Yampa cracks down on K-9s

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— Town officials here are asking residents to help out with the dog-at-large problem in the town.

The Yampa Board of Trustees passed a motion to put a request in the town's next newsletter asking residents to take a picture of any dog running loose and send it to town officials.

"We have had some complaints with people scared to walk up and down the street," Town Trustee Dick Rudeen said, who was acting as mayor at the Wednesday night meeting because the mayor and the mayor pro tem couldn't be there.

The town historically has had problems with dogs running loose and recently received two signs from the county that state the ordinance to manage barking dogs, dogs at large and the leash law will be enforced.

Those signs will be placed in the town.

"I don't know how we go about getting the county more aggressive with this situation," Rudeen said. "I know they've been down here but I don't think they have had much luck."

The town depends on the county when it comes to animal control. The Routt County Sheriff's Office's county-wide animal control officer, Cindy DelValle, makes a couple of trips to Yampa a week.

She said the town officials' decision to have residents take a picture of the dogs running loose is a good move.

"It has to be a community effort," she said.

DelValle explained that it is difficult for her to respond to dog-at-large calls because by the time she makes the 45-minute drive from Steamboat to Yampa, the dog is gone.

She suggested that if people know who owns the dog that they should ask them to keep it inside, behind a fence or on a leash. If it is a reoccurring problem, then they should call Sheriff's Office.

"I will be writing more tickets in Yampa. No more warnings. It will be an automatic summons and they will have to go to court in Yampa," DelValle said.

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