Borough of Highlands, NJ
Monmouth County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[The relevant statutory provisions are found in R.S. 4:19-15, et seq.]
As used in this chapter:
DOG
Shall mean any dog, bitch or spayed bitch.
DOG OF LICENSING AGE
Shall mean any dog which has attained the age of seven months or which possesses a set of permanent teeth.
KEEPER
Shall mean any person exercising control over a dog or permitting a dog to remain on premises under his control.
OWNER
When applied to the proprietorship of a dog shall mean and include every person having a right of property in the dog and every person who has a dog in his keeping.
VICIOUS DOG
Shall mean any dog which has been declared by a municipal judge to be a vicious dog which has attacked or bitten any human being, or which habitually attacks other dogs or domestic animals.
Licenses shall be required for the following dogs of licensing age:
a. 
Any dog owned or kept within the borough by a resident of the borough on January 1 of any calendar year.
b. 
Any dog acquired by a person during the course of any calendar year and kept within the borough for more than ten days after acquisition.
c. 
Any dog attaining licensing age during the course of the calendar year.
d. 
Any unlicensed dog brought into the borough by any person and kept within the borough for more than ten days.
e. 
Any dog licensed by another state brought into the borough by any person and kept within the borough for more than 90 days.
Each application for a license under this chapter shall give the following information:
a. 
A general description of the dog sought to be licensed, including breed, sex, age, color and markings and whether the dog is of a long or short-haired variety.
b. 
Name, street and post office address of the owner of, and of the person who shall keep or harbor the dog.
Registration numbers shall be issued in the order in which applications are received.
Applications for licenses for dogs which are required to be licensed by the provisions of subsection 5-2.1a shall be made before February 1 of each calendar year. In all other cases, the application for a license shall be made at the time the dog in question first becomes subject to the provisions of this section.
The information on all applications under this chapter and the registration number issued to each licensed dog shall be preserved for a period of three years by the borough clerk. In addition, he shall forward similar information to the State Department of Health each month on forms furnished by the department.
The person applying for a license shall pay a fee of eighteen ($18.00) dollars for each dog that is neutered and twenty-one ($21.00) dollars for nonneutered dogs. Such person shall also pay any registration fee, clinic fee, population control fee, or other fee required by the State of New Jersey. The New Jersey population control fee shall only be charged for non-spayed/non-neutered animals. The owner of any dog may, if the license tag is mislaid, lost or stolen, procure a duplicate tag upon the payment of one ($1.00) dollar.
Each dog license and registration tag shall expire on the last day of January of the calendar year following the calendar year in which it was issued.
Dogs used as guides for blind persons and commonly known as seeing eye dogs shall be licensed in the same manner as other dogs, except that the owner or keeper shall not be required to pay any fee.
No license to own, keep or harbor a dog shall be issued to or in the name of a minor.
License fees and other moneys collected or received under the provisions of this chapter, except registration tag fees, shall be forwarded to the borough treasurer within 30 days after collection or receipt and shall be placed in a special account separate from any of the other accounts of the borough. The moneys shall be used for the following purposes only: collecting, keeping and disposing of dogs liable to seizure under this chapter; local prevention and control of rabies; anti-rabies treatment under the direction of the local board of health for any person known to have been or suspected of having been exposed to rabies; all other purposes prescribed by the Statutes of New Jersey governing the subject; and the administration of the provisions of this chapter. Any unexpended balance remaining in the special account shall be retained therein until the end of the third fiscal year following and may be used for any of the purposes set forth in this section. At the end of the third fiscal year following, and at the end of each fiscal year thereafter, there shall be transferred from the special account to the general funds of the borough any amount then in the account which is in excess of the total amount paid in during the last two fiscal years next preceding.
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Section 5-4, Dog Canvass, previously codified was repealed in its entirety by Ordinance No. 0-12-8.
It shall be the duty of the police department and the dog warden to receive and investigate complaints against dogs. If they deem any dog complained of to be a vicious dog, as defined in section 5-1, they shall report their findings in writing to the municipal judge.
