Local Ordinances

Navigation

Full Site Search

Loading...

The navigation select boxes below will direct you to the selected page when you hit enter.

Topical Explanations

Primary Legal Materials

Select by Subject

Select by Species

Select Administrative Topic


World Law

Secondary Legal Materials

Great Apes and the Law

Great Apes and the Law

Maps of State Laws

Map of USA
Colorado - Aurora

Chapter 14 - ANIMALS

Last Checked by Web Center Staff: 05/2012
Disclaimer: Due to the overwhelming number of cities and counties across the United States, the Animal Legal & Historical Center's collection reflects only a sample of all animal-related ordinances. Many ordinances are not complete sets and have been edited for a particular topic. If you do not see your city or county listed on the website, please refer to your local government’s website or try searching Municode or American Legal Publishing (http://www.amlegal.com/library/ and http://www.municode.com/Library). Please note that we update ordinances once a year, so the ordinances on this website may not be the most current version.
Statute Details
Printable Version

Citation: Chapter 14. Sec. 14-1 to 14-161

Summary:  
The following comprises Aurora, Colorado's animal-related ordinances. In addition to the standard ordinances dealing with number restrictions, at-large animals, barking dogs, and licensing, the city has two important provisions. First, the city makes it unlawful to own, possess or keep any dog, rabbit, or cat over the age of 6 months that has not been spayed or neutered (subject to some exceptions). Second, it is unlawful for any person to have, own, possess, keep, exercise control over, maintain, harbor, transport, or sell within the city any pit bull or restricted breed of dog. "Restricted breeds" include any American Bulldog (Old Country Bulldog), Dogo Argentino, Canary Dog (Canary Island Dog, Presa Canario, Perro De Presa Canario), Presa Mallorquin (Pero De Presa Mallorquin, Ca De Bou), Tosa Inu (Tosa Fighting Dog, Japanese Fighting Dog, Japanese Mastiff), Cane Corso (Cane Di Macellaio, Sicilian Branchiero), Fila Brasileiro or any dog displaying the majority of physical traits of any one or more of the above breeds.


Ordinance Text in Full:

Chapter 14 - ANIMALS

ARTICLE I. - IN GENERAL

ARTICLE II. - DOGS AND CATS

ARTICLE III. - LIVESTOCK

ARTICLE IV. - FERRETS AND RABBITS

 

ARTICLE I. - IN GENERAL

Sec. 14-1. - Definitions.

Sec. 14-2. - Inspection and enforcement powers.

Sec. 14-3. - Destruction of injured animals.

Sec. 14-4. - Impoundment; court proceedings; destruction of animals.

Sec. 14-5. - Running at large.

Sec. 14-6. - Cruelty; mistreatment.

Sec. 14-7. - Keeping vicious, aggressive or dangerous animals.

Sec. 14-8. - Keeping wild, exotic or dangerous animals or livestock.

Sec. 14-9. - Removal of excrement.

Sec. 14-10. - Damage to property.

Sec. 14-11. - Rabies control.

Sec. 14-12. - Public nuisance.

Sec. 14-13. - Humane care.

Sec. 14-14. - Trapping.

Sec. 14-15. - Beekeeping.

Secs. 14-16—14-40. - Reserved.

ARTICLE II. - DOGS AND CATS

DIVISION 1. - GENERALLY

Sec. 14-41. - Licensing.

Sec. 14-42. - Spay or neuter.

Sec. 14-43. - Sale in public places.

Secs. 14-44—14-70. - Reserved.

DIVISION 2. - DOGS

Sec. 14-71. - Excessive number prohibited.

Sec. 14-72. - Keeping barking dogs.

Sec. 14-73. - Reserved.

Sec. 14-74. - Guard dogs.

Sec. 14-75. - Unlawful keeping of pit bulls or restricted breed of dog.

Secs. 14-76—14-100. - Reserved.

DIVISION 3. - CATS

Sec. 14-101. - Running at large.

Sec. 14-102. - Excessive number prohibited.

Secs. 14-103—14-130. - Reserved.

ARTICLE III. - LIVESTOCK

DIVISION 1. - GENERALLY

Sec. 14-131. - Running at large.

Sec. 14-132. - Impoundment.

Sec. 14-133. - Use in public places.

DIVISION 2. - RESERVED

Secs. 14-134—14-140. - Reserved.

ARTICLE IV. - FERRETS AND RABBITS

Sec. 14-161. - Excessive number prohibited.

 

 

 

Sec. 14-1. - Definitions.

The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this chapter, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning:

Abandon means the leaving of an animal without adequate provisions for the animal's proper care by its owner, the person responsible for the animal's care or custody or any other person having possession of such animal.

Animal means a living organism other than a plant or bacterium. Animal in this Code includes arthropods, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. As used in this Code, the term "animal" excludes humans.

Animal care officer means any person empowered by the city to enforce this chapter by means of appropriate police powers.

Animal grooming service means any place or establishment where animals are kept less than 24 hours to be clipped, combed or otherwise groomed for compensation for the purpose of enhancing their appearance, aesthetic value or health.

Animal shelter means any premises designated by the city manager for the humane boarding and caring for any animal impounded under this chapter or any other ordinance or laws of the state.

Cat means any member of the felidae family including the domestic cat, lion, tiger, leopard, jaguar, cougar, wildcat, lynx and cheetah and any member of the feline family regardless of sex.

Cat, spayed/neutered means any cat upon which spaying or other neutering procedure has been performed by a licensed veterinarian and accompanied by a certificate asserting such operation or other procedure has been performed.

Cattery means any structure or premises where more than three adult cats are kept, whether by the owners of the cats or by persons providing facilities and care whether or not for compensation. A cattery does not include a small animal hospital, clinic or pet shop.

Circus means a commercial variety show featuring feats of horsemanship, balancing, tumbling, vaulting, and where clowns or acrobats, wild animals, performers and actors entertain the audience.

Dog, female/male means any dog upon which no alternative surgery of the genital organs or other neutering procedure has been performed.

Dog kennel means any facility for housing, boarding, harboring, training or breeding where more than three dogs that are four months of age or older are kept.

Dog, spayed/neutered means any dog upon which any neutering procedure has been performed by a licensed veterinarian and accompanied by a certificate asserting such operation or other procedure has been performed.

Domesticated means any animal customarily adapted so as to commonly live safely within the community.

Household pet means any domesticated animal commonly kept in the primary residence. Household pets include dogs, domestic cats, domestic caged birds, canaries, parrots, rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs and similar rodents, fish, and reptiles so long as such animals are not kept to supplement food supplies or for any commercial purpose whatsoever. Household pet does not include livestock or potbellied pigs.

Hybrid means any offspring of two animals of different breeds, varieties, species or genera.

Intact means any dog or cat upon which no alternative surgery of the reproductive organs or other neutering procedure has been performed.

Kennel means any structure or premises used for boarding or breeding of any animal for compensation or for profit.

Livestock means any domesticated animal, including but not limited to equine, bovine genus, ruminantia, sheep, goats, pigs, peacocks, turkeys, chickens, pigeons, ducks, geese, ratite or other poultry or fowl or mink.

Microchip means an electronic transponder intended for the subcutaneous insertion into an animal for the use of identification.

Mistreatment means every act or omission which causes or unreasonably permits the continuation of unnecessary abuse or unjustifiable pain or suffering.

Motor vehicle means any motor vehicle, including but not limited to the open bed of a truck, a convertible vehicle with the top down or removed, the rear storage portion of a station wagon with the tailgate open and the trunk or hatchback portion of any vehicle with trunk or hatchback open.

Neglect means failure to provide food, water, protection from the elements or other care generally considered to be normal, usual and accepted for an animal's health and well-being consistent with the species, breed and type of animal.

Owner means any person in possession of, harboring, keeping or having custody and control of any animal to which the section in which the word appears is applicable.

Pack animals means animals used for carrying materials, including such animals as horses, donkeys, burros or llamas.

Pet shop means any business engaged in buying, selling, trading or bartering for resale or wholesale pet animals to consumers, brokers, commissioned merchants or any middleman.

Ratite means a sub-ordinal group of birds with small or rudimentary wings and no keel to the breastbone that are nonetheless descended from birds with the power of flight, including ostriches, rheas, cassowaries and emus, elephant birds, moas and kiwis.

Rescue means the capture of either a dog or cat that is either running at large or abandoned.

Ruminantia means any even-toed hoofed mammals including sheep, goats, deer, elk, llama and alpaca that chew their cud and have a complex three or four-chambered stomach.

Veterinary clinic means any establishment maintained and operated by a licensed veterinarian for surgery, diagnosis and treatment of diseases and injuries of animals.

