Control your dogs to protect deer


(12/21/2003)

Although deer season is over for most hunters, the season is never opened for dogs.

In fact, Minnesota law authorizes conservation officers and peace officers to shoot domestic dogs chasing big game animals.

"The DNR reminds dog owners to keep their dogs under control at all times," said DNR Chief Conservation Officer Mike Hamm. "Dog owners can be fined if their pets harass big game, and although it is not pleasant, conservation officers can shoot dogs in the act of chasing big game."

During late fall and winter, most big game animals have critically low energy reserves. Even if a chasing dog does not catch a deer, the induced stress can be enough to kill the animal later in the winter because of its weakened condition.

SUGGESTED TIPS FOR DOG OWNERS:

do not allow your dog to chase deer, or other wildlife at any time

keep your dog controlled within your property boundaries

report wildlife harassment to your local conservation officer (Contact the Minnesota State Patrol for the name and phone number of a conservation officer in your area)

respect all types of wildlife

the owner of a dog that kills or pursues a big game animal is guilty of a petty misdemeanor and is subject to a civil penalty of up to $500 for each violation.

 

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