The municipal judge shall notify the owner or keeper of an allegedly vicious dog, in writing, that a complaint has been made and shall require the person to appear before him at a stated time and place for a hearing. The judge shall conduct the hearing in the same manner as he would conduct the trial of a criminal case. If the judge decides that the dog complained of is a vicious dog, he shall so notify the owner or keeper of the dog.
No person owning or keeping a vicious dog shall permit the dog to be off the property of the owner or keeper without being securely muzzled.
The dog warden shall take into custody and impound, or cause to be taken into custody and impounded, any of the following dogs:
a. 
Any unlicensed dog running at large in violation of the provisions of this chapter.
b. 
Any dog off the premises of the owner of or of the person keeping or harboring the dog which the dog warden or his agent has reason to believe is a stray dog.
c. 
Any dog off the premises of the owner of or of the person keeping or harboring the dog without a current registration tag on its collar.
d. 
Any female dog in season off the premises of the owner of or of the person keeping or harboring the dog.
e. 
Any dog which has been determined to be a vicious dog as provided in section 5-5, provided that the dog may also be seized by any police officer, and provided further that if the dog cannot be seized with safety, it may be killed.
Any officer or agent authorized or empowered to perform any duty under this chapter is hereby authorized to go on any premises to seize for impounding any dog which he may lawfully seize and impound when the officer is in immediate pursuit of the dog, except on the premises of the owner of the dog if the owner is present and forbids it.
If any dog so impounded or seized wears a registration tag, collar or harness showing the name and address of any person, or if the owner of or the person keeping or harboring the dog is known, the dog warden shall immediately serve on the person whose address is given on the collar, or on the person owning, keeping or harboring the dog, a written notice stating that the dog has been seized and will be liable to be disposed of or destroyed if not claimed within seven days after service of the notice.
A notice under this subsection may be served either by delivering it to the person on whom it is to be served, or by leaving it at the person's usual or last-known place of abode or at the address given on the collar, or by forwarding it by mail in a prepaid letter addressed to that person at his usual or last-known place of abode or to the address given on the collar.
The dog warden is authorized and empowered to cause the destruction of any unclaimed dog, in as humane a manner as possible, under any of the following contingencies:
a. 
When any dog so seized has not been claimed by the person owning, keeping or harboring the dog within seven days after notice or within seven days of the dog's detention when notice has not been or cannot be given, as set forth in the previous subsection.
b. 
If the person owning, keeping or harboring any dog so seized has not claimed the dog and has not paid all expenses incurred by reason of its detention, including maintenance, not to exceed five ($5.00) dollars for the first day and one ($1.00) dollar per day for each additional day.
c. 
If the seized dog is unlicensed at the time of its seizure and the person owning, keeping or harboring the dog has not produced a license and registration tag as provided in this chapter.
No person shall own, keep or harbor a dog the borough except in compliance with the provisions of this chapter and the following regulations.
All dogs which are required by the provisions of this chapter to be licensed shall wear a collar or harness with the registration tag for the dog securely fastened thereto.
No person, except an officer in the performance of his duties, shall remove a registration tag from the collar of any dog without the consent of the owner, nor shall any person attach a registration tag to a dog for which it was not issued.
No person shall hinder, molest or interfere with anyone authorized or empowered to perform any duty under this chapter.
No person shall own, keep, harbor or maintain any dog which habitually barks or cries.
No person owning, keeping or harboring any dog shall suffer or permit it to run at large upon the public streets or in any public park, public building or other public place within the borough.
No person owning, keeping or harboring any dog shall suffer or permit it to be upon the public streets or in any of the public places of the borough unless such dog is accompanied by a person over the age of 12 years and is securely confined and controlled by an adequate leash not more than six feet long.
No person owning, keeping or harboring a dog shall permit or suffer it to do any injury or to do any damage to any lawn, shrubbery, flowers, grounds or property.
