City council approves more rules for dog owners in Yakima
YAKIMA, Wash.- It got just a little bit harder to be man's best friend in Yakima.
The city council approved a new dog ordinance that gives owners more rules to follow.
New rules include requiring dogs to be spayed or neutered if they've been impounded more than once in a 12-month period.
Council also expanded the definition of a potentially dangerous dog to include dogs who chase people in a menacing fashion or apparent attitude of attack.
City manager Cliff Moore said the expanded definition gives them more options when it comes to potentially dangerous dogs.
“When animals have a tendency to be aggressive, that's something that we need to keep an eye on,” he said.
The final addition was increasing the cost to register a dog who has not been sprayed or neutered yet.
People at the meeting expressed their concern with how expensive it could now be to have a dog in your home.
“A lot of people won't be able to afford to do this and you're going to raise the fees for licensing,” Yakima resident Duane Sperl said.
The city did get rid of the requirement for all dogs to be microchipped.
Moore said the changes come after getting feedback from a public safety committee.
Our understanding of how to manage dogs, how to manage animal control continue to evolve.
The question of the pit bull ban came up during last night’s meeting, but a majority of council members said they can't revisit that issue until this ordinance goes into effect.
Councilman Brad Hill said the changes made will do the city good.
“I think the intent is to keep the city safe. Which I think that this ordinance largely does,” he said.
The new rules go into effect 30 days after the day it's approved. So, look for it to become law by July 19th.
City council said they will have a public safety committee review the current pitbull ban in Yakima.
After that, the council will be able to revoke, update or keep the ban entirely.