Zoological park means a garden or a park where wild or exotic animals are kept for exhibition.

(Code 1979, § 7-1 ; Ord. No. 97-51, § 1, 10-13-97; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 1, 11-18-2002; Ord. No. 2004-52, § 1, 8-23-2004)

 

 

Sec. 14-2. - Inspection and enforcement powers.

(a) Interference unlawful. It shall be unlawful for any person to interfere with, molest, hinder or obstruct the animal care officer or any other city employee or official in the discharge of official duties under this chapter.

(b) Inspection procedure. Whenever it becomes necessary to make an inspection to enforce any of the provisions of or to perform any duty imposed by this chapter or other applicable law or whenever the animal care officer or authorized representative has reasonable cause to believe that there exists in any building or upon any premises any violation of the provisions of this chapter or other applicable law, the animal care officer or authorized representative is authorized to enter such property at any reasonable time and to inspect the property and perform any duty imposed upon the animal care officer by this chapter or by other applicable law, provided that:

(1) If such property is occupied, the animal care officer shall first present proper credentials to the occupant and request and obtain permission for entry, explaining the reasons therefor; or

(2) If such property is unoccupied, the animal care officer shall first make a reasonable effort to locate the owner or other person having charge or control of the property and request entry, explaining the reasons therefor. If such entry is refused or cannot be obtained because the owner or other person having charge or control of the property cannot be found after due diligence, the animal care officer or authorized representative shall have recourse to every remedy provided by law to secure lawful entry and inspect the property. Notice of the entry shall be given by posting such notification at an entrance to or at a conspicuous place upon such area or building where such animal is confined.

(c) Immediate inspection. Not withstanding subsection (b) of this section, if the animal care officer or authorized representative has reasonable cause to believe that the keeping or the maintaining of any animal is so hazardous, unsafe or dangerous as to require immediate inspection to safeguard the animal or the public health or safety, the animal care officer shall have the right immediately to enter and inspect such property and may use any reasonable means required to effect such entry and make such inspection, whether such property is occupied or unoccupied and whether or not permission to inspect has been obtained. If the property is occupied, the animal care officer shall first present proper credentials to the occupant and demand entry, explaining the reasons therefor and the purpose of the inspection.

(d) Exemption for police dogs. Police dogs shall be deemed exempt from the provisions of this chapter while being used by the police department in the performance of the functions and duties of the police department.

(Code 1979, § 7-10; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 2, 11-18-2002)

 

Sec. 14-3. - Destruction of injured animals.

Any police officer or animal care shelter supervisor or designee may lawfully destroy or cause to be destroyed any animal in his or her charge when, in the judgment of such officer, such animal appears to be seriously injured, disabled, diseased past recovery or unfit for any useful purpose.

(Code 1979, § 7-12; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 2, 11-18-2002)

 

Sec. 14-4. - Impoundment; court proceedings; destruction of animals.

(a) Animal shelter. The city shall provide for an animal shelter for the city in the enforcement of this chapter. The city animal shelter shall be any premises designated by the city manager for the humane boarding and caring for any animal impounded under this chapter or any other ordinance or law of the state. This chapter shall be enforceable by any animal care officer and by any police officer or other person who may be so authorized by the Code. They shall be authorized to issue, sign and serve summonses and complaints and to make all determinations within their discretion in compliance with this chapter.

(b) Length of impoundment. If there is probable cause to believe that there is a violation of sections 14-5(a) through (c), 14-6(a) through (d), 14-7(a), 14-8, 14-12, 14-13(a), 14-72, 14-74 or 14-75 the animal may be taken into custody by the animal care officer or member of the police department and impounded in the animal shelter in a humane manner for a period of not less than three days, unless earlier claimed upon payment of all requisite fees as set forth in subsection (g) of this section if a complaint has not been filed in municipal court pursuant to subsection (f) of this section. If the owner fails to claim the impounded animal after three days subsequent to being notified or reasonable efforts to notify have been made, the animal shall become the property of the city and shall be disposed of in a humane manner at the discretion of the city manager or designee. The owner shall still be subject to all fees and costs.

(c) Failure to produce animal. The owner of any animal subject to impoundment under subsection (b) of this section shall, on demand of the animal care officer, or other person who may be so authorized by the Code, produce the animal for impoundment as prescribed in this section. It shall be unlawful for the owner of any such animal to fail or refuse to produce the animal on demand. Any such failure or refusal shall subject the owner to immediate arrest, should probable cause exist to believe that the owner is harboring or keeping the animal and refuses to produce it upon such demand. Upon arrest, the owner shall be held to appear before a judge of the municipal court who may order the immediate production of the animal. Each day of such willful refusal to produce the animal shall constitute a separate violation and offense.

(d) Fees. The city manager shall promulgate the fees relevant to this chapter in accordance with city procedures concerning administrative charges for city services.

(e) Notice. The animal care officer shall make every reasonable effort to identify and notify the owner of the impoundment of the animal.

(f) Court proceedings against animal owner. If a dog or other animal is impounded, the animal care officer or member of the police department may institute proceedings in the municipal court on behalf of the city against the animal owner, if known, charging the owner with a violation of this chapter. Nothing in this section shall be construed as preventing the animal care officer, a member of the police department or any other person who may be authorized pursuant to this Code from instituting a proceeding in the municipal court for violation of this chapter when there is probable cause to believe that the violation occurred but where there has been no impoundment.

(g) Court findings; release of animal; destruction; surrender. If a complaint has been filed in the municipal court against the owner of an animal impounded for violation of section 14-5(a) through (c), 14-6(a) through (d), 14-7(a), 14-8, 14-12, 14-13(a), 14-72, 14-74 or 14-75, the animal shall not be released from impoundment except on the order of the municipal judge. Charges and payment of all costs under subsection (g) of this section, in addition to any penalties for violation of this chapter, shall be assessed against the owner. If the fees and charges are not paid within three days after an order releasing the animal, it shall be deemed an unclaimed animal under subsection (b) of this section. Such an order releasing an animal shall not occur without 24 hours' notice to the city animal shelter and the city attorney's municipal court office, so as to provide an opportunity to oppose release based on the character of the animal; prior offenses involving the same owner or animal; improper care; or prior unpaid fines, fees or charges. The municipal judge may, upon making a finding that the alleged owner has failed, without prior excuse, to appear for any court date on the complaint, order the animal to be surrendered to the Aurora Animal Care Division or destroyed in a humane manner under the supervision of the animal care officer. When, at a hearing for release or destruction, an owner of an animal that has been found by the municipal court, by a preponderance of the evidence, to have violated any provision of section 14-75, the animal shall be destroyed unless the owner produces evidence deemed sufficient by the court pursuant to section 14-75(e) that the pit bull or restricted breed of dog is to be permanently taken out of the city. When, at a hearing for release or destruction, an owner of an animal that has been found by the municipal judge, by a preponderance of the evidence, to have violated section 14-5(a) through (c), 14-7(a), 14-12, 14-72 or 14-74, the animal shall be ordered surrendered for disposition or destroyed unless the municipal judge finds, by a preponderance of the evidence, there exists reasonable assurance that the animal can be safely maintained, cared for and controlled without danger to the community or that the animal does not create a nuisance to the surrounding neighbors or community. In determining whether the animal can be safely maintained, cared for and controlled by its owner, the judge shall consider all relevant and reliable evidence, whether or not the evidence is admissible at trial, including, without limitation, pre-bite or post-bite behavior indicative of vicious, aggressive or dangerous tendencies regardless of impoundment status; however, the mere absence of other instances of post-bite vicious, aggressive or dangerous behavior, regardless of impoundment status, shall not be sufficient to support a finding in favor of release. Additionally, when determination of the animal being a nuisance is made, the judge shall consider the frequency of violations and the degree of annoyance.

(1) When, at a pretrial hearing for release, destruction, surrender, an owner of an animal has been found by the municipal judge, by a preponderance of the evidence, to have violated section 14-6 or 14-13 of this section, the animal shall be ordered surrendered to the Aurora Animal Care Division for disposition unless the municipal judge finds, by a preponderance of the evidence, there exists reasonable assurance that the animal can be safely maintained, cared for and controlled without danger to the animal. Surrender of an animal by the owner to the animal care officer shall not relieve or render the owner immune from the decision of the court or from the fees and fines or penalties which may result from any violation of this chapter.

(2) When, at a pretrial hearing, an owner of an animal has been found by the municipal judge, by a preponderance of the evidence, to have violated section 14-8 of this section, the animal shall be ordered surrendered to the Aurora Animal Care Division for disposition.