Where it has been determined by a physician that a person has been bitten by a dog, the individual, or his parent or guardian if he is a minor, shall immediately notify the police. When the owner or keeper of any dog is notified by the police that the dog has bitten any individual or individuals, the owner or keeper of the dog shall comply with the following procedures:
Have the dog examined by a licensed veterinarian within 12 hours.
Have the dog kept in quarantine in the owner's home or at a kennel for a period of ten days.
At the end of the ten days have the dog re-examined by a veterinarian and a written report of the dog's state of health sent to the board of health.
The mayor and council may, by proclamation, require all dogs and cats to be quarantined during any period in each year which may seem advisable to the council.
The mayor and council shall have the power to appoint a dog warden whose duty it shall be to enforce the provisions of this chapter. The mayor and council shall also have the power to appoint one or more persons, to be known as dog catchers, who may impound unlicensed dogs running at large in violation of the provisions of this chapter and who shall make a monthly and annual report to the council.
Any person who violates or who fails or refuses to comply with section 5-2 of this chapter shall be liable to a penalty of not less than fifteen ($15.00) dollars nor more than fifty ($50.00) dollars for each offense. For any other violation of this chapter, the general penalty clause shall apply.
No person owning, walking or otherwise having custody or possession of any domesticated animal kept for amusement or companionship shall cause, suffer or permit such domesticated animal to soil, defile, defecate on, or commit any nuisance on any curb, street, sidewalk, park, playground, school land, or upon any private property without the permission of the owner of the private property obtained in the last instance.
Any person owning, walking or otherwise having custody or possession of any domesticated animal which soils, defecates on, or commits any nuisance on any curb, street, sidewalk, park, playground, school land, or upon any private property without the permission of the owner of said private property win the last instance, shall immediately remove all feces deposited by any such domesticated animal, which removal shall be in a sanitary manner by shovel, scoop or other device, and placed in a container and promptly disposed of in a sanitary manner.
Any person who shall violate any provisions of section 5-12 shall, upon conviction thereof, be subject to a fine of not more than two hundred ($200.00) dollars or a jail sentence of not more than ten days or both in the discretion of the judge of the municipal court before whom the complaint is heard.
Every person, firm or corporation that owns, harbors or keeps a cat more than six months of age on January 1 of any year, or six months of age within the license year, shall annually or within 30 days from the date such cat becomes six months of age, obtain a license for each cat from the borough clerk. The license year shall commence on July 1 and end on the following June 30. Such cat license, if paid on or before September 1, shall be eighteen ($18.00) dollars for each altered cat and twenty-one ($21.00) dollars for nonneutered cats. An increased fee of two ($2.00) dollars per cat license shall be paid by all persons purchasing cat licenses after September 1 or more than three months after such cat becomes six months of age. Each applicant for a cat license shall present a valid Certificate of Vaccination before being issued a license. All funds received from cat licenses shall be paid into the general fund of the borough.
a. 
It shall be the duty of each cat owner to have such cat inoculated with an avianized antirabic vaccine or any similar vaccine by a veterinarian every two calendar years.
b. 
Cats under six months of age are not required to be vaccinated.
c. 
Any cat for which a veterinarian licensed by the state issues a certificate to the effect that the proposed inoculation will be harmful shall be exempt from the inoculation prescribed by this section.
The county health officer, or other person designated by the Borough to enforce this section shall negotiate with local veterinarians licensed in the state for the provision of appropriate certificate and tag for each cat vaccinated. The certificate shall include the name and address of the owner of the cat, date of vaccination, tag number, breed, color, age, sex and such other information as may be required. The cat tags shall be numbered and contain the year of issuance.
It shall be the duty of each veterinarian, after inoculating a cat, to insert in a certificate the information required thereby, and to present one copy to the owner of the cat. The veterinarian shall also deliver the corresponding tag to the owner of the cat, and the said owner shall immediately attach the same to the collar or harness of said cat, which shall be worn by the cat at all times.
