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North Carolina

West's North Carolina General Statutes Annotated. Chapter 14; Chapter 19A. Protection of Animals; Chapter 67. Dogs; Chapter 90. Medicine and Allied Occupations; Chapter 113. Conservation and Development; Chapter 130A. Public Health; Chapter 145. State Symbols and Other Official Adoptions; Chapter 160A. Cities and Towns.

Statute Details
Printable Version
Citation: NC ST 14-81 to 82; 19A-20 to 44; 19A-60 to 65; 67-1 - 36; 90-187.7; 113-291.5; 130A-184 to 204; 145-13; 160A-186; 160A-212

Citation: N.C.G.S.A. 14-81 to 82; 19A-20 to 44; 19A-60 to 65; 67-1 to 36; 90-187.7; 113-291.5; 130A-184 - 204; 145-13; 160A-186; 160A-212


Last Checked by Web Center Staff: 03/2013

Summary:   These North Carolina statutes comprise the state's dog laws.  Among the provisions include pet shop provisions, rabies vaccination laws, and the dangerous dog chapter.


Statute in Full:

Larceny of Dog

Animal Welfare Act (includes licensing, animal control, and neglect provisions)

Spay/Neuter Program

Liability for Damage Caused by Dogs (including dog bite provisions)

Dangerous Dog Provisions

Licensing and Dog Restraint Provisions

Protection of Livestock and Poultry from Ranging Dogs

Abandonment of Dog at Veterinarian

Wildlife Provisions Affecting Dogs

Rabies Provisions

State Symbols and Municipal Authority to Regulate Animals

 

Chapter 14. Criminal Law.  Subchapter V. Offenses Against Property.  Article 16. Larceny.

§ 14-81. Larceny of horses, mules, swine, cattle, or dogs

§ 14-82. Taking horses, mules, or dogs for temporary purposes

Chapter 19A. Protection of Animals.  Article 3. Animal Welfare Act.

§ 19A-20. Title of Article

§ 19A-21. Purposes

§ 19A-22. Animal Welfare Section in Animal Health Division of Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services created; Director

§ 19A-23. Definitions

§ 19A-24. Powers of Board of Agriculture

§ 19A-25. Employees; investigations; right of entry

§ 19A-26. Certificate of registration required for animal shelter

§ 19A-27. License required for operation of pet shop

§ 19A-28. License required for public auction or boarding kennel

§ 19A-29. License required for dealer

§ 19A-30. Refusal, suspension or revocation of certificate or license

§ 19A-31. License not transferable; change in management, etc., of business or operation

§ 19A-32. Procedure for review of Director's decisions

§ 19A-33. Penalty for operation of pet shop, kennel or auction without license

§ 19A-34. Penalty for acting as dealer without license; disposition of animals in custody of unlicensed dealer

§ 19A-35. Penalty for failure to adequately care for animals; disposition of animals

§ 19A-36. Penalty for violation of Article by dog warden

§ 19A-37. Application of Article

§ 19A-38. Use of license fees

§ 19A-39. Article inapplicable to establishments for training hunting dogs

§ 19A-40. Civil Penalties

§ 19A-41. Legal representation by the Attorney General

Chapter 19A. Protection of Animals.  Article 5. Spay/Neuter Program.

§ 19A-60. Legislative findings

§ 19A-61. Spay/Neuter Program established

§ 19A-62. Spay/Neuter Account established

§ 19A-63. Eligibility for distributions from Spay/Neuter Account

§ 19A-64. Distributions to counties and cities from Spay/Neuter Account

§ 19A-65. Annual Report Required From Every Animal Shelter in Receipt of State or Local Funding

§ 19A-66. Notification of available funding

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 1. Owner's Liability.

§ 67-1. Liability for injury to livestock or fowls

§ 67-2. Permitting bitch at large

§ 67-3. Sheep-killing dogs to be killed

§ 67-4. Failing to kill mad dog

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 1A. Dangerous Dogs.

§ 67-4.1. Definitions and procedures

§ 67-4.2. Precautions against attacks by dangerous dogs

§ 67-4.3. Penalty for attacks by dangerous dogs

§ 67-4.4. Strict liability

§ 67-4.5. Local ordinances

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 2. License Taxes on Dogs.

§ 67-12. Permitting dogs to run at large at night; penalty; liability for damage

§ 67-13. Repealed by Laws 1973, c. 822, § 6

§ 67-14. Mad dogs, dogs killing sheep, etc., may be killed

§ 67-14.1. Dogs injuring deer or bear on wildlife management area may be killed; impounding unmuzzled dogs running at large

§ 67-15. Repealed by Laws 1983, c. 35, § 2

§ 67-16. Failure to discharge duties imposed under this Article

§ 67-17. Deleted

§ 67-18. Application of Article

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 5. Protection of Livestock and Poultry from Ranging Dogs.

§ 67-30. Appointment of animal control officers authorized; salary, etc.

§ 67-31. Powers and duties of dog warden

§§ 67-32 to 67-35. Repealed by Laws 1973, c. 822, § 6

§ 67-36. Article supplements existing laws

Chapter 90. Medicine and Allied Occupations.  Article 11. Veterinarians.

§ 90-187.7. Abandonment of animals; notice to owner; relief from liability for disposal; "abandoned" defined

Chapter 113. Conservation and Development.  Subchapter IV. Conservation of Marine and Estuarine and Wildlife Resources.  Article 22. Regulation of Wildlife.

§ 113-291.5. Regulation of dogs used in hunting; limitations on authority of Wildlife Resources Commission; control of dogs on game lands; control of dogs chasing deer; other restrictions

Chapter 130A. Public Health.  Article 6. Communicable Diseases. Part 6. Rabies.

§ 130A-184. Definitions

§ 130A-185. Vaccination required

§ 130A-186. Appointment and certification of certified rabies vaccinator

§ 130A-187. County rabies vaccination clinics

§ 130A-188. Repealed by S.L. 2009-327, § 4, eff. Oct. 1, 2009

§ 130A-189. Rabies vaccination certificates

§ 130A-190. Rabies vaccination tags

§ 130A-191. Possession and distribution of rabies vaccine

§ 130A-192. Animals not wearing required rabies vaccination tags

§ 130A-193. Vaccination and confinement of animals brought into this State

§ 130A-194. Quarantine of districts infected with rabies

§ 130A-195. Destroying stray or feral animals in quarantine districts

§ 130A-196. Notice and confinement of biting animals

§ 130A-197. Infected animals to be destroyed; protection of vaccinated animals

§ 130A-198. Confinement

§ 130A-199. Rabid animals to be destroyed; heads to be sent to State Laboratory of Public Health

§ 130A-200. Confinement or leashing of vicious animals

§ 130A-201. Rabies emergency

Chapter 145. State Symbols and Other Official Adoptions.

§ 145-13. The State dog

Chapter 160A. Cities and Towns.  Article 8. Delegation and Exercise of the General Police Power.

§ 160A-186. Regulation of domestic animals

Chapter 160A. Cities and Towns.  Article 9. Taxation.

§ 160A-212. Animal taxes

 

 

Chapter 14. Criminal Law.  Subchapter V. Offenses Against Property.  Article 16. Larceny.

§ 14-81. Larceny of horses, mules, swine, cattle, or dogs

(a) Larceny of horses, mules, swine, or cattle is a Class H felony.

(a1) Larceny of a dog is a Class I felony.

(b) In sentencing a person convicted of violating this section, the judge shall, as a minimum punishment, place a person on probation subject to the following conditions:

(1) A person must make restitution for the damage or loss caused by the larceny of the livestock or dogs, and

(2) A person must pay a fine of not less than the amount of the damages or loss caused by the larceny of the livestock or dogs.

(c) No provision in this section shall limit the authority of the judge to sentence the person convicted of violating this section to an active sentence.

Amended by Laws 1965, c. 621, § 6; Laws 1981, c. 664, § 2; Laws 1989, c. 773, § 2; Laws 1993, c. 539, § 1171, eff. Oct. 1, 1994; Laws 1994(1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 14-82. Taking horses, mules, or dogs for temporary purposes

If any person shall unlawfully take and carry away any horse, gelding, mare, mule, or dog, the property of another person, secretly and against the will of the owner of such property, with intent to deprive the owner of the special or temporary use of the same, or with the intent to use such property for a special or temporary purpose, the person so offending shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.

Amended by Laws 1969, c. 1224, § 3; Laws 1989, c. 773, § 3; Laws 1994, (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 14, § 3.3, eff. Oct. 1, 1994.

 

Chapter 19A. Protection of Animals.  Article 3. Animal Welfare Act.

§ 19A-20. Title of Article

This Article may be cited as the Animal Welfare Act.