(3) When, at a pretrial hearing, an owner of an animal has been found by the municipal judge, by a preponderance of the evidence, to have violated section 14-7(a), and such violation is a second violation of section 14-7(a) involving the same animal, the animal shall be ordered destroyed.

(h) Payment of fees prior to animal's release. Subject to subsections (f) and (g) of this section, any impounded animal may be redeemed by the owner upon prior payment of the impound fee, if the animal was not voluntarily impounded by the owner; boarding fees; veterinary charges, if any; and such other costs assessed incidental to the impoundment of the animal.

(i) Fails to pay fees; penalty. The refusal to redeem any impounded animal by the owner thereof shall not relieve the owner of the duty to pay the impoundment, boarding and veterinary charges that may be assessed. The owner of any animal who fails or refuses to pay such fees and charges shall be in violation of this section and may be summoned and be subject to both such fine and imprisonment as provided by section 1-13, upon conviction of violation of this section.

(j) Liability. Neither the city, its employees, nor any person enforcing this section shall be held liable for any accident or subsequent disease that may occur in connection with the administration of this section.

(k) Appeal bond. If the owner of an animal that is ordered surrendered or destroyed pursuant to subsection (f) of this section desires a stay of execution of the destruction order pending appeal, the owner shall, as a condition of any such stay of execution, post with the clerk of the court an amount sufficient to pay the costs, fees and expenses specified in subsections (k)(1) and (2) of this section. The fees specified in subsection (k)(2) of this section shall be posted with the clerk of the municipal court 60-days in advance, and in successive 30-day increments thereafter during the pendency of the appeal. If any required deposit is not made, the stay of execution shall expire and the order for surrender or destruction of the animal shall be executed. If a final order is entered authorizing the surrender or destruction of the animal, the costs, fees and expenses posted pursuant to subsections (k)(1) and (2) of this section shall be forfeited and paid to the animal shelter. If, after final appeal, it is determined that the animal should not be surrendered or destroyed and that the order for surrender or destruction was entered in error, the fees posted as a condition of the stay of execution pursuant to subsection (k)(2) of this section shall be refunded to the appellant and the animal shall be released to the owner. In such event, the costs and expenses posted pursuant to subsection (k)(1) of this section shall be ordered forfeited to the court and paid to the animal shelter. In addition to those costs, fees and expenses covered by subsections (k)(1) and (2) of this section, costs and expenses covered by subsection (k)(3) of this section shall be remitted to the animal shelter within 15 days of the billing thereof. The date of the bill shall be the day the bill is mailed to the owner's last known address. In lieu of a cash deposit, the appellant may execute a bond to the city as provided in this subsection. One or more sureties may be required or the defendant may furnish cash security or, in the discretion of the court, no security or surety need be required. Costs and fees shall be designated as follows:

(1) Costs and expenses from and including the date of impoundment through and including the date the stay of execution is obtained.

(2) Boarding fees from the date the stay of execution is obtained through and including final resolution.

(3) Reasonable and necessary costs and other expenses, undertaken for the welfare of the animal not covered by subsections (k)(1) and (2) of this section, incurred from and including the date of the stay of execution through final resolution.

(Code 1979, § 7-9; Ord. No. 97-51, § 2, 10-13-97; Ord. No. 99-57, § 2, 8-16-99; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 2, 11-18-2002; Ord. No. 2004-52, § 2, 8-23-2004; Ord. No. 2005-84, § 2, 10-24-2005)

 

Sec. 14-5. - Running at large.

(a) Prohibited. It shall be unlawful for the owner or custodian of any dog or other animal to fail to keep the dog or other animal from running at large within the city. For the purposes of this chapter, an animal shall be deemed running at large when such animal is not physically restrained as follows:

(1) When the animal is being restrained by tethering upon the premises of the owner or custodian, it must have a cord, leash or chain that is a minimum of six feet in length. It must not be able to enter upon public property, including sidewalks, or the premises of another. Any animal off the premises of the owner or custodian shall be restrained by a leash, cord or chain a maximum of ten feet in length, held by a person who is physically able to control the animal.

(2) For the purposes of this chapter, the term "premises of the owner or custodian" shall be defined as the residence of the owner or custodian, including the attached property surrounding the residence that is leased or owned by the owner or custodian, but not including any common area, park or recreational property jointly owned or leased by the members of a homeowners' or tenants' association.

(3) No animal shall be deemed to be running at large when the animal is upon the premises of the owner or custodian and when the animal is contained on or restricted to the premises by fencing or other means secured by an adequate locking device.

(4) Any animal enclosed within the automobile or other vehicle of its owner or custodian shall be deemed to be upon the owner's or custodian's premises.

(5) No dog shall be deemed to be running at large when the dog is upon the premises of a city dedicated off-leash dog park.

(b) Animal killed or injured on highway. Notwithstanding any provisions herein to the contrary, animals injured or killed on or along public streets or other rights-of-way shall be presumed to be running at large. The animal care officer shall remove all such animals and, at his or her discretion, take those needing medical attention to a veterinarian or to the city animal shelter. The owner of such animal shall be liable for all expenses of treatment and of impoundment, as well as any penalties which may be imposed for violation of this section.

(c) Unspayed females. Any unspayed female animal in the state of estrus (heat) shall be deemed to be running at large unless confined during such period of time within a house, building or other secure enclosure which shall be so constructed that no other animal of the opposite sex of the same species may gain access to the confined area unless intentionally admitted to such area by the confined animal's owner for breeding purposes. The animal care officer shall have the authority to order the owner to remove any unspayed female animal in the state of estrus (heat) to the type of confinement described in this subsection and may furthermore require the animal to be confined to a boarding kennel or veterinary hospital of the owner's choice or to the animal shelter for the duration of the estrus cycle. Any animal so confined to the animal shelter shall not be disposed of as provided in subsection 14-4(b). However, after notification that the animal is no longer in estrus and the animal is not redeemed after three days, the owner is deemed to have abandoned the animal and subsection 14-4(b) shall become applicable. All expenses that were incurred as a result of confinement shall be paid by the owner. No impound fee shall be assessed. Failure to comply with the confinement order of the animal care officer shall constitute a violation of this section and the animal will then be impounded as set forth in section 14-4 and its owner shall be subject to the penalty set forth in subsection (d) of this section.

(d) Penalty. Any person found guilty of violating this section shall, upon the first conviction, be subject to the payment of a fine of not less than $25.00 upon the conviction of a second offense involving the same animal shall be fined a sum not less than $75.00 and shall be required to spay or neuter and microchip the animal; (unless the owner provides a written statement from a licensed veterinarian that the spay or neuter procedure would be harmful or dangerous to the health of the animal), and upon the third and subsequent offenses shall be fined an amount not less than $150.00 nor more than $1,000.00. In addition to the fines stated in this subsection, a person convicted under this section may be subject to not more than one year in jail. The minimum monetary fines stated in this subsection may not be suspended by the municipal court. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed as preventing the animal care officer from instituting a proceeding in the municipal court for violation of this section where there has been no impoundment.

(Code 1979, § 7-2 ; Ord. No. 97-51, § 3, 10-13-97; Ord. No. 2001-55, § 1, 8-20-2001; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 3, 11-18-2002; Ord. No. 2004-52, § 3, 8-23-2004)

 

Sec. 14-6. - Cruelty; mistreatment.

(a) Cruelty. It shall be unlawful for any person to commit cruelty to animals. A person commits cruelty to animals if he or she knowingly or with criminal negligence overdrives, overworks, tortures, torments, deprives of necessary sustenance, unnecessarily or cruelly beats, needlessly mutilates, needlessly kills or, having the charge or custody of any animal, fails to provide it with proper food, drink or protection from the weather or abandons it.

(b) Open vehicle. No person who owns or has control of any animal shall allow such animal to ride in any open motor vehicle or vessel in such a manner as to permit injury to the animal. For purposes of this subsection, the operator of a motor vehicle shall be deemed to have control of any animals riding therein. Factors to be considered by the court shall include, but are not limited to the following:

(1) Transporting any animal in an open truck or any motor vehicle or vessel in such a manner as to permit an animal to jump or be thrown therefrom by acceleration of, stopping of or accident involving the vehicle.

(2) Weather conditions and temperature of the vehicle.

(3) Tethering or securing any animal in such a way that it may be thrown from the vehicle by acceleration of, stopping of or accident involving the vehicle.

This subsection shall not apply to the owner or controller of such animal if such animal is confined to a cage or enclosure of adequate construction to prevent its escape therefrom and provides proper ventilation.

