City of Pawtucket, RI
Providence County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Approved 5-10-1984 as Ch. No. 1878]
As used in this Article, the following terms shall have the following meanings:
ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICER/ASSISTANT ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICER
The person or persons employed by the City as its enforcement officer(s) and shall include any police officer of said City.
AT LARGE
Any dog off the property of its owner and not under restraint as hereinafter defined.
CONSIDERABLE NUMBER OF PERSONS
Two complaining neighbors or residents.
DOG POUND
Any premises designated by action of the City for the purpose of impounding and caring for all animals found running at large in violation of this article.
ENCLOSURE
A fence or structure of at least six feet in height, forming or causing an enclosure suitable to prevent the entry of young children and suitable to confine a vicious dog in conjunction with other measures which may be taken by the owner or keeper, such as tethering of the vicious dog. Such enclosure shall be securely enclosed and locked and designed with secure sides, top and bottom and shall be designed to prevent the animal from escaping from the enclosure.
[Added 11-21-1985 by Ch. No. 1937]
EXPOSED TO RABIES
A dog having been bitten by, or been exposed to, any animal known to have been infected with rabies.
KENNEL
A place or establishment other than a pound or animal shelter where animals not owned by the proprietor are sheltered during the day and/or overnight, fed, and watered in return for a fee.
[Amended 12-16-2009 by Ord. No. 2933]
OWNER
Any person, group of persons or corporation owning, keeping or harboring a dog or dogs.
PROPERLY COLLARED
A dog wearing around its neck a collar with license attached and the name of the owner or keeper distinctly impressed thereon.
[Amended 7-25-1996 by Ch. No. 2420]
PROPERLY LEASHED
A dog with a cord or chain attached to its collar or harness and held in the hand by the owner or competent person leading said dog.
[Amended 7-25-1996 by Ch. No. 2420]
SPAYED FEMALE
Any bitch which has been operated upon to prevent conception.
UNDER RESTRAINT
A dog leashed or on or within a vehicle being driven or parked on the streets or within the property limits of its owner or keeper.
[Amended 7-25-1996 by Ch. No. 2420]
A. 
Any dog that, when unprovoked, inflicts bites or attacks a human being or other animals either on public or private property, or in a vicious or terrorizing manner approaches any person in apparent attitude of attack upon the streets, sidewalks or any public grounds or places.
B. 
Any dog with a known propensity, tendency or disposition to attack unprovoked, to cause injury or to otherwise endanger the safety of human beings or domestic animals.
C. 
Any dog which attacks a human being or domestic animal without provocation.
D. 
Any dog owned or harbored primarily or in part for the purpose of dog fighting or any dog trained for dog fighting.
E. 
Any dog not licensed according to City ordinance.
The provisions of this Article shall be enforced by the Animal Control Officer of the City of Pawtucket and any police officer of said City.
The owner shall keep his or her dog under restraint at all times and shall not permit such dog to be at large, off the premises or property of the owner, unless under restraint as hereinbefore defined and properly collared as hereinbefore defined.
A. 
Any dog or dogs found running at large not under restraint as defined in § 116-9 or uncollared as defined in § 116-9 or declared a public nuisance as defined in § 116-25A by the Animal Control Officer or any police officer of this City shall be taken up by the Animal Control Officer and impounded in the shelter designated as the City Dog Pound and there confined in a humane manner for a period of not less than 10 days unless all runs at said shelter are full. In that event one dog at a time shall be disposed of in a humane manner in the order in which they were impounded, i.e., first dog impounded, first dog disposed of, except that in no instance shall a dog be impounded for less than five days before its humane disposal. Dogs not claimed by their owners before the expiration of five days shall be eligible for adoption through the Volunteer Services for Animals. Dogs not claimed by their owners or adopted before the expiration of 10 days, or less in the event of the above situation, may be disposed of at the discretion of the Animal Control Officer, except as hereinafter provided in the cases of certain dogs.
[Amended 4-11-1985 by Ch. No. 1918]
B. 
The Animal Control Officer may transfer title to any dog held at the Dog Pound to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals after the legal detention period has expired and such dog has not been claimed by its owner.
C. 
When dogs are found running at large and their ownership is known to the Animal Control Officer, such dogs need not be impounded, but such officer may cite the owners of such dogs to appear in court to answer to charges of violation of this Article.
D. 
Immediately upon impounding dogs, the Animal Control Officer shall make every possible reasonable effort to notify the owners of such dogs so impounded and inform such owners of the conditions whereby they may regain custody of such dogs.
E. 
Any animal, other than a dog, found running at large within the City limits may be impounded or disposed of according to law when such action is required either to protect the animal or to protect the residents of the City.
F. 
When the owners of one or more dogs are cited for one of their dogs found running at large, after having been previously cited by the City for this offense, the owners of such dogs shall be cited to appear in the municipal court to answer to charges of violation of this article. In addition to any other fines and penalties which may be imposed by the court, if the owners are deemed to be in violation of this article for a second offense, then they shall be required to tether the dogs when the dogs are outside unattended. If the owners are deemed to be in violation of this article for a third offense, then they shall be required to have their property fenced in order to keep the dogs confined to the property. The fence shall be no less than four feet in height and shall encompass the entire property. The dogs may be impounded until the fence is erected, and the owner shall be responsible for all boarding fees.
