Assistant Managing Editor
After the collapse of a building at the temporary rented facilities the Auglaize County dog warden was operating out of, all recovered dogs are now being cared for in Allen County.
“All dogs are going straight to Allen County now,” Auglaize County Dog Warden Russ Bailey told the Wapakoneta Daily News.
He said the decision was made after they had a couple issues at the property where the dogs had been kept outside of New Knoxville. Although he said the problems weren’t with the building where the dogs were housed, it was a concern and they decided to have the dogs taken to Allen County until a new dog shelter is completed, hopefully by the end of the year. Construction started in July.
Bailey is to pay a $300 monthly fee while the dogs are being housed in Allen County and is no longer renting the temporary location near the county airport.
As part of the agreement, dogs taken to Allen County, to be under the care of the dog warden there, become their property after a three-day period, per state law.
“I try to keep them as long as I can after I pick them up and try to give the owner a call to help locate them and save them a trip,” Bailey said.
“Absolutely there are concerns about it,” Bailey said, adding that the agreement adds travel time and fuel costs, but that the Allen County dog warden has bent over backward to help since Auglaize County took over dog warden services again here locally in 2008.
The agreement has been made retroactive through July.
Bailey said those purchasing or renewing dog licenses in 2014 will have a couple new options.Beginning next year, residents may continue to purchase or renew a one-year dog license for $20 per dog or may opt to pay $60 for a three-year license or $200 for a permanent dog license, according to a resolution recently approved by the Auglaize County commissioners.
Kennel tags are $100.
“Before your only choice was a one-year dog license,” Bailey said.
The change was established through an amendment in the state budget bill.
Bailey said the new options don’t really save dog owners money unless they opt for the lifetime license, however it is nonrefundable.
Although there had been some talk about raising license fees, Bailey said they chose not to do so at this time.
“We’ve saved a good amount of money toward our building and can still cover a good amount of our expenses,” Bailey said. “At this time, I think we are OK with what we are charging.”
He said dog license fees are largely responsible for covering all expenses incurred by the county dog warden. All of his operating costs are to come from his budget.
To date, 7,300 dog tags have been sold in 2013, compared to a total of 6,700 sold in 2012.
“It has continued to go up every year so far,” Bailey said, adding that they also continue to collect a lot of late fees from dog owners not purchasing their licenses by the required date.