Fremont to consider vicious dog ordinance

ST. ANTHONY — The Fremont County Commissioners might consider creating their own vicious dog ordinance after a resident complained that dogs have continually injured his livestock.

Nathan Frisby met with commissioners on Monday and asked the board to create such an ordinance. He complained that his horses and chickens have been attacked by what’s referred to as “at-large” dogs, and that the county doesn’t have its own ordinance.

According to Fremont County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Brock Bischoff, no Idaho counties have their own dog ordinances.

“They rely exclusively on the state statute. We would be the first county to actually have an ordinance,” he said.

Frisby reported five separate incidents where his livestock have been attacked by his neighbor’s dogs. In the most recent case, about two weeks ago, one of Frisby’s horses suffered a severed artery.

“It would have died if it had not had vet care,” he said.

During that incident, Fremont Sheriff’s Deputies gave the woman living at the neighbor’s home a warning about the dog.

“My only recourse is to sue them,” he said.

In previous incidents the neighbor’s dogs have killed his hens and roosters, Frisby said.

“One dog had gotten into the chicken coop. One person admitted to it at that time. At that time, no violation was given. They were just given a warning,” he said. “The second time I did not personally witness the dog get into the chickens, and in that case there were 12 chickens killed.”

Frisby reported that following the second incident, the dog’s owner got rid of the animal “by their own choosing.”

“The deputy responded to that, but didn’t even go talk to her. I had no evidence that it was that dog. It is my belief that she was aware of it, and that is the reason why she got rid of the dog,” he said.

Frisby said there had been five separate incidents where the neighbor’s canine had attacked his livestock.

“I personally went over and talked to the people about their dog getting loose and attacking my horses. They were belligerent to me. Their response to me was ‘Just shoot it,’” he said.

Workers at a neighboring shop witnessed a subsequent attack, but at that time, Frisby’s animals didn’t suffer any injuries. Following this third incident, the neighbors pleaded guilty to having a dog at large.

The courts backed him in forcing his neighbors to pay monetary damages.

“I was compensated for the vet bills. Another incident was handled by the city. I do not have the police report with me. There were injuries to the animals, but it was not severe enough to require vet bills. I’m not entirely sure how the city handled it,” he said.

Frisby lives in the county while his neighbors live in the city.

Before any type of a county dog ordinance could be created, the state requires commissioners to hold a public hearing and announce the ordinance in the newspaper. In the meantime, commissioners asked that Bischoff bring a copy of St. Anthony’s dog ordinance to its next meeting. That meeting is scheduled at 9 a.m. April 23 at the courthouse.

For information on the upcoming meeting, call 208-624-4271.

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