In Montello, Wisconsin, it is unlawful to keep, harbor, own or possess any pit bull dog, provided that dogs previously registered may be kept subject to certain requirement. These requirements are keeping the dog properly confined or on a leash and muzzle, posting a "Beware of Dog” sign, keeping $50,000 liability insurance, and taking photographs for identification purposes. Sale or transfer of ownership of pit bulls is prohibited. Failure to comply may result in the seizure and impoundment of the dog, a fine of up to $1,000 and imprisonment for up to 30 days.
§ 117-17 Pit Bull Dogs.
A. Keeping prohibited. It shall be unlawful to keep, harbor, own or in any way possess within the corporate limits of the City of Montello, Wisconsin, any pit bull dog, provided that pit bull dogs registered with the City on the date of publication of this section may be kept within the City subject to the standards and requirements set forth in Subsection B of this section. "Pit bull dog" is defined to mean:
(1) The Staffordshire bull terrier breed of dog.
(2) The American pit bull terrier breed of dog.
(3) The American Staffordshire Terrier breed of dog.
(4) Any dog which has the appearance and characteristics of being predominantly of the breeds of Staffordshire bull terrier, American pit bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier, or a combination of any of these breeds.
B. Keeping of registered pit bulls. The provisions of Subsection A of this section are not applicable to owners, keepers or harborers of pit bull dogs registered with the City of Montello as of May 10, 1989, the effective date of this section. The keeping of such dogs, however, shall be subject to the following standards:
(1) Leash and muzzle. No person shall permit a registered pit bull dog to go outside its kennel or pen unless such dog is securely leashed with a leash no longer than four feet in length. No person shall permit a pit bull dog to be kept on a chain, rope or other type of leash outside its kennel or pen unless a person is in physical control of the leash. Such dogs may not be leashed to inanimate objects, such as trees, posts, buildings, etc. In addition, all pit bull dogs on a leash outside the animal's kennel must be muzzled by a muzzling device sufficient to prevent such dog from biting persons or other animals.
(2) Confinement. All registered pit bull dogs shall be securely confined indoors or in a securely enclosed and locked pen or kennel, except when leashed and muzzled as above provided. Such pen, kennel or structure must have secure sides and a secure top attached to the sides. All structures used to confine registered pit bull dogs must be locked with a key or combination lock when such animals are within the structure. Such structure must have a secure bottom or floor attached to the sides of the pen, or the sides of the pen must be embedded in the ground not less than two feet. All structures erected to house pit bull dogs must comply with all zoning and building regulations of the City. All such structures must be adequately lighted and ventilated and kept in a clean and sanitary condition.
(3) Confinement indoors. No pit bull dog may be kept on a porch or patio or in any part of a house or structure that would allow the dog to exit such building on its own volition. In addition, no such animal may be kept in a house or structure when the windows are open or when screen windows or screen doors are the only obstacle preventing the dog from exiting the structure.
(4) Signs. All owners, keepers or harborers of registered pit bull dogs within the City shall, within 10 days of the effective date of this section, display in a prominent place on their premises a sign easily readable by the public using the words "Beware of Dog." In addition, a similar sign is required to be posted on the kennel or pen of such animal.
(5) Insurance. All owners, keepers or harborers of registered pit bull dogs must, within 10 days of the effective date of this section, provide proof to the Montello City Clerk-Treasurer of public liability insurance in a single incident amount of $50,000 for bodily injury to or death of any person or persons or for damage to property owned by any persons which may result from ownership, keeping or maintenance of such animal. Such insurance policy shall provide that no cancellation of the policy will be made unless 10 days' written notice is first given to the Montello City Clerk-Treasurer.
(6) Identification photographs. All owners, keepers or harborers of registered pit bull dogs must, within 10 days of the effective date of this section, provide to the City Clerk-Treasurer two color photographs of the registered animal clearly showing the color and approximate size of the animal.
(7) Reporting requirements. All owners, keepers or harborers of registered pit bull dogs must, within 10 days of the incident, report the following information in writing to the Montello City Clerk-Treasurer as required hereinafter:
(a) The removal from the City or death of a registered pit bull dog.
(b) The birth of offspring of a registered pit bull dog.
(c) The new address of a registered pit bull dog owner should the owner move within the corporate City limits.
(8) Sale or transfer of ownership prohibited. No person shall sell, barter or in any other way dispose of a pit bull dog registered with the City to any person within the City unless the recipient person resides permanently in the same household and on the same premises as the registered owner of such dog, provided that the registered owner of a pit bull dog may sell or otherwise dispose of a registered dog or the offspring of such dog to persons who do not reside within the City.
(9) Animals born of registered dogs. All offspring born of pit bull dogs registered within the City must be removed from the City within six weeks of the birth of such animals.
C. Irrebuttable presumptions. There shall be an irrebuttable presumption that any dog registered with the City as a pit bull dog or any of those breeds prohibited by Subsection A of this section is in fact a dog subject to the requirements of this section.
D. Failure to comply. It shall be unlawful for the owner, keeper or harborer of a pit bull dog registered with the City of Montello to fail to comply with the requirement and conditions set forth in this section. Any dog found to be the subject of a violation of this section shall be subject to immediate seizure and impoundment. In addition, failure to comply will result in the revocation of the license of such animal resulting in the immediate removal of the animal from the City.
E. Violations and penalties. Any person violating or permitting the violation of any provision of this section shall, upon conviction in Circuit Court, be fined a sum of not less than $200 and not more than $1,000. In default of payment of the fine imposed the Court may sentence the defendant to imprisonment in the county jail for a period not to exceed 30 days. In addition, the court shall order the registration of the subject pit bull revoked and the dog removed from the City. Should the defendant refuse to remove the dog from the City, the Circuit Court Judge shall find the defendant owner in contempt and order the immediate confiscation and impoundment of the animal. Each day that a violation of this section continues shall be deemed a separate offense. In addition to the foregoing penalties, any person who violates this section shall pay all expenses, including shelter, food, handling, veterinary care and testimony, necessitated by the enforcement of this section.
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II).