting calling on a joint City Council Committee to hold public hearings and review existing legislation with a goal of reducing the number of animal attacks.
Dog bites and attacks in Chicago remain a serious concern. In 2011, Chicago Animal Care and Control reported nearly 2,000 dog bites and Chicago ranks 13th in the nation on dog attacks against postal service workers. There are many reasons a dog may attack, such as the personality of the dog, how it interacts with other dogs, whether it has been spayed or neutered and the dog’s relationship with humans.
"My office received several hundred calls and emails from dog owners and concerned residents in the south and west loop. We have to examine current laws and insure appropriate measures are taken to hold dog owners accountable and promote public safety," said Alderman Fioretti.
“In the first week of January alone there were two high-profile, horrific dog attacks in Chicago and none of the dogs involved in the attacks were licensed by the city. When dogs are licensed we also confirm they have a rabies vaccination, a serious public health concern,” said City Clerk Mendoza. “My office recently launched a dog registration campaign as dogs are grossly under-registered in Chicago. Today I am urging the City Council to complete a comprehensive review of all legislation surrounding dogs and dog owners in Chicago, including our dog registration policies.”
The resolution calls on the City Council Committee on Health and Environmental Protection, Committee on Public Safety and the Committee on License and Consumer Protection to convene a joint committee hearing. The joint committee would take public and expert testimony regarding the current best practices in animal care and control and make recommendations for legislation to reduce the number of animal attacks. “It is important to note that we do not feel that any legislation should be dog breed-specific, but instead focused on responsible dog ownership,” emphasized City Clerk Mendoza.