Dangerous dog chases Dougherty Co. woman - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Dangerous dog chases Dougherty Co. woman

November 24, 2003

Dougherty County - A Dougherty County woman says dangerous dogs in her neighborhood are forcing her and her neighbors to stay inside. And, she wants the county to do something about the pit bulls.

Her complaint comes as County Commissioners tentatively agree to get into the animal control business.

Cheri Hurley and Buster, her dog, enjoyed walking in their Jimmy Goff Road neighborhood until last week. "We were walking down the road. At a house down the street, there are some dogs that have been chained up. But one of them got loose and came chasing after us," said Hurley.

And, the dog continues to room freely around the house. "He was growling at us. He was aggressively coming towards us, so we ran," said Hurley.

They ran to a neighbor's house, and the pit bull finally darted off. "Now, we don't go down the street because we're too afraid. We stay in our own yard."

The pit bull is one of 6 left at the home at 4400 Jimmy Goff Road. The rest of the dogs are chained up in the yard. "The dogs are down there, and no one taking care of them. They're chained up and they're hungry. They bark constantly because they're miserable. We're afraid to go down there to give them water," said Hurley.

Neighbors say the owners of the home left weeks ago, and rarely come back to feed the animals. Some of Hurley's neighbors called police, and animal control officers promised to remove the unleashed dogs. But under Georgia law, they can't do anything about the chained dogs unless they bite someone.

"That's ludicrous. If you wait that long, someone's life could be in jeopardy. Action should be taken before then," said Hurley.

County commissioners are taking action. They tentatively agreed to build an animal shelter that the Humane Society will run. They also plan to hire two animal control officers, after passing new rules concerning stray and dangerous animals. But, it could be months before the ordinance goes into effect, and Hurley says that's too long to wait to get control of these dogs.

County commissioners are discussing a temporary animal control ordinance to use until the shelter is built.

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