This set of laws comprises the Yukon Dog Act. The law provides that an owner must keep his or her dog fed and watered and not punish it to an extent that is cruel or unnecessary. Dogs found at large contrary to the Act are impounded for a period of five days for owners to reclaim them. The Act also states that a person may kill a dog that is running at large in the act of pursuing, worrying, injuring or destroying cattle, horses, sheep, pigs or poultry.
s 1. Interpretation
In this Act,
"dog" includes a male or female dog and an animal that is a cross between a dog and a wolf; ("chien")
"muzzle" means to secure a dog's mouth in such a fashion that it cannot bite anything; ("museler")
"officer" means a person appointed by the Commissioner in Executive Council to carry out the provisions of this Act and any member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police; ("agent")
"owner" means a person who owns, harbours, possesses or has control or custody of a dog; ("propriétaire")
"run at large" means to run off the premises of the owner either when the dog is not muzzled or when the dog is not under the control of any person. ("errer")
s 2. Appointment of officers
The Commissioner in Executive Council may appoint any person to carry out the provisions of this Act.
s 3. Feed and water
No owner shall allow a dog to remain unfed or unwatered for a sufficient period either to amount to cruelty or to cause the dog to become a nuisance.
s 4. Punishment
No person shall punish or abuse a dog in a manner or to an extent that is cruel or unnecessary.
s 5. Running at large
No owner shall permit a dog to run at large
(a) in an area that may be defined by the Commissioner in Executive Council;
(b) contrary to a bylaw made by the council of a municipality;
(c) that is of a vicious temperament or dangerous to the public safety; or
(d) while in heat.
An officer may seize or kill a dog found running at large contrary to paragraph (1)(c) or (d).
s 6. Dogs in harness
No person shall have a dog in harness in any settlement or within one kilometre of any settlement in the Yukon unless the dog has a muzzle or is under the custody and control of a person over 16 years of age who is capable of ensuring that the dog will not harm the public or create a nuisance.
No person shall drive a dog or dog team on a sidewalk situated on the street or road of a settlement.
This section does not apply in a municipality.
s 7. Seizure and sale
An officer may seize a dog from a person whom the officer finds violating this Act.
Subject to subsection (6), an officer who has seized a dog under subsection (1) shall restore possession of the dog to the owner thereof if
(a) the owner claims the dog within five days after the date of seizure; and
(b) the owner pays to the officer all expenses incurred in securing, caring for and feeding the dog.
If, at the end of five days, the dog has not been claimed by the owner under subsection (2), the officer may sell the dog at public auction.
The proceeds of the sale of a dog by public auction shall be distributed in the following manner
(a) all expenses incurred in securing, caring for and feeding the dog shall be paid to the officer;
(b) the expenses of the public auction shall be paid;
(c) the balance, if any, shall be paid to the owner.
If a dog has not been claimed within five days after seizure under subsection (2) and no bid has been received at a sale by public auction, the officer may destroy or dispose of the dog as the officer sees fit at any time after the auction and no damages or compensation may be recovered on account of its destruction or disposal by the officer.
If, in the opinion of the officer, a dog seized under this section is injured or should be destroyed without delay for humane reasons or for reasons of safety, the officer may destroy the dog as soon after seizure as the officer thinks fit without permitting any person to claim the dog or without offering it for sale by public auction and no damages or compensation may be recovered on account of its destruction by the officer.
If the seizure of a dog is made for contravention of a bylaw respecting dogs passed by a council of a municipality, the provisions of the bylaw respecting the impounding, selling or killing of dogs shall apply instead of the provisions of this section.
s 8. Nuisance
For the purposes of this section it is declared to be a nuisance if, in the vicinity of any hospital, an owner permits their dog to howl or make other noises which disturb the peace and repose of patients in that hospital.
On complaint in writing signed by two members of the staff of a hospital setting forth the circumstances constituting a nuisance, an officer may, by notice in writing served on the person alleged to be responsible for the nuisance, require that the nuisance be abated within 48 hours from the time of service of the notice.
If any person
(a) is responsible for a nuisance under this section;
(b) has been served with a notice under subsection (2); and
(c) has failed to comply with the notice by abating the nuisance within 48 hours of the time of service of the notice,
that person is guilty of an offence.
On any prosecution under this section the evidence of two members of the staff of a hospital to the effect that the peace and repose of patients therein have been disturbed by noises apparently made by a dog kept by the person accused, shall be prima facie evidence that the accused is guilty of a nuisance.
s 9. Destruction of dogs pursuing domestic animals
A person may kill a dog that is running at large in the act of pursuing, worrying, injuring or destroying cattle, horses, sheep, pigs or poultry.
s 10. Proceedings against owner
On receiving a complaint made under oath that an owner has a dog that has, while running at large, within the preceding three months pursued, worried or injured a person or pursued, worried or injured or destroyed any cattle, horses, sheep, pigs or poultry, a justice may issue a summons requiring the owner to appear before the justice to answer the complaint at the time and place stated in the summons.
On summary conviction on the evidence of one or more credible witnesses other than the complainant, the justice may make an order for the destruction of the dog within three days, or for the control of the dog. If the dog is not destroyed pursuant to the order, or the order for the control of the dog is not complied with, the justice may direct a peace officer to destroy the dog or execute the order, as may suit the case, and the owner of the dog commits an offence.
s 11. Action for damages not barred
No conviction or order under section 10 shall bar the owner of cattle, horses, sheep, pigs or poultry from bringing an action for the recovery of damages for injury done thereto by a dog.
No conviction or order under section 10 shall bar a person from bringing an action for the recovery of damages for injury done to the person by a dog.
s 12. Nature of proof in civil action
It is not necessary for the plaintiff in an action referred to in section 11 to prove that the defendant knew of the dog's propensity to
(a) pursue, worry or injure persons; or
(b) pursue, worry, injure or destroy animals.
The defendant's liability shall not depend on previous knowledge of their dog's propensity.
s 13. Offence and penalty
Every person who violates any provision of this Act commits an offence.
s 14. Regulations
The Commissioner in Executive Council may make regulations for carrying out the purposes and provisions of this Act.