Owners of Dangerous Dogs to Face New Penalties

By Associated Press/Pulbished by Online Athens/Athens Banner-Herald/Friday, May 4, 2012

Atlanta — Georgians who own dogs that are deemed dangerous will soon face penalties if their animals injure people under a bill recently signed into law. 

Gov. Nathan Deal on Thursday signed House Bill 685, which provides definitions and hearing procedures for determining whether a dog is dangerous or vicous. 

The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports (http://bit.ly/lpMtYz) that the bill defines procedures for handling and keeping such animals, including muzzling and requiring a secure enclosure. If a dog has been defined as vicious, the owner must carry $50,000 in insurance and the dog must have a microchip. 

A dog owner could face at least a year in prison and at least a $5,000 fine if the dog injures someone on a second occasion. 

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