RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - An important reminder for Hanover county pet owners - starting Thursday, leash laws go into effect countywide.
This law applies throughout the year in the county's suburban area, but rules about dogs running free extend to rural areas April 1 through June 30 to help cut down on rabies.
Even if this isn't a law where you live, it's good practice to not let your dogs run loose off your property. This time of year, there's increased wildlife activity and a higher rabies rate - which puts not only your pets, but vulnerable livestock at risk.
Violations will land you a summons and stray animals will be impounded.
Impoundment fees are $25 the first time, then an additional $10 for each subsequent violation within a 12-month period. That's on top of a $5/day boarding fee.
Animal control says it boils down to safety.
"We have a lot of dogs and cats in Hanover county and we also have a lot of rabies, so we want to help the community make sure their pets are protected, plus their families and the community," said Hanover county Animal Control Sgt. Kevin Kilgore.
You can report dogs running loose to Hanover county emergency communications at 804-365-6140.
In Hanover, dogs cannot run off of their owner's property any time of year without a current county license tag on their collar.