Added by Laws 1977( 2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 1.

 

§ 19A-21. Purposes

The purposes of this Article are (i) to protect the owners of dogs and cats from the theft of such pets; (ii) to prevent the sale or use of stolen pets; (iii) to insure that animals, as items of commerce, are provided humane care and treatment by regulating the transportation, sale, purchase, housing, care, handling and treatment of such animals by persons or organizations engaged in transporting, buying, or selling them for such use; (iv) to insure that animals confined in pet shops, kennels, animal shelters and auction markets are provided humane care and treatment; (v) to prohibit the sale, trade or adoption of those animals which show physical signs of infection, communicable disease, or congenital abnormalities, unless veterinary care is assured subsequent to sale, trade or adoption.

Added by Laws 1977( 2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 2.

 

§ 19A-22. Animal Welfare Section in Animal Health Division of Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services created; Director

There is hereby created within the Animal Health Division of the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, a new section thereof, to be known as the Animal Welfare Section of said division.

The Commissioner of Agriculture is hereby authorized to appoint a Director of said section whose duties and authority shall be determined by the Commissioner subject to the approval of the Board of Agriculture and subject to the provisions of this Article.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 3. Amended by S.L. 1997-261, § 1, eff. July 1, 1997.

 

§ 19A-23. Definitions

For the purposes of this Article, the following terms, when used in the Article or the rules or orders made pursuant thereto, shall be construed respectively to mean:

(1) "Adequate feed" means the provision at suitable intervals, not to exceed 24 hours, of a quantity of wholesome foodstuff suitable for the species and age, sufficient to maintain a reasonable level of nutrition in each animal. Such foodstuff shall be served in a sanitized receptacle, dish, or container.
 
(2) "Adequate water" means a constant access to a supply of clean, fresh, potable water provided in a sanitary manner or provided at suitable intervals for the species and not to exceed 24 hours at any interval.
 
(3) "Ambient temperature" means the temperature surrounding the animal.
 
(4) "Animal" means any domestic dog (Canis familiaris), or domestic cat (Felis domestica).
 
(5) "Animal shelter" means a facility which is used to house or contain seized, stray, homeless, quarantined, abandoned or unwanted animals and which is under contract with, owned, operated, or maintained by a county, city, town, or other municipality, or by a duly incorporated humane society, animal welfare society, society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, or other nonprofit organization devoted to the welfare, protection, rehabilitation, or humane treatment of animals.
 
(5a) "Boarding kennel" means a facility or establishment which regularly offers to the public the service of boarding dogs or cats or both for a fee. Such a facility or establishment may, in addition to providing shelter, food and water, offer grooming or other services for dogs and/or cats.
 
(6) "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of Agriculture of the State of North Carolina.
 
(7) "Dealer" means any person who sells, exchanges, or donates, or offers to sell, exchange, or donate animals to another dealer, pet shop, or research facility; provided, however, that an individual who breeds and raises on his own premises no more than the offspring of five canine or feline females per year, unless bred and raised specifically for research purposes shall not be considered to be a dealer for the purposes of this Article.

(8) "Director" means the Director of the Animal Welfare Section of the Animal Health Division of the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

(9) "Euthanasia" means the humane destruction of an animal accomplished by a method that involves rapid unconsciousness and immediate death or by a method that involves anesthesia, produced by an agent which causes painless loss of consciousness, and death during such loss of consciousness.
 
(10) "Housing facility" means any room, building, or area used to contain a primary enclosure or enclosures.
 
(11) "Person" means any individual, partnership, firm, joint-stock company, corporation, association, trust, estate, or other legal entity.
 
(12) "Pet shop" means a person or establishment that acquires for the purposes of resale animals bred by others whether as owner, agent, or on consignment, and that sells, trades or offers to sell or trade such animals to the general public at retail or wholesale.
 
(13) "Primary enclosure" means any structure used to immediately restrict an animal or animals to a limited amount of space, such as a room, pen, cage compartment or hutch.
 
(14) "Public auction" means any place or location where dogs or cats are sold at auction to the highest bidder regardless of whether such dogs or cats are offered as individuals, as a group, or by weight.

(15) "Research facility" means any place, laboratory, or institution at which scientific tests, experiments, or investigations involving the use of living animals are carried out, conducted, or attempted.

(16) "Sanitize" means to make physically clean and to remove and destroy to a practical minimum, agents injurious to health.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 4. Amended by Laws 1979, c. 734, § 1; Laws 1987, c. 827, § 61; S.L. 1997-261, § 2, eff. July 1, 1997; S.L. 2005-276, § 11.5(a), eff. Oct. 1, 2005.

 

§ 19A-24. Powers of Board of Agriculture

(a) The Board of Agriculture shall:

(1) Establish standards for the care of animals at animal shelters, boarding kennels, pet shops, and public auctions. A boarding kennel that offers dog day care services and has a ratio of dogs to employees or supervisors, or both employees and supervisors, of not more than 10 to one, shall not as to such services be subject to any regulations that restrict the number of dogs that are permitted within any primary enclosure.

(2) Prescribe the manner in which animals may be transported to and from registered or licensed premises.

(3) Require licensees and holders of certificates to keep records of the purchase and sale of animals and to identify animals at their establishments.

(4) Adopt rules to implement this Article, including federal regulations promulgated under Title 7, Chapter 54, of the United States Code.

(5) Adopt rules on the euthanasia of animals in the possession or custody of any person required to obtain a certificate of registration under this Article. An animal shall only be put to death by a method and delivery of method approved by the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Humane Society of the United States, or the American Humane Association. The Department shall establish rules for the euthanasia process using any one or combination of methods and standards prescribed by the three aforementioned organizations. The rules shall address the equipment, the process, and the separation of animals, in addition to the animals' age and condition. If the gas method of euthanasia is approved, rules shall require (i) that only commercially compressed carbon monoxide gas is approved for use, and (ii) that the gas must be delivered in a commercially manufactured chamber that allows for the individual separation of animals. Rules shall also mandate training for any person who participates in the euthanasia process.

(b) In addition to rules on the euthanasia of animals adopted pursuant to subdivision (5) of subsection (a) of this section, the Board of Agriculture shall adopt rules for the certification of euthanasia technicians. The rules may provide for:

(1) Written and practical examinations for persons who perform euthanasia.

(2) Issuance of certification to persons who have successfully completed both training and examinations to become a euthanasia technician.

(3) Recertification of euthanasia technicians on a periodic basis.

(4) Standards and procedures for the approval of persons who conduct training of euthanasia technicians.

(5) Approval of materials for use in euthanasia technician training.

(6) Minimum certification criteria for persons seeking to become euthanasia technicians including, but not limited to: age; previous related experience; criminal record; and other qualifications that are related to an applicant's fitness to perform euthanasia.

(7) Denial, suspension, or revocation of certification of euthanasia technicians who:

a. Violate any provision of this Article or rules adopted pursuant to this Article;

b. Have been convicted of or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to:

1. Any felony;

2. Any misdemeanor or infraction involving animal abuse or neglect; or

3. Any other offense related to animal euthanasia, the duties or responsibilities of a euthanasia technician, or a euthanasia technician's fitness for certification;

c. Make any false statement, give false information, or omit material information in connection with an application for certification or for renewal or reinstatement of certification as a euthanasia technician; or

d. Otherwise are or become ineligible for certification.

(8) Provision of the names of persons who perform euthanasia at animal shelters and for the animal shelter to notify the Department when those persons are no longer affiliated, employed, or serving as a volunteer with the shelter.

(9) Certified euthanasia technicians to notify the Department when they are no longer employed by or are serving as a volunteer at an animal shelter.

(10) The duties, responsibilities, and standards of conduct for certified euthanasia technicians.

(c) Regardless of the extent to which the Board exercises its authority under subsection (b) of this section, the Department may deny, revoke, or suspend the certification of a euthanasia technician who has been convicted of or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to a felony involving the illegal use, possession, sale, manufacture, distribution, or transportation of a controlled substance, drug, or narcotic.

(d) Persons seeking certification as euthanasia technicians, or a renewal of such certification, shall provide the Department a fingerprint card in a format acceptable to the Department, a form signed by the person consenting to a criminal record check and the use of the person's fingerprints, and such other identifying information as may be required by the State or national data banks. The Department may deny certification to persons who refuse to provide the fingerprint card or consent to the criminal background check. Fees required by the Department of Justice for conducting the criminal background check shall be collected by the Department and remitted to the Department of Justice along with the fingerprint card and consent form.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 5. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 62; S.L. 2004-199, § 12, eff. Aug. 17, 2004; S.L. 2005-276, § 11.5(b), eff. Oct. 1, 2005; S.L. 2005-345, § 22, eff. July 1, 2005; S.L. 2008-198, § 2(a), eff. Nov. 1, 2007; S.L. 2010-127, §§ 2, 3, eff. Oct. 1, 2010.

