Louisiana: St. Landry Parish Ordinance Criminalizes Hunting with Dogs

Big-city animal-rights extremists appear to have invaded the deep South, or at least taken over the drafting of animal-control ordinances in one Louisiana locality – St. Landry Parish – as a proposed “Animal Control Ordinance” (ACO) seeks, among other things, to make the use of dogs while hunting a violation of law.

The Sportsmen’s Alliance has previously reported on the numerous ways this 30-plus page proposal will wreak havoc on homeowners, pet owners, hunters and just about everyone else in the parish. We’ve highlighted stupid ideas #1 (no rat killing), #2 (no dogs in cars), #3 (everyone is a breeder) and #4 (no tethering for hunters), all of which would be comical if not for the serious consequences and criminal ramifications for violations of each. To be clear, all of these violations incur heavy fines with many including potential jail time for offenders.

Unfortunately, our work is not yet done, and we will continue to report one stupid provision after another, all the way up to the hearing on Nov. 16. And if the previous examples already seem extreme, today’s report covers a provision that should chill every resident of the parish completely to the bone.

Stupid Idea #5 – No Hunting with Dogs

With that headline, you might ask, “they can’t really prohibit hunting with dogs, can they?” That is a logical question, and no, the ACO does not actually come out and prohibit hunting with dogs directly. Instead, the ACO prohibits hunting with dogs in a much more sinister and hidden way. It hides the prohibition under the “running at large” restriction.

The ACO prohibits dogs running at large, which many of us are likely to agree with. Common sense suggests that dogs running the streets is not a good idea. But as with so many other provisions in the ACO, the wording of the ordinance matters. The running at large section provides:

No dog shall be allowed to run at large… whether it is on private or public property, except where such private property is the private property of such owner …

To understand this section, the definition of “at large” found earlier in the ordinance is:

At large and stray mean any animal … which is not within the confines of the owners’ home, dog yard, pen, or fenced area or is not under the direct control of the owner or designated handler by means of a leash.

In plain language, this means a violation of the ACO occurs when a hunter has a dog anywhere that is not their own property, and the dog is off a leash. For anyone who knows anything about hunting with dogs, the use of a leash is simply not possible in 99% of cases. Hunting on public property? No dogs. How about on your friend’s place or where you have permission to hunt?  Nope, this also a violation. Moreover, and this is where the extremism of this proposal shines through, this prohibition means that when your dog accidentally gets on property adjacent to your own while hunting, you have violated the ordinance and are now a criminal.

“This is one where you have to ask if anyone is actually thinking about what they are doing or even trying to do,” said Todd Adkins, vice president of government affairs for the Sportsmen’s Alliance. “This one restriction stops just about all hunting with dogs. Holy cow, are they serious?”

Recap on the Seven Stupid Ideas in the ACO

  1. Rat Killing is Illegal
  2. Riding in Cars with Dogs is Prohibited
  3. Everyone is a Breeder and must be licensed
  4. Tethering 101 for Dummies
  5. No Hunting with Dogs

Tomorrow: Barking Dogs Prohibited – Stay Tuned!


Please use the TAKE ACTION button below to email or call the St. Landry Parish Council urging them to OPPOSE the massive government overreach of the “Animal Control Ordinance.”  If you have family and friends who live in St. Landry Parish, make sure you let them know about this shocking example of government overreach.