[Added 11-23-2016 by Ch. No. 3118]
A. 
The owner shall be entitled to regain possession of any impounded dog, except as hereinafter provided in the cases of certain dogs, upon the payment of impoundment fees set forth herein. (Proof of ownership might include a license receipt, affidavits of neighbors, a photograph, etc.)
B. 
Any other animal impounded under the provisions of this Article may be reclaimed by the owner upon the payment of impoundment fees set forth herein.
C. 
Any dog or other animal impounded under the provisions of this Article and not reclaimed by its owner within five days may be humanely destroyed by the Animal Control Officer, have its title transferred to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals as provided for in § 116-12B or be placed in the custody of some person deemed to be a responsible and suitable owner, who will agree to comply with the provisions of this Article and such other regulations as shall be fixed by the City of Pawtucket; provided, however, that if the animal is one to which the respective rights of the owner and the person in possession or custody are determined by state law, such law shall be complied with.
[Amended 4-7-1994 by Ch. No. 2348]
A. 
The owner or keeper of any dog impounded hereunder shall not take such dog out of the pound until he/she shall have first paid to the poundkeeper the expense of keeping such dog, such expense not to exceed $5 per day. Impoundment fees set forth herein shall be collected for the City of Pawtucket by the Animal Control Officer for the City of Pawtucket.
B. 
The sum of $3 shall be deducted from each five-dollar fee collected for the daily impoundment of any dog and shall be deposited in the Animal Control Fund established in § 116-30 of the Code of the City of Pawtucket. The remaining sums collected shall provide for the keeping of the animals.
A. 
All vicious dogs shall be confined in an enclosure. It shall be unlawful for any owner or keeper to maintain a vicious dog upon any premises which does not have a locked enclosure. It shall be unlawful for any owner or keeper to allow any vicious dog to be outside of the dwelling of the owner or keeper or outside of the enclosure unless it is necessary for the owner or keeper to obtain veterinary care for the vicious dog or to sell or give away the vicious dog or to comply with commands or directions of the Animal Control Officer with respect to the vicious dog. In such event, the vicious dog shall be securely muzzled and restrained with a chain having a minimum tensile strength of 300 pounds and not exceeding three feet in length and shall be under the direct control and supervision of the owner or keeper of the vicious dog.
[Amended 11-21-1985 by Ch. No. 1937]
B. 
Every female dog or other animal in heat shall be kept confined in a building or secure enclosure, or in a veterinary hospital or boarding kennel, in such a manner that such female dog or other animals cannot come in contact with another dog or animal, except for intentional breeding purposes.
C. 
Any animal described in Subsection B hereof found at large shall be impounded by the Animal Control Officer and may not be reclaimed by owners unless such reclamation is authorized by any court having jurisdiction.
[Amended 11-21-1985 by Ord. No. 1937]
D. 
Any dog or other animal may, the first time it is impounded for being a public nuisance, be reclaimed as provided in § 116-12A hereof, but may not be reclaimed when so impounded on second or subsequent occasion unless such reclamation is authorized by a court having jurisdiction in the matter.
E. 
When in the judgment of the Animal Control Officer or any police officer in this City an animal should be destroyed for humane reasons, such animal may not be reclaimed.
F. 
No wild animal may be kept within the City limits, except under such conditions as shall be fixed by the Animal Control Officer; provided, however, that wild animals may be kept for exhibition purposes by circuses, zoos and educational institutions, in accordance with such regulations as shall be established by the Animal Control Officer. Any wild animal which escapes and is found at large may be destroyed by the Animal Control Officer or any police officer of this City.
G. 
If any vicious dog shall kill or wound or assist in killing or wounding of any domestic animal belonging to or in the possession of any person, or shall attack, assault, bite or otherwise injure any person or assist in attacking, assaulting, biting or otherwise injuring any person while out of or within the enclosure of the owner or keeper of such vicious dog, or while otherwise on or off the property of the owner or keeper whether or not such vicious dog was on a leash and securely muzzled or whether the vicious dog escaped without fault of the owner or keeper, the owner or keeper of such dog shall be liable to the person aggrieved as aforesaid for all damage sustained, to be recovered in a civil action with costs of suit. It is rebuttably presumed as a matter of law that the owning, keeping or harboring of a vicious dog in violation of this Article is a nuisance. It shall not be necessary, in order to sustain any such action, to prove that the owner or keeper of such vicious dog knew that such vicious dog possessed the propensity to cause such damage or that the vicious dog had a vicious nature. Upon such attack or assault, the Animal Control Officer is hereby empowered to confiscate and destroy such vicious dog, if the conduct of such vicious dog or its owner or keeper constituted a violation of the provisions of this Article punishable by the confiscation and destruction of the animal.
[Added 4-25-1985 by Ch. No. 1919; amended 11-21-1985 by Ch. No. 1937]
A. 
