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Spay & Neuter: Related Ordinances

Ordinances that deal with the spaying or neutering of pets cover one of two areas. First, pet sellers or local animal shelters may be required to spay or neuter pets prior to sale or adoption. Alternatively, the law may require the new owner to pay a refundable deposit for future sterilization surgery. The second emerging area is a mandatory spay or neuter requirement for all pet owners. These ordinances are considered controversial by some. Generally, such a law requires an owner with an animal over six months old to spay or neuter his or her dog or cat unless he or she obtains a special "unaltered" license. For more, see our Spay/Neuter Topic Area or this detailed discussion on local mandatory spay/neuter programs.

Ordinance Name Citation Summary
CA - Los Angeles County - Title 10. Animals   Sections 10.04.010 to 10.90.010   Title 10 comprises the animal law ordinances for Los Angeles County, California. Chapter 10.08 contains definitions; Chapters 10.12 and 10.16 are the laws pertaining to the Department of Animal Care and Control and its volunteer program. Chapter 10.20 outlines licensing, vaccinations, spaying and neutering requirements for dogs and cats. Chapter 10.32 prohibits animals running at large, and 10.36 contains impoundment procedures. Chapter 10.37 deals with dangerous dogs. Chapter 10.52 contains the laws regarding stockyards and hog ranches. The importation of animals is covered in Chapter 10.56. Tuberculosis and quarantine laws are found in Chapters 10.60 and 10.64. Title 10 also covers sanitation (10.68), animal disease reports (10.72), apiaries (10.76), dogs in open vehicles (10.80), feeding of predators (10.84), interference with police dogs (10.86), and fees (10.90).  
CA - San Mateo - Title 6 - ANIMALS   Title 6 - ANIMALS, Sections 6.04.010 to 6.20.160   These are the ordinances in San Mateo, California that deal with animals. The laws regulate animal control, exotic animals, spaying, neutering, and breeding, kennels, catteries, and animal fanciers permits.
 
CA - Santa Cruz County - Santa Cruz County Code. Title 6. Animals.   Title 6. Sections 6.04 to 6.24.090   This comprises Santa Cruz County's animal-related ordinances. Santa Cruz County has a mandatory sterilization ordinance, which states that a dog or cat over the age of 6 months must be spayed or neutered unless such person holds an unaltered animal certification for the animal (excepting law enforcement dogs, service dogs, dogs or cats with health problems that prevent sterilization, herding dogs, or dogs or cats boarded in a business for training or resale). The code also has a section on feral cats, defined as felines that are wild by nature or no longer domesticated. It is unlawful for a person to intentionally provide food, water, or other forms of sustenance to a feral cat colony unless that person has registered with the county, and complies with the requirements (e.g., regularly trapping the cats for sterilization, testing trapped cats for feline leukemia, "ear tipping" for identification, rabies vaccination, and regularly feeding the colony even on holidays and weekends). Other provisions of note include a prohibition on "noisy animals" (one that habitually howls, yells, barks or makes other noise that unreasonably disturbs); a prohibition on the keeping of any "wild species" as defined by Section 2118 of the Cal. Fish & Game Code; and a leash/tether/grasp requirement when a dog is off its owner's premises.  
CO - Aurora - Chapter 14 - ANIMALS   Chapter 14. Sec. 14-1 to 14-161   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.  
WA - King County - IV. MANDATORY SPAY AND NEUTER PROGRAM   Sections 11.04.400 to 11.04.580   This part of the King County, Washington animal control ordinance states that no person shall own or harbor any cat or dog over the age of six months that has not been spayed or neutered unless the person holds an unaltered animal license for the animal pursuant to K.C.C. 11.04.030 (except for guide dog puppies and police service dogs). The animal care and control authority shall develop and implement a twelve-month program to canvass for compliance with the licensing requirements of this chapter.  

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