Lyon County animal advisory board to consider cruelty ordinance |

Lyon County animal advisory board to consider cruelty ordinance

By Karen Woodmansee

Appeal Staff Writer

The Lyon County Commission passed an animal cruelty amendment to its animal control ordinance; now the Lyon County Animal Control Advisory Board will figure out how to implement it.

The board will meet at 7 p.m. today at the McAtee Building in Silver Springs.

Commissioner Larry McPherson will be on hand to explain the rule to the board, which bans “horse tripping,” an event common in some Mexican rodeos, but does not address “steer tailing,” another controversial rodeo event.

“We’ll discuss what is an appropriate way to enforce it,” said board member Willis Lamm. “It needs to be done right and it needs to be done impartially.”

Lamm said he was hoping for public participation at the meeting.

“This is a situation where the intent is for the department is to serve the public interest,” he said. “Let’s see if we can’t do it right.”

He said he would prefer the board look at standards that are already in place in other jurisdictions rather than try to develop a plan from scratch.

“We hope we’ll get some good ideas and put the best of them to work so the intent of protecting animals against extraordinary mistreatment is addressed,” he said. “It’s not anyone’s intent for the new ordinance to be invasive.”

Other activities that would be banned under the law include fighting animals, overworking animals and keeping animals in too-small crates.

A section on fighting would make it unlawful for any person to own, keep, use or be in any manner connected with or have a financial interest in instigating, promoting, arranging or carrying on fighting between animals. It would also be illegal to maintain premises for that purpose.

Another section would forbid the overdriving, overloading or overworking of animals, including to cruelly beat, torture or unjustifiably injure, maim, mutilate or kill any animal.

A section on enclosures and restraints would make it unlawful to confine or overcrowd an animal in any cage or enclosure in a cruel or inhumane manner.

The section that covers rodeos also covers carnivals, fairs and amusement parks, and makes it unlawful for any owner, operator or agent to use live animals as a target or in any cruel or unusual manner.

Other actions by the board will include the selection of officers, a review of animal services disaster preparedness, a review of policies and procedures and possibly changing the name of the advisory board.

• Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at or 881-7351.

If You Go

WHAT: Lyon County Animal Control Advisory Board meeting

WHEN: 7 p.m. today

WHERE: McAtee Building, 2475 Fort Churchill St., Silver Springs