NEW ALBANY, Miss. (WTVA) -- It's working.
That's the word from Union County officials who say the dangerous animals law on the books is getting the job done.
Officials are just weeks into the new law and already that effort is in full
Union County Animal Control Officer Curt Clayton has his hands full these days but not with the kind of dogs he expected to see.
He picks up 3 or 4 dogs everyday that have been abandoned.
"So far, dangerous-wise we have not had that many vicious dogs," Clayton said.
Prior to the ordinance, the complaints to the Board of Supervisors were numerous according to Union County Administrator Terry Johnson.
"Well, they had put it off as long as they could because of economic conditions and finally, just bit the bullet and adopted this ordinance and I think the response has been well," Johnson said.
The ordinance does not identify any breed of dog as dangerous.
"I mean, you can say it's the (Pit Bull) that's vicious. It could be a German Shepherd. It could be a Feist. It could be a Beagle-whatever that's dangerous that has bit or attacked another dog," Clayton added.
Myrtle Kennel owner Caroline Williams says she is in favor of having a dangerous animals ordinance on the books, but not one that would target any breed.
"Don't take it to extreme that every dog that is labeled as a vicious animal is vicious because they're not," Williams said.
Sheriff Jimmy Edwards remains concerned about Pit Bulls, however. He says someone was recently injured by a Pit Bull.
"There are a lot of Pit Bulls in the county and a lot of people have multiple Pit Bulls tied all around their house. I don't know if that's to try to deter police from coming or what, but they do need to be responsible. They can be arrested for neglecting or mistreating animals," Sheriff Edwards said.
Officer Clayton says dogs housed behind the Sheriffs Department are an example of the rampant problem they are facing. All have been abandoned. If the owner does not show up within 5 days, the next stop will be the Tupelo Lee County Humane Society.
County officials say there are fines for those who do not abide by the ordinance.
There can even be jail time.
State law requires all dog owners to have them vaccinated for rabies.