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Riverhead Town to delay changing dog law

Riverhead Town Hall is at 200 Howell Ave.

Riverhead Town Hall is at 200 Howell Ave. Credit: Carl Corry

A code change that would have expanded Riverhead Town’s ability to seize dogs was delayed a bit after a public hearing Tuesday, when one resident complained that the new wording was too subjective and vague.

She objected to one particular phrase, which would let a town worker take her dog even if it was in her fenced-in yard, if anyone walking past her house felt “intimidated ... or in reasonable apprehension of bodily harm” by the dog’s barking.

Barking is common in summer when large crowds come to the aquarium in downtown Riverhead, and walk down local streets to their cars.

“If your dog is behind the fence, it’s doing what it’s supposed to,” Supervisor Sean Walter said.

The public hearing was kept open for written comment until Feb. 15.


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