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Bexley keeps cap on dog allowance
An ordinance that limits the number of dogs per residence to three is still in effect for Bexley.
"I don't want to give false hope one way or the other," Councilman Jed Morison said. "I don't think we are inclined to rescind our ordinance."
However, Morison said council might allow exceptions.
Councilman Rick Weber agreed, "I don't see (granting variances) as a problem as long as we set guidelines and (determine) how to enforce them."
Factors such as the size of the lot and the size of the dogs could be considered.
Bexley recently forced Janet and Karl Hinch to relinquish two of their five dogs.
The animals had been rescued from "terrible conditions that made them difficult to place," Janet Hinch said.
For two years they worked with one dog to make it suitable for adoption.
Mayor John Brennan, who was bit by a dog in 1995, said he didn't "want to live next door to a dog that (required) two years to rehabilitate" nor did he want children living next door to such an animal.
Councilman Mark Masser said he is a dog lover like many residents of Bexley, but "a lot of residents have a fear of dogs. We have to do what's best for the majority."
Animal control officer Becky Shope said in the last year, there had been 11 violators of the ordinance including the Hinch family.
Shope said in most cases she became aware of the violation through neighbors complaining of barking and foul odors.
The Hinch family gathered the signatures of 25 neighbors who supported the family's right to keep the dogs.
|On February 17, 2009 Karl said:
My name is Karl Hinch and I am currently stationed at Camp Eggers in Kabul, Afghanistan as a civilian member of the Department of Defense. I took this assignment because I wanted to make a small contribution to Americas' efforts in Afghanistan. Jan and I both knew this would be a difficult and stressful six months but we counted on the support of the community and neighbors to help make the six months a little more bearable. However, Bexley has chosen this time to enforce an ordinance regarding the number of dogs per residence and as a result caused a tremendous amount of stress and pain to Jan and myself. In response to the actions of the Bexley safety committee we proposed a permit or license plan for families with more than three dogs. The proposed plan would allow for review of the specifics of each request instead of the �one size fits� all ordinance currently in place. That plan is still being reviewed. Jan also requested an extension to allow us to keep all of our dogs until my return from Afghanistan in April. Bexley denied this request and forced Jan to give up two of our dogs. Like many people we consider our dogs to be a part of our family so this is heartbreaking to us. Jan and I are responsible members of the community and responsible dog owners. We sincerely hope Bexley approves the permit plan that allows for more than three dogs per residence. Thank you for the opportunity to share our viewpoint.
|On February 12, 2009 Janet said:
I would like to respond to Mayor Brennan's comments at the recent Safety Committee meeting. He automatically assumed "rehabilitation" of a dog means that they are dangerous. The dog I was refering to is a 10 lbs. Poodle-Bichon mix that was being bred to death in a puppy mill. She was in poor health, had never been in a home, gone up or down steps, drank from a bowl or walked in the grass!! I suggest Mayor Brennan educate himself as to the plight of many suffering dogs in Ohio. I have temporarily placed two dogs with a relative and if Bexley votes against a variance, my husband and I will be putting our home on the market when he returns from Afghanistan in April.
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