Full Statute Name:  Iowa Code Annotated . Title IX. Local Government. Subtitle 1. Counties. Chapter 351. Dogs and Other Animals.

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Primary Citation:  I. C. A. § 351.1 - 43; I. C. A. § 162.20 Country of Origin:  United States Last Checked:  December, 2014 Alternate Citation:  IA ST 351.1 - .43; IA ST § 162.20
Summary:

These Iowa statutes comprise the state's dog laws.  With regard to damage done by dogs and dog bites, the owner of a dog shall be liable to an injured party for all damages done by the dog, when the dog is caught in the action of worrying, maiming, or killing a domestic animal, or the dog is attacking or attempting to bite a person, except when the party damaged is doing an unlawful act, directly contributing to the injury.  Further, the law states that it shall be the duty of the owner of any dog, cat or other animal which has bitten or attacked a person or any person having knowledge of such bite or attack to report this act to a local health or law enforcement official.  The section also contains general rabies vaccination provisions and a prohibition on dogs running at large (results in impoundment).

Statute Text: 

Title IX. Local Government.  Subtitle 1. Counties.  Chapter 351. Dogs and Other Animals.

351.1 to 351.14. Repealed by Acts 1994 (75 G.A.) ch. 1173, § 42

351.25 . Dog as property

351.26 . Right and duty to kill untagged dog

351.27 . Right to kill tagged dog

351.28 . Liability for damages

351.29 . Construction clause

351.30 to 351.32. Repealed by Acts 1967 (62 G.A.) ch. 118, § 9, eff. July 1, 1967

351.33 . Rabies vaccination

351.34. Repealed by Acts 1994 (75 G.A.) ch. 1173, § 42, subsec. 2

351.35 . How and when

351.36 . Enforcement

351.37 . Dogs running at large--impoundment--disposition

351.38 . Owner's duty

351.39 . Confinement

351.40 . Quarantine

351.41 . Not a limitation on power of municipalities and counties

351.42 . Exempt dogs

351.43 . Penalty

Iowa Code Annotated. Title V. Agriculture [Chs. 159-215A]. Subtitle 2. Animal Industry [Chs. 162-172E]. Chapter 162. Care of Animals in Commercial Establishments

162.20. Sterilization

 

351.25. Dog as property

All dogs under six months of age, and all dogs over said age and wearing a collar with a valid rabies vaccination tag attached to the collar, shall be deemed property. Dogs not provided with a rabies vaccination tag shall not be deemed property.

CREDIT(S)

Amended by Acts 1970 (63 G.A.) ch. 1174, § 2, eff. March 21, 1970; Acts 1994 (75 G.A.) ch. 1173, § 32.

 

351.26. Right and duty to kill untagged dog

It shall be lawful for any person, and the duty of all peace officers within their respective jurisdictions unless such jurisdiction shall have otherwise provided for the seizure and impoundment of dogs, to kill any dog for which a rabies vaccination tag is required, when the dog is not wearing a collar with rabies vaccination tag attached.

CREDIT(S)

Amended by Acts 1961 (59 G.A.) ch. 193, § 9; Acts 1994 (75 G.A.) ch. 1173, § 33.

 

351.27. Right to kill tagged dog

It shall be lawful for any person to kill a dog, wearing a collar with a rabies vaccination tag attached, when the dog is caught in the act of chasing, maiming, or killing any domestic animal or fowl, or when such dog is attacking or attempting to bite a person.
CREDIT(S)

Amended by Acts 1994 (75 G.A.) ch. 1173, § 34; Acts 2007 (82 G.A.) ch. 111, S.F. 406, § 1.

HISTORICAL AND STATUTORY NOTES

2007 Electronic Update

2007 Legislation

Acts 2007 (82 G.A.) ch. 111, S.F. 406, § 1, deleted "worrying," following "caught in the act of".


 

351.28. Liability for damages

The owner of a dog shall be liable to an injured party for all damages done by the dog, when the dog is caught in the action of worrying, maiming, or killing a domestic animal, or the dog is attacking or attempting to bite a person, except when the party damaged is doing an unlawful act, directly contributing to the injury. This section does not apply to damage done by a dog affected with hydrophobia unless the owner of the dog had reasonable grounds to know that the dog was afflicted with hydrophobia and by reasonable effort might have prevented the injury.

CREDIT(S)
Amended by Acts 1983 (70 G.A.) ch. 117, § 1.

 

351.29. Construction clause

A holding that one or more sections hereof are unconstitutional shall not be held to invalidate the remaining sections.

Derivation:
Codes 1939, 1935, 1931, 1927, 1924, § 5451.
Acts 1923-24 Ex.Sess. (40 G.A.) H.F. 71, § 84.
Acts 1921 (39 G.A.) ch. 140, § 14.

 

351.30 to 351.32. Repealed by Acts 1967 (62 G.A.) ch. 118, § 9, eff. July 1, 1967

 

351.33. Rabies vaccination

Every owner of a dog shall obtain a rabies vaccination for such animal. It shall be unlawful for any person to own or have a dog in the person's possession, six months of age or over, which has not been vaccinated against rabies. Dogs kept in kennels and not allowed to run at large shall not be subject to these vaccination requirements.

