Beginning May 1, several animal control ordinances will be civil infractions rather than criminal misdemeanors. These code changes lessen the severity of the penalty to more accurately fit the “crime.” With the new codes, people in violation will get a civil citation with an immediate fine versus a possible criminal record, fines and jail time. Common violations include: animal at large (off-leash), animal disturbance (barking dog), animal waste removal/pick-up and any animal license/rabies vaccination violations.
Additionally, reporting barking dog complaints will change to provide better, more responsive customer service. The recent changes include:
- allowing anonymous complaints when there is enough information provided for follow-up on the complaint,
- no longer requiring a dog description (although the more information, the better to verify the violation), and
- allowing more flexibility regarding the address of the barking dog.
“In March, City Council approved the ordinance changes in response to growing concerns and complaints by residents,” stated Beth Sowder, the City’s Neighborhood Manager. “We hope the changes will more effectively address animal issues in our neighborhoods.”
Animal Control Officers from the Larimer Humane Society are contracted by Fort Collins, Loveland and Larimer County to enforce and uphold local and state animal protection and control ordinances and laws. To report a barking dog, please contact Larimer Humane Society Animal Control at 970-226-3647 or larimerhumane.org. Residents may also contact the City’s Neighborhood Services at 970-224-6046 for assistance with reporting or more information.
For more information on the City’s services for neighborhoods, please visit fcgov.com/neighborhoods