Any police officer, local or county health officer, code enforcement official, or other person or employee charged by the borough with enforcing this section may impound any such cat which does not carry the tags required by this section. The owner may obtain possession of any cats so impounded or seized by paying an impounding fee of five ($5.00) dollars, plus two ($2.00) dollars for each day of impoundment, provided, however, that said cat shall not be released until proof has been furnished to the appropriate official that the cat has been inoculated with antirabic vaccine in accordance with the terms of this section. Such cat may be released temporarily to a licensed veterinarian or an employee of a licensed veterinarian for the purpose of inoculation with antirabic vaccine or for other treatment. After such cat has been so impounded for a period of seven days without having been reclaimed by its owner or anyone on behalf of said owner, the appropriate authority may have the cat destroyed under the direction of the County Humane Society or other appropriate agency. Notice of impounding shall be given by the person or officer in possession of the cat within 24 hours of impounding to the owner of the cat, if known.
a. 
Reporting. Anyone having knowledge that any cat in the borough has bitten a person shall report within 24 hours, so far as it is known, the name and address of the owner and the circumstances of the animal. Such report concerning bites shall be made to the police department.
b. 
Control. Whenever any cat has bitten a person, it shall be confined in such place as the appropriate borough official may direct and for such period of observation as may be necessary, unless such cat is too vicious and dangerous to be impounded safely, in which case it may be killed, and its head shipped to the appropriate State or county laboratory for a rabies examination.
Any person, firm or corporation who shall violate any of the provisions of this section shall, upon conviction thereof, be subject to a fine of not less than fifteen ($15.00) dollars and not exceeding fifty ($50.00) dollars for each violation. Each day that a violation is permitted to exist shall constitute a separate offense.
a. 
The person owning, keeping or harboring any dog or cat seized by or on behalf of the Borough of Highlands Animal Control Officer or the firm, society or agency performing animal control services pursuant to contract with the Borough of Highlands as a stray or vicious animal or for any other proper reason pursuant to law shall be responsible to reimburse the full amount of any fees or charges incurred by the Borough of Highlands in order to seize and shelter said dog or cat.
b. 
Said fees incurred shall be reimbursed to the Borough of Highlands whether the person owning, keeping or harboring the animal reclaims same or not.
c. 
If the person owning, keeping or harboring said animals fails or refuses to pay said reimbursement to the Borough of Highlands within 14 days of the receipt of an itemized bill of the charges, said person shall be subject to a fine of not less than two hundred fifty ($250.00) dollars nor more than one thousand two hundred fifty ($1,250.00) dollars or a jail sentence of not more than ten days or both in the discretion of the judge of the municipal court before whom the complaint is heard and said person shall also be required to make the full reimbursement set forth above which shall be part of the judge's order.
[Ord. No. O-11-10]
For the purpose of this section, the following terms shall have the meaning set forth in this section. When not inconsistent with the context, words used in the present tense include the future, words in the plural number include the singular, words in the singular number include the plural, and words in the male gender include the female gender.
ABANDONED
Shall mean that an owner or caregiver has forsaken a domesticated cat entirely, or has neglected or refused to provide care and support to the cat.
ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICER
Shall mean any person employed or appointed by the borough who is authorized to investigate violations of laws and regulations concerning animals, and to issue citations in accordance with New Jersey law and this Code.
CAREGIVER
Shall mean any person who provides food, water or shelter to or otherwise cares for a cat.
DOMESTICATED CAT
Mean a cat that is socialized to humans and is appropriate as a companion for humans.
EAR-MARKED
Shall mean a tagged, notched or tipped left ear as performed by a licensed veterinarian.
FERAL CAT COLONY
Shall mean a group of cats that congregates, more or less, together as a unit. Although not every cat in a colony may be feral, any non-feral cats that congregate with a colony shall be deemed to be a part of it.
MANAGED CAT COLONY
Shall mean spaying and neutering the cats to stabilize the population of the feral cat colony.
NUISANCE
Shall mean disturbing the peace by (a) habitually or continually howling, crying or screaming, or (b) the habitual and significant destruction, desecration or soiling of property against the wishes of the owner of the property.
OWNER
Shall mean any person, firm, corporation, partnership, association, trust, estate, or any other legal entity.
