"The City-County Council has passed Proposal No. 370, the Dangerous Dog ordinance, which makes changes to the Indianapolis Code as it relates to animals. The proposal was first introduced on July 19 and passed the full council by a vote of 26-0 on Monday, Nov. 13.

President Gray said, “The intent of the proposal is to protect citizens from dangerous animals, and send a message to irresponsible pet owners that they are and will be held accountable for the actions of their pets.”

Calls for breed specific legislation, particularly a citywide ban on pit bull ownership, did not make the final version of the resolution. According to Gray, “We didn’t single out a specific breed of dog because any breed can attack people and other animals, particularly if they are mistreated or taught to fight by their owner.”

Some of the key provisions of the new ordinance include increased fines relating to dangerous animals, which will range from $500 to $1,000; limits the ownership of dangerous animals to two and defines a dangerous animal as one that 1) would constitute a danger to human life or property, or 2) has caused serious injury to a person without having been provoked by the person or 3) has chased or approached a person, in a menacing fashion, or attacked another domestic animal, or 4) because of its training or behavior, is capable of inflicting physical harm or death to humans.

The proposal will become effective on Jan. 1, 2007.

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