Every animal which bites a person shall be promptly reported to the Animal Control Officer and shall thereupon be securely quarantined at the direction of the Animal Control Officer for a period of 14 days and shall not be released from such quarantine except by written permission of the Animal Control Officer. At the discretion of the Animal Control Officer, such quarantine may be on the premises of the owner, at the shelter designated as the Dog Pound or, at the owner's option and expense, in a veterinary hospital of his or her choice. In the case of stray animals or in the cases of animals whose ownership is not known, such quarantine shall be at the shelter designated by the Animal Control Officer.
B. 
The owner, upon demand by the Animal Control Officer, shall forthwith surrender any animal which has bitten a human, or which is suspected as having been exposed to rabies, for supervised quarantine, the expense of which shall be borne by the owner. Said animal may be reclaimed by the owner if it is adjudged free of rabies upon payment of fees set forth in § 116-14 of this Article.
C. 
When rabies has been diagnosed in an animal under quarantine or rabies is suspected by a licensed veterinarian, and the animal dies while under such observation, the Animal Control Officer shall immediately send the head of such animal to the State Health Department for the pathological examination and shall notify the proper public health officer of reports of human contacts and the diagnosis.
D. 
When one or both reports indicate a positive diagnosis of rabies, the Animal Control Officer shall recommend an area-wide quarantine for a period of 90 days, and upon invoking of such emergency quarantine, no animal shall be taken into the streets or permitted to be in the streets during such period of quarantine. During such quarantine, no animal may be taken or shipped from the City without written permission of the Animal Control Officer.
E. 
During this quarantine period and as long afterward as he or she decides it is necessary to prevent the spread of rabies, the Animal Control Officer shall require all dogs three months of age and older to be vaccinated against rabies with a canine rabies vaccine approved by the Biologics Control Section of the United States Department of Agriculture. The types of approved canine antirabies vaccine to be used and the recognized duration of immunity for each shall be established by the Animal Control Officer. All vaccinated dogs shall be restricted (leashing or confinement on enclosed premises) for 30 days after vaccination. During the quarantine period, the Animal Control Officer shall be empowered to provide for a program of mass immunization by the establishment of temporary emergency canine rabies vaccination clinics strategically located throughout the City.
F. 
No dog which has been impounded by reason of its being a stray, unclaimed by its owner, is allowed to be claimed during the period of the rabies emergency quarantine, except by special authorization of the Animal Control Officer.
G. 
Dogs bitten by a known rabid animal shall be immediately destroyed, or if the owner is unwilling to destroy the exposed animal, strict isolation of the animal in a kennel for six months shall be enforced. If the dog has been previously vaccinated within time limits established by the Animal Control Officer based on the kind of vaccine used, revaccination and restraint (leashing and confinement) for 30 days shall be carried out.
H. 
In the event that there are additional positive cases of rabies occurring during the period of the quarantine, such period of quarantine may be extended for an additional six months.
I. 
No person shall kill, or cause to be killed, any rabid animal, any animal suspected of having been exposed to rabies or any animal biting a human, except as herein provided, nor remove same from the City limits without written permission from the Animal Control Officer.
J. 
The carcass of any dead animal exposed to rabies shall upon demand be surrendered to the Animal Control Officer.
K. 
The Animal Control Officer shall direct the disposition of any animal found to be infected with rabies.
L. 
No person shall fail or refuse to surrender any animal for quarantine or destruction as required herein when demand is made therefor by the Animal Control Officer.
It shall be the duty of every physician or other medical practitioner to report to the Animal Control Officer at the Police Division the names and addresses of persons treated for bites inflicted by animals, together with such other information as will be helpful in rabies control.
It shall be the duty of every licensed veterinarian to report to the Animal Control Officer any animal considered by him or her to be a rabies suspect.
A. 
Hospitals, clinics and other premises operated by licensed veterinarians for the care and treatment of animals are exempt from the provisions of this Article, except where expressly stated.
B. 
The licensing and vaccination requirements of this Article shall not apply to any dog belonging to a nonresident of the City and kept within the City for not longer than 30 days, provided that all such dogs shall at all times while in the City be kept within a building, enclosure or vehicle or be under restraint by the owner.
No dog over six months old shall be permitted within the City limits unless such dog shall have been vaccinated or immunized in the manner set forth in this Article within a period of 12 months, if such dog shall have been vaccinated or immunized with the one-year vaccine, or within a period of 36 months, if such dog shall have been vaccinated or immunized by the three-year vaccine.
The vaccination or immunization referred to in § 116-20 of this Article shall be by a vaccine approved by the State Department of Health and shall be certified to by a licensed veterinarian. Such certificate shall be dated as of the date of inoculation or vaccination, shall show the rabies tag number, the sex and breed of dog and the owner thereof and whether the vaccine given is the one-year vaccine or the three-year vaccine, together with such other information as may reasonably be required by the Animal Control Officer or the veterinarian administering the same.
