[HISTORY: Adopted by Common Council of City of North Tonawanda 12-4-1979. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also provides for the repeal of former Ch. 33, Dogs, adopted as follows: Article I, 7-7-1958; Article II, 2-1-1960.
For the purpose of this ordinance, except where otherwise indicated, the words herein shall be defined as in Article 7 of the New York Agriculture and Markets Law (Chapters 220 and 221 of the Laws of 1978).
It shall be unlawful for any owner of a dog in the City of North Tonawanda to permit or allow such dog to:
Run at large.
Be off the owner's property unless leashed by a chain or leash not exceeding six feet in length and in charge of and under the control of a competent person.
Engage in habitual loud howling, barking or whining or to conduct itself in such a manner as to habitually annoy any person other than the owner or harborer of the dog.
Cause damage or destruction to public or private property, soil, defile, defecate, urinate or otherwise commit a nuisance upon the property other than the owner or harborer of the dog. The restriction in this section shall not apply to a dog defecating or urinating in that portion of the street lying between the curblines, which shall be used to curb such dog under the following conditions: when the person who so curbs such dog shall immediately remove all feces deposited by such dog by any sanitary method and shall dispose of such feces in a sanitary place and method.
Chase, leap on or otherwise harass bicycles or motor vehicles.
Bite, chase, jump upon or otherwise harass any person in such a manner as to cause intimidation or to put such a person in reasonable apprehension of bodily harm or injury.
Be unlicensed when six months of age or older, unless excluded by state law.
Not have a current and valid New York State identification tag on its collar while at large, whether or not restrained by an adequate leash.
Any dog owned by a resident of the City of North Tonawanda, which dog is six months or older, shall be licensed as provided herein. Application for a dog license shall be made to the City Clerk upon such form as the City Clerk shall prescribe and shall be accompanied by the appropriate license fee and a certificate of rabies vaccination or statement in lieu thereof. In the case of a spayed or neutered dog, every application shall also be accompanied by a certificate signed by a licensed veterinarian or an affidavit signed by the owner, showing that the dog has been spayed or neutered.
A license shall be renewed after a period of one year, beginning with the first day of the month following the date of issuance and shall be renewable annually thereafter prior to the expiration date.
Purebred license. The owner of one or more purebred dogs registered by a recognized registry association may annually make an application for a purebred license, in lieu of or in addition to the individual licenses required by Subsection A. Such license shall be issued as provided in Subsection A and B above.
No license shall be transferable. Upon change or ownership of any licensed dog, the new owner shall immediately make application for a license for such dog.
Identification tag. Each dog licensed pursuant to this section shall be assigned a permanent official identification number which shall be affixed to a collar on the dog at all times during which the dog is not on the premises of the owner.
Change of ownership. In the event of a change in ownership of any dog assigned an official identification number or in the address of the owner of record of any such dog, the owner of record shall, within 10 days of such change, file a written report of such change with the State Commission of Agriculture and Markets.
Lost or stolen dogs. If any dog assigned an official identification number is lost or stolen, the owner of record shall, within 10 days of such loss or theft, file a written report of such loss or theft with the State Commissioner of Agriculture and Markets.
Any dog control officer or peace officer in the employ of or under contract to a municipality shall seize any dog:
Running at large in the City contrary to the provisions of this ordinance.
Which does not display an identification tag and is not on the owner's premises.
Which is not licensed, except where excluded by state law.
In violation of any of the regulations and restrictions provided for above.
Notice to owners. Promptly upon seizure of any identified dog, the owner of record of such dog shall be notified personally or by certified mail, return receipt requested, of the facts of seizure and the procedure for redemption. If personal notice is given, such dog shall be held for a period of seven days after day of notice, during which period the dog may be redeemed by the owner. If such notification is made by mail, such dog shall be held for a period of nine days from the date of mailing for redemption. In either case, the owner may redeem such dog upon payment of the impounding fees and by producing proof that the dog has been licensed.
Unidentified dog. Each dog which is not identified, whether or not licensed, shall be held for a period of five days from the day seized during which period the dog may be redeemed by its owner, provided that such owner produces proof that the dog has been licensed and has been identified and further provided that the owner pays the impoundment fees.
Impoundment fees shall be as follows:
On the first pickup of any dog, a fine of $25 for the release of said dog, if said dog is released at the City's holding area, to be paid to the City Clerk; or if released at the Society of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA, a fine of $25 plus per-diem expenses shall be paid to the SPCA, which shall reimburse the City on a monthly basis for the fines so collected. The per-diem expenses shall be retained by the SPCA.
On the second pickup of the dog, a fine of $50 for the release of said dog shall be imposed.
If any dog so impounded is not redeemed as provided in this ordinance, the owner shall forfeit all title to the dog, and the dog shall then be available for adoption or euthanized. In the case of a euthanized dog, a written report shall be made to the City Clerk of such disposition. In the case of sale, the purchaser must pay the purchase price to the City Clerk and also obtain a license for the dog.
Records required. The dog control officer shall keep a record of any seizure and subsequent disposition of any dog. Such record shall include a description of the dog, date and hour of seizure, official identification number of dog, location where seized, reason for seizure, owner's name and address, if known, and any other information as required by the State Commission of Agriculture and Markets.
A violation of any of the regulations and restrictions set forth in this ordinance shall be punishable by a fine not more than $25 for first offense; by a fine of not more than $50 for a second offense; and by a fine of not more than $100 for a third or subsequent offense.
Any dog control officer or police officer is authorized to issue an appearance ticket, pursuant to the Criminal Procedure Law, to assist in the enforcement of this ordinance.
Any person who observes a dog in violation of any provision of this ordinance or in violation of the provisions of § 121 of the New York State Agriculture and Markets Law may file a signed complaint, under oath, with the Judge of the City of North Tonawanda or with the authorized dog control officer or any peace officer, specifying the violation, the date of violation, the damage caused, and including the place(s) violation occurred and name and address of dog owner, if known. A hearing on the complaint shall be held before the Judge of the City Court, and if it is determined that the dog is a dangerous dog, an order shall be granted to destroy the dog immediately.
Rabies. When it has been certified, in writing, to a dog control officer or peace officer, that any dog or other animal has bitten or injured any person, such dog control officer or the Chief of Police may seize such dog or cause such dog or other animal to be surrendered to a licensed veterinarian for a period of seven days from the date of the bite or injury for observation for rabies. If such tests disclose the dog or other animal to be rabid, it shall be disposed of according to law. The cost of detention and/or disposition shall be borne by its owner.
The owner or harborer of any dog so destroyed under the provisions of this ordinance, whether destroyed by dog control officer, or peace officer, or released to an authorized humane society or veterinarian, shall not be entitled to any compensation, and no action shall be maintainable thereafter to recover the value of such dog or any other type of damage.
This ordinance shall take effect immediately.