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July 2, 2019

The Lake County (Illinois) Board of Health will be holding a public hearing on July 9 in order to receive public comments on several changes to the county’s animal control ordinance.

This is the result of a lengthy process, in which animal control was responding to local pressure for new laws to regulate inhumane breeders, but desired to develop something enforceable and effective.  The AKC greatly appreciates that the county contacted us on multiple occasions (including notifying us of the July 9 hearing) and expressed their desire to obtain feedback from local breeders.

Those who reside or participate in dog events in Lake County are strongly encouraged to attend the public hearing on July 9 and comment on the proposal.

Summary:

The proposal contains several amendments, including:

  • Amendments to the county limit law – Current law limits ownership to four dogs and cats over six months of age. The proposal would remove the exemption for animals under six months of age if the owner is in violation of the state cruelty laws and laws regarding proper care of the animal.  If the owner is found to be in violation, and puppies under six months of age are found on the property that result in more than the four-dog limit, they will be considered in violation of the county limit law and a fine would be imposed.
    County Animal Care and Control have stated in an official memo that enforcement will be on a complaint-driven basis.
  • Amendments to “Animal-Aggressive Dog” Regulations – In addition to state laws regarding dangerous and vicious dogs, the county also regulates “animal-aggressive dogs” that cause serious physical injury or death to another animal without justification. Under the proposed changes, if a dog has been found to be animal-aggressive, the owner may not sell, transfer or give away the dog without county approval.  The county will provide documentation to the new owner stating they now own an animal-aggressive dog and meet the requirements set out in current law.
    In addition, if someone who owns an animal-aggressive dog relocates, they need to notify both Lake County and the jurisdiction where they move.

The full proposal may be found on the Lake County website.

What You Can Do:

Lake County is encouraging resident breeders and dog owners to attend the July 9 public meeting.  The details are as follows:
Lake County Board of Health Public Hearing
Tuesday, July 9, 2019
2:00 pm
Lake County Central Permit Facility
500 W. Winchester Road
Libertyville, Illinois 60048

If you cannot attend, you may submit comments until 5:00 pm on July 8 to any of the following:

Email: lmackey@lakecountyil.gov
Fax: (847) 984-5622 (Attn: Larry Mackey)

Mail: Lake County Health Department and Community Health Center
Attn: Larry Mackey, Director, Environmental Health
500 W. Winchester Road
Libertyville, Illinois 60048

AKC Government Relations will continue to provide more information.  For questions, contact AKC GR at doglaw@akc.org.

If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact us at enewsletter@akc.org
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