 

§ 19A-25. Employees; investigations; right of entry

For the enforcement of the provisions of this Article, the Director is authorized, subject to the approval of the Commissioner to appoint employees as are necessary in order to carry out and enforce the provisions of this Article, and to assign them interchangeably with other employees of the Animal Health Division. The Director shall cause the investigation of all reports of violations of the provisions of this Article, and the rules adopted pursuant to the provisions hereof; provided further, that if any person shall deny the Director or his representative admittance to his property, either person shall be entitled to secure from any superior court judge a court order granting such admittance.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 6. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 63.

 

§ 19A-26. Certificate of registration required for animal shelter

No person shall operate an animal shelter unless a certificate of registration for such animal shelter shall have been granted by the Director. Application for such certificate shall be made in the manner provided by the Director. No fee shall be required for such application or certificate. Certificates of registration shall be valid for a period of one year or until suspended or revoked and may be renewed for like periods upon application in the manner provided.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 7. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 64.

 

§ 19A-27. License required for operation of pet shop

No person shall operate a pet shop unless a license to operate such establishment shall have been granted by the Director. Application for such license shall be made in the manner provided by the Director. The license shall be for the fiscal year and the license fee shall be seventy-five dollars ($75.00) for each license period or part thereof beginning with the first day of the fiscal year.
 
Credits
Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 8. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 65; Laws 1989, c. 544, § 17; S.L. 2011-145, § 31.5(a), eff. July 1, 2011.
 

§ 19A-28. License required for public auction or boarding kennel

No person shall operate a public auction or a boarding kennel unless a license to operate such establishment shall have been granted by the Director. Application for such license shall be made in the manner provided by the Director. The license period shall be the fiscal year and the license fee shall be seventy-five dollars ($75.00) for each license period or part thereof beginning with the first day of the fiscal year.

Credits
Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 9. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 65; Laws 1989, c. 544, § 18; S.L. 2011-145, § 31.5(b), eff. July 1, 2011.

 

§ 19A-29. License required for dealer

No person shall be a dealer unless a license to deal shall have been granted by the Director to such person. Application for such license shall be in the manner provided by the Director. The license period shall be the fiscal year and the license fee shall be seventy-five dollars ($75.00) for each license period or part thereof, beginning with the first day of the fiscal year.
 
Credits
Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 10. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 66; Laws 1989, c. 544, § 19; S.L. 2011-145, § 31.5(c), eff. July 1, 2011.

 

§ 19A-30. Refusal, suspension or revocation of certificate or license

The Director may refuse to issue or renew or may suspend or revoke a certificate of registration for any animal shelter or a license for any public auction, kennel, pet shop, or dealer, if after an impartial investigation as provided in this Article he determines that any one or more of the following grounds apply:

(1) Material misstatement in the application for the original certificate of registration or license or in the application for any renewal under this Article;

(2) Willful disregard or violation of this Article or any rules issued pursuant thereto;

(3) Failure to provide adequate housing facilities and/or primary enclosures for the purposes of this Article, or if the feeding, watering, sanitizing and housing practices at the animal shelter, public auction, pet shop, or kennel are not consistent with the intent of this Article or the rules adopted under this Article;

(4) Allowing one's license under this Article to be used by an unlicensed person;

(5) Conviction of any crime an essential element of which is misstatement, fraud, or dishonesty, or conviction of any felony;

(6) Making substantial misrepresentations or false promises of a character likely to influence, persuade, or induce in connection with the business of a public auction, commercial kennel, pet shop, or dealer;

(7) Pursuing a continued course of misrepresentation of or making false promises through advertising, salesmen, agents, or otherwise in connection with the business to be licensed;

(8) Failure to possess the necessary qualifications or to meet the requirements of this Article for the issuance or holding of a certificate of registration or license.

The Director shall, before refusing to issue or renew and before suspension or revocation of a certificate of registration or a license, give to the applicant or holder thereof a written notice containing a statement indicating in what respects the applicant or holder has failed to satisfy the requirements for the holding of a certificate of registration or a license. If a certificate of registration or a license is suspended or revoked under the provisions hereof, the holder shall have five days from such suspension or revocation to surrender all certificates of registration or licenses issued thereunder to the Director or his authorized representative.

A person to whom a certificate of registration or a license is denied, suspended, or revoked by the Director may contest the action by filing a petition under G.S. 150B-23 within five days after the denial, suspension, or revocation.

Any licensee whose license is revoked under the provisions of this Article shall not be eligible to apply for a new license hereunder until one year has elapsed from the date of the order revoking said license or if an appeal is taken from said order of revocation, one year from the date of the order or final judgment sustaining said revocation. Any person who has been an officer, agent, or employee of a licensee whose license has been revoked or suspended and who is responsible for or participated in the violation upon which the order of suspension or revocation was based, shall not be licensed within the period during which the order of suspension or revocation is in effect.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 11. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 67.

 

§ 19A-31. License not transferable; change in management, etc., of business or operation

A license is not transferable. When there is a transfer of ownership, management, or operation of a business of a licensee hereunder, the new owner, manager, or operator, as the case may be, whether it be an individual, firm, partnership, corporation, or other entity shall have 10 days from such sale or transfer to secure a new license from the Director to operate said business. A licensee shall promptly notify the Director of any change in the name, address, management, or substantial control of his business or operation.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 12.

 

§ 19A-32. Procedure for review of Director's decisions

A denial, suspension, or revocation of a certificate or license under this Article shall be made in accordance with Chapter 150B of the General Statutes.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 13. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 68.

 

§ 19A-33. Penalty for operation of pet shop, kennel or auction without license

Operation of a pet shop, kennel, or public auction without a currently valid license shall constitute a Class 3 misdemeanor subject only to a penalty of not less than five dollars ($5.00) nor more than twenty-five dollars ($25.00), and each day of operation shall constitute a separate offense.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 14. Amended by Laws 1993, c. 539, §§ 315, 1359, eff. Oct. 1, 1994; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.),c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 19A-34. Penalty for acting as dealer without license; disposition of animals in custody of unlicensed dealer

Acting as a dealer in animals as defined in this Article without a currently valid dealer's license shall constitute a Class 2 misdemeanor. Continued illegal operation after conviction shall constitute a separate offense. Animals found in possession or custody of an unlicensed dealer shall be subject to immediate seizure and impoundment and upon conviction of such unlicensed dealer shall become subject to sale or euthanasia in the discretion of the Director.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 15. Amended by Laws 1993, c. 539, § 316, eff. Oct. 1, 1994; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 19A-35. Penalty for failure to adequately care for animals; disposition of animals

Failure of any person licensed or registered under this Article to adequately house, feed, and water animals in his possession or custody shall constitute a Class 3 misdemeanor, and such person shall be subject to a fine of not less than five dollars ($5.00) per animal or more than a total of one thousand dollars ($1,000). Such animals shall be subject to seizure and impoundment and upon conviction may be sold or euthanized at the discretion of the Director and such failure shall also constitute grounds for revocation of license after public hearing.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 16. Amended by S.L. 1999-408, § 4, eff. Dec. 1, 1999.

 

§ 19A-36. Penalty for violation of Article by dog warden

Violation of any provision of this Article which relates to the seizing, impoundment, and custody of an animal by a dog warden shall constitute a Class 3 misdemeanor and the person convicted thereof shall be subject to a fine of not less than fifty dollars ($50.00) and not more than one hundred dollars ($100.00), and each animal handled in violation shall constitute a separate offense.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 17. Amended by Laws 1993, c. 539, § 317,eff. Oct. 1, 1994; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 19A-37. Application of Article

This Article shall not apply to a place or establishment which is operated under the immediate supervision of a duly licensed veterinarian as a hospital where animals are harbored, boarded, and cared for incidental to the treatment, prevention, or alleviation of disease processes during the routine practice of the profession of veterinary medicine. This Article shall not apply to any dealer, pet shop, public auction, commercial kennel or research facility during the period such dealer or research facility is in the possession of a valid license or registration granted by the Secretary of Agriculture pursuant to Title 7, Chapter 54, of the United States Code. This Article shall not apply to any individual who occasionally boards an animal on a noncommercial basis, although such individual may receive nominal sums to cover the cost of such boarding.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 18. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 69.

 

§ 19A-38. Use of license fees

All license fees collected shall be used in enforcing and administering this Article.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 19.

 

§ 19A-39. Article inapplicable to establishments for training hunting dogs

Nothing in this Article shall apply to those kennels or establishments operated primarily for the purpose of boarding or training hunting dogs.

