San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas


Hays County commissioners are set to vote on an amended animal control ordinance that requires pet owners to relinquish their dog after a second attack on livestock or other animals. The commissioners are scheduled to deliberate on the proposed ordinance at their meeting 9 a.m. Tuesday at the Hays County Courthouse.

The changes come in response to a public outcry after two dogs were euthanized for killing chickens in Wimberley.

First attack

  • The dog owner is liable for all damage done by the dog and all costs incurred in the capture and care of the dog
  • Owner must not permit the dog to run at large. Failure to confine dog could result in up to $100 fine
  • Dog may be registered as a dangerous dog. Animal control officers may provide owner with written requirements for controlling the dog. Failure to implement requirements could result in confiscation of dog.

Second attack

  • A hearing will be scheduled before a justice of the peace
  • Dog will be confiscated unless owner demonstrates he/she can confine the dog
  • If evidence presented during the hearing shows the dog indeed attacked livestock, domestic animals or fowl, the dog may be euthanized. However,
  • The owner may then relinquish the dog and request that it be placed with a nonprofit animal shelter, so long as the owner swears in writing to refrain from interfering with the dog’s placement and/or attempting to own or possess the dog in the future.

Any person who witnesses a dog attack on livestock or other animals is permitted to kill the dog and will not be liable for any damages but must not violate any other laws such as trespassing or deadly conduct.


» Hays County proposed animal control ordinance [pdf] Email Email | Print Print


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