As you might expect, Harrison has a whole bunch of requirements regarding our dogs. No, that doesn't mean "height and weight." At least not since the ACLU got involved. I'm talking about licenses, leash laws and something called "definition." You'd think we all would've agreed on that one by now. But then the Labradoodle was invented and now nobody can actually define what a dog is anymore. Anyway, here are some of the laws you'll need to obey if you have a better, or at least woolier, half.
Now, what about those "definitions," anyway? There are some useful ones, at least. Like, the town actually defines what it means for your dog to be "at large." It just means off their property. As opposed to "on the lam," which means your dog has robbed a 7-11 and his "moll" is probably involved. This, in turn, means the two are now considered "grifters" who may be packing a "gat" or a "roscoe." And things can get pretty dangerous from there.
The other definitions seem somehow less important. The town goes on to describe what it means for a dog to be "leashed," what constitutes an "owner" and how they define a "dog." If you already know all these definitions, give yourself a hand. Just don't think it's now a foregone conclusion that you're getting into any A.P. classes.
As for the definition of an "owner"? It's anyone who "owns" or "harbors," a dog. Of course, if anyone is "harboring" a dog who is "at large," and is also carrying a "gat" or a "roscoe," you might want to check out at least one more definition. The one about "jail time."
All dog owners must register their pet with the town clerk. And never suggest, at any time, that their dog could do his job with more speed and accuracy. You'll get a chilly reaction, at best. When the canine is registered, the clerk will furnish the owner with a metal tag that is to be affixed to any dog "at large." If the dog is simply "large," that's a whole other deal. And don't expect the town clerk to hold him down while you affix the metal tag. Town workers went on strike several years ago because of just such a scenario. This whole incident is now known, of course, as "The Great Irish Wolfhound Rebellion."
Needless to say, it's essential that your dog be registered and licensed. If found "at large" and unlicensed, The Poundmaster will pick the dog up and take him away. Will he be scooped up gently and treated well? Let's just say, the dude is not called "The Poundmaster" for nothing.
If your pup is picked up, deal with the situation honestly. Meaning, don't go down to the pound and tell the folks your dog's license was merely revoked. This only happens to prizefighters who chew off their opponents' ears. And I think it once happened to James Bond.
If you don't reclaim your dog after 21 days, will you see him again? Well, in a manner of speaking. One day, a big smoky cloud will pass you in the sky. And you can point upwards and say, 'Hey kids, there goes Fluffy now!"
You can redeem your dog up to five days after he is "impounded." The dog should be fine, especially once you scrape that big orange sticker off his forehead. Money should be paid to The Poundmaster. Get the title right. Once I went to bail out my dog and accidentally referred to this guy as "The Cryptkeeper." I don't have to tell you, that delayed processing for over an hour.
Harrison does have exceptions to these laws. Non-residents' dogs will not be picked up by The Poundmaster if found running free. For local dogs who want the same privilege? Just wrap them in a "Virginia Is For Lovers" T shirt and see how obsequious The Poundmaster can be!
There are any number of restrictions regarding dogs within the town limits. For instance, a dog can be off his leash while on his own property, but not on anyone else's. But why would a dog stay on his own lawn if he was off his leash? You need a Zen master to answer that one. Also, any dog with a "dangerous disposition" shouldn't be off his leash, either. This means physically dangerous, by the way. If you're worried about a certain dog's diabolical intelligence, you might just want to keep this to yourself.