No license shall be issued for any dog required to be licensed in the City unless the person making application therefor shall first present to the Police Division of the City or other person duly authorized to issue such license a current certificate of vaccination or inoculation as provided in this article for the dog for which such license is requested. Such certificate shall certify that the dog for which the license is to be issued has been properly vaccinated or inoculated in accordance with the provisions of this article. Public clinics providing inoculations at a nominal charge shall be made available twice a year by the Director of Public Safety.
It shall be unlawful for any person to own, keep or harbor any dog over six months old within the City, unless such dog shall have been vaccinated or inoculated in accordance with the provisions of this article.
Any dog over six months old found within the limits of the City without evidence that such dog has been vaccinated or inoculated in accordance with the provisions of this article shall be impounded by any police officer of the City or other authorized person for a period not exceeding 15 days, during which time such dog may be returned to its owner upon proof of ownership, vaccination of the dog and payment by such owner of the fees provided in § 116-14 hereof. At the expiration of the fifteen-day period above-mentioned, any dog not so claimed by its owner may be disposed of in accordance with § 116-13 hereof.
A. 
The keeping or harboring of any dog, whether licensed, leashed or not, which by habitual barking, howling, yelping or other noise disturbing or annoying any considerable number of persons or neighborhood, in the judgment of the Animal Control Officer or any police officer of this City, is unlawful, and is hereby declared to be a public nuisance.
B. 
It shall be unlawful to allow or permit any animal to trespass on private or public property so as to damage or destroy any property or thing of value and the same is hereby declared to be a nuisance, and any such animal may be impounded by the Animal Control Officer.
C. 
Whenever it shall be affirmed in writing by one person having a separate residence or regularly employed in the neighborhood that any animal is an habitual nuisance by reason of trespassing, howling, barking or other noise or damage to property, being vicious or by its actions potentially vicious, or in any other manner causing undue annoyance, the Animal Control Officer, if he or she finds such nuisance to exist, shall serve notice upon the owner or custodian that such nuisance must be abated.
[Amended 3-6-2002 by Ch. No. 2636]
A. 
No dogs are allowed in schoolyards or on school property, whether at large or under restraint, Seeing Eye dogs, so-called, excepted.
B. 
No dogs are allowed in any stores or eating places within the City, whether at large or under restraint, Seeing Eye dogs, so-called, excepted.
C. 
No dogs are allowed on any athletic fields within the City, whether at large or under restraint, Seeing Eye dogs, so-called, excepted.
[Added 4-20-1995 by Ch. No. 2383]
D. 
No dogs are allowed in any playgrounds within the City, whether at large or under restraint, Seeing Eye dogs, so-called, excepted.
[Added 5-24-2007 by Ch. No. 2844]
E. 
No dogs are allowed in any City-owned cemeteries within the City, whether at large or under restraint, Seeing Eye dogs, so-called, excepted.
[Added 5-24-2007 by Ch. No. 2844]
F. 
No dogs are allowed inside of City Hall, whether at large or under restraint, Seeing Eye dogs, so-called, excepted.
[Added 6-16-2010 by Ch. No. 2938]
[Amended 12-11-2003 by Ch. No. 2708]
A. 
It shall be unlawful to keep more than three licensed dogs at the same residence, except as permitted by the Director of Public Safety.
[Amended 3-11-2004 by Ch. No. 2718]
B. 
The Animal Control Officer is empowered to impound up to 10 days any dog exceeding the limits set forth above. Such animal(s) may be reclaimed at any time subject to a showing to the satisfaction of the Animal Control Officer that the animal(s) is in compliance with the requirements of this section. If the animal is unable to be reclaimed, after 10 days it shall be subject to removal pursuant to the provisions of § 116-13.
[Amended 3-11-2004 by Ch. No. 2718]
C. 
This provision shall not apply to licensed kennels.
All complaints made under the provisions of this article shall be made to the Animal Control Officer and may be made orally; provided, however, that such complaint is within 48 hours reduced to writing on forms provided by the Animal Control Officer, and shall be signed by the complainant showing his or her address and telephone number, if any.
A. 
The Animal Control Officer or his or her representative shall have access to all parts of the premises on which any complaints regarding cats have been received. Upon the determination of the Animal Control Officer that a health hazard exists, regardless of the number of cats at the subject premises, the owner of such cat or cats shall be considered in violation of this article.
B. 
Any person convicted of violating any provision of this subsection may be punished by the payment of a fine not exceeding $10 for the first offense, not exceeding $50 for the second offense, not exceeding $100 for the third and any subsequent offense, to be recovered by action of debt or by complaint and warrant.
[Added 9-8-1989 by Ch. No. 2105; amended 10-6-2005 by Ord. No. 2785; 12-16-2009 by Ch. No. 2933]
The Animal Control Fund is established herein for the limited purpose of providing for the reasonable protection, care and welfare of animals impounded by the Animal Control Officer and to provide for the maintenance and care of the impoundment shelter facility.
A. 
The sum of $3 shall be deducted from each fee collected in the issuance of dog licenses hereunder and shall be deposited in the Animal Control Fund.
B. 
