[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Concord 5-7-1979 by Ord. No. 113. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Article I Dogs Running At Large
[Adopted 5-7-1979 by Ord. No. 113]
It shall be unlawful for the owner or custodian of any dog, whether licensed or not, to fail to keep such dog either confined within an enclosure from which it cannot escape, firmly secured by means of a collar and chain or other device so that it cannot stray beyond the premises of the owner or custodian, under the personal control of and in close proximity to said owner or custodian or, when engaged in lawful hunting, accompanied by an owner or custodian.
It shall be unlawful for the owner or custodian of any dog, at any time whatsoever, to permit such dog to run at large or to cause any damage to any buildings, lawns, shrubbery or any other real or personal property or to cause any annoyance to persons in the Township of Concord. Failure of any such owner or custodian to properly curb and restrain his dog shall subject him to penalties provided under this article.
It shall be unlawful for any person to interfere with any officer in the enforcement of this article, and it shall be unlawful for any person forcibly to cut the leash of or to take such dog away from any officer having it in his possession after having found it running at large unaccompanied by the owner or custodian.
It shall be the duty of a Constable of Concord Township or an Animal Control Officer, to be appointed by the Board of Supervisors, to enforce this article and to seize any dog allowed to run at large contrary to the provisions of this article.
Where the owner or custodian is known, the enforcement officer may deliver immediate possession of the dog to him or his representative, subject to the following conditions:
The owner or custodian, in return for getting his dog back before paying the penalty hereinafter specified, agrees to keep and hold it thereafter in compliance with the terms of this article; and
The owner or custodian recognizes the violation of this article and agrees to pay a penalty, in accordance with the fine schedule, to the township at the Secretary's office within five days of said violation.
If the enforcement officer is unable for any reason to deliver immediate possession of the dog to its owner or custodian, he shall deliver the same to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), and notice shall be given to the owner or custodian as soon as possible. The owner or custodian may reclaim the same at the office of the SPCA upon complying with that organization's rules, subject to the following conditions:
The owner or custodian, in return for the release of his dog, before paying the penalty hereinafter specified, agrees to keep and hold it thereafter in compliance with terms of this article; and
The owner or custodian recognizes the violation of this article and agrees to pay to the township, at the Secretary's office, the penalty as prescribed in the fine schedule within five days following said release.
If the owner or custodian fails to pay the applicable penalty within the five-day period, he shall be subject to prosecution before a District Justice or other court having jurisdiction, and be charged with violation of this article. If the owner or custodian fails to claim the dog within three days following seizure, it shall be considered abandoned, and subject to disposition in accordance with the rules of the SPCA. Such abandonment shall not, however, relieve the owner or custodian from the consequences of violating this article.
If the ownership of a seized dog cannot be ascertained because such dog is not carrying any identifying license, such dog may be disposed of in accordance with the rules of the SPCA.
[Amended 12-3-1996 by Ord. No. 206; 10-1-2013 by Ord. No. 354]
Any person who shall violate any provision of this article or who permits the violation of any provision of this article shall make reimbursement to the Township of Concord for any fees incurred in the transportation, boarding and/or handling by the SPCA or by detention of the Animal Control Officer, in addition to:
Each violation for each separate day and each violation of any provision of this article shall constitute a separate and distinct violation.
Any person who violates or permits the violation of any provision of this article shall, upon being found liable therefor in a civil enforcement proceeding commenced by Concord Township, pay the fine prescribed by this article, plus all court costs, including reasonable attorney fees, incurred by Concord Township.
Enforcement of this article shall be the responsibility of the Constable, Animal Control Officer, Code Enforcement Officer or Township Manager, as appropriate, who shall follow the enforcement procedure set forth and shall initiate enforcement proceedings by sending a notice of violation to the violator or violators by certified mail or by serving it personally upon the violator or violators. The notice shall state at least the following:
A citation to the ordinance involved;
The specific violations;
The date and time, if appropriate;
The amount of the civil penalty;
The nature of the proceeding as being civil;
The time within which the civil penalty is to be paid;
The place of payment; and
The consequences of failure to pay the civil penalty on or before the due date.
In the event that the violator falls to pay to Concord Township the civil penalty fine on or before the due date, Concord Township shall commence a civil enforcement proceeding in a court having jurisdiction.