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Ask the Chief: Specific rules apply to dangerous dogs

Roger Pohlman

"Ask The Chief" allows readers access to useful information about law enforcement issues in Red Wing. This communication tool has been developed to enhance community policing efforts by providing residents and visitors with the opportunity to ask questions about local laws, programs and the department in general.

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Q: Does Red Wing have a dangerous dog law and are specific dog breeds banned from the city?

A: The short answer is yes, the city of Red Wing has a dangerous dog ordinance, and no the city does not ban certain dog breeds. City of Red Wing Code, Section 10.6, subdivision 13 covers "Dangerous Dogs." The definition in the codes states, "Dangerous Dog" is any dog that has:

• without provocation, inflicted substantial bodily harm on a human being on public or private property;

• killed a domestic animal without provocation while off the owner's property; or

• been found to be potentially dangerous, and after the owner has noticed that the dog is potentially dangerous, the dog aggressively bites, attacks or endangers the safety of humans or domestic animals.

The definition of "potentially dangerous dog" is any dog that:

• when unprovoked, bites a human or domestic animal on public or private property;

• when unprovoked, chases or approaches a person, including a person on a bicycle, upon the streets, sidewalks, or any public or private property, other than the dog owner's property, in an apparent attitude of attack; or

• has a known propensity, tendency or disposition to attack unprovoked, causing injury or otherwise threatening the safety of humans or domestic animals.

To summarize the dangerous dog registration requirements:

• a proper enclosure exists for the dangerous dog; with a warning sign, including a warning symbol for children, has been placed informing of the presence of the dangerous dog

• the owner has procured a surety bond issued by a surety company authorized to do business in Minnesota, in a form acceptable to the city in at least the sum of $300,000 payable to any person injured by the dog

• the owner has paid to the city an annual fee as provided in the fee ordinance in addition to the regular license fee for a dog; dangerous dog license is $500 per year

• the owner has had microchip identification implanted in the dangerous dog

• the dangerous dog has a standardized tag identifying the dog as dangerous and containing the uniform dangerous dog symbol, which is affixed to the dog's collar at all times

• Dangerous dog must be sterilized

• Owners of a dangerous dog may request a hearing within 14 days of receiving notice of dangerous dog determination. If the designation is upheld, the owner of the dangerous dog may be billed for the cost of the hearing, up to $1,000

Dangerous dog ban based solely on breed is prohibited in Minnesota. Minnesota Statute 347.51 Dangerous Dogs; Registration. Subd. 8.Local ordinances. A statutory or home rule charter city, or a county, may not adopt an ordinance regulating dangerous or potentially dangerous dogs based solely on the specific breed of the dog. Ordinances inconsistent with this subdivision are void.

The American Veterinary Medical Association has a state listing outlining Breed Specific Prohibited or Restricted Ordinances at

Please help us keep our citizens safe by following the leash laws or securing your dog in your yard. In 2016, the Red Wing Police Department responded to a total of 30 animal violations, of which 18 involved animal bites.

How to prevent dog bites and attacks:

• Education:


Dog Biting:


• City of Red Wing Code Section 10.06, Dog and Cat Regulation and Licensing.

• Minnesota Statue 347.51 Dangerous Dogs; Registration.