Havelock to revisit rules on vicious animals

Published: Wednesday, July 9, 2014 at 04:59 PM.

Complaints from residents to the Board of Commissioners have prompted Havelock officials to revisit the city’s regulations on vicious animals.

Havelock Mayor Will Lewis said city staff was gathering information on how other cities and towns deal with animals that display threatening behavior.

The decision to revisit the rules came on the heels of an incident in which a female boxer/beagle mix named Sadie was ruled to be vicious. Under the current regulations, the dog had to be either euthanized at the owner’s expense or banned from the city, with the owners having to pay a $1,000 fee. The money is refunded after a year as long as the vicious animal is not brought back into the city.

Havelock Police Chief G. Wayne Cyrus said that Sadie was involved in an incident on Barden Drive on June 3 when it is alleged that she escaped her property and bit a woman in her left buttock while she was running down the street.

According to minutes from an appeal hearing conducted on June 17, the dog was deemed vicious based on the city regulations, and consequently, City Manager Frank Bottorff ruled that the dog should be either euthanized or removed from the city limits.

Though Sadie allegedly bit the woman, the incident was not witnessed and the reported bite did not draw blood or tear clothing, according to statements from residents in the neighborhood. Furthermore, the alleged victim did not seek medical attention for the bite.

To declare a dog vicious after such an incident didn’t make sense to Shirley Allard, a Havelock resident who spoke out against the current rules during a recent Havelock commissioners meeting.

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