The fees and fines collected for kennel licenses shall be deposited in the Animal Control Fund.
C. 
The Director of Finance shall be the custodian of all funds collected under this section and he or she shall invest such funds in accord with prudent investment procedure. Income derived from all such investment shall be retained for the purposes of this fund. Any amounts to be expended or disbursed from this fund shall require the express approval of the Animal Control Committee of the Pawtucket City Council.
[Added 9-8-1989 by Ch. No. 2105]
A. 
Subject to the approval of the Animal Control Committee, qualified applicants may adopt animals residing within the impoundment shelter facility. Said adoption shall be permitted for the personal safety, protection and enjoyment of the applicant and not for resale to a third party or any other commercial purpose, including breeding.
B. 
Any qualified person who shall adopt an animal pursuant this section shall pay to the City Clerk the sum of $15. Said fee shall be deposited into the Animal Control Fund, as defined herein.
In the discharge of the duties imposed by this Article, the Animal Control Officer or any police officer of this City shall have the authority at all reasonable times to enter upon any premises (but such authority should not include the right to enter any residence on such premises) to examine a dog or other animal which is allegedly in violation of a provision of this Article. Such officer shall have the further authority to take possession of any such dog or other animal and remove it from such premises.
No person shall interfere with, hinder or molest the Animal Control Officer or any police officer of this City in the performance of his or her duties, or seek to release any animal in the custody of the Animal Control Officer or any police officer, except as herein provided.
A. 
It shall be the duty of the Animal Control Officer to keep or cause to be kept accurate and detailed records of the impoundment and disposition of all animals coming into its custody.
B. 
It shall be the duty of the Animal Control Officer to keep or cause to be kept accurate and detailed records of all bite cases reported to him or her and the investigation of the same.
C. 
It shall be the duty of the Animal Control Officer to keep or cause to be kept accurate and detailed records of all moneys belonging to the City of Pawtucket, which records shall be open to inspection at reasonable times by such persons responsible for similar records of the City of Pawtucket and shall be audited by the City of Pawtucket annually in the same manner as other City records are audited.
[Amended 4-25-1985 by Ch. No. 1919; 11-21-1985 by Ch. No. 1937]
A. 
Any vicious dog, except those ruled vicious solely for violation of § 116-9, Subsection E of the definition of "vicious dog," which does not have a valid license in accordance with the provisions of this Article or whose owner or keeper does not secure the liability coverage required in accordance with § 116-37B(1) shall be confiscated by the Animal Control Officer and promptly destroyed in an expeditious and humane manner. In addition, the owner or keeper shall pay a fine in the amount of $200.
B. 
If any vicious dog shall kill, wound or worry or assist in the killing of any animal, the owner or keeper of said dog shall pay a fine in the amount of $250 for the first violation, and for each subsequent violation shall be fined $500.
C. 
If any vicious dog shall attack, assault, wound, bite or otherwise injure or kill a person, the owner or keeper shall pay a fine in the amount of $500.
[Amended 5-24-2018 by Ch. No. 3160]
D. 
No dog shall be destroyed within five days of its being impounded, except those described in Subsection A.
[Amended 7-25-1996 by Ch. No. 2420]
E. 
If the owner or keeper of an animal impounded for an alleged violation of this Article shall believe that there shall not have been a violation of such sections hereof, such owner or keeper may make complaint under oath hereof to any Judge of the District Court, and such Judge shall cause a summons to be served on the Animal Control Officer for the City where such dog is impounded. The impounded dog shall not be destroyed pending resolution of such owner or keeper's complaint if the complaint shall have been filed and the summons shall have been served within five days of impoundment of such dog, and said hearing shall be conducted within seven days from serving of summons. If the Court shall find that there shall not have been a violation such dog may be released to the custody of the owner or keeper upon payment to the poundkeeper of the expense of keeping such dog, as determined in accordance with the provisions of this Article.
[Amended 11-21-1985 by Ch. No. 1937; 10-6-2005 by Ch. No. 2785; 10-26-2006 by Ch. No. 2828]
A. 
Every owner or keeper of a dog shall annually in the month of April cause such dog to be licensed from the first day of the ensuing May, in the office of the City Clerk, and shall pay to the City Clerk for the license so issued $15 for spayed or neutered dogs or $25 for unspayed or unneutered dogs, with the exception of senior citizens, who shall, upon proof that they have attained the age of 65 years, pay the sum of $5 for spayed or neutered dogs or $10 for unspayed or unneutered dogs for said license. All licenses issued under the provisions of this section shall be valid in every city or town during the then-current year, provided that any person who shall become the owner or keeper of a dog shall cause the same to be licensed as aforesaid within 30 days after he or she becomes such owner or keeper.
B. 
In accordance with § 4-24-9 of the General Laws of the State of Rhode Island, the City of Pawtucket shall collect a surcharge of $1 on each dog license issued. The revenue generated by the surcharge shall be deposited in the City's spay/neuter accounts to fund low-cost spay/neuter programs.
C. 