Added by Laws 1977 (2nd Sess.), c. 1217, § 21. Amended by Laws 1979, c. 734, § 2.

 

§ 19A-40. Civil Penalties

The Director may assess a civil penalty of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000) against any person who violates a provision of this Article or any rule promulgated thereunder. In determining the amount of the penalty, the Director shall consider the degree and extent of harm caused by the violation. The clear proceeds of civil penalties assessed pursuant to this section shall be remitted to the Civil Penalty and Forfeiture Fund in accordance with G.S. 115C-457.2.

Added by Laws 1995, c. 516, § 6, eff. Oct. 1, 1995. Amended by S.L. 1998-215, § 3, eff. Oct. 31, 1998.

 

§ 19A-41. Legal representation by the Attorney General

It shall be the duty of the Attorney General to represent the Commissioner of Agriculture and the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, or to designate some member of his staff to represent the Commissioner and the Department, in all actions or proceedings in connection with this Article.

Added by S.L. 2005-276, § 11.5(c), eff. Oct. 1, 2005.

 

§§ 19A-42 to 19A-44. Reserved

 

Chapter 19A. Protection of Animals.  Article 5. Spay/Neuter Program.

§ 19A-60. Legislative findings

The General Assembly finds that the uncontrolled breeding of cats and dogs in the State has led to unacceptable numbers of unwanted dogs, puppies and cats and kittens. These unwanted animals become strays and constitute a public nuisance and a public health hazard. The animals themselves suffer privation and death, are impounded, and most are destroyed at great expense to local governments. It is the intention of the General Assembly to provide a voluntary means of funding a spay/neuter program to provide financial assistance to local governments offering low-income persons reduced-cost spay/ neuter services for their dogs and cats and to provide a statewide education program on the benefits of spaying and neutering pets.

Added by S.L. 2000-163, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2001.

 

§ 19A-61. Spay/Neuter Program established

There is established in the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services a voluntary statewide program to foster the spaying and neutering of dogs and cats for the purpose of reducing the population of unwanted animals in the State. The program shall consist of the following components:

(1) Education Program.--The Department shall establish a statewide program to educate the public about the benefits of having cats and dogs spayed and neutered. The Department may work cooperatively on the program with the North Carolina School of Veterinary Medicine, other State agencies and departments, county and city health departments and animal control agencies, and statewide and local humane organizations. The Department may employ outside consultants to assist with the education program.

(2) Local Spay/Neuter Assistance Program.--The Department shall administer the Spay/Neuter Account established in G.S. 19A-62. Monies deposited in the account shall be available to reimburse eligible counties and cities for the direct costs of spay/neuter surgeries for cats and dogs made available to low-income persons.

CREDIT(S)

Added by S.L. 2000-163, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2001. Amended by S.L. 2010-31, § 11.4(b), eff. Oct. 1, 2010.

 

§ 19A-62. Spay/Neuter Account established

(a) Creation.--The Spay/Neuter Account is established as a nonreverting special revenue account in the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The Account consists of the following:

(1) Repealed by S.L. 2010-31, § 11.4(c), eff. Oct. 1, 2010.

(2) Twenty dollars ($20.00) of the additional fee imposed by G.S. 20-79.7 for an Animal Lovers special license plate.

(3) Any other funds available from appropriations by the General Assembly or from contributions and grants from public or private sources.

(b) Use. -- The revenue in the Account shall be used by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services as follows:

(1) Repealed by Session Laws 2010-31, s. 11.4(c), effective October 1, 2010.

(2) Up to twenty percent (20%) may be used to develop and implement the statewide education program component of the Spay/Neuter Program established in G.S. 19A-61(1).

(3) Up to twenty percent (20%) of the money in the Account may be used to defray the costs of administering the Spay/Neuter Program established in this Article.

(4) Funds remaining after deductions for the education program and administrative expenses shall be distributed quarterly to eligible counties and cities seeking reimbursement for reduced-cost spay/neuter surgeries performed during the previous calendar year. A county or city is ineligible to receive funds under this subdivision unless it requires the owner to show proof of rabies vaccination at the time of the procedure or, if none, require vaccination at the time of the procedure.”

(c) Report.--In February of each year, the Department must report to the Joint Legislative Commission on Governmental Operations and the Fiscal Research Division. The report must contain information regarding all revenues and expenditures of the Spay/Neuter Account.

Credits
Added by S.L. 2000-163, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2001. Amended by S.L. 2007-487, §§ 2, 3, eff. Jan. 1, 2008; S.L. 2008-187, § 8, eff. Aug. 7, 2008; S.L. 2010-31, § 11.4(c), eff. Oct. 1, 2010; S.L. 2011-326, § 4, eff. June 27, 2011.

 

§ 19A-63. Eligibility for distributions from Spay/Neuter Account

(a) A county or city is eligible for reimbursement from the Spay/Neuter Account if it meets the following condition:

(1) The county or city offers one or more of the following programs to low-income persons on a year-round basis for the purpose of reducing the cost of spaying and neutering procedures for dogs and cats:

a. A spay/neuter clinic operated by the county or city.

b. A spay/neuter clinic operated by a private organization under contract or other arrangement with the county or city.

c. A contract or contracts with one or more veterinarians, whether or not located within the county, to provide reduced-cost spaying and neutering procedures.

d. Subvention of the spaying and neutering costs incurred by low-income pet owners through the use of vouchers or other procedure that provides a discount of the cost of the spaying or neutering procedure fixed by a participating veterinarian or other provider.

e. Subvention of the spaying and neutering costs incurred by persons who adopt a pet from an animal shelter operated by or under contract with the county or city.

(2) Reserved for future codification purposes.

(b) For purposes of this Article, the term “low-income person” shall mean an individual who qualifies for one or more of the programs of public assistance administered by the Department of Health and Human Services pursuant to Chapter 108A of the General Statutes or whose annual household income is under three hundred percent (300%) of the federal poverty level guidelines published by the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

(c) Each county shall make rules or publish guidelines that designate what proof a low-income person must submit to establish that the person qualifies for public assistance under subsection (b) of this section or has an annual household income lower than three hundred percent (300%) of the federal poverty level guidelines published by the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

CREDIT(S)

Added by S.L. 2000-163, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2001. Amended by S.L. 2010-31, § 11.4(d), eff. Oct. 1, 2010.

 

§ 19A-64. Distributions to counties and cities from Spay/Neuter Account

(a) Reimbursable Costs.--Counties and cities eligible for distributions from the Spay/Neuter Account may receive reimbursement for the direct costs of a spay/neuter surgical procedure for a dog or cat owned by a low-income person as defined in G.S. 19A-63(b). Reimbursable costs shall include anesthesia, medication, and veterinary services. Counties and cities shall not be reimbursed for the administrative costs of providing reduced-cost spay/neuter services or capital expenditures for facilities and equipment associated with the provision of such services.

(b) Application.--A county or city eligible for reimbursement of spaying and neutering costs from the Spay/Neuter Account shall apply to the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services by the last day of January, April, July, and October of each year to receive a distribution from the Account for that quarter. The application shall be submitted in the form required by the Department and shall include an itemized listing of the costs for which reimbursement is sought.

(c) Distribution.--The Department shall make payments from the Spay/Neuter Account to eligible counties and cities who have made timely application for reimbursement within 30 days of the closing date for receipt of applications for that quarter. In the event that total requests for reimbursement exceed the amounts available in the Spay/Neuter Account for distribution, the monies available will be distributed as follows:

(1) Fifty percent (50%) of the monies available in the Spay/Neuter Account shall be reserved for reimbursement for eligible applicants within development tier one areas as defined in G.S. 143B-437.08. The remaining fifty percent (50%) of the funds shall be used to fund reimbursement requests from eligible applicants in development tier two and three areas as defined in G.S. 143B-437.08.

(2) Among the eligible counties and cities in development tier one areas, reimbursement shall be made to each eligible county or city pursuant to rules adopted by the Department.

(3) Among the eligible counties and cities in development tier two and three areas, reimbursement shall be made to each eligible county or city pursuant to rules adopted by the Department.

(4) Should funds remain available from the fifty percent (50%) of the Spay/Neuter Account designated for development tier one areas after reimbursement of all claims by eligible applicants in those areas, the remaining funds shall be made available to reimburse eligible applicants in development tier two and three areas.

CREDIT(S)

Added by S.L. 2000-163, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2001. Amended by S.L. 2006-252, § 2.11, eff. Jan. 1, 2007; S.L. 2010-31, § 11.4(e), eff. Oct. 1, 2010.