(c) Care of confined animal. Except as authorized by law, no animal shall be confined without an adequate supply of food and water. If any animal is found to be confined without adequate food or water, it shall be lawful for any police officer or animal care officer, from time to time as may be necessary, to enter into and upon any area or building where such animal is confined and supply it with adequate food and water in accordance with the procedures found in section 14-2. If such animal is not cared for by a person other than an animal care officer within 24 hours of the posting of notification as described in section 14-2, such animal shall be presumed to have been abandoned under circumstances in which the animal's life or health is endangered.

(d) Endangering animal's health or life. No animal shall be mistreated or neglected to such degree or abandoned in any circumstance so that the animal's life or health is endangered. The term "mistreatment," "neglect" or "abandon" are as defined in section 14-1

(e) Poisoning. It shall be unlawful for any person to poison any animal or to distribute poison in any manner whatsoever with the intent to or for the purpose of poisoning any animal; provided, however, for the purpose only of this subsection, the term "animal" shall not include bats, mice, rats, or other rodents approved by state law, but shall include hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits and squirrels. The distribution of any poison or poisoned meat or food, other than those specifically for insect or bat, mouse, rat, or other rodent poisoning, shall be prima facie evidence of violation of this subsection.

(f) Molesting birds. It shall be unlawful for any person within the city to at any time willfully frighten, shoot at, wound, kill, capture, ensnare, net, trap or in any other manner molest or injure any bird, fowl or water fowl or in any manner willfully molest or injure the nest, eggs or young of any such bird, fowl or water fowl.

(Code 1979, § 7-3 ; Ord. No. 97-51, § 4, 10-13-97)

 

Sec. 14-7. - Keeping vicious, aggressive or dangerous animals.

(a) Prohibited. It shall be unlawful for any person to keep or harbor a fierce, vicious, aggressive or dangerous animal. For the purposes of this chapter, the term "fierce, vicious, aggressive or dangerous animal" shall mean any dog or other animal that, without intentional provocation, bites or attacks humans or other animals or in a fierce, vicious, aggressive, dangerous or in a terrorizing manner approaches any person or other animal in an apparent attitude of attack, whether or not the attack is consummated or capable of being consummated. It shall be an affirmative defense to charges under this section if the actual or intended victim of any attack has made an unlawful entry into the dwelling of the owner.

(b) Guard dogs excepted. Dogs maintained as guard dogs, as defined in section 14-74 and in compliance with such section, shall not be included under this section.

(c) Penalty. Any person found guilty of violating this section shall, upon the first conviction, be subject to the payment of a fine of not less than $150.00, upon the second conviction shall be fined not less than $500.00, and upon the third and any subsequent convictions shall be fined not less than $1,000.00. In addition to the fines stated in this subsection, a person convicted under this section may be subject to not more than one year in jail. None of the minimum monetary fines in this subsection shall be suspended by the municipal court and the penalties in this subsection may be imposed in addition to the court-ordered destruction provided for in subsection 14-4(f). In addition to the fines and penalties stated in this subsection, any person convicted of this section shall be ordered to have the vicious, aggressive or dangerous animal microchipped and spayed/neutered. Any person convicted of a subsequent violation of this section shall be ordered to have all dogs within their ownership microchipped and spayed/neutered. If such violation is a second violation involving the same animal, the animal shall be ordered destroyed.

(d) Destruction. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to prevent the immediate destruction by the animal care officer or a police officer of any fierce, vicious, aggressive or dangerous dog or other animal when less drastic methods, such as tranquilizing, are not available or effective and when neither the animal care officer, a member of the police department nor the animal's owner is able to restrain or control the animal so that it might be impounded in the animal shelter pursuant to section 14-4

(Code 1979, § 7-4 ; Ord. No. 97-51, § 5, 10-13-97; Ord. No. 2004-52, § 4, 8-23-2004)

 

Sec. 14-8. - Keeping wild, exotic or dangerous animals or livestock.

(a) Prohibited. It shall be unlawful for any person to own, possess, harbor, sell or in any other manner traffic in the following species or hybrid species of animals:

(1) All poisonous or venomous animals, anacondas, Reticulated Pythons, Burmese Pythons and Amethystine Pythons.

(2) All other non-venomous snakes with a length greater than six feet measured from the tip of the nose to the tip of the tail.

(3) All other reptiles with a length greater than three feet measured from the tip of the nose to the tip of the tail.

(4) Gorillas, chimpanzees, orangutans, baboons and any other primates.

(5) Any species of feline not falling within the categories of ordinary domesticated house cats.

(6) Bears of any species.

(7) Marsupials, squirrels, raccoons, porcupines, skunks, badgers or other like species, except ferrets (mustela furo).

(8) Foxes, wolves, coyotes or other species of canines other than dogs.

(9) Crocodilians and monitor lizards.

(10) Any animal that is not indigenous to the state and is not classified as a household pet.

(11) Livestock as defined in section 14-1 is not permitted unless allowed by zoning district provisions in chapter 146

(b) Alleged domestication of any prohibited animal shall not affect its status under this section.

(c) Exceptions.

(1) Subsection (a) of this section shall not be applicable to any bona fide zoological garden or any circus or carnival licensed by the city or any bona fide research institute using wild, exotic or dangerous animals for scientific research or any state licensed wildlife rehabilitator, organization or individual who performs wildlife rescue and rehabilitation and is permitted with the city animal care division, or any individual in possession of a current and valid city permit for keeping non-venomous snakes that exceed six-feet in length for educational presentations in compliance with the conditions established by the city manager or the manager's designee for the permit. Under no circumstances will a permit be granted for anacondas, Reticulated Pythons, Burmese Pythons, Amethystine Pythons or venomous snakes.

(2) Two years from the effective date of this section, the animal care division will present to members of the code enforcement policy committee, a report of the number and types of snakes impounded under subsection (a)(1) and the number of permits issued for keeping non-venomous snakes longer than six-feet for educational presentations.

(d) At large. The animal care officer will have the authority to apprehend any livestock, wild, exotic or dangerous animal that may be at large within the city. Such livestock, wild, exotic or dangerous animal may be impounded, released in wild areas outside of the city which are representative of the animal's natural habitat or released to an appropriate keeper or humanely destroyed when the animal care officer in his or her discretion shall determine such, subject to applicable state law. The animal care officer is authorized to use any tranquilizer gun or other firearm to subdue or destroy any wild, exotic or dangerous animal that is determined by the animal care officer in his or her discretion to be of danger to either itself or to the public health and safety.

(Code 1979, § 7-5; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 4, 11-18-2002; Ord. No. 2005-12, § 29, 4-11-2005; Ord. No. 2006-75, § 1, 1-8-2007)

 

Sec. 14-9. - Removal of excrement.

It shall be unlawful for the owner of any dog or other animal not to immediately remove excrement deposited by such animal upon a common thoroughfare, street, sidewalk, play area, park or upon any other public property, except unlandscaped city-owned property in its native state, or upon private property when permission of the owner or tenant of the property has not been obtained, and such is declared to be a public nuisance and a violation of this chapter. Animal excrement shall not be placed in storm sewers or street gutters, but shall be disposed of in a sanitary manner. It shall also be unlawful under this chapter to permit excessive excrement to accumulate on any property to the degree that it becomes offensive or injurious to health.

(Code 1979, § 7-6)

 

Sec. 14-10. - Damage to property.

Any animal owner whose animal, whether or not running at large, destroys, damages or injures any shrubbery, plants, flowers, grass, lawn, fence or anything whatsoever upon any public property or upon any private property, when permission of the owner or tenant of the property has not been obtained, shall be in violation of this chapter and such is declared to be a public nuisance.

(Code 1979, § 7-7)

 

Sec. 14-11. - Rabies control.

(a) Inoculation. Any animal lawfully kept as a household pet or working in the city which is capable of transmitting rabies shall be inoculated against rabies by a licensed veterinarian before attaining the age of four months unless the owner presents to the animal care division a written statement from a licensed Colorado veterinarian that vaccination for rabies would be detrimental to the health of the specific animal. Such vaccination shall be kept current at all times with booster shots administered by a licensed veterinarian on or before the appropriate anniversary date of the initial inoculation. The owner acquiring such animal without current rabies inoculation and tag shall have such animal inoculated against rabies within 30 days after the acquisition or when the animal reaches four months of age. The owner or custodian of any animal required by this section to be inoculated against rabies shall keep a current rabies tag securely attached to the animal at all times. Such tag shall contain the year of the vaccination.

