Township of Thornbury, PA
Chester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Thornbury as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Parks and recreation — See Ch. 41.
Peace and good order — See Ch. 89.
[Adopted 6-4-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-4]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
OWNER/CUSTODIAN
Includes every person having right of proprietorship or ownership in a dog and every person who keeps or harbors a dog or has it in his care and any person who permits a dog to remain on or about any premises occupied by him.
RUNNING AT LARGE
Being upon a public highway, street, alley, park or any other public land, or upon property of another person other than the owner, or not being on a leash and accompanied by or under the control of the owner or any other person having custody of a said dog.
SMALL DOMESTIC FOWL
Includes only chickens, hens, ducks, and roosters of a noncrowing species. Such animal shall not include any exotic, wild, and/or dangerous animal, including but not limited to those designated and regulated as such by the Pennsylvania Game Commission or other federal or state law.
[Added 10-15-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-1]
A. 
The owners of every dog within the Township of Thornbury shall at all times keep such dog either:
(1) 
Firmly secured by means of a collar and chain or other device so that it cannot stray beyond the premises on which it is secured; or
(2) 
Under the reasonable control of some person, or when engaged in lawful hunting exhibition or field training.
B. 
No person owning, harboring, keeping or in charge of a dog shall cause, suffer or allow the dog to soil, defile, defecate on or commit any nuisance on any common thoroughfare, sidewalk, passageway, bypath, play area or any place where people congregate or walk, or on any public property whatsoever, or on any private property without the permission of the owner of said property. The restriction set forth in this subsection shall not apply to the portion of the street lying between the curblines, which shall be used to curb such dog under the following conditions:
(1) 
The person who so curbs such dog shall immediately remove all feces deposited by the dog by any sanitary and reasonable manner.
(2) 
The feces removed from the aforementioned designated area shall be disposed of in a sanitary manner by the person owning, harboring, keeping or in charge of any dog curbed in accordance with the provisions of this article.
It shall be unlawful for the owner of any dog to permit such dog to run at large in Thornbury Township. Any such dog found to be running at large, either upon the public streets or highways of the commonwealth, or upon the property of a person other than the owner of such dog, and unaccompanied by the owner or keeper, whether licensed or unlicensed, shall be subject to seizure, detention and disposition by any Thornbury Township police officer or agency employed by Thornbury Township to carry out such seizure, detention and disposition in accordance with the provisions of Section 302 of the Pennsylvania Dog Law, Act of December 7, 1982, P.L. 784, No. 225, as from time to time amended.
If the enforcement officer is unable for any reason to deliver immediate possession of the dog to its owner or custodian, he shall deliver the same to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), and notice shall be given to the owner or custodian as soon as possible. The owner or custodian may reclaim the same at the office of the SPCA upon complying with that organization's rules, subject to the following conditions:
A. 
The owner or custodian, in return for the release of his dog, before paying the penalty hereinafter specified, agrees to keep and hold it thereafter in compliance with terms of this article; and
B. 
The owner or custodian recognizes the violation of this article and agrees to pay to the Township, at the Secretary's office, the penalty as prescribed in the fine schedule within five days following said release.
If the owner or custodian of the dog shall fail to pay the applicable penalty within the five-day period, he shall be subject to prosecution before a District Justice or other court having jurisdiction, and be charged with violation of this article. If the owner or custodian fails to claim the dog within three days following seizure, it shall be considered abandoned, and subject to disposition in accordance with the rules of the SPCA. Such abandonment shall not, however, relieve the owner or custodian from the consequences of violating this article.
Any person violating any of the provisions of this article shall be subject to the following fines and penalties:
A. 
A fine of $25 for the first offense in any calendar year.
B. 
A fine of $50 for the second offense in any one calendar year.
C. 
A fine of $100 for the third and subsequent offense in any one calendar year.
It shall be unlawful within the Township of Thornbury for any person or persons to own, possess, harbor or control any dog which makes noise continuously and/or incessantly to the disturbance of any reasonable person for a period of 30 minutes or more between the hours of 8:00 a.m. through 10:00 p.m. or for a period of 30 minutes or more between the hours of 10:00 p.m. through 8:00 a.m, provided that at the time the dog is making such noise, it does so without reasonable provocation. Prior to the filing of any complaint, it must be demonstrated that reasonable attempts have been made by the aggrieved parties to resolve the dispute.
No person shall own, keep or harbor within the Township any dog six months or older unless such animal is licensed by the County of Chester and unless such dog wears a collar and a license tag. This provision is not intended to apply to dogs whose owners are nonresidents, and temporarily in the Township, nor to any Seeing eye dog or Hearing ear dog properly trained to assist blind persons or hearing-impaired persons when such dog is actually used by a blind person or a hearing-impaired person for the purpose of going from place to place.
Any person who violates or permits a violation of this article shall, upon conviction in a summary proceeding brought before a District Justice under the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure, be guilty of a summary offense and shall be punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000, plus costs of prosecution. Each day or portion thereof that such violation continues or is permitted to continue shall constitute a separate offense, and each section of this chapter that is violated shall also constitute a separate offense.
[Adopted 10-15-2013 by Ord. No. 2013-1]
A. 
The keeping of small domestic fowl for noncommercial purposes is allowed on a residential property, provided that the following conditions are met:
(1) 
The keeping of roosters of a crowing species is specifically prohibited.
(2) 
The total number of small domestic fowl shall not exceed one per each 1/5 acre of gross lot area.
(3) 
Fencing and an enclosed animal house structure, either fixed or movable, shall be located pursuant to an approved zoning permit issued by the Township. The fenced area and animal house structure shall be located only in the rear yard and shall comply with the following requirements:
(a) 
The setback for the fenced area and animal house structure shall be at least 50 feet from any property line, unless written permission has been given from the adjoining property owner. If the applicant requests permission from the adjoining property via certified mail, and no response is provided within 30 days, then permission to locate closer than 50 feet from the property line is implied.
(b) 
Animal waste must be disposed of in an enclosed container, or composted in a designated area.
(c) 
Composted animal waste must either be placed in a location that either drains inward onto the property, or is at least 20 feet from a neighboring property. At no time shall composted animal waste drain onto a neighboring property.
(4) 
At no time may the keeping of small domestic fowl be allowed to be a nuisance, as defined in the Township Code, due to odor, noise, or otherwise disturbing the peace as determined by the Township Code Enforcement Officer or police officer, as applicable.
B. 
On properties of five acres or greater, the regulations in Subsection A shall not apply, and the keeping of such animals shall be subject to applicable regulations for agricultural use under Chapter 155.