 

§ 19A-65. Annual Report Required From Every Animal Shelter in Receipt of State or Local Funding

Every county or city animal shelter, or animal shelter operated under contract with a county or city or otherwise in receipt of State or local funding shall prepare an annual report in the form required by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services setting forth the numbers, by species, of animals received into the shelter, the number adopted out, the number returned to owner, and the number destroyed. The report shall also contain the total operating expenses of the shelter and the cost per animal handled. The report shall be filed with the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services by March 1 of each year. A city or county that does not timely file the report required by this section is not eligible to receive reimbursement payments under G.S. 19A-64 during the calendar year in which the report was to be filed.

CREDIT(S)

Added by S.L. 2000-163, § 5, eff. Jan. 1, 2001. Amended by S.L. 2010-31, § 11.4(f), eff. Oct. 1, 2010.

 

§ 19A-66. Notification of available funding

Prior to January 1 of each year, the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services shall notify counties and cities that have, prior to that notification deadline, established eligibility for distribution of funds from the Spay/Neuter Account pursuant to G.S. 19A-63, of the following:

(1) The amount of funding in the Spay/Neuter Account that the Department will have available for distribution to each county or city receiving notification to pay reimbursement requests submitted by the county or city during the calendar year following the notification deadline; and

(2) The amount of additional funding, if any, the Department estimates, but does not guarantee, may be available to pay reimbursement requests submitted by the notified county or city to the Department during the calendar year following the notification deadline.

CREDIT(S)

Added by S.L. 2010-31, § 11.4(g), eff. Oct. 1, 2010.

 

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 1. Owner's Liability.

§ 67-1. Liability for injury to livestock or fowls

If any dog, not being at the time on the premises of the owner or person having charge thereof, shall kill or injure any livestock or fowls, the owner or person having such dog in charge shall be liable for damages sustained by the injury, killing, or maiming of any livestock, and costs of suit.

 

§ 67-2. Permitting bitch at large

If any person owning or having any bitch shall knowingly permit her to run at large during the erotic stage of copulation he shall be guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor.

Amended by Laws 1993, c. 539, § 529; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 67-3. Sheep-killing dogs to be killed

If any person owning or having any dog that kills sheep or other domestic animals, or that kills a human being, upon satisfactory evidence of the same being made before any judge of the district court in the county, and the owner duly notified thereof, shall refuse to kill it, and shall permit such dog to go at liberty, he shall be guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor, and the dog may be killed by anyone if found going at large.

Amended by Laws 1973, c. 108, § 24; Laws 1977, c. 597; Laws 1993, c. 539, § 530; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 67-4. Failing to kill mad dog

If the owner of any dog shall know, or have good reason to believe, that his dog, or any dog belonging to any person under his control, has been bitten by a mad dog, and shall neglect or refuse immediately to kill the same, he shall forfeit and pay the sum of fifty dollars ($50.00) to him who will sue therefor; and the offender shall be liable to pay all damages which may be sustained by anyone, in his property or person, by the bite of any such dog, and shall be guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor.

Amended by Laws 1993, c. 539, § 531; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 1A. Dangerous Dogs.

§ 67-4.1. Definitions and procedures

(a) As used in this Article, unless the context clearly requires otherwise and except as modified in subsection (b) of this section, the term:

(1) "Dangerous dog" means

a. A dog that:

1. Without provocation has killed or inflicted severe injury on a person; or

2. Is determined by the person or Board designated by the county or municipal authority responsible for animal control to be potentially dangerous because the dog has engaged in one or more of the behaviors listed in subdivision (2) of this subsection.

b. Any dog owned or harbored primarily or in part for the purpose of dog fighting, or any dog trained for dog fighting.

(2) "Potentially dangerous dog" means a dog that the person or Board designated by the county or municipal authority responsible for animal control determines to have:

a. Inflicted a bite on a person that resulted in broken bones or disfiguring lacerations or required cosmetic surgery or hospitalization; or

b. Killed or inflicted severe injury upon a domestic animal when not on the owner's real property; or

c. Approached a person when not on the owner's property in a vicious or terrorizing manner in an apparent attitude of attack.

(3) "Owner" means any person or legal entity that has a possessory property right in a dog.

(4) "Owner's real property" means any real property owned or leased by the owner of the dog, but does not include any public right-of-way or a common area of a condominium, apartment complex, or townhouse development.

(5) "Severe injury" means any physical injury that results in broken bones or disfiguring lacerations or required cosmetic surgery or hospitalization.

(b) The provisions of this Article do not apply to:

(1) A dog being used by a law enforcement officer to carry out the law enforcement officer's official duties;

(2) A dog being used in a lawful hunt;

(3) A dog where the injury or damage inflicted by the dog was sustained by a domestic animal while the dog was working as a hunting dog, herding dog, or predator control dog on the property of, or under the control of, its owner or keeper, and the damage or injury was to a species or type of domestic animal appropriate to the work of the dog; or

(4) A dog where the injury inflicted by the dog was sustained by a person who, at the time of the injury, was committing a willful trespass or other tort, was tormenting, abusing, or assaulting the dog, had tormented, abused, or assaulted the dog, or was committing or attempting to commit a crime.

(c) The county or municipal authority responsible for animal control shall designate a person or a Board to be responsible for determining when a dog is a "potentially dangerous dog" and shall designate a separate Board to hear any appeal. The person or Board making the determination that a dog is a "potentially dangerous dog" must notify the owner in writing, giving the reasons for the determination, before the dog may be considered potentially dangerous under this Article. The owner may appeal the determination by filing written objections with the appellate Board within three days. The appellate Board shall schedule a hearing within 10 days of the filing of the objections.

Any appeal from the final decision of such appellate Board shall be taken to the superior court by filing notice of appeal and a petition for review within 10 days of the final decision of the appellate Board. Appeals from rulings of the appellate Board shall be heard in the superior court division. The appeal shall be heard de novo before a superior court judge sitting in the county in which the appellate Board whose ruling is being appealed is located.

Added by Laws 1989 (Reg. Sess., 1990), c. 1023, § 1.

 

§ 67-4.2. Precautions against attacks by dangerous dogs

(a) It is unlawful for an owner to:

(1) Leave a dangerous dog unattended on the owner's real property unless the dog is confined indoors, in a securely enclosed and locked pen, or in another structure designed to restrain the dog;

(2) Permit a dangerous dog to go beyond the owner's real property unless the dog is leashed and muzzled or is otherwise securely restrained and muzzled.

(b) If the owner of a dangerous dog transfers ownership or possession of the dog to another person (as defined in G.S. 12-3(6)), the owner shall provide written notice to:

(1) The authority that made the determination under this Article, stating the name and address of the new owner or possessor of the dog; and

(2) The person taking ownership or possession of the dog, specifying the dog's dangerous behavior and the authority's determination.

(c) Violation of this section is a Class 3 misdemeanor.

Added by Laws 1989 (Reg. Sess., 1990), c. 1023, § 1. Amended by Laws 1993, c. 539, § 532; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 67-4.3. Penalty for attacks by dangerous dogs

The owner of a dangerous dog that attacks a person and causes physical injuries requiring medical treatment in excess of one hundred dollars ($100.00) shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Added by Laws 1989 (Reg. Sess., 1990), c. 1023, § 1. Amended by Laws 1993, c. 539, § 533; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 67-4.4. Strict liability

The owner of a dangerous dog shall be strictly liable in civil damages for any injuries or property damage the dog inflicts upon a person, his property, or another animal.

Added by Laws 1989 (Reg. Sess., 1990), c. 1023, § 1.

 

§ 67-4.5. Local ordinances

Nothing in this Article shall be construed to prevent a city or county from adopting or enforcing its own program for control of dangerous dogs.

Added by Laws 1989 (Reg. Sess., 1990), c. 1023, § 1.

 

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 2. License Taxes on Dogs. 

§§ 67-5 to 67-11. Repealed by Laws 1973, c. 822, § 6

 

 

§ 67-12. Permitting dogs to run at large at night; penalty; liability for damage

No person shall allow his dog over six months old to run at large in the nighttime unaccompanied by the owner or by some member of the owner's family, or some other person by the owner's permission. Any person intentionally, knowingly, and willfully violating this section shall be guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor, and shall also be liable in damages to any person injured or suffering loss to his property or chattels.

Amended by Laws 1993, c. 539, § 534; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c). eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 67-13. Repealed by Laws 1973, c. 822, § 6

 

§ 67-14. Mad dogs, dogs killing sheep, etc., may be killed

Any person may kill any mad dog, and also any dog if he is killing sheep, cattle, hogs, goats, or poultry.

 

§ 67-14.1. Dogs injuring deer or bear on wildlife management area may be killed; impounding unmuzzled dogs running at large

(a) Any dog which trails, runs, injures or kills any deer or bear on any wildlife refuge, sanctuary or management area, now or hereafter so designated and managed by the Wildlife Resources Commission, during the closed season for hunting with dogs on such refuge or management area, is hereby declared to be a public nuisance, and any wildlife protector or other duly authorized agent or employee of the Wildlife Resources Commission may destroy, by humane method, any dog discovered trailing, running, injuring or killing any deer or bear in any such area during the closed season therein for hunting such game with dogs, without incurring liability by reason of his act in conformity with this section.

(b) Any unmuzzled dog running at large upon any wildlife refuge, sanctuary, or management area, when unaccompanied by any person having such dog in charge, shall be seized and impounded by any wildlife protector, or other duly authorized agent or employee of the Wildlife Resources Commission.

(c) The person impounding such dog shall cause a notice to be published at least once a week for two successive weeks in some newspaper published in the county wherein the dog was taken, or if none is published therein, in some newspaper having general circulation in the county. Such notice shall set forth a description of the dog, the place where it is impounded, and that the dog will be destroyed if not claimed and payment made for the advertisement, a catch fee of one dollar ($1.00) and the boarding, computed at the rate of fifty cents (50¢) per day, while impounded, by a certain date which date shall be not less than 15 days after the publication of the first notice. A similar notice shall be posted at the courthouse door.

(d) The owner of the dog, or his agent, may recover such dog upon payment of the cost of the publication of the notices hereinbefore described together with a catch fee of one dollar ($1.00) and the expense, computed at the rate of fifty cents (50¢) per day, incurred while impounding and boarding the dog.

(e) If any impounded dog is not recovered by the owner within 15 days after the publication of the first notice of the impounding, the dog may be destroyed in a humane manner by any wildlife protector or other duly authorized agent or employee of the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, and no liability shall attach to any person acting in accordance with this section.

Added by Laws 1951, c. 1021, § 1.

 

§ 67-15. Repealed by Laws 1983, c. 35, § 2

 

§ 67-16. Failure to discharge duties imposed under this Article

Any person failing to discharge any duty imposed upon him under this Article shall be guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor.

Amended by Laws 1993, c. 539, § 535; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c), eff. March 26, 1994.

 

§ 67-17. Deleted

 

§ 67-18. Application of Article

This Article, G.S. 67-5 to 67-18, inclusive, is hereby made applicable to every county in the State of North Carolina, notwithstanding any provisions in local, special or private acts exempting any county or any township or municipality from the provisions of the same enacted at any General Assembly commencing at the General Assembly of 1919 and going through the General Assembly of 1929.

 

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 3. Special License Tax on Dogs.

§ 67-18. Application of Article

This Article, G.S. 67-5 to 67-18, inclusive, is hereby made applicable to every county in the State of North Carolina, notwithstanding any provisions in local, special or private acts exempting any county or any township or municipality from the provisions of the same enacted at any General Assembly commencing at the General Assembly of 1919 and going through the General Assembly of 1929.

§§ 67-19 to 67-28. Repealed by Laws 1973 c. 822, § 6

 

 

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 4. Guide Dogs.

§ 67-29. Repealed Laws by 1973, c. 493, § 2

 

Chapter 67. Dogs.  Article 5. Protection of Livestock and Poultry from Ranging Dogs.

§ 67-30. Appointment of animal control officers authorized; salary, etc.

A county may appoint one or more animal control officers and may fix their salaries, allowances, and expenses.

Added by Laws 1951, c. 931, § 1. Amended by Laws 1955, c. 1333, § 1; Laws 1957, c. 81; Laws 1957, c. 840; Laws 1973, c. 822, § 6.

 

§ 67-31. Powers and duties of dog warden

The powers and duties of the county dog warden shall be as follows:

(1) He shall have the power of arrest and be responsible for the enforcement within his county of all public and public-local laws pertaining to the ownership and control of dogs, and shall cooperate with all other law-enforcement officers operating within the county in fulfilling this responsibility.

(2) In those counties having a rabies control officer, the county dog warden shall act as assistant to the rabies control officer, working under the supervision of the county health department, to collect the dog tax. In those counties having no rabies control officer, the county dog warden shall serve as rabies control officer.

Amended by Laws 1951, c. 931, § 2.

 

§ 67-32. Repealed by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 9, eff. Jan. 1, 1984

 

§§ 67-33 to 67-35. Repealed by Laws 1973, c. 822, § 6

 

 

§ 67-36. Article supplements existing laws

The provisions of this Article are to be construed as supplementing and not repealing existing State laws pertaining to the ownership, taxation, and control of dogs.

Added by Laws 1951, c. 931, § 7.

 

Chapter 90. Medicine and Allied Occupations.  Article 11. Veterinarians.

§ 90-187.7. Abandonment of animals; notice to owner; relief from liability for disposal; "abandoned" defined

(a) Any animal placed in the custody of a licensed veterinarian for treatment, boarding or other care, which shall be unclaimed by its owner or his agent for a period of more than 10 days after written notice by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, to the owner or his agent at his last known address, shall be deemed to be abandoned and may be turned over to the nearest humane society, or dog pound or disposed of as such custodian may deem proper.

(b) The giving of notice to the owner, or the agent of the owner, of such animal by the licensed veterinarian, as provided in subsection (a) of this section, shall relieve the licensed veterinarian and any custodian to whom such animal may be given of any further liability for disposal.

(c) For the purpose of this Article the term "abandoned" shall mean to forsake entirely, or to neglect or refuse to provide or perform the legal obligations for care and support of an animal by its owner, or his agent. Such abandonment shall constitute the relinquishment of all rights and claims by the owner to such animal.

Added by Laws 1973, c. 1106, § 1.

 

Chapter 113. Conservation and Development.  Subchapter IV. Conservation of Marine and Estuarine and Wildlife Resources.  Article 22. Regulation of Wildlife.

§ 113-291.5. Regulation of dogs used in hunting; limitations on authority of Wildlife Resources Commission; control of dogs on game lands; control of dogs chasing deer; other restrictions

(a) Except as provided in G.S. 113-291.4, in the area described below, the Wildlife Resources Commission may regulate the use of dogs taking wildlife with respect to seasons, times, and places of use. The area covered by this subsection is that part of the State in and west of the following counties or parts of counties: Rockingham; Guilford; that part of Alamance and Orange lying south of Interstate Highway 85; Chatham; that part of Wake lying south of N.C. Highway 98; Lee; Randolph; Montgomery; Stanly; Union; and that part of Anson lying west of N.C. Highway 742.

(b) In the area of the State lying east of that described in subsection (a), the Wildlife Resources Commission may not restrict or prohibit the use of dogs in hunting or the training of dogs, in season or out, except during the breeding and raising seasons for game during the period April 15 through June 15.

(c) On game lands, wildlife refuges, and public hunting grounds the Wildlife Resources Commission may regulate the possession and use of dogs and may impound dogs found running at large without supervision or, if unsupervised, without means of identification.

(d) The Wildlife Resources Commission may not by its rules anywhere in the State restrict the number of dogs used in hunting or require that any particular breed of dog be used in hunting.

(e) It is unlawful to allow dogs not under the control of the owner or the individual in possession of the dogs to run or chase deer during the closed deer season.

(f) Nothing in this section is intended to require the leashing or confining of pet dogs.

Added by Laws 1979, c. 830, § 1. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 827, § 98.

 

Chapter 130A. Public Health.  Article 6. Communicable Diseases. Part 6. Rabies.

§ 130A-184. Definitions

The following definitions apply in this Part:

(1) Animal Control Officer.--A city or county employee whose responsibility includes animal control. The term “Animal Control Officer” also includes agents of a private organization that is operating an animal shelter under contract with a city or county whenever those agents are performing animal control functions at the shelter.

(2) Cat.--A domestic feline of the genus and species Felis catus.

(3) Certified rabies vaccinator.--A person appointed and certified to administer rabies vaccine to animals in accordance with this Part.

(4) Dog.--A domestic canine of the genus, species, and subspecies Canis lupus familiaris.

(4a) Feral.--An animal that is not socialized.

(4b) Ferret.--A domestic mammal of the genus, species, and subspecies Mustela putorius furo.

(5) Rabies vaccine.--An animal rabies vaccine licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture and approved for use in this State by the Commission.

(6) State Public Heath Veterinarian.--A person appointed by the Secretary to direct the State public health veterinary program.

(6a) Stray.--An animal that meets both of the following conditions:

a. Is beyond the limits of confinement or lost.

b. Is not wearing any tags, microchips, tattoos, or other methods of identification.

(7) Vaccination.--The administration of rabies vaccine by a person authorized to administer it under G.S. 130A-185.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 2009-327, § 1, eff. Oct. 1, 2009; S.L. 2009-304, § 2, eff. Jan. 1, 2010.

 

§ 130A-185. Vaccination required

(a) Vaccination required.--The owner of an animal listed in this subsection over four months of age shall have the animal vaccinated against rabies:

(1) Cat.

(2) Dog.

(3) Ferret.

(b) Vaccination.--Only animal rabies vaccine licensed by the United States Department of Agriculture and approved by the Commission shall be used on animals in this State. A rabies vaccine may only be administered by one or more of the following:

(1) A licensed veterinarian.

(2) A registered veterinary technician under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian.

(3) A certified rabies vaccinator.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 2009-327, § 2, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-186. Appointment and certification of certified rabies vaccinator

In those counties where licensed veterinarians are not available to participate in all scheduled county rabies control clinics, the local health director shall appoint one or more persons for the purpose of administering rabies vaccine to animals in that county. Whether or not licensed veterinarians are available, the local health director may appoint one or more persons for the purpose of administering rabies vaccine to animals in their county and these persons will make themselves available to participate in the county rabies control program. The State Public Health Veterinarian shall provide at least four hours of training to those persons appointed by the local health director to administer rabies vaccine. Upon satisfactory completion of the training, the State Public Health Veterinarian shall certify in writing that the appointee has demonstrated a knowledge and procedure acceptable for the administration of rabies vaccine to animals. A certified rabies vaccinator shall be authorized to administer rabies vaccine to animals in the county until the appointment by the local health director has been terminated.

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2.

 

§ 130A-187. County rabies vaccination clinics

(a) Local Clinics.--The local health director shall organize or assist other county departments to organize at least one countywide rabies vaccination clinic per year for the purpose of vaccinating animals required to be vaccinated under this Part. Public notice of the time and place of rabies vaccination clinics shall be published in a newspaper having general circulation within the area.

(b) Fee.--The county board of commissioners may establish a fee to be charged for a rabies vaccination given at a county rabies vaccination clinic. The fee amount may consist of the following:

(1) A charge for administering and storing the vaccine, not to exceed ten dollars ($10.00).

(2) The actual cost of the rabies vaccine, the vaccination certificate, and the rabies vaccination tag.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by Laws 1987, c. 219; S.L. 2009-327, § 3, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-188. Fee for vaccination at county rabies vaccination clinics - § 130A-188. Repealed by S.L. 2009-327, § 4, eff. Oct. 1, 2009

 

§ 130A-189. Rabies vaccination certificates

A person who administers a rabies vaccine shall complete a rabies vaccination certificate. The Commission shall adopt rules specifying the information that must be included on the certificate. An original rabies vaccination certificate shall be given to the owner of the animal that receives the rabies vaccine. A copy of the rabies vaccination certificate shall be retained by the licensed veterinarian or the certified rabies vaccinator. A copy shall also be given to the county agency responsible for animal control, provided the information given to the county agency shall not be used for commercial purposes.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by Laws 1993, c. 245, § 1; S.L. 2009-327, § 5, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-190. Rabies vaccination tags

(a) Issuance.--A person who administers a rabies vaccine shall issue a rabies vaccination tag to the owner of the animal. The rabies vaccination tag shall show the year issued, a vaccination number, the words “North Carolina” or the initials “N.C.” and the words “rabies vaccine.” Dogs shall wear rabies vaccination tags at all times. Cats and ferrets must wear rabies vaccination tags unless they are exempt from wearing the tags by local ordinance.

(b) Fee.--Rabies vaccination tags, links, and rivets may be obtained from the Department of Health and Human Services. The Secretary is authorized to collect a fee for the rabies tags, links, and rivets in accordance with this subsection. The fee for each tag is the sum of the following:

(1) The actual cost of the rabies tag, links, and rivets.

(2) Transportation costs.

(3) Fifteen cents (15¢). This portion of the fee shall be used to fund rabies education and prevention programs.

(4) Deleted by S.L. 2010-31, § 11.4(h), eff. Oct. 1, 2010.

(c) Deleted by S.L. 2007-487, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2008.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 1997-69, § 1; S.L. 2000-163, § 2, eff. Jan. 1, 2001; S.L. 2007-487, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2008; S.L. 2009-327, § 6, eff. Oct. 1, 2009; S.L. 2010-31, § 11.4(h), eff. Oct. 1, 2010.

 

§ 130A-191. Possession and distribution of rabies vaccine

It shall be unlawful for persons other than licensed veterinarians, certified rabies vaccinators and persons engaged in the distribution of rabies vaccine to possess rabies vaccine. Persons engaged in the distribution of vaccines may distribute, sell and offer to sell rabies vaccine only to licensed veterinarians and certified rabies vaccinators.

Added by Laws 1987, c. 218, § 1.

 

§ 130A-192. Animals not wearing required rabies vaccination tags

(a) The Animal Control Officer shall canvass the county to determine if there are any animals not wearing the required rabies vaccination tag. If an animal required to wear a tag is found not wearing one, the Animal Control Officer shall check to see if the owner's identification can be found on the animal. If the animal is wearing an owner identification tag with information enabling the owner of the animal to be contacted, or if the Animal Control Officer otherwise knows who the owner is, the Animal Control Officer shall notify the owner in writing to have the animal vaccinated against rabies and to produce the required rabies vaccination certificate to the Animal Control Officer within three days of the notification. If the animal is not wearing an owner identification tag and the Animal Control Officer does not otherwise know who the owner is, the Animal Control Officer may impound the animal. The duration of the impoundment of these animals shall be established by the county board of commissioners, but the duration shall not be less than 72 hours. During the impoundment period, the Animal Control Officer shall make a reasonable effort to locate the owner of the animal. If the Animal Control Officer has access at no cost or at a reasonable cost to a microchip scanning device, the Animal Control Officer may scan the animal and utilize any information that may be available through a microchip to locate the owner of the animal, if possible. If the animal is not reclaimed by its owner during the impoundment period, the animal shall be disposed of in one of the following manners: returned to the owner; adopted as a pet by a new owner; sold to institutions within this State registered by the United States Department of Agriculture pursuant to the Federal Animal Welfare Act, as amended; or put to death by a procedure approved by rules adopted by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services or, in the absence of such rules, by a procedure approved by the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Humane Society of the United States or of the American Humane Association.

(a1) Before an animal may be sold or put to death, it shall be made available for adoption under procedures that enable members of the public to inspect the animal, except in cases in which the animal is found by the operator of the shelter to be unadoptable due to injury or defects of health or temperament. An animal that is seriously ill or injured may be euthanized if the manager of the animal shelter determines, in writing, that it is appropriate to do so. Nothing in this subsection shall supercede (i) any rules adopted by the Board of Agriculture which specify the number of animals allowed for kennel space in animal shelters, or (ii) the duration of impoundment established by the county board of commissioners, or the 72-hour holding period, as provided in subsection (a) of this section.

(a2) Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, a person who comes to an animal shelter attempting to locate a lost pet is entitled to view every animal held at the shelter, subject to rules providing for such viewing during at least four hours a day, three days a week. If the shelter is housing animals that must be kept apart from the general public for health reasons, public safety concerns, or in order to preserve evidence for criminal proceedings, the shelter shall make reasonable arrangements that allow pet owners to determine whether their lost pets are among those animals.

(a3) The Animal Control Officer shall maintain a record of all animals impounded under this section which shall include the date of impoundment, the length of impoundment, the method of disposal of the animal and the name of the person or institution to whom any animal has been released.

(b) In addition to domesticated dogs and cats not wearing the required rabies tags, the provisions of subsection (a) of this section concerning the holding of animals for at least 72 hours and the permissible means of disposition of animals after expiration of that holding period also apply to all of the following:

(1) Dogs and cats that are wearing rabies tags but are taken into custody for violation of statutes or ordinances not related to rabies control, such as ordinances requiring the leashing or restraining of dogs and cats.

(2) Dogs and cats surrendered to an animal shelter by the owners of the animals, unless an owner provides to the shelter the following:

a. Some proof of ownership of the animal, and

b. A signed written consent to the disposition of the animal, in a manner authorized by this section, before the expiration of the 72-hour holding period or of a longer period established by ordinance or local rule to which the shelter is subject.

(c) If an animal is not wearing tags, or other mode of identification indicating its owner, and is delivered to an animal shelter by (i) a person who has found and captured the animal, or (ii) by an approved rescue organization that received the animal from a person who found and captured the animal, then the shelter may, in writing, appoint the finder or approved rescue organization to be the agent of the shelter. For purposes of this subsection, the term “approved rescue organization” means a nonprofit corporation or association that cares for stray animals that has been favorably assessed by the operator of the animal shelter through the application of written standards.