RESCUE GROUP
Shall mean a for-profit or not-for-profit entity, or a collaboration of individuals with at least one of its purposes being the adoption or placement of cats in homes with humans to serve as companion animals.
STRAY CAT
Shall mean a cat that is regularly off the property of the owner, is not under the physical control and restraint of the owner and is not regularly provided with food by its owner.
SUITABLE SHELTER
Shall mean shelter that provides protection from rain, sun, and other elements that is adequate to protect the health of the cat.
TNR
Shall mean Trap, Neuter and Return.
TNR PROGRAM
Shall mean a program pursuant to which feral and stray cats are trapped, neutered or spayed, vaccinated against rabies and returned to the location where they congregate.
ZOONOTIC DISEASE
Shall mean those diseases transmittable to humans from animals, including parasitic, bacterial, fungal and viral diseases.
[Ord. No. O-11-10]
a. 
Owners of domesticated cats shall provide appropriate and adequate food, water and shelter for their cats.
b. 
The owner of a domesticated cat shall exercise reasonable care to guard against the cat creating a nuisance.
c. 
The owner of a sexually intact (not spayed or neutered) domesticated cat shall not permit his/her cat to roam unsupervised.
d. 
An owner shall not abandon a domesticated cat.
[Ord. No. O-11-10; Ord. No. O-2016-08 §§ 1-3]
a. 
Feral cat colonies shall be permitted and caregivers shall be entitled to maintain them in accordance with the terms and conditions of this section.
b. 
Sponsorship of Colony TNR Programs. The Monmouth County SPCA is approved as sponsor. Other persons may apply to the borough to serve as colony TNR Program sponsors ("Sponsors"). Any person or entity so applying shall comply with the requirements of this section for sponsors and execute a Monmouth County SPCA approved sponsor contract. Any person intending to undertake the responsibilities of sponsor shall advise the Monmouth County SPCA in writing and provide his/her/its address and telephone number.
c. 
Sponsor Requirements. It shall be the duty of the Sponsor to:
1. 
Review and approve of colony caregivers;
2. 
Help to resolve any complaints over the conduct of a colony caregiver or of cats within a colony;
3. 
Maintain records provided by colony caregivers on the size and location of the colonies as well as the vaccination and spay/neuter records of cats in the sponsor's colonies; and
4. 
Report annually to the borough on the following:
(a) 
Number of colonies in the borough;
(b) 
Total number of cats in colonies;
(c) 
Number of cats and kittens spayed and neutered pursuant to the TNR Program; and
(d) 
Number of cats and kittens placed in permanent homes.
5. 
Register feral cat colonies as provided in subsection 5-16.4.
6. 
Equally responsible with that of the animal control officer for humanely capturing, trapping, neutering, vaccinating, identifying and spaying or neutering feral cats.
7. 
Obtain and maintain liability insurance for all activities, actions and work performed pursuant to this section and laws of the State of New Jersey, naming the Borough of Highlands as an additional named insured and providing an annual copy of the declaration of insurance and proof of payment of the same.
d. 
Feral Cat Caregiver Requirements. Caregivers are responsible for the following:
1. 
Registering the feral cat colony with the sponsor;
2. 
Taking steps that are reasonably likely to result in the vaccination of the colony population for rabies and making reasonable efforts to update the vaccinations on cats that can be recaptured;
3. 
Taking steps that are reasonably likely to further the objective of the spay/neuter of at least 90 percent of the colony population;
4. 
Providing the sponsor with descriptions of each cat in the colony and copies of documents evidencing that the cats have been vaccinated and spayed/neutered;
5. 
Providing food, water and, if feasible, shelter for colony cats;
6. 
Observing the colony cats at least twice per week and keeping a record of any illnesses or unusual behavior noticed in any colony cats;
7. 
Obtaining the approval, in writing, of the owner of any property, to which the caregiver requires access to provide colony care;
8. 
In the event that kittens are born to a colony cat, the caregiver shall take reasonable steps likely to result in the removal of the kittens from the colony after they have been weaned, and the placement of the kittens in homes or foster homes for the purpose of subsequent permanent placement or with the sponsor for subsequent permanent placement;
9. 