(b) Biting animals; quarantine. The owner of any dog or other animal required by this section to be inoculated against rabies that has bitten any person or other animal shall immediately notify an animal care officer or the animal shelter of such. Any dog or other animal covered by this section that has bitten any person or any other animal or that has been exposed to another animal which is believed to have rabies shall be immediately confined and observed for a period of no fewer than ten days from the date of the bite or exposure. It shall be unlawful for the owner of any dog or other animal that has bitten any person or other animal or that has been exposed to an animal that is believed to have rabies to destroy such animal before it can be properly confined and observed under the supervision of the animal care officer. Such confinement may be on the premises of the owner if deemed an appropriate and sufficient safeguard in the discretion of the animal care officer. If not on the owner's premises, the confinement shall be at the city animal shelter or any licensed veterinary hospital of the owner's choice. Such confinement shall be at the sole expense of the owner.

(c) Removal from quarantine. It shall be unlawful for any person to remove from any place of quarantine any animal which has been quarantined pursuant to this section, without the express consent of the animal care officer.

(d) Diagnosis by veterinarian.

(1) When an animal under quarantine has been diagnosed by a licensed veterinarian as being rabid, the veterinarian making such diagnosis shall immediately notify the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment and advise it of any reports of human contact with such rabid animal. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment shall then, pursuant to its rules and procedures, humanely destroy such rabid animal.

(2) If any animal under quarantine dies while under observation and before a diagnosis has been made, the animal care officer shall immediately take action to notify the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment which will take action to obtain a pathological and inoculation examination of the animal.

(3) If, after the ten-day or longer confinement and observation period provided for in this section, the dog or other animal has not been diagnosed by a licensed veterinarian as having rabies, the quarantined animal shall be released from confinement by the animal care officer upon payment of all impoundment and other quarantine fees, unless the animal is being held pursuant to section 14-4

(Code 1979, § 7-8; Ord. No. 99-57, § 1, 8-16-99; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 4, 11-18-2002)

 

Sec. 14-12. - Public nuisance.

Under this chapter, it shall be unlawful for any person to cause or constitute a public nuisance or to knowingly permit, encourage or unreasonably fail to prevent such nuisances. Nuisance, for purposes of this section, shall be deemed to be but not limited to:

(1) Any continuous and habitual violation of any section within this chapter. Factors to be considered may be but are not limited to accumulated convictions for separate and distinct violations, degree of aggravation or failure of the owner to take corrective action for any violation or all violations.

(2) Any behavior involving animals that endangers the health, safety or public peace of the community.

(3) Negligence in allowing the accumulation of waste matter to the degree of creating a putrid, offensive, unsanitary or unhealthy condition to the surrounding area.

(Code 1979, § 7-13; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 4, 11-18-2002)

 

Sec. 14-13. - Humane care.

(a) Generally. Each animal shall be adequately supervised by the owner and cared for so as to prevent injury, diseases or neglect. Sick or injured animals shall be provided with veterinary care and cared for in a manner that provides for the health and comfort of the animal at all times.

(b) Standards. Every owner, agent, lessee, tenant or occupant of any premises where any animal is kept shall ensure all equipment, buildings and facilities are constructed and maintained to not less than the following standards:

(1) Structural strength. Housing facilities or shelters for animals shall be structurally sound and able to contain the animals and shall be maintained in good repair to protect the animals from injury, adverse weather, safety or health hazards.

(2) Water. Adequate and potable water shall be available to the animals at all times unless veterinary orders indicate to the contrary. Watering receptacles shall be kept clean.

(3) Electric power. Reliable and adequate electric power shall be provided if required for lighting or heating.

(4) Storage. Supplies of feed and bedding shall be stored and protected against infestation or contamination by vermin or decaying organic matter.

(5) Cleaning of pet shops, kennels, cages, facilities and surrounding premises. In pet shops, kennels, cages, facilities and surrounding premises, waste material shall be removed as often as necessary to prevent contamination and to reduce disease, hazards and odors.

(6) Ventilation. Cages, corrals, kennels, stables, stalls, facilities and shelters shall be ventilated to provide for the health and comfort of the animals at all times. Animals shall be provided with fresh air, either by means of windows, doors or vents, which shall be ventilated so as to minimize draft, odors and moisture condensation.

(7) Lighting. Where lighting is required, such lighting shall provide uniformly distributed illumination of sufficient intensity to permit routine inspection and cleaning during inspections or working periods.

(8) Heating. The ambient temperature shall be consistent with the health requirements of the animals.

(9) Cages, corrals, kennels, stables, stalls or any other enclosures. Cages or enclosures shall be structurally sound to contain the animal and shall be maintained in good repair to protect the animal from injury and any adverse conditions. Enclosures shall provide sufficient space to meet the conditions and size of the animal and allow the animal to turn about freely and to easily stand and lie in a comfortable, normal position.

(10) Housekeeping. All facilities shall be kept clean and in good repair in order to protect the animals from injury and disease and to facilitate good animal husbandry, and the owner shall keep surrounding areas free of accumulations of trash, debris and waste.

(11) Feeding. Each animal shall be fed food of a sufficient quantity and of good nutritive quality to meet the normal daily requirements according to size and needs of the animal. Food receptacles shall be located for easy accessibility to the animal and to minimize contamination from trash, debris and waste.

(12) Fencing. All fencing requirements shall comply with chapter 146 of this Code.

(Code 1979, § 7-14)

 

Sec. 14-14. - Trapping.

(a) Illegal traps. It shall be unlawful to use or set, or cause to be used or set, a leghold, snare, instant kill, body gripping trap or such other trap which can cause pain, injury or suffering for the purpose of trapping any feral cat or household pet.

(b) Trapping permits. Except as provided in subsection (c), it shall be unlawful for any person to use or set or cause to be used or set any trap, for the purpose of trapping any feral cat or household pet without first obtaining a permit. Such permit shall be issued by the animal care division of the city for a specified address and period of time not to exceed one year and shall limit and specify the type and number of traps which may be utilized. Such permit may be denied or revoked if the applicant, or any member of the applicant's household has been convicted of any violation relating to cruelty or mistreatment of animals within one year preceding the date of the application for the permit, or during the term of permit.

(c) Exceptions. No permit, as described in subsection (b), shall be required to trap any feral cat or household pet if such trapping is being done inside the individual's residence or place of business. This exception shall not apply to any attached or detached garage or storage structure which is being utilized in connection with a residential use.

(d) Inspection of traps. It shall be unlawful for any person, who uses to sets, or causes to be used or set, any trap which is designed to not harm the animal, to fail, refuse, or neglect to check the trap on a timely basis to prevent endangering the life or health of any animal which is captured by such trap.

(Ord. No. 2001-55, § 2, 8-20-2001)

 

Sec. 14-15. - Beekeeping.

(a) Definitions. The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this section, shall have meanings ascribed to them in this section:

(1) Apiary shall mean a place where bee colonies are kept.

(2) Bee shall mean any stage of the common domestic honey bee, Apis Mellifera Species.

(3) Colony shall mean a hive and its equipment and appurtenances, including bees, comb, honey, pollen, and brood.

(4) Hive shall mean a structure intended for the housing of a bee colony.

(5) Tract shall mean a contiguous parcel of land under common ownership.

(b) Hives. All bee colonies shall be kept in inspectable type hives with removable combs, which shall be kept in sound and usable condition.

(c) Setback. All hives shall be located at least five feet from any adjoining property with the back of the hive facing the nearest adjoining property.

(d) Fencing of flyways. In each instance in which any colony is situated within 25 feet of a developed public or private property line of the tract upon which the apiary is situated, as measured from the nearest point on the hive to the property line, the beekeeper shall establish and maintain a flyway barrier at least six feet in height consisting of a solid wall or fence parallel to the property line and extending ten feet beyond the colony in each direction so that all bees are forced to fly at an elevation of at least six feet above ground level over the property lines in the vicinity of the apiary.

(e) Water. Each beekeeper shall ensure that a convenient source of water is available at all times to the bees so that the bees will not congregate at swimming pools, bibcocks, pet water bowls, birdbaths or other water sources where they may cause human, bird or domestic pet contact. The water shall be maintained so as not to become stagnant.

(f) Maintenance. Each beekeeper shall ensure that no bee comb or other materials that might encourage robbing are left upon the grounds of the apiary site. Upon their removal from the hive, all such materials shall promptly be disposed of in a sealed container or placed within a building or other bee-proof enclosure.

(g) Queens. In any instance in which a colony exhibits unusually aggressive characteristics by stinging or attempting to sting without due provocation or exhibits an unusual disposition towards swarming, it shall be the duty of the beekeeper to re-queen the colony. Queens shall be selected from stock bred for gentleness and nonswarming characteristics.

(h) Colony densities.

