Could not picking up after your pooch cost you cash?
NAPLES- Could not picking up after your pooch cost you cash? One Naples dog owner is confused about a notice left on her door from animal services.
When Fox 4 account executive Taylor Horn found a notice on her door, she says it didn't make much sense.
"I became concerned. Is this regarding my dog? Did they get an address wrong? There was a line on the notice saying if not corrected dogs may be impounded."
The notice was from Collier County Animal Control. It said she needed to renew her dog's license and that she wasn't picking up after her dog.
"I always clean up after my animals. I have this dog poop bag attached on the leash. I clean up after them," said Horn.
The notice also referred to a dog named Stitch, but Taylor's dogs are Dexter and Sheldon. So I went to Domestic Animal Service to find out what's going on.
"I received a voice mail from someone in the homeowner's association board who said there was a sanitary nuisance and gave a specific address. We sent out an officer," said Amanda Townsend, Domestic Animal Services.
DAS tells me an officer never witnessed a violation and says Stitch must have been a pet of the previous owner who moved.
Taylor wasn't fined, but Domestic Animal Services warns pet owners if you are caught not cleaning up after your dog you can be fined $107 dollars the first time. Multiple violations can cost you up to $500.
"Generally speaking, in order to issue a penalty like a citation, an officer has to witness the violation or if we receive 2 sworn statements from neighbors with same info and they testify to that, we can issue a citation," said Townsend.
DAS tells me they are thinking about changing protocol for efficiency reasons. Instead of sending out an officer after getting a complaint, they want to just send a letter educating pet owners the first time and only sending out an officer after multiple complaints.