Every owner or keeper of any dog found to be in violation of this section governing the licensing of dogs shall for the first offense be fined $25 and shall be required to have said dog tattooed in a manner prescribed by the provisions of this article at a fee not greater than $10, and for a second violation of said provision shall be fined $200 and shall be required to have said dog tattooed in a manner prescribed by the provisions of this article, and for a third or subsequent offense shall be fined $500 and shall be required to have said dog tattooed in a manner prescribed by the provisions of this article.
D. 
In addition, any owner or keeper convicted of a third or subsequent violation shall present to the City Clerk proof that the owner or keeper has procured liability insurance in the amount of at least $100,000, covering any damage or injury that may be caused by such vicious dog, which policy shall contain a provision requiring the City to be named as additional insured for the sole purpose of notification of said City Clerk by the insurance company of any cancellation, termination or expiration of the liability insurance policy. Said owner or keeper shall in addition thereto comply with the provisions of § 116-37.
E. 
No fine and/or tattooing requirement shall be suspended by any court of competent jurisdiction.
[Amended 12-11-2003 by Ch. No. 2708]
A. 
Any owner or keeper having the ownership, custody or control of any dog known to the owner or keeper as, or identified as, a Rottweiler; any dog exhibiting those distinguishing characteristics which substantially conform to the standards established by the American Kennel Club or United Kennel Club for this breed, the characteristics being identifiable even if there are technical deficiencies in any particular dog's conformance thereto; or any dog identifiable by a licensed veterinarian, animal control officer or any other knowledgeable person whose identification is deemed credible by the Public Safety Director and the Animal Control Officer as having Rottweiler or the major element of its breeding, must register said dog with the City Clerk on a form to be provided by the City. Said form shall require the following information: name, address and telephone number of the dog's owner or keeper; dog's sex, color, rabies certificate and tag number and other distinguishing physical characteristics of the dog; as well as proof of liability insurance of not less than $25,000 for each such registration.
[Amended 10-26-2006 by Ch. No. 2828]
B. 
Registration of vicious dogs. No vicious dog shall be licensed for any licensing period commencing after April 1986, unless the owner or keeper of such vicious dog shall meet the following requirements:
(1) 
The owner or keeper shall present to the City Clerk proof that the owner or keeper has procured liability insurance in the amount of at least $100,000 covering any damage or injury which may be caused by such vicious dog during the twelve-month period for which licensing is sought, which policy shall contain a provision requiring the City be named as additional insured for the sole purpose of the City Clerk to be notified by the insurance company of any cancellation, termination or expiration of the liability insurance policy.
(2) 
The owner or keeper shall have the licensing number assigned to such vicious dog, or such other identification number as the City Clerk shall determine, tattooed upon such vicious dog by a licensed veterinarian or other state or City agency on the upper inner lip of the vicious dog. Said number shall be noted on the City licensing files for such vicious dog if it is different from the license number of such vicious dog. For the purposes of this section, "tattoo" shall be defined as any permanent numbering of a vicious dog by means of indelible or permanent ink with the number designated by the licensing authority or any other permanent, acceptable method of tattooing.
(3) 
The owner or keeper shall display a sign on his or her premises warning that there is a vicious dog on the premises. Said sign shall be visible and capable of being read from the public highway.
(4) 
The owner or keeper shall sign a statement attesting that:
(a) 
The owner or keeper shall maintain and not voluntarily cancel the liability insurance required by this section during the twelve-month period for which licensing is sought, unless the owner or keeper shall cease to own or keep the vicious dog prior to expiration of such license.
(b) 
The owner or keeper shall, on or prior to the effective date of such license for which application is being made, have a fenced enclosure for the vicious dog on the property where the vicious dog will be kept or maintained.
(c) 
The owner or keeper shall notify the licensing authority within 24 hours if a vicious dog is on the loose, is unconfined, has attacked another animal or has attacked a human or has died or has been sold or given away. If the vicious dog has been sold or given away, the owner or keeper shall also provide the licensing authority with the name, address and telephone number of the new owner or keeper.
C. 
The Animal Control Officer is hereby empowered to make whatever inquiry is deemed necessary to ensure compliance with the provisions of this article, and said Animal Control Officer is hereby empowered to seize and impound any vicious dog whose owner or keeper fails to comply with the provisions hereof.
[Added 12-11-2003 by Ch. No. 2708]
A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to own, possess, keep, exercise control over, maintain, harbor, transport, or sell within the City any pit bull dog.
B. 
Definitions. As used in this section, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
KEEPER
Any person who possesses, keeps, exercises control over, maintains, harbors, transports or sells a pit bull, whether or not that person is the owner.
OWNER
Any person who owns, possesses, keeps, exercises control over, maintains, harbors, transports or sells a pit bull.
PIT BULL
Any dog that is an American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier; or any dog of mixed breed displaying the majority of physical traits of any one or more of the above breeds, or any dog exhibiting those distinguishing characteristics which substantially conform to the standards established by the American Kennel Club or United Kennel Club for any of the above breeds, the characteristics being identifiable even if there are technical deficiencies in any particular dog's conformance thereto; or any dog identifiable by a licensed veterinarian, animal control officer or any other knowledgeable person whose identification is deemed credible by the Public Safety Director or the Animal Control Officer, as having any American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier as any element of its breeding.
