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(Special to the American Press)

(Special to the American Press)

Informer: Lake Charles, parish ordinances on at-large dogs same

Last Modified: Saturday, October 06, 2012 8:50 PM

By Andrew Perzo / American Press

I live in the unincorporated area of the parish. I was recently told by an Animal Services officer that the Police Jury had adopted the same “dogs at large prohibited” ordinance as the city of Lake Charles.

He said he could write me a ticket because I was standing in my yard with my lab and she was not on a leash.

He also said that all dogs had to be confined on private property by fence, kennel, etc., and be accompanied on a leash at all times when not confined and are not allowed to roam at all on my property.

Is this true?

Yes.

As The Informer has pointed out before, both the city and the parish codes feature the same at-large dog ordinance.

“Any citizen may, or law enforcement officer shall, seize any dog found unaccompanied by its owner or keeper and running at-large on any road, street, or other public place or trespassing on any premises other than the owners’,” read the ordinances.

“Citizen must contact animal services and adoption center to provide details regarding the animal.”

The parish code includes the following penalty provision:

In addition to the charges and civil penalties specified herein, the owner, harborer or possessor of a dog who is found at-large must have the dog microchipped ... . If the dog has not already been rendered sterile, the owner shall be encouraged to have the animal spayed or neutered within seven (7) days of redemption or return. If the impoundment for said animal is a second offense occurring within one (1) calendar year, the sterilization of the animal will be mandatory.

The ordinance says owners, and the dogs themselves, can avoid sterilization — “keep the animal intact,” it reads — if they pay $300. The fee will be assessed “each time the animal is found at large for the life of the animal.”

For more information, call Calcasieu Parish Animal Services at 721-3730.


Neutral ground off limits to cars

What is the law regarding parking on the neutral ground in front of your home?

It’s Section 20-100 of Lake Charles’ code of ordinances: “No vehicle shall be parked on any neutral ground within the city.”

The provision contains an exception for certain paved roadside spots.

“If a vehicle is found in violation, the complainant should notify the Police Department, who will in turn dispatch an officer to assess the circumstances,” Lt. Ted Trunick wrote in an email.

“The officer should then place a parking citation on the windshield of the vehicle. The citation is to be paid to City Hall at the Water Department within the next 48 hours.”

He said abandoned vehicles parked on neutral ground or public property can be reported to police, who will place a citation and a violation notice on them. Owners have 10 days to move their vehicles, Trunick said.

Online: www.municode.com.

•••

The Informer answers questions from readers each Sunday, Monday and Wednesday. It is researched and written by Andrew Perzo, an American Press staff writer. To ask a question, call 494-4098, press 5 and leave voice mail, or email informer@americanpress.com

Posted By: Tracey Lingo On: 10/8/2012

Title: Parish ordinances on at-large dogs

Quoting from the Informer, which is quoting the Calcasieu Parish code on the at-large dog ordinance on 10/8:
"Any citizen may, or law enforcement officer shall, seize any dog found unaccompanied by its owner or keeper and running at-large on any road, street, or other public place or trespassing on any premises OTHER THAN THE OWNERS’,” read the ordinances. (Emphasis mine). So what part of the word 'other' does the Informer not understand? The word 'other' in that context means that a dog IS allowed to run free on its owner's property. Or is the Informer trying to tell me that an ordinance actually passed in Calcasieu parish saying that someone's dog cannot be off-leash on THEIR OWN PROPERTY? I live in Vernon Parish, so this ordinance doesn't affect me one way or another. I am just amazed that either the parish has lost its collective mind by passing such a draconian ordinance as the Informer and Animal Services officer seem to think it has, or else there is a serious lack of reading comprehension on the part of the Informer and the Animal Services officer.

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