SCHENECTADY, N.Y. – The City of Schenectady is making a push to report unlicensed dogs in the area.
A group of 18-year-olds worked in pairs on Monday in order to report any dogs to the city to ensure all pets are licensed.
The group of teens that went door-to-door on Monday is from the County Youth Bureau.
The kids looked for signs of a dog, whether it is a leash, dog bowl, or even barking. If the groups determine a dog is living at a residence, they will then leave a door hanger letting people know their dog has been reported but also has an explanation of the process of licensing and fees.
The City of Schenectady will then cross check those reported addresses and see which homes have licensed pets.
City Clerk Chuck Thorne says he testified in a vicious dog attack case a few years ago. The owner had an unlicensed dog and Thorne says the victim was badly hurt.
“The woman was horribly scarred, she hadn’t received any compensation whatsoever and the person with the dog was still terrorizing the neighbors and the building with that dog,” said Thorne.
Those residents who do not have a licensed dog will have to pay a $10 dollar fine and will have three weeks to get a dog license.
Linda Bozek was one of the homes visited on Monday. She has two unlicensed dogs, but says she never made the trip to City Hall because her dogs are never out of her sight.
“They never leave the back yard and there’s always somebody out there but this is a good thing. I mean it’s going to cost me 40 bucks,” said Bozek.
The $40 Bozek mentions is for her two dog tags alone.
If residents do not get their dog licensed within that time period, Animal Control will fine the owners $250.
City Clerk Chuck Thorne says the city is doing this because they have estimated 15,000 dogs live in the area, but only 2,300 are licensed.
Workers will go door-to-door randomly and Thorne says every neighborhood is fair game.
Vaccinations are also a problem city is trying to fix. Almost half of dog owners found through this program did not vaccinate their dog.