(1) It shall be unlawful to keep more than the following number of colonies on any tract within the city, based upon the size or configuration of the tract on which the apiary is situated:

a. One-quarter acre or less tract size—Two colonies;

b. More than one-quarter acre but less than one-half acre tract size—Four colonies;

c. One-half acre or more but less than one acre tract size—Six colonies;

d. One acre or larger tract size—Eight colonies;

e. Regardless of tract size, where all hives are situated at least 200 feet in any direction from all property lines of the tract on which the apiary is situated, there shall be no limit to the number of colonies.

(2) For each two colonies authorized under colony densities, subsection (h)(1) above, there may be maintained upon the same tract one nucleus colony in a hive structure not exceeding one standard 9⅝ inch depth ten frame hive body with no supers attached as required from time to time for management of swarms. Each such nucleus colony shall be disposed of or combined with an authorized colony within 30 days after the date it is acquired.

(i) Prohibited. The keeping by any person of bee colonies in the city not in strict compliance with this section is prohibited. Any bee colony not residing in a hive structure intended for beekeeping, or any swarm of bees, or any colony residing in a standard or homemade hive which, by virtue of its condition, has obviously been abandoned by the beekeeper, is unlawful and may be summarily destroyed or removed from the city by the city manager or designee.

(Ord. No. 2003-51, § 1, 8-11-2003)

 

Secs. 14-16—14-40. - Reserved.


Sec. 14-41. - Licensing.

(a) License required. Any owner of a domesticated dog or cat kept as a household pet or working within the city shall obtain a one-year or a three-year animal license, from the city or its designated agents, for each animal over the age of six months. No license shall be issued until the applicant for the license provides proof of current vaccination for rabies as required in this chapter.

(b) Assessment of fees. An animal license fee for domesticated dogs and cats kept as household pets shall be assessed pursuant to the annual administrative fees as adopted by the council.

(c) Expiration and renewal. A one-year animal license shall expire 12 months from the date of issuance. A three-year animal license shall expire 36 months from the date of issuance. An animal license may be reissued upon payment of fees as stated in subsection (b) of this section.

(d) License tags. It is the responsibility of any owner, keeper or possessor of a domesticated dog or cat kept as a household pet or working within the city to cause such animal to wear at all times a metal tag bearing the legible number of a current license issued for such animal as provided for in this section. At any trial concerning a violation charged under this section, the absence of such tags shall be prima facie evidence that such animal was not properly licensed.

(e) Penalty. Any person found guilty of violating this section shall, upon the first conviction, be subject to the payment of a fine of not less than $50.00, upon the conviction of a second offense occurring within a one-year period shall be fined a sum not less than $75.00, and upon the third and any subsequent convictions shall be fined not less than $100.00 and not more than $1,000.00. In addition to the fines stated in this subsection, a person convicted under this section may be subject to not more than one year in jail. None of the minimum monetary fines in this subsection shall be suspended by the municipal court.

(Code 1979, § 7-56; Ord. No. 97-51, § 6, 10-13-97; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 4, 11-18-2002)

 

Sec. 14-42. - Spay or neuter.

(a) Spay or neuter required. It shall be unlawful to own, possess or keep in the city any dog, rabbit or cat over the age of six months that has not been spayed or neutered, except as provided in subsection (b) of this section.

(b) Exceptions. The following are exceptions to the spay or neuter requirements in subsection (a) of this section:

(1) Medical. A licensed veterinarian has determined that an animal is medically unsuited to undergo the surgical procedure. A signed statement from a licensed veterinarian is required and shall state specifically the medical grounds for the exemption.

(2) Temporary medical. When the animal's medical condition is temporary in nature, the licensed veterinarian shall sign a written statement as to the prognosis of when the surgery may be performed. The date given on that prognosis shall become the expiration date of the temporary medical exemption. After the period of the temporary medical exemption, spay or neuter shall be required unless a licensed veterinarian provides another temporary medical exemption and prognosis of when the surgery may be performed.

(3) Transitory status. An animal which is temporarily in the city. When an animal is temporarily in the city for breeding purposes, the owner of such animal is required to have and present, when requested, a certificate of health signed by a licensed veterinarian.

(4) Intact animal license. An owner obtains an annual intact animal license and is in compliance with the city annual licensing requirements contained in this chapter.

(c) Litter permit and registration number. All litters, or a portion thereof, of puppies or kittens that are to be whelped, queened, sold, traded, bartered, given away, or otherwise transferred within the City of Aurora shall have a litter permit and registration number.

(1) The owner or possessor shall obtain a litter permit and registration number within one week of obtaining possession of any litter, or portion thereof, of puppies or kittens.

(2) Owners or possessors shall abide by all the litter permit and registration administrative requirements.

(3) The litter permit and registration number requirements, of this subsection, shall not apply to pet shops.

(d) Penalty. Any owner found guilty of violating this section and not classified within the exceptions shall be subject to both fine and imprisonment as provided by section 1-13 of this Code. Upon the first conviction, the court shall impose a fine of not less than $100.00. A portion of the minimum monetary fines and imprisonment may be suspended by the municipal court only if the owner of any animal in violation presents to the court proof of the spay or neuter of the animal. Upon a second conviction, in addition to any penalty provided by section 1-13, the owner shall be required to spay or neuter the animal; (unless the owner provides a written statement from a licensed veterinarian that the spay or neuter procedure would be harmful or dangerous to the health of the animal). Nothing in this subsection shall be construed as preventing the animal care officer from instituting a proceeding in the municipal court for violation of this section where there has been no impoundment.

(Code 1979, § 7-15; Ord. No. 97-51, § 7, 10-13-97; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 5, 11-18-2002; Ord. No. 2009-42, § 1, 9-28-2009)

 

Sec. 14-43. - Sale in public places.

A person shall not display any dog or cat in a public place for the purpose of selling or giving the animal away. The term "public place" shall include but not be limited to streets, highways, areas exterior to shops or businesses, carnivals, sidewalks and flea markets. This section does not apply to a registered rescue group or animal welfare society.

(Code 1979, § 7-16)

 

Secs. 14-44—14-70. - Reserved.

 

Sec. 14-71. - Excessive number prohibited.

(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to keep or harbor more than three dogs that are four months of age or older on any premises. Only one litter of offspring may be kept on the premises until the age of four months. Exceptions are licensed kennels, pet shops and city shelters and individuals in possession of a valid fancier's permit with the conditions established by the city council for the permit. In no event shall the permit authorize the possession of more than six dogs except as provided in subsection (b).

(b) Exceptions. The following exceptions shall apply to the issuance of a fancier's permit.

(1) A fancier's permit may be issued for American Kennel Club (AKC) registered dogs for the possession of up to six intact dogs, or eight intact dogs if at least two are actively being shown at a current AKC dog show. This limit shall be in addition to one litter until the age of six months.

(2) A fancier's permit may be issued for residents in R-A zoned districts for four dogs per each full acre not to exceed ten household pets per property. This limit shall be in addition to one litter until the age of six months.

(3) The issuance of permits under these exceptions shall be in accordance with the conditions established by the city council.

(c) It shall be an affirmative defense to excessive number of dogs permitted if the owner is engaged in a bona fide effort to rescue dogs and possesses an animal rescue permit. The owner must make application for the permit to the animal care division within 14 days of taking custody of the additional dogs. The permit shall give the owner three months to dispose of the dogs or otherwise return to the limit of permitted dogs. A maximum of two permits shall be issued to a household at any one time.

(Code 1979, § 7-22; Ord. No. 2002-01, § 1, 2-25-2002)

 

Sec. 14-72. - Keeping barking dogs.

It shall be unlawful to keep or harbor any dog which by frequent, habitual or continued barking, yelping or howling shall cause an annoyance or inconvenience to a neighbor or to people passing to and from upon the public streets or sidewalks, and such is declared to be a nuisance as defined in section 14-12 and a violation of this chapter. The animal care officer or a member of the police department shall have the authority to use all reasonable means to abate such nuisance, including but not limited to requiring that the owner make bona fide efforts to quiet the dog or impoundment of the dog where the owner is absent from the premises. Upon impoundment of a dog for violation of this section, the animal care officer or police officer shall attempt to locate and notify the absent owner by any reasonable means as readily as possible. No summons and complaint shall be issued nor shall there be a conviction for violation of this section unless there are at least two or more complaining witnesses from separate households who shall have signed such complaint and shall have testified at trial. An animal care officer or police officer who has personally investigated the complaint of a single complainant and observed problem behavior of the dog with regard to its frequent, habitual or continued barking, yelping or howling may satisfy the requirement for the second complaining witness and may give testimony to such observations at trial.

(Code 1979, § 7-23)

 

Sec. 14-73. - Reserved.

 

Sec. 14-74. - Guard dogs.

