4 Days, 800 Violations Cited
Fort Worth, TX- In potentially a world record-breaking feat, the City of Fort Worth has gone after non compliant dog owners with gusto. In just 4 days, Forth Worth Animal Control cited 800 violations. This massive effort falls in the wake of the fatal mauling of 3-year old Brooklynn Milburn that was killed by her neighbor's rottweiler last week. Though that dog owner was not in violation of city dog laws, it turns out many other Fort Worth dog owners are.
Brandon Bennett, the director of Code Compliance in Fort Worth, said an alarming number of pit bulls were found roaming the streets around the Polytechnic Heights neighborhood, located district five. In 2008, animal control picked up 1,800 stray dogs in the district, the second highest number out of the districts. On the north side, in district two, the problem was even worse. Animal control picked up 2,400 stray dogs, making it the number one problematic district.
Bennett said, "We have dogs that have a propensity to attack that are running loose in the neighborhood." Since 2004, the number of pit bull bites has tripled in Fort Worth. Given that Texas prohibits breed-specific law, animal control can't focus on the pit bull problem -- even though their bite count has tripled and their bites often inflict severe injury. What they can do is fine all dog owners who have unregistered and tethered dogs (AKA dangerous dog owners).
Code officers say they plan to hit every Fort Worth neighborhood within the next 90 days, and will continue to go door-to-door checking for animal violations.
01/19/09: 2009 Fatality: Brooklynn Grace Milburn Killed by Rottweiler
08/20/08: Dog Attacks, Trends and Dog Law Coverage of Texas