Council to decide dog’s fate

The Austin City Council will discuss whether to let a dangerous dog set for euthanization go free this week.

Council members will vote on Monday whether to let 4-year-old Roc, a pit bull declared a dangerous dog last month, be released to a shelter out of Central Minnesota.

Mayor Tom Stiehm proposed the shelter after weeks of controversy and pushback from the dog’s former owner, as well as animal rights advocates out of New York.

The Austin City Council declared Roc a dangerous dog on July 21 and finalized its findings to euthanize him on Aug. 3.

Roc has allegedly attacked or threatened residents in northwest Austin several times since 2013. He reportedly jumped on a man walking near the 600 block of Sixth Avenue on July 1 and tried to bite him, according to police reports. The man only suffered a slight scratch on his face, however.

Roc’s former owner has appealed the Austin City Council’s decision to euthanize the dog with the help of an animal rights advocate from New York.

Attorney Lisa Dailey, representing Sofia Smith, requested a temporary restraining order Friday from Mower County District Judge Kevin Siefken to prevent Roc from being euthanized.

Roc is set to be euthanized on Aug. 19.

The council will also discuss its budget, Hormel Foundation grant applications and more at Monday’s meeting, which begins at 5:30 p.m.

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