(1) If the animal is a dog or cat, the finder or approved rescue organization shall hold the animal for the 72-hour holding period provided for in subsection (a) of this section or such longer holding period that may be applicable to the shelter by ordinance or local rule. If the animal is not a dog or cat, then the holding period shall be by agreement between the animal shelter and the person or organization receiving the animal.

(2) After the expiration of the applicable holding period, the shelter may:

a. Transfer the animal by adoption to the person or organization that has held it as agent, or

b. Extend the period of time the finder or rescue organization holds the animal as agent of the shelter.

(3) A shelter may terminate an agency created under this subsection at any time by directing the finder or rescue organization to deliver the animal to the shelter.

(4) The city, county, or organization operating the animal shelter, as principal in the agency relationship, shall not be liable to reimburse the agent for the costs of care of the animal and shall not be liable to the owner of the animal for harm to the animal caused by the agent, absent a written contract providing otherwise.

(d) During the 72-hour or longer holding period established under subsection (a) of this section, an animal shelter may place an animal it is holding in foster care.

(e) If an animal shelter transfers physical possession of a dog or cat under subsection (c) or (d) of this section, so that the animal is no longer on the animal shelter premises, at least one photograph which depicts the head and face of the animal shall (i) be displayed at the shelter in a conspicuous location that is available to the general public during hours of operation, and (ii) remain posted for the 72-hour or longer holding period established under subsection (a) of this section.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 2009-327, § 7, eff. Oct. 1, 2009; S.L. 2009-304, § 1, eff. Jan. 1, 2010.

 

§ 130A-193. Vaccination and confinement of animals brought into this State

(a) Vaccination Required.-- An animal brought into this State that is required to be vaccinated under this Part shall immediately be securely confined and shall be vaccinated against rabies within one week after entry. The animal shall remain confined for two weeks after vaccination.

(b) Exceptions.--The provisions of subsection (a) shall not apply to:

(1) An animal brought into this State for exhibition purposes if the animal is confined and not permitted to run at large.

(2) An animal brought into this State accompanied by a certificate issued by a licensed veterinarian showing that the animal is apparently free from and has not been exposed to rabies and that the animal is currently vaccinated against rabies.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 2009-327, § 8, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-194. Quarantine of districts infected with rabies

An area may be declared under quarantine against rabies by the local health director when the disease exists to the extent that the lives of persons are endangered. When quarantine is declared, each animal in the area that is required to be vaccinated under this Part shall be confined on the premises of the owner or in a veterinary hospital unless the animal is on a leash or under the control and in the sight of a responsible adult.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 2009-327, § 9, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-195. Destroying stray or feral animals in quarantine districts

When quarantine has been declared and stray or feral animals continue to run uncontrolled in the area, any peace officer or Animal Control Officer shall have the right, after reasonable effort has been made to apprehend the animals, to destroy the stray or feral animals and properly dispose of their bodies.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 2009-327, § 10, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-196. Notice and confinement of biting animals.

(a) Notice.--When a person has been bitten by an animal required to be vaccinated under this Part, the person or parent, guardian or person standing in loco parentis of the person, and the person owning the animal or in control or possession of the animal shall notify the local health director immediately and give the name and address of the person bitten and the owner of the animal. If the animal that bites a person is a stray or feral animal, the local agency responsible for animal control shall make a reasonable attempt to locate the owner of the animal. If the owner cannot be identified within 72 hours of the event, the local health director may authorize the animal be euthanized, and the head of the animal shall be immediately sent to the State Laboratory of Public Health for rabies diagnosis. If the event occurs on a weekend or State holiday the time period for owner identification shall be extended 24 hours.

A physician who attends a person bitten by an animal known to be a potential carrier of rabies shall report the incident within 24 hours to the local health director. The report must include the name, age, and sex of the person.

(b) Confinement.--When an animal required to be vaccinated under this Part bites a person, the animal shall be immediately confined for 10 days in a place designated by the local health director. The local health director may authorize a dog trained and used by a law enforcement agency to be released from confinement to perform official duties upon submission of proof that the dog has been vaccinated for rabies in compliance with this Part. After reviewing the circumstances of the particular case, the local health director may allow the owner to confine the animal on the owner's property. An owner who fails to confine an animal in accordance with the instructions of the local health director shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor. If the owner or the person who controls or possesses the animal that has bitten a person refuses to confine the animal as required by this subsection, the local health director may order seizure of the animal and its confinement for 10 days at the expense of the owner.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by Laws 1985, c. 674, § 1; Laws 1989, c. 298; Laws 1993, c. 539, § 950; Laws 1994 (1st Ex. Sess.), c. 24, § 14(c); S.L. 2009-327, § 11, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-197. Infected animals to be destroyed; protection of vaccinated animals

When the local health director reasonably suspects that an animal required to be vaccinated under this Part has been exposed to the saliva or nervous tissue of a proven rabid animal or animal reasonably suspected of having rabies that is not available for laboratory diagnosis, the animal shall be considered to have been exposed to rabies. An animal exposed to rabies shall be destroyed immediately by its owner, the county Animal Control Officer or a peace officer unless the animal has been vaccinated against rabies in accordance with this Part and the rules of the Commission more than 28 days prior to being exposed, and is given a booster dose of rabies vaccine within five days of the exposure. As an alternative to destruction, the animal may be quarantined at a facility approved by the local health director for a period up to six months, and under reasonable conditions imposed by the local health director.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 2000-163, § 4, eff. Jan. 1, 2001; S.L. 2009-327, § 12, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-198. Confinement

A person who owns or has possession of an animal which is suspected of having rabies shall immediately notify the local health director or county Animal Control Officer and shall securely confine the animal in a place designated by the local health director. The animal shall be confined for a period of 10 days. Other animals may be destroyed at the discretion of the State Public Health Veterinarian.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 2009-327, § 13, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-199. Rabid animals to be destroyed; heads to be sent to State Laboratory of Public Health

An animal diagnosed as having rabies by a licensed veterinarian shall be destroyed and its head sent to the State Laboratory of Public Health. The heads of all animals that die during a confinement period required by this Part shall be immediately sent to the State Laboratory of Public Health for rabies diagnosis.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2. Amended by S.L. 2009-327, § 14, eff. Oct. 1, 2009.

 

§ 130A-200. Confinement or leashing of vicious animals

A local health director may declare an animal to be vicious and a menace to the public health when the animal has attacked a person causing bodily harm without being teased, molested, provoked, beaten, tortured or otherwise harmed. When an animal has been declared to be vicious and a menace to the public health, the local health director shall order the animal to be confined to its owner's property. However, the animal may be permitted to leave its owner's property when accompanied by a responsible adult and restrained on a leash.

Added by Laws 1983, c. 891, § 2.

 

§ 130A-201. Rabies emergency

A local health director in whose county or district rabies is found in the wild animal population as evidenced by a positive diagnosis of rabies in the past year in any wild animal, except a bat, may petition the State Health Director to declare a rabies emergency in the county or district. In determining whether a rabies emergency exists, the State Health Director shall consult with the Public Health Veterinarian and the State Agriculture Veterinarian and may consult with any other source of veterinary expertise the State Health Director deems advisable. Upon finding that a rabies emergency exists in a county or district, the State Health Director shall petition the Executive Director of the Wildlife Resources Commission to develop a plan pursuant to G.S. 113- 291.2(a1) to reduce the threat of rabies exposure to humans and domestic animals by foxes, raccoons, skunks, or bobcats in the county or district. Upon determination by the State Health Director that the rabies emergency no longer exists for a county or district, the State Health Director shall immediately notify the Executive Director of the Wildlife Resources Commission.

Added by S.L. 1997-402, § 1.

 

§§ 130A-202 to 130A-204. Reserved

 

Chapter 145. State Symbols and Other Official Adoptions.

§ 145-13. The State dog

The Plott Hound is adopted as the official dog of the State of North Carolina.

Added by Laws 1989, c. 773, § 1.

 

Chapter 160A. Cities and Towns.  Article 8. Delegation and Exercise of the General Police Power.

§ 160A-186. Regulation of domestic animals

A city may by ordinance regulate, restrict, or prohibit the keeping, running, or going at large of any domestic animals, including dogs and cats. The ordinance may provide that animals allowed to run at large in violation of the ordinance may be seized and sold or destroyed after reasonable efforts to notify their owner.

Amended by Laws 1971, c. 698, § 1.

 

Chapter 160A. Cities and Towns.  Article 9. Taxation.

§ 160A-212. Animal taxes

A city shall have power to levy an annual license tax on the privilege of keeping any domestic animal, including dogs and cats, within the city. This section shall not limit the city's authority to enact ordinances under G.S. 160A-186.

Amended by Laws 1949, c. 933; Laws 1971, c. 698, § 1.

 



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