Headline News
Go Back

City residents - keep canines contained!

By Judith Pannebaker BCC Editor

City of Bandera residents are urged to keep their dogs at home and make sure their four-legged companions have been vaccinated against rabies as required by the State of Texas.
In the past, city workers who found familiar dogs running at large discreetly secured the errant pooches back in their own yards. However, this service is no longer available to city residents - if indeed it ever was.
As Animal Control Clerk Lisa Chacon noted, "(City workers) shouldn't have been doing that." She noted that impound fees are involved prior to releasing an animal back to its owner. Additionally, impound fees increase significantly when dogs are picked up frequently.
The initial impound fee is $25; the second, $50; and the third, $100. An animal maintenance fee is $5 per day in the city pound, which is located off Highway 16 South at the water treatment facility.
In addition, an animal service call to pick up a dog running at large is $25. This means a city resident could be charged for the service call to pick up his dog as well as a $25 to $100 impound fee to bail him out of the pound.
According to Chacon, however, the current policy of taking pups "directly to doggie jail" has not increased the number of impounded pooches by much. "We usually only get one or two in a month," she said, adding, "Although we had a period when we were full."
Chacon praised the efforts of volunteer extraordinaire Sandra Schott and her cadre of volunteers for their efforts at minimizing the number of dogs impounded in the city animal control facility. "She does an amazing job of finding new homes for the dogs that have been brought in by Animal Control Officer Brian Cummings," Chacon said. "I don't know what we would do without all her help - and that of the people who work with her."
Chacon also reminded residents that all dogs living within the city must be vaccinated against rabies and be registered. Registration fees, which include issuance of dog tags-licenses, for neutered and spayed dogs are $10 per dog. The fee for dogs not neutered or spayed is $25 per dog. Also, city residents may only have a total of four animals, which includes a mix of dogs and cats.
"My advice to residents is to keep their dogs safely at home and to register them," Chacon said. On the city website, http://www.cityofbandera.org/pet_adoptions.htm, it is stated: "Your pet license is their ticket back to you, should they get lost. If your loving pet should arrive at the City Animal Shelter, or even the veterinarian's office, their city tag could make the difference in whether they get back to you!"
Also available on the website are portals to the animal control ordinance, fee schedule, K-9 registration and a dog adoption application form.
However, lest it seem municipal administrators are using impounded dogs to fatten city coffers, exceptions can be made. "Basically, if a dog is registered with the city and gets out of his yard or home and the city doesn't have to keep him for more than a night, we'll give the owner a free pass," Chacon said. "We really don't want to keep residents' dogs, but would rather get them safely back to their owners." However, she added, after that initial grace period, owners will be charged for the return of their impounded dogs.