Swiss Village: Pay Up or We'll Kill Your Dog

A dog of the Saint Bernard hospice plays in the snow on the Great St. Bernard Pass between Switzerland and Italy after returning from winter quarters in Martigny, Switzerland, Monday, June 9, 2008.
AP/Keystone, Olivier Maire
GENEVA - A Swiss village has found a drastic way to compel dog holders to pay their pet's annual tax: cough up, or the dog gets it.

Reconvilier - population 2,245 humans, 280 dogs - plans to put Fido on notice if its owner doesn't pay the annual $50 tax.

Local official Pierre-Alain Nemitz says the move is part of an effort to reclaim hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid taxes.

He says a law from 1904 allows the village to kill dogs if its owner does not pay the canine charge.

Nemitz told the AP on Monday that authorities have received death threats since news of the plan got out.

"This isn't about a mass execution of dogs," Nemitz said. "It's meant to put pressure on people who don't cooperate."