CREDIT(S)
Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1. Amended by Acts 1970 (63 G.A.) ch. 1174, § 3, eff. March 21, 1970.

 

351.34. Repealed by Acts 1994 (75 G.A.) ch. 1173, § 42, subsec. 2

 

351.35. How and when

The rabies vaccination required by section 351.33 shall be an injection of antirabies vaccine approved by the state department of agriculture and land stewardship, and the frequency of revaccination necessary for approved vaccinations shall be as established by such department. The vaccine shall be administered by a licensed veterinarian and shall be given as approved by the state department of agriculture and land stewardship. The veterinarian shall issue a tag with the certificate of vaccination, and such tag shall at all times be attached to the collar of the dog.

CREDIT(S)
Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1.

 

351.36. Enforcement

Local health and law enforcement officials shall enforce the provisions of sections 351.33 to 351.43 relating to vaccination and impoundment of dogs. Such public officials shall not be responsible for any accident or disease of a dog resulting from the enforcement of the provisions of said sections.

CREDIT(S)
Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1. Amended by Acts 1967 (62 G.A.) ch. 163, § 38, eff. Aug. 15, 1967.

 

351.37. Dogs running at large--impoundment--disposition

A dog shall be apprehended and impounded by a local board of health or law enforcement official if the dog is running at large and the dog is not wearing a valid rabies vaccination tag or a rabies vaccination certificate is not presented to the local board of health or law enforcement official.

The local board of health or law enforcement official shall provide written notice to the owner if the local board of health or law enforcement official can reasonably determine the owner's name and current address by accessing a tag or other device that is on or a part of the dog. The notice shall be sent within two days after the dog has been impounded. The notice shall provide that if the owner does not redeem the dog within seven days from the date that the notice is delivered, the dog may be humanely destroyed or otherwise disposed of in accordance with law. For purposes of this section, notice is delivered when the local board of health or law enforcement official mails the notice which may be by regular mail. An owner may redeem a dog by having it immediately vaccinated and paying the cost of impoundment.

If the owner of the impounded dog fails to redeem the dog within seven days from the date of the delivery of the notice to the dog's owner as provided in this section, the dog may be disposed of in accordance with law. If the dog is destroyed, it must be destroyed by euthanasia as defined in section 162.2.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1. Amended by Acts 2002 (79 G.A.) ch. 1130, § 1.

 

351.38. Owner's duty

It shall be the duty of the owner of any dog, cat or other animal which has bitten or attacked a person or any person having knowledge of such bite or attack to report this act to a local health or law enforcement official. It shall be the duty of physicians and veterinarians to report to the local board of health the existence of any animal known or suspected to be suffering from rabies.

CREDIT(S)
Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1. Amended by Acts 1967 (62 G.A.) ch. 163, § 39, eff. Aug. 15, 1967.

 

351.39. Confinement

If a local board of health receives information that an animal has bitten a person or that a dog or animal is suspected of having rabies, the board shall order the owner to confine such animal in the manner it directs. If the owner fails to confine such animal in the manner directed, the animal shall be apprehended and impounded by such board, and after ten days the board may humanely destroy the animal. If such animal is returned to its owner, the owner shall pay the cost of impoundment. This section shall not apply if a police service dog or a horse used by a law enforcement agency and acting in the performance of its duties has bitten a person.

CREDIT(S)

Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1. Amended by Acts 1967 (62 G.A.) ch. 163, § 40, eff. Aug. 15, 1967; Acts 2001 (79 G.A.) ch. 19, § 1; Acts 2001 (79 G.A.) ch. 176, § 68.

 

351.40. Quarantine

If a local board of health believes rabies to be epidemic, or believes there is a threat of epidemic, in its jurisdiction, it may declare a quarantine in all or part of the area under its jurisdiction and such declaration shall be reported to the Iowa department of public health. During the period of quarantine, any person owning or having a dog in the person's possession in the quarantined area shall keep such animal securely enclosed or on a leash for the duration of the quarantine period.

CREDIT(S)
Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1. Amended by Acts 1976 (66 G.A.) ch. 163, § 41, eff. Aug. 15, 1967.

 

351.41. Not a limitation on power of municipalities and counties

This chapter does not limit the power of any city or county to prohibit dogs and other animals from running at large, whether or not they have been vaccinated for rabies, and does not limit the power of any city or county to provide additional measures for the restriction of dogs and other animals for the control of rabies and for other purposes.

CREDIT(S)
Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1; Acts 1974 (65 G.A.) ch. 1087, § 32. Amended by Acts 1981 (69 G.A.) ch. 117, § 1065.

 

351.42. Exempt dogs

Dogs that are under the control of the owner or handlers and which are in transit, or are to be exhibited shall be exempt from the vaccination provisions of these sections if they are within the state for less than thirty days. Dogs assigned to a research institution or a like facility shall be exempt from the provisions of sections 351.33 to 351.43.

CREDIT(S)
Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1.

