Question:

We all love our pets, and "man's best friend" is among them. However, the city's leash law doesn't seem to be enforced, especially along the greenbelt trail. There are no signs reminding people about the leash law, and I have had to protect my five year old nephew and myself from other peoples' dogs while enjoying the greenbelt trail.

Who is responsible criminally if I hurt the dog with mace: the owner, or me?

Answer:

"The City of Laramie has laws governing animals at large that can be found under Laramie Municipal Ordinance 6.04.060, which reads as follows:

6.04.060--At Large

A. "At large" includes any animal which is off the premises of the owner upon public or private property without permission of the property owner. Dogs, cats, and potbellied pigs are not at large when they are under control of a leash (less than 10 feet long with strength proportionate to that of the animal attached) held by a person capable of managing the animal.

B. "At large" also includes any animal in the bed of a pickup truck if the animal is not physically so that it is unable to reach the side of the bed. 

C. "At large" also includes any animal that is in a parked vehicle if that animal can extend its muzzle outside the enclosed cabin compartment of the vehicle.

D. "At large" also includes any animal on the premises of the owner, possessor, or keeper, which is unattended and not physically confined in such a way as to prevent the animal from leaving the property.

E. A dog is not at large when it is being trained within a dog training area or dog park established by the parks/tree/recreation advising board in a public park at specific times. The parks/tree/recreation advisory board shall recommend dog friendly parks within the city.

The entire City of Laramie ordinances can be found here. Residents are urged to call the Laramie Police Department at 307-721-2526 to report violations of municipal ordinance.

We also cannot address the legality of macing any dog.

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