SECURE TEMPORARY ENCLOSURE
A ecure enclosure used for purposes of transporting a pit bull and which includes a top and bottom permanently attached to the sides except for a "door" for removal of the pit bull. Such enclosure must be of such material, and such door closed and secured in such a manner, that the pit bull cannot exit the enclosure on its own.
C. 
Exceptions. The prohibition of this section shall not apply in the following enumerated circumstances.
(1) 
The owner or keeper of a pit bull that is registered and licensed with the City Clerk on the date of passage of the ordinance enacting § 116-37.1 may apply for a pit bull license, to be renewed annually. After this date no pit bull licenses will be issued. Any owner or keeper, who has applied for and received a pit bull license in accordance with Subsection D of this section, and who maintains the pit bull at all times in compliance with the pit bull license requirements of Subsection D of this section and all other applicable requirements of this section, may keep a pit bull within the City. Notwithstanding the prohibition of Subsection A, in the event of the death of a licensed pit bull that was registered and licensed with the City Clerk on the date of the passage of this section, the owner or keeper may own another pit bull and must apply for an annual pit bull license, provided that the owner or keeper has not at any time violated any provision of this section.
(2) 
The City's municipal animal shelter may temporarily harbor and transport any pit bull for purposes of enforcing the provisions of this section.
(3) 
Any humane society operating an animal shelter which is registered and licensed by the City may temporarily hold any pit bull that it has received or otherwise recovered, but only for so long as it takes to contact the City's municipal animal shelter and either turn the pit bull over to the municipal animal shelter employees or receive permission to destroy or have destroyed the pit bull pursuant to the provisions of Subsection E.
(4) 
A person may temporarily transport into and hold in the City a pit bull only for the purpose of showing such pit bull in a place of public exhibition, contest or show sponsored by a dog club association or similar organization. However, the sponsor of the exhibition, contest, or show must receive written permission from the City Council, must obtain any other permits or licenses required by City ordinance, and must provide protective measures adequate to prevent pit bulls from escaping or injuring the public. The person who transports and holds a pit bull for showing shall, at all times when the pit bull is being transported within the City to and from the place of exhibition, contest, or show, keep the pit bull confined in a "secure temporary enclosure," as defined in Subsection B.
(5) 
(Reserved)[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Subsection C(5), which provided for a temporary transport permit, was repealed 9-8-2004 by Ch. No. 2740.
(6) 
Failure by the owner or keeper to comply and remain in compliance with all of the terms of any applicable exception shall subject the pit bull to immediate impoundment and/or disposal pursuant to Subsection E of this section and shall operate to prevent the owner or keeper from asserting such exception as a defense in any prosecution under Subsection A.
D. 
Pit bull license requirements. The owner or keeper of any pit bull which had been licensed on or before the date of passage of the ordinance enacting this (§ 116-37.1), and that is allowed to apply for an annual pit bull license shall at the time of application for the annual pit bull license comply with or otherwise provide sufficient evidence that the owner or keeper is in compliance with all of the following regulations:
(1) 
The owner or keeper of the pit bull shall keep current the license for such pit bull through annual renewal. Such license is not transferable and shall be renewable only by the holder of the license. A pit bull license tag will be issued to the owner or keeper at the time of issuance of the license. Such license tag shall be attached to the pit bull by means of a collar or harness and shall not be attached to any pit bull other than the pit bull for which the license was issued. If the pit bull tag is lost or destroyed, a duplicate tag may be issued upon the payment of a $20 fee.
(2) 
The owner or keeper must be at least 21 years of age.
(3) 
The owner or keeper shall present to the City Clerk proof that the owner or keeper has procured liability insurance in the amount of at least $100,000, covering any damage or injury which may be caused by a pit bull during the twelve-month period covered by the pit bull license. The policy shall contain a provision requiring the insurance company to provide written notice to the City Clerk of Pawtucket not less than 15 days prior to any termination of the policy and not less than five days subsequent to cancellation or expiration of the policy.
(4) 
The owner or keeper, at the owner's or keeper's own expense shall have had the pit bull spayed or neutered and shall present to the City Clerk documentary proof from a licensed veterinarian that this sterilization has been performed. This requirement shall be waived upon a written statement from a licensed veterinarian that the procedure should not or cannot be performed for reasons of the health or age of the animal. If funds are available through the Animal Control Office spay/neuter account, the Animal Control Officer will assist owners or keepers who are residents of the City seeking assistance for the spay/neuter of their dog(s),
(5) 
The Animal Control Officer and the City Clerk shall each maintain a file containing the license numbers, pit bull tag numbers, and the names and addresses of the owner or keepers. The owner or keeper shall notify the Animal Control Officer and the City Clerk in writing of any change of address.
