54-617 . Dangerous dogs; terms, defined
54-618 . Dangerous dogs; actions required; costs; limitations on transport; permanent relocation; procedure
54-619 . Dangerous dogs; confinement required; warning signs
54-620 . Dangerous dogs; confiscation; when; costs
54-621 . Dangerous dogs; disposal by court order
54-622 . Dangerous dogs; violation; penalty
54-622.01 . Dangerous dogs; serious bodily injury; penalty; defense
54-623 . Dangerous dogs; violation; conviction; effect
54-623.01 . County; designate animal control authority
54-624 . Dangerous dogs; local laws or ordinances
For purposes of sections 54-617 to 54-624:
(1) Animal control authority means an entity authorized to enforce the animal control laws of a county, city, or village or this state and includes any local law enforcement agency or other agency designated by a county, city, or village to enforce the animal control laws of such county, city, or village;
(2) Animal control officer means any individual employed, appointed, or authorized by an animal control authority for the purpose of aiding in the enforcement of sections 54-617 to 54-624 or any other law or ordinance relating to the licensure of animals, control of animals, or seizure and impoundment of animals and includes any state or local law enforcement officer or other employee whose duties in whole or in part include assignments that involve the seizure and impoundment of any animal;
(3)(a) Dangerous dog means a dog that, according to the records of an animal control authority: (i) Has killed a human being; (ii) has inflicted injury on a human being that requires medical treatment; (iii) has killed a domestic animal without provocation; or (iv) has been previously determined to be a potentially dangerous dog by an animal control authority, the owner has received notice from an animal control authority or an animal control officer of such determination, and the dog inflicts an injury on a human being that does not require medical treatment, injures a domestic animal, or threatens the safety of humans or domestic animals.
(b)(i) A dog shall not be defined as a dangerous dog under subdivision (3)(a)(ii) of this section, and the owner shall not be guilty under section 54-622.01, if the individual was tormenting, abusing, or assaulting the dog at the time of the injury or has, in the past, been observed or reported to have tormented, abused, or assaulted the dog.
(ii) A dog shall not be defined as a dangerous dog under subdivision (3)(a)(iv) of this section, and the owner shall not be guilty under section 54-622.01, if the injury, damage, or threat was sustained by an individual who, at the time, was committing a willful trespass as defined in section 20-203, 28-520, or 28-521, was committing any other tort upon the property of the owner of the dog, was tormenting, abusing, or assaulting the dog, or has, in the past, been observed or reported to have tormented, abused, or assaulted the dog, or was committing or attempting to commit a crime.
(iii) A dog shall not be defined as a dangerous dog under subdivision (3)(a) of this section if the dog is a police animal as defined in section 28-1008;
(4) Domestic animal means a cat, a dog, or livestock. Livestock includes buffalo, deer, antelope, fowl, and any other animal in any zoo, wildlife park, refuge, wildlife area, or nature center intended to be on exhibit;
(5) Medical treatment means treatment administered by a physician or other licensed health care professional that results in sutures or surgery or treatment for one or more broken bones;
(6) Owner means any person, firm, corporation, organization, political subdivision, or department possessing, harboring, keeping, or having control or custody of a dog; and
(7) Potentially dangerous dog means (a) any dog that when unprovoked (i) inflicts an injury on a human being that does not require medical treatment, (ii) injures a domestic animal, