[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Pittston as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 8-16-2006 by Ord. No. 2006-9; amended in its entirety 3-21-2012 by Ord. No. 2012-4]
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Any person owning, keeping, feeding, harboring or having custody of a pet or who allows a pet to reside or remain about his premises shall be considered a pet owner.
- Any dog, cat, or other domestic animal.
- The practice of inoculations with a vaccine to afford protection from rabies as required by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
It shall be unlawful for any owner to have any pet that becomes a nuisance in the City. Acts of nuisance shall include, but are expressly not restricted to, the following:
Digging into flowerbeds, lawns, children's sandboxes, gardens, or the damaging of shrubbery, trees, lawns, personal property not belonging to the owner of the pet or the depositing of feces as set forth below:
No person owning, harboring, keeping or in charge of any pet shall cause, suffer or allow such pet to soil, defile, defecate on or commit any nuisance on any common thoroughfare, sidewalk, passageway, bypath, play area, park or any other place where people congregate or walk, or on any public property whatsoever, nor on any private property without the permission of the owner of said property. The restriction in this section shall not apply to that portion of street lying between the curblines which shall be used to curb such pet under the following conditions:
The person who so curbs such a pet shall immediately remove all feces deposited by such pet by any sanitary method.
The feces removed from the aforementioned designated area shall be disposed of by the person owning, harboring, keeping or in charge of any pet curbed in accordance with the provisions of this article in a sanitary manner.
No owner shall permit a pet to enter upon any area designated as a publicly owned park or playground.
Any owner of a pet shall comply with and be current with rabies vaccination requirements of the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania with regard to pets.
It shall be unlawful for the owner or keeper of any dog to fail to keep at all times the dog in any of the following manners:
A violation of this section shall constitute a summary offense, accompanied by a fine of not less than $500.
The City Code Enforcement Officer or the person or agency designated by the City Administrator shall enforce the provisions of this article. Upon receipt of a written complaint that a pet is a public nuisance, the Code Enforcement Officer will investigate said complaint and, if found to be legitimate, the Code Enforcement Officer shall authorize the seizure of the pet by the issuance of a humane-type trap to trap said pet alive. Nothing contained herein is intended to nor shall it limit the Code Enforcement Officer from acting without a previously registered complaint based upon the Code Enforcement Officer's personal observation.
The person who is issued the trap must notify the Code Enforcement Officer as soon as possible after the pet is apprehended. The Code Enforcement Officer and/or person or agency designated by the governing body of the City of Pittston will transfer and deliver the pet to the Humane Society for holding. If the Humane Society refuses to take the pet, the pet will be delivered to a veterinarian contracted with the City and held for 72 hours prior to being disposed of in a humane manner. If the pet so apprehended bears any identification of ownership, the Code Enforcement Officer shall, on the date of apprehension, notify the owner that the pet has been apprehended and that it may be claimed at a designated location subject to the provisions of this article.
Any pet may be claimed by its owner at the veterinarian during the custodial period, and the owner shall pay all costs for the care, maintenance and disposal of said pet at the prevailing veterinarian rate.
Any pet which has been seized pursuant to this article and which has not been reclaimed during the custodial period may be disposed of in a humane manner in accordance with the standards generally followed by the Humane Society or as provided by the contract for veterinarian service in Subsection B.
No more than three pets shall be kept, maintained or harbored for more than 90 days in any residential housing unit or on its grounds.
If the owner of animals in violation of this article does not comply with a notice to abate the violation within the time period described, the City of Pittston shall have the authority to take measures to correct the conditions and collect the costs of such correction, plus 10% of all costs. The City of Pittston, in such event and pursuant to its statutory or otherwise authorized police powers, shall have the rights and powers to enter upon the offending premises to accomplish the foregoing. The enforcement authority of this provision shall contain the right to use all other enforcement provisions of this article.
Any person violating any of the provisions of this article shall, upon summary conviction thereof in a summary proceeding before a Magisterial District Judge, be sentenced to pay a fine not to exceed $500, and costs. In default of payment of such fine and costs, such person shall be imprisoned in the county jail for a period not exceeding 90 days. Each and every day upon which any person violates or continues to violate the provisions of this article shall constitute a separate offense.