Reporting annually in writing to the sponsor on the status of the colony, including data on the number and gender of all cats in the colony, the number of cats that died or otherwise ceased being a part of the colony during the year, the number of kittens born to colony cats and their disposition and the number of cats and kittens placed in permanent homes as companion cats; and
10. 
Obtaining proper medical attention to any colony cat that appears to require it.
11. 
Taking reasonable steps to prevent cats from creating a nuisance in adjacent properties, which includes, but is not limited to, providing litter boxes for feral cats.
[Ord. No. O-2016-08 § 1]
12. 
Feral cat caregivers shall not leave open containers of food for such cats outdoors after 9:00 p.m. nor before 5:00 a.m.
[Ord. No. O-2016-08 § 2]
e. 
Colony Cat Requirements.
1. 
The left ear of a colony cat that has been spayed or neutered and vaccinated shall be eartipped.
2. 
An electronic animal identification device (EAID) shall be inserted into the cat by a veterinarian in accordance with professional medical standards. The colony number shall be used for purposes of the EAID.
f. 
Disposition of Colony Cats.
1. 
An animal control officer or sponsor who has trapped a cat whose left ear has been tipped or which bears some other distinguishing mark indicating that it belongs to a feral cat colony shall scan any cat trapped or picked up for an EAID. If an EAID is found, the officer shall return the cat to its colony or its owner. If an EAID is not found, the officer shall contact the sponsor and the sponsor or any other person named as the owner of the cat.
2. 
If the owner or sponsor is not able to immediately take custody of the cat, the officer shall return the cat to the appropriate colony.
3. 
If the cat does not have an EAID then the animal control officer shall contact the sponsor so the cat can be properly placed in a colony. If the cat is obviously a domestic cat the sponsor shall arrange for care for the cat until the owner is located and may determine the disposition of the cat in those circumstances where the domestic cat's owner cannot be located. If the cat does not have an EAID and the owner cannot be located then the sponsor will nevertheless treat the cat as any stray with a seven day holding period.
(a) 
Requirements in General.
(1) 
It shall be the responsibility of all residents of Highlands along with the sponsor, feral cat caregivers, and all involved individuals to use due consideration to avoid the taking of rare, threatened or endangered species under the Endangered and Non-Game Species Conservation Act, N.J.S.A. 23:2A-1, et seq. and pursuing the actions allowed by this section.
g. 
Registration of Feral Cat Colonies.
1. 
The sponsor shall register feral cat colonies maintained by approved caregivers. Feral cat colonies within the borough that are not registered by the sponsor are not entitled to any benefits or protections set forth in this section. No colonies may be established except in accordance with this section. On an annual basis the sponsor shall provide the Borough of Highlands with a colony management plan for the borough containing all registered feral cat colonies with information on the number of cats, anticipated rate of attrition and the length of project, efforts to deter predation and to prevent immigration of more cats into each colony. The list of registered feral cat colonies and the annual colony management plan shall be filed with the borough administrator.
[Ord. No. O-11-10]
a. 
The borough shall have the following rights:
1. 
The right to seize or remove cats from a colony that have not been vaccinated against rabies and which are demonstrating signs of the disease.
2. 
The right to seize or remove a cat from a colony that is creating a nuisance as defined above and the caregiver and sponsor have been given 30 days to remove and relocate the cat and have failed to do so.
3. 
The right to seize or remove a colony of cats when the caregiver regularly fails to comply with the requirements of this section and the sponsor has not been able to obtain a replacement or substitute caregiver within 30 days of the borough's notice to the sponsor of the caregiver's failure to comply with this section.
b. 
The requirements of this section notwithstanding, animal control officers and police officers may investigate any nuisance complaint.
[Ord. No. O-11-10]
Not later than December 31, 2015, the Borough of Highlands shall study the effectiveness of the TNR Program and review the continuance of this section. This section however shall continue as provided until specifically rescinded or amended.