No person shall keep a wild animal in any place other than a veterinary hospital or clinic, a licensed humane society or conservation organization, circus or facility used for federal-approved scientific purposes, which provides proper cages, fences and other protective devices adequate to prevent such animal from escaping or injuring the public.
No person, whether or not licensed or exempt under this article, shall sell, offer for sale or adoption or exchange, with or without charge, any wild animal.
Unless otherwise permitted in this article, no person shall transport, lead, carry, display or exhibit within the City of Somers Point any wild animal in public.
A "wild animal" is any species defined in the definitions section attached hereto and made a part of this Code.
No individual, organization, corporation or other entity shall keep or operate within the City of Somers Point any stationary or traveling animal show, circus, animal act or miscellaneous animal exhibit or ride or reptile exhibit, whether with wild or nonwild animals, without first obtaining an animal exhibit permit from the City Clerk. The fee for this permit shall be $100. The City Clerk shall not issue a permit to the applicant unless reasonably reliable proof is submitted by the applicant satisfactory to the City Clerk that:
The applicant is the owner of the animal(s).
The animal(s) and the conduct or operation of the exhibit will not constitute a menace to the health, welfare or safety of the citizenry or the animal(s).
The premises and facilities where such animal(s) is/are quartered shall be maintained in a clean and sanitary condition in order to control vermin and disease.
Adequate clean and proper food, clean drinking water and adequate shelter shall be provided to the animal(s).
All cages and enclosures shall be constructed of fire-resistant materials.
Supervision shall be provided in order to prevent danger to the public or mistreatment or injury of the animal(s). The owner or his/her appointed handler(s), supervisor(s) or employee(s) shall be in control of the animal(s) and available on site at all times, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, during the course of the permitted exhibit. No person who has been convicted of a felony or cruelty to animals shall be permitted to care for or have custody of any animals.
The owner shall hold the City of Somers Point harmless with respect to any incident arising from the exhibit, the animal(s), handler(s), supervisor(s), manager(s) or employee(s) or any condition whatsoever and shall cause to be issued to the City of Somers Point by the carrier a certificate of liability insurance naming the city as an additional insured, in an amount no less than $1,000,000, commencing with the date of the application and continuing during the period for which the permit is to be issued.
The permit shall be personal to the owner and shall be applied for and issued to, and only to, the owner of the animal(s). The permit shall be nontransferable. The owner, as the permit holder, shall be fully and completely responsible for compliance with all requirements of this article and other law. Animal handler(s), supervisor(s), manager(s) or other individual(s) appointed, engaged or employed by the owner shall have the same responsibilities as the owner under this article, and shall be liable for any consequences as shall the owner.
The permit issued by the City Clerk shall be for such period as is determined reasonable by the City Clerk, but in no event for a period greater than the length of time sought by the applicant or one year, whichever shall be less.
All permits shall be subject to the city's absolute right to suspend the permit at any time, with or without notice, for reasons of the health, welfare or safety of the public and/or the animal(s).
Any animal not shown in the following species definitions, or as is specifically excluded therein, shall be considered wild:
The species Canis familiaris (domestic dogs, excluding hybrids with wolves, coyotes or jackals).
The species Felis catus (domestic cats, excluding hybrids with ocelots or margays).
The species Equus caballus (domestic horses).
The species Equus asinus (asses/donkeys).
The species Bos taurus (cattle).
The species Ovis aries (domestic sheep).
Domesticated races of the species Gallus gallus or Meleagris gallopavo (poultry).
Domesticated races of the species Mesocricetus auratus (golden hamsters).
Domesticated races of the subspecies Cavia porcellus (guinea pigs).
Domesticated races of the species Meriones unguiculatus (gerbils).
Domesticated races of rats or mice (white or albino, trained, laboratory reared).
Domesticated races of the species Oryctolagus cuniculus (rabbits).
Domesticated races of the subspecies Mustela putorius furo (ferrets).
All nonvenomous members of Squamata (snakes and lizards) under three feet in length, excluding rear fang snakes, members of the genus Rhabdophis (asiatic water snakes) and members of the family Boidae (boas and pythons).
All members of the class Amphibia (amphibians), excluding Dendrobates terribilis (golden dart frogs).
All members of the class Pisces (fish), excluding piranha and venomous fish.
The owner of any animal(s) seeking a permit from the City of Somers Point shall be required to completely fill out, sign and date in person before the City Clerk the application form reproduced below. In addition, the owner shall supply as a condition of consideration of issuance of a permit any and all additional information or documents reasonably requested by the City Clerk. The City Council of the City of Somers Point may amend, add to or delete items or information in the form, by resolution, and as it deems reasonable in its discretion from time to time.
Editor's Note: The Application Form is on file in the City Clerk's office.
Any person adjudged guilty of a violation of any provision of this article shall be punished by a fine of no less than $100 nor more than $1,000 and/or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 90 days as determined in the Municipal Court of the City of Somers Point pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:49-5. Any charge within or outside of the provisions of this article alleging cruelty to animals shall require the immediate temporary confiscation of the animal(s) in question with any associated costs being charged to the owner. A subsequent guilty adjudication shall require the permanent confiscation of the animal(s).