(6) 
At all times when a pit bull is at the property of the owner or keeper, the owner or keeper shall keep the pit bull confined, either in a secure, temporary enclosure, or within the premises of the owner or keeper, or within a fenced enclosure from which the dog cannot escape. At all times when a pit bull is away from the property of the owner or keeper, the owner or keeper shall keep the pit bull either securely leashed and muzzled, or in a "secure temporary enclosure," as that term is defined in Subsection B(3) of this section.
(7) 
The owner or keeper shall not sell or otherwise transfer the pit bull to any person except a member of the owner's or keeper's immediate family who will then become the owner or keeper and will be subject to all of the provisions of this section. The owner or keeper shall notify the City Clerk within five days in the event that the pit bull is lost, stolen, dies, or has a litter. In the event of a litter, the owner or keeper must deliver the puppies to the Pawtucket Municipal Animal Shelter for destruction or permanently remove the puppies from the City of Pawtucket and provide sufficient evidence of such removal by the time the puppies are weaned, but in no event shall the owner or keeper be allowed to keep in Pawtucket a pit bull puppy born after the date of passage of this section, § 116-37.1, that is more than eight weeks old. Any pit bull puppies kept contrary to the provisions of this subsection are subject to immediate impoundment and disposal pursuant to Subsection E of this section.
(8) 
The owner or keeper shall have posted at each possible entrance to the owner or keeper's property where the pit bull is kept a conspicuous and clearly legible pit bull sign. Such pit bull sign must be at least eight inches by 10 inches in rectangular dimensions and shall contain only the words "PIT BULL DOG" in lettering not less than two inches in height.
E. 
Impoundment and disposal of unlicensed pit bull. Notwithstanding any provisions of this chapter, the Animal Control Officer is authorized to immediately impound any pit bull found in the City of Pawtucket which does not fall within the exceptions listed in Subsection C above, and the municipal animal shelter may house or dispose of such pit bull in such manner as the Animal Control Officer may deem appropriate, except as the procedures in Subsection F, below, otherwise require.
F. 
Appeal procedure; Pit bull classification.
(1) 
When the Animal Control Officer has impounded any pit bull dog pursuant to this section, and the owner or keeper of such dog disputes the classification of such dog as a pit bull, the owner or keeper of such dog may appeal the decision by filing a written petition with the Animal Control Officer for a hearing concerning such classification no later than seven days after impoundment. Such petition shall include the name and address, including mailing address, of the petitioner. The Animal Control Officer will then issue a notice of hearing date by mailing a copy to the petitioner's address no later than 10 days prior to the date of the hearing. Where the Animal Control Officer receives no written request from the owner or keeper for a hearing within seven days of impoundment, the pit bull shall be destroyed.
(2) 
The hearing, if any, will be held before the panel regarding dogs created by RIGL § 4-13.1-11. Any facts which the petitioner wishes to be considered shall be submitted under oath or affirmation either in writing or orally at the hearing. The panel shall make a final determination whether the dog is a pit bull as defined in Subsection B(2) of this section. Such final determination shall be considered a final order of the City Council, subject to review under the state rules of civil procedure.
(3) 
If the dog is found to be a pit bull, it shall be destroyed, unless the owner or keeper produces evidence deemed sufficient by the City Council that the pit bull is to be permanently taken out of Pawtucket and the owner or keeper pays the cost of impoundment. If the dog is found not to be a pit bull, the dog shall be released to the owner or keeper, with no impoundment fees imposed, unless the animal was impounded as a result of being at large. The procedures in this Subsection F shall not apply and the owner or keeper is not entitled to such a hearing with respect to any dog which was impounded as the immediate result of an attack or bite. In those instances, the dog shall be handled and the procedures governed by the provisions of RIGL § 4-13.1-1 et seq.
G. 
Enforcement and penalties.
(1) 
The Animal Control Officer shall receive the assistance of the Police Department in carrying out the enforcement provisions of this section.
(2) 
Upon warrant issued by the district court, the Animal Control Officer may enter any residence or business for the enforcement of this section.
[Amended 9-8-2004 by Ch. No. 2740]
(3) 
Any pit bull, after the effective date of this section,[2] which is found by the Animal Control Officer not to be licensed as defined in Subsection C above, or kept according to the provisions of Subsection D above, is subject to immediate impoundment.
[2]
Editor's Note: The effective date of the ordinance adopting this section is 1-1-2004.
(4) 
The owner or keeper of any pit bull which is not subject to the prohibition of Subsection A above, whose dog is found in violation of any part of this section, shall be subject on a first offense to a fine of not more than $250 and on a second or subsequent offense to a fine of not more than $500.
[Amended 9-22-2004 by Ch. No. 2741; 5-24-2018 by Ch. No. 3160]
(5) 
The owner or keeper of any pit bull which is subject to the prohibition of Subsection A above, and which is found in violation of any part of this section, shall be subject to a fine of not more than $500, and the dog shall be subject to immediate impoundment pursuant to Subsection E.
[Amended 9-22-2004 by Ch. No. 2741; 5-24-2018 by Ch. No. 3160[3]]
[3]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Subsection G(6), which provided that the owner or keeper of any pit bull found in violation of this section be subject to no more than 30 days' imprisonment.