The term "guard dog" shall mean any dog trained or used to protect persons or property by attacking or threatening to attack any person found within the area patrolled by the dog and that is either securely enclosed within that area at all times or under the continuous control of a trained handler. It shall be unlawful for any person to place or maintain guard dogs in any area for the protection of persons or property unless the following are met:

(1) The dogs shall be confined to an enclosed area adequate to ensure they will not escape; or

(2) They shall be under the absolute control of a handler at all times when not securely enclosed; and

(3) The owner or other person in control of the premises upon which a guard dog is maintained shall post warning signs on, over or next to all exterior doors stating that such a dog is on the premises. At least one such sign shall be posted at each driveway or entranceway to the premises. Such signs shall be in lettering clearly visible from either the curbline or a distance of 50 feet, whichever is less, and shall contain a telephone number where some person responsible for controlling such guard dog can be reached 24 hours a day; and

(4) Prior to the placing of a guard dog on any property, the person responsible for the placing shall inform the animal care officer, the police department and the fire department, in writing, of his or her intention to post the dog; the number of dogs to be posted; the location where the dog will be posted; the approximate length of time the dog will be guarding the area; the daily hours the dog will be guarding the area; the breed, sex and age of the dog; and the rabies tag number of the dog. Such notice must be renewed every six months.

(Code 1979, § 7-25)

 

Sec. 14-75. - Unlawful keeping of pit bulls or restricted breed of dog.

(a) Prohibited. It shall be unlawful for any person to have, own, possess, keep, exercise control over, maintain, harbor, transport, or sell within the city any pit bull or restricted breed of dog.

(b) Definitions.

(1) "Immediate family" for purposes of this chapter, includes the owner's spouse, child, parent or sibling.

(2) "Muzzle" for purposes of this chapter, shall mean a restraining device made of metal, plastic, leather, cloth or a combination of these materials that, when fitted and fastened over a snout/mouth/head, prevents the dog from biting but allows room for the dog to breath and pant. The muzzle must be made in a manner that will not cause injury to the dog or interfere with its vision or respiration, but must prevent it from biting any person or animal.

(3) "Pit bull" for purposes of this chapter, is defined as any dog that is an American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, or any dog 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.

(4) "Restricted breed of dog" shall mean any American Bulldog (Old Country Bulldog), Dogo Argentino, Canary Dog (Canary Island Dog, Presa Canario, Perro De Presa Canario), Presa Mallorquin (Pero De Presa Mallorquin, Ca De Bou), Tosa Inu (Tosa Fighting Dog, Japanese Fighting Dog, Japanese Mastiff), Cane Corso (Cane Di Macellaio, Sicilian Branchiero), Fila Brasileiro or any dog displaying the majority of physical traits of any one or more of the above breeds.

(5) "Secure temporary enclosure" for purposes of this chapter, is a secure enclosure used for purposes of transporting a pit bull or restricted breed of dog and which includes a top and bottom permanently attached to the sides except for a "door" for removal of the pit bull or restricted breed of dog. Such enclosure must be of such material and secured with a keyed or combination lock so that the pit bull or restricted breed of dog cannot exit the enclosure on its own.

(6) "Secure pen or enclosure" for the purposes of this chapter, shall mean a six-sided structure designed to prevent entry of a child or escape of a pit bull or restricted breed of dog. Such pen or structure must have minimum dimensions of five-feet by ten-feet per animal housed within and must have secure chain-link sides, a secured top and a secure bottom. The enclosure must provide protection from the elements for the dog. All structures erected to house a pit bull or restricted breed of dog must comply with all zoning and building ordinances and regulations of the city and shall be kept in a clean and sanitary condition. The gate of the pen or enclosure shall be secured with a keyed or combination lock.

(c) Exceptions. The prohibition in subsection (a) shall not apply in the following enumerated circumstances. Failure by the owner to comply and remain in compliance with all of the terms of any applicable exception may subject the pit bull or restricted breed of dog to immediate impoundment and disposition.

(1) The owner of a pit bull or restricted breed of dog who has applied for and received a pit bull or restricted breed of dog license within 60 days of the effective date of this section in accordance with subsection (d) of this section, and who maintains the pit bull or restricted breed of dog at all times in compliance with the pit bull or restricted breed of dog license requirements of subsection (d) of this section and all other applicable requirements of this chapter, may keep a pit bull or restricted breed of dog within the city.

(2) The animal care division may temporarily transport and harbor any pit bull or restricted breed of dog for purposes of enforcing the provisions of this chapter.

(3) Any veterinarian while treating or grooming a pit bull or restricted breed of dog, or holding such pit bull or restricted breed of dog after treatment until claimed by the owner or released to an animal care officer.

(4) A person may temporarily transport into and hold in the city a pit bull or restricted breed of dog only for the purpose of showing such pit bull or restricted breed of dog 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 manager or designee, must obtain any other permits or licenses required by city ordinance, and must provide protective measures adequate to prevent pit bulls or restricted breeds from escaping or injuring the public. The person who transports and holds a pit bull or restricted breed of dog for showing shall, at all times when the pit bull or restricted breed of dog is being transported within the city to and from the place of exhibition, contest, or show, keep the pit bull or restricted breed of dog confined in a secure temporary enclosure locked with a keyed or combination lock and bearing a caution sign affixed in a conspicuous location warning people a pit bull or restricted breed of dog is confined within.

(5) The owner of a pit bull or restricted breed of dog may temporarily transport the pit bull or restricted breed of dog through the city. During such transport the owner may not stop within the city for any reason not reasonably related to and necessary for travel. During such travel, the owner shall keep the pit bull or restricted breed of dog muzzled and either in a secure temporary enclosure or securely leashed with a leash no longer than four feet in length held by someone 21 years of age or older who is capable of effectively controlling the dog. Extension-style leashes may not be used. Leashes may not be attached to inanimate objects.

(d) License. The owner of a pit bull or restricted breed of dog who has applied for and received a pit bull or restricted breed of dog license within 60 days of the effective date of this section, shall be allowed to keep such pit bull or restricted breed of dog within the city. As a condition of issuance of a pit bull or restricted breed of dog license, the owner shall at the time of application, comply with or otherwise provide sufficient evidence that the owner is in compliance with all of the following regulations:

(1) The owner of the pit bull or restricted breed of dog shall provide proof of a current rabies vaccination and shall pay an annual pit bull or restricted breed of dog license fee to be set by city council.

(2) The owner of the pit bull or restricted breed of dog shall keep current the license for such pit bull or restricted breed of dog through annual renewal. Such license is not transferable or renewable except by the holder of the license or by a member of the immediate family of such licensee. A pit bull or restricted breed of dog license tag will be issued to the owner at the time of issuance of the license. Such license tag shall be attached to the pit bull or restricted breed of dog by means of a collar or harness which must be worn by the animal at all times, clearly visible, and shall not be attached to any pit bull or restricted breed of dog other than the pit bull or restricted breed of dog for which the license was issued.

(3) The owner must be at least 21 years of age.

(4) The owner shall present to the city manager or designee proof that the owner has homeowner's or renter's insurance with a minimum of $100,000.00 for liability coverage which will cover any damage or injury caused by a pit bull or restricted breed of dog during the twelve month period covered by the pit bull or restricted breed of dog license.

(5) The owner shall, at the owner's own expense, have the pit bull or restricted breed of dog spayed or neutered and shall present to the city manager or designee documentary proof from a licensed veterinarian that this sterilization has been performed.

(6) The owner shall, at the owner's own expense, have a microchip containing an identification number implanted into the pit bull or restricted breed of dog. The city manager or designee shall maintain a file containing the registration numbers and names of the pit bull or restricted breed of dog and the names and addresses of the owners. The owner shall notify the city manager or designee of any change of address.

(7) At all times when a pit bull or restricted breed of dog is at the property of the owner, the owner shall keep the pit bull or restricted breed of dog confined. When outdoors, all pit bulls or restricted breed of dogs shall be confined in a locked secure pen or enclosure or with an adult at least 21 years of age in the rear yard with the dog, and the rear yard enclosed by a six foot fence maintained in accordance with chapter 146 of this Code. A warning sign shall be affixed to the gate of the structure notifying people a pit bull or restricted breed of dog is contained within.

(8) No pit bull or restricted breed of dog may be kept on a porch, patio or in any part of a house or structure that would allow the dog to exit such building on its own volition.

(9) At all times when a pit bull or restricted breed of dog is away from the property of the owner, the owner shall keep the pit bull or restricted breed of dog muzzled and either in a secure temporary enclosure or securely leashed with a leash no longer than four feet in length held by someone 21 years of age or older who is capable of effectively controlling the dog. Extension-style leashes may not be used. Leashes may not be attached to inanimate objects.