 

351.43. Penalty

Any person refusing to comply with the provisions of sections 351.33 to 351.42 or violating any of their provisions, shall be deemed guilty of a simple misdemeanor.

CREDIT(S)
Added by Acts 1965 (61 G.A.) ch. 311, § 1. Amended by Acts 1976 (66 G.A.) ch. 1245 (ch. 4), § 324, eff. Jan. 1, 1978.

 

Iowa Code Annotated. Title V. Agriculture [Chs. 159-215A]. Subtitle 2. Animal Industry [Chs. 162-172E]. Chapter 162. Care of Animals in Commercial Establishments

162.20. Sterilization

1. A pound or animal shelter shall not transfer ownership of a dog or cat by sale or adoption, unless the dog or cat is subject to sterilization. The sterilization shall involve a procedure which permanently destroys the capacity of a dog or cat to reproduce, either by the surgical removal or alteration of its reproductive organs, or by the injection or ingestion of a serum. The pound or animal shelter shall not relinquish custody until it provides for one of the following:

a. Sterilization performed by a veterinarian licensed pursuant to chapter 169.

b. The execution of an agreement with a person intended to be the permanent custodian of the dog or cat. The agreement must provide that the custodian shall have the dog or cat sterilized by a veterinarian licensed pursuant to chapter 169.

2. The pound or animal shelter maintaining custody of the dog or cat may require that a person being transferred ownership of the dog or cat reimburse the pound or animal shelter for the amount in expenses incurred by the pound or animal shelter in sterilizing the dog or cat, if the dog or cat is sterilized prior to the transfer of ownership of the dog or cat to the person.

3. a. The sterilization agreement may be on a form which shall be prescribed by the department. The agreement shall contain the signature and address of the person receiving custody of the dog or cat, and the signature of the representative of the pound or animal shelter.

b. The sterilization shall be completed as soon as practicable, but prior to the transfer of the ownership of the dog or cat by the pound or animal shelter. The pound or animal shelter may grant an extension of the period required for the completion of the sterilization if the extension is based on a reasonable determination by a licensed veterinarian.

c. A pound or animal shelter shall transfer ownership of a dog or cat, conditioned upon the confirmation that the sterilization has been completed by a licensed veterinarian who performed the procedure. The confirmation shall be a receipt furnished by the office of the attending veterinarian.

d. A person who fails to satisfy the terms of the sterilization agreement shall return the dog or cat within twenty-four hours following receipt of a demand letter which shall be delivered to the person by the pound or animal shelter personally or by certified mail.

4. a. A person who does not comply with the provisions of a sterilization agreement is guilty of a simple misdemeanor.

b. A person who fails to return a dog or cat upon receipt of a demand letter is guilty of a simple misdemeanor.

c. A pound or animal shelter which knowingly fails to provide for the sterilization of a dog or cat is subject to a civil penalty of up to two hundred dollars. The department may enforce and collect civil penalties according to rules which shall be adopted by the department. Each violation shall constitute a separate offense. Moneys collected from civil penalties shall be deposited into the general fund of the state and are appropriated on July 1 of each year in equal amounts to each track licensed to race dogs to support the racing dog adoption program as provided in section 99D.27. Upon the third offense, the department may suspend or revoke a certificate of registration issued to the pound or animal shelter pursuant to this chapter. The department may bring an action in district court to enjoin a pound or animal shelter from transferring animals in violation of this section. In bringing the action, the department shall not be required to allege facts necessary to show, or tending to show, a lack of adequate remedy at law, that irreparable damage or loss will result if the action is brought at law, or that unique or special circumstances exist.

5. This section shall not apply to the following:

a. The return of a dog or cat to its owner by a pound or animal shelter.

b. The transfer of a dog or cat by a pound or animal shelter which has obtained an enforcement waiver issued by the department. The pound or shelter may apply for an annual waiver each year as provided by rules adopted by the department. The department shall grant a waiver, if it determines that the pound or animal shelter is subject to an ordinance by a city or county which includes stricter requirements than provided in this section. The department shall not charge more than ten dollars as a waiver application fee. The fees collected by the department shall be deposited in the general fund of the state.

c. The transfer of a dog or cat to a research facility as defined in section 162.2 or a person licensed by the United States department of agriculture as a class B dealer pursuant to 9 C.F.R. ch. 1, subch. A, pt. 2. However, a class B dealer who receives an unsterilized dog or cat from a pound or animal shelter shall either sterilize the dog or cat or transfer the unsterilized dog or cat to a research facility provided in this paragraph. The class B dealer shall not transfer a dog to a research facility if the dog is a greyhound registered with the national greyhound association and the dog raced at a track associated with pari-mutuel racing unless the class B dealer receives written approval of the transfer from a person who owned an interest in the dog while the dog was racing.

Credits

Added by Acts 1993 (75 G.A.) ch. 134, § 1. Amended by Acts 2008 (82 G.A.) ch. 1058, S.F. 2177, § 16; Acts 2010 (83 G.A.) ch. 1061, S.F. 2237, § 180; Acts 2012 (84 G.A.) ch. 1023, S.F. 2203, § 27.



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