[Adopted 7-18-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1988]
The Town of Wheatfield, New York, finds that the running at large and other uncontrolled behavior of dogs has caused physical harm to persons and damage to property and has created a nuisance within the Town. The purpose of this article is to protect the health, safety and well-being of persons and property by imposing restrictions and regulations upon the keeping or running at large of dogs and the seizure thereof within the Town.
This article is enacted pursuant to the provisions of § 124 of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
The title of this article shall be the "Dog Control Law of the Town of Wheatfield."
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- AT LARGE
- Any dog that is unleashed and on property open to the public or is on private property not owned or leased by the owner of the dog unless permission for such presence has been obtained. No dog shall be deemed to be at large if it is:
- A. Accompanied by and under the immediate supervision and control of the owner or other responsible person;
- B. A police work dog in use for police work; or
- C. Accompanied by its owner or other responsible person and is actively engaged in hunting or training for hunting on unposted land or on posted land with the permission of the owner of the land.
- To provide food or shelter to any dog.
- Any person who harbors or keeps any dog. In the event that any dog found in violation of this article shall be owned by a person under 18 years of age, the owner shall be deemed to be the parent or guardian of such person (or the head of the household in which said person resides).
It shall be unlawful for any owner of any dog to permit or allow such dog, in the Town of Wheatfield, to:
Be at large.
Engage in habitual loud howling, barking, crying or whining or to conduct itself in such a manner so as to unreasonably and habitually annoy any person.
Cause damage or destruction to property or commit a nuisance by defecating or urinating upon the premises of a person other than the owner of such dog.
Chase or otherwise harass any person in such a manner as reasonably to cause intimidation or to put such person in reasonable apprehension of bodily harm or injury.
Habitually chase, run alongside of or bark at motor vehicles or bicycles.
Be in any Town park or designated area in the Town for any reason except for dog shows or other functions approved by the Town Board.
This article shall be enforced by any animal control officer, peace officer, when acting pursuant to his or her special duties, or police officer in the employ of or under contract to the Town of Wheatfield.
Any dog found in violation of the provisions of § 60-5 of this article may be seized pursuant to the provisions of § 118 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
Every dog seized shall be properly cared for, sheltered, fed and watered for the redemption periods set forth in § 118 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
Seized dogs may be redeemed by producing proof of licensing and identification pursuant to the provisions of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law and by paying the impoundment fees as set forth from time to time by resolution of the Town Board.
If the owner of any unredeemed dog is known, such owner shall be required to pay the impoundment fees set forth in Subsection D of this section, whether or not such owner chooses to redeem his or her dog.
Any dog unredeemed at the expiration of the appropriate redemption period shall be made available for adoption or euthanized pursuant to the provisions of § 118 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
The Town Board of the Town of Wheatfield may at any time by order require that all dogs in such municipality shall be securely confined between sunset and one hour after sunrise prevailing time for the period of time designated in the order or, if no period of time is so designated, until the order is revoked.
Notice of such order shall be given by publication in the official Town newspaper(s) and by filing a copy of the order in the office of the Town Clerk.
Any animal control officer or peace officer shall destroy or seize any dog not confined as required by such order, and no liability in damages or otherwise shall be incurred on account of such destruction or seizure. Any dog so seized shall be subject to the provisions of § 118 of the Agriculture and Markets Law. A dog shall not be deemed to be in violation of such order if accompanied by and under the full control of the owner.
Any person who observes a dog in violation of this article may file a written complaint under oath with the animal control officer or any police officer of the Town of Wheatfield specifying the nature of the violation, the date thereof, a description of the dog and the name and residence, if known, of the owner of such dog. Such complaint may serve as the basis for enforcing the provisions of this article.
Any animal control officer, peace officer, when acting pursuant to his or her special duties, or police officer in the employ of or under contract to the Town of Wheatfield, having reasonable cause to believe that a person has violated this article, shall issue and serve upon such person an appearance ticket for such violation and file a supporting deposition with the Town Justice Court before the return date of the appearance ticket.
[Amended 2-11-2008 by L.L. No. 1-2008]
Unless otherwise provided by Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law or in Subsection B below, any person convicted of a violation of this article shall be liable to a civil penalty not exceeding $100 for a first violation, not exceeding $250 for a second violation and not exceeding $500 for each subsequent violation. In addition to the fine, the court may impose a sentence of imprisonment not to exceed 90 days for each offense.
In the event that a person is convicted of a violation of this article and the violation involves a dog previously determined to be a dangerous dog by a court of competent jurisdiction, then any person convicted of a violation of this article shall receive a fine of not less than $1,000 for each subsequent violation. In addition to the fine, the court may impose a sentence of imprisonment not to exceed 90 days for each offense.