(10) The owner shall not sell or otherwise transfer the pit bull or restricted breed of dog to any person residing within the city except a member of the owner's immediate family who will then become the owner and will be subject to all of the provisions of this section.

(11) The owner shall immediately notify the animal care division in the event that the pit bull or restricted breed is loose, stolen, at-large, unconfined, has mauled, bitten, attacked, threatened, or in any way menaced another animal or human, or has died.

(12) The owner shall have posted at the front door entrance to the owner's property where the pit bull or restricted breed is kept a conspicuous and clearly legible pit bull or restricted breed warning sign obtained from the animal care division.

(13) No person applying for a pit bull or restricted breed of dog license shall be granted a litter or fancier's permit pursuant to section 14-42 of this section for such pit bull or restricted breed of dog.

(14) Failure to comply with any of these conditions shall result in a revocation of the license, impoundment and disposition pursuant to subsection (e) of this section.

(e) Impoundment. The animal care division is authorized to immediately impound any pit bull or restricted breed of dog found within the city limits which does not fall within the exceptions listed in subsection (c) or (d), subject to a pre-trial hearing pursuant to section 14-4 of this Code. If the dog is found to be an unlicensed pit bull or restricted breed of dog, it shall be destroyed unless the owner produces evidence deemed sufficient by the court that the pit bull or restricted breed of dog is to be permanently taken out of the city. Sufficient evidence must include, but is not limited to, a notarized agreement from the person taking custody of the animal containing an address and date of transfer. Additionally, the owner must consent to an in-home inspection by the animal care division within 30 days of release for the purpose of verifying the dog's removal from the city. Prior to release, the owner must pay the cost of impoundment and microchip the dog pursuant to subsection (d)(6) of this section. If the dog is found not to be a pit bull or restricted breed of dog, the dog shall be released to the owner.

(f) Penalty.

(1) Any person found guilty of violating this section with a licensed pit bull or restricted breed, upon conviction, could be subject to the penalty provisions of City Code section 1-13

(2) Any person found guilty of violating this section with an unlicensed pit bull or restricted breed shall, upon conviction, be subject to the payment of a fine of not less than $700.00. In addition to the fines stated in this subsection, a person convicted under this section may be subject to not more than one year in jail. None of the minimum monetary fines in this subsection shall be suspended by the municipal court and the penalties in this subsection may be imposed in addition to the court-ordered destruction provided for in section 14-4

(Ord. No. 2005-84, § 1, 10-24-2005; Ord. No. 2010-55, §§ 1—4, 12-6-2010)

 

Secs. 14-76—14-100. - Reserved.

 

Sec. 14-101. - Running at large.

(a) Prohibited. It shall be unlawful for the owner of any cat to fail to keep the cat from running at large within the city.

(1) For the purposes of this chapter, a cat not physically restrained when off the premises of the owner or custodian shall be deemed running at large.

(2) For purposes of this chapter, the term "premises of the owner or custodian" shall be defined as the residence of the owner or custodian, including the attached property surrounding the residence that is leased or owned by the owner or custodian, but not including any common area, park or recreational property jointly owned or leased by the members of a homeowners' or tenants' association.

(3) No cat shall be deemed to be running at large when the animal is upon the premises of the owner.

(4) Any cat enclosed within the automobile or other vehicle of its owner or custodian shall be deemed to be upon the owner's or custodian's premises.

(b) Penalty. Any person found guilty of violating this section shall, upon the first conviction, be subject to the payment of a fine of not less than $15.00, upon the conviction of a second offense occurring within a one-year period shall be fined a sum not less than $25.00, and upon the third and subsequent offenses committed within a one-year period shall be fined an amount not less than $75.00 nor more than $1,000.00. In addition to the fines stated in this subsection, a person convicted under this section, may be subject to not more than one year in jail. None of the fines shall be suspended by the municipal court. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed as preventing the animal care officer from instituting a proceeding in the municipal court for violation of this section where there has been no impoundment.

(Code 1979, § 7-30; Ord. No. 97-51, § 8, 10-13-97)

 

Sec. 14-102. - Excessive number prohibited.

(a) It shall be unlawful to own, keep or harbor more than five cats that are four months of age or older on any premises. Only one litter of offspring may be kept on the premises until the age of four months. Exceptions are as follows:

(1) Licensed kennels, pet shops, city shelters and individuals in possession of a valid fancier's permit with the conditions established by the city council for the permit. In no event shall the permit authorize the possession of more than ten cats.

(2) Individuals exceeding the allowable number of cats at the time of the enactment of the ordinance from which this section derives may be permitted excess allowable number of cats if the specific existing cats were licensed by the animal care division at the time this section became effective on February 18, 1994.

(b) It shall be affirmative defense to excessive number of cats prohibited if the owner is engaged in a bona fide effort to rescue cats and possesses an animal rescue permit. The owner must make application for the permit to the animal care division within 14 days of taking custody of the additional cats. The permit shall give the owner three months to dispose of the cats or otherwise return to the limit of permitted cats. A maximum of two rescue permits shall be issued to a household at any one time.

(Code 1979, § 7-31; Ord. No. 97-51, § 9, 10-13-97; Ord. No. 2002-02, § 1, 2-25-2002)

 

Secs. 14-103—14-130. - Reserved.


Sec. 14-131. - Running at large.

It shall be unlawful for any person who is the owner or keeper of any horse, cow or other livestock to fail to keep any such horse, cow or other livestock securely corralled or fenced and under such reasonable control as to prevent such horse, cow or other livestock from going attended or unattended on any public property or any private property for which the owner or tenant has not given permission for such entry. This section does not apply where the exception contained in section 14-133 is applicable.

(Code 1979, § 7-37)

 

Sec. 14-132. - Impoundment.

(a) Generally. In addition to any other penalty provided for violation of any section of this chapter, the animal care officer or authorized representative is authorized to remove and impound any horse, cow or other livestock found running at large in violation of section 14-131, and the animal care officer shall impound and keep such animal in a suitable place for disposition as provided in this section and the animal care officer shall, as soon as practicable, contact the state brand inspector's office to determine the ownership of the animal.

(b) Fees. After impounding and before any horse, cow or other livestock is released to the owner, the fees based on the following shall be paid:

(1) The city manager or designee shall promulgate the fees relevant to this chapter in accordance with city procedures concerning administrative charges for city services.

(2) Boarding, actual costs incurred for boarding to be paid to the stable owner.

(3) All actual costs of publication of the notice of sale.

(4) All actual costs for necessary veterinary care.

(c) Sale. No horse, cow or other livestock shall be impounded and boarded for more than ten days, and prior to the expiration of the ten-day period the city shall advertise one time in a newspaper of general circulation in the city that such animal so described in the notice of sale will be sold to the highest bidder. If there is no bidder at the sale, the city shall sell the animal at private sale. From the proceeds of the sale, there shall be withheld all costs incurred in impounding, boarding, veterinary care and advertising and conducting the sale, and any excess remaining shall be returned to the owner, if known. If the owner cannot be located or does not claim the excess funds within 30 days after the sale by presenting satisfactory evidence of ownership, the excess, if any, shall be used to defray those costs incurred by the city for the impounding, boarding and sale of such animals.

(d) Bill of sale. Upon the sale of the horse, cow or other livestock at public or private sale as provided in this section, the city shall execute to the buyer thereof a bill of sale describing the animal, and the bill of sale shall extinguish any prior title or interest of any other person claiming an interest in the animal.

(Code 1979, § 7-38)

 

Sec. 14-133. - Use in public places.

Notwithstanding the prohibition in section 14-131, a person may ride or lead a horse on a bridle path or other ways expressly provided for and posted for that purpose. A person may also lead or ride a horse in a funeral procession or parade so long as a special use permit has been issued for the procession or parade.

(Code 1979, § 7-39)

 

Secs. 14-134—14-140. - Reserved.

 

Sec. 14-161. - Excessive number prohibited.

(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to keep or harbor more than three ferrets or two rabbits that are four months of age or older on any premises. Only one litter of offspring may be kept on the premises until the age of four months.

(b) Exceptions.

(1) Licensed kennels, pet shops and city shelters.

(2) Any person providing records of ownership for excessive number of rabbits with the Aurora Animal Care Division within 30 days of the effective date [December 28, 2002] of this section shall not be subject to enforcement of subsection (a) for any rabbits existing at the time of the registration.

(Ord. No. 2001-82, § 1, 1-7-2002; Ord. No. 2002-70, § 6, 11-18-2002)


 

Top of Page