Apparently in Orange County, not only does every dog have its day, it also has its day in court.
Last week the Orange County Superior Court ruled that Tank Willis, a purebred Pembroke Welsh corgi, should be stricken from the county’s list of “vicious” dogs.
Orange County Animal Control has the power to label dogs as “vicious” when the animal has shown that it is capable of severely injuring or killing a person when unprovoked. A designation of “vicious” places fees and restrictions on owners and their pets and the label lasts a lifetime. 179 Orange County dogs have been labeled as “vicious.”
Last November, Tank was labeled as “vicious” after biting his groomer at a Huntington Beach Petco. The groomer had to be treated by paramedics after two wounds near her mouth required thirty stitches. Tank was placed in quarantine for ten days and county officials designated the “vicious” label.
Priscilla and Donald Willis challenged the labeling but lost their case in an administrative hearing with the county last fall. They appealed the ruling to the OC Superior Court.
Priscilla and Donald came to court with written statements from neighbors who attested to Tank’s playful and gentle nature. They accused OC Animal Control officials of ignoring statements from the groomer that she had provoked the incident. After three months of court hearings and over $20,000 in legal fees, Tank’s “vicious” label was officially revoked.
Read more about OC Animal Control’s procedure and the Willis’ ordeal at the OC Register.