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Statement on Dangerous Animal Euthanization


The German Shepherd dog known as Zeus, who was designated as a dangerous animal, was humanely euthanized earlier today by the City of Elk Grove consistent with a previously issued administrative order.       

This has been a difficult situation for all involved in this matter, and the City does not take this action lightly. 

The City takes its duty to preserve public safety and protect the community very seriously. While some members of the public asked the City to consider alternatives to euthanasia, the dog’s established bite history and dangerous propensities presented too great of a risk to public safety for this community, or any other community to which the animal may have been relocated.

The process that led to today’s action began following the first unprovoked attack on a resident on May 16, 2022. Two administrative hearings were conducted by two separate independent hearing officers on June 8, 2022, and August 15, 2022. The first hearing officer confirmed that the dog was properly designated as a dangerous animal and imposed keeping restrictions for the animal.  The second hearing officer concluded that the owner failed to comply with mandated keeping restrictions, that the dog bit a police officer, and ordered the dangerous animal to be humanely euthanized. The courts have consistently ruled in favor of the City in a number of legal challenges on this issue. The City delayed euthanasia of the animal for almost two months to allow time for the owner to pursue judicial remedies with the courts, but efforts by the owner in both state and federal court for a stay of the euthanasia or other related relief have been unsuccessful. Continued housing of the dangerous animal was not in the public or the animal’s interest. The humane euthanasia of the dangerous animal was necessary and appropriate in this instance.

Dangerous Animal Incident Timeline

View the September 29, 2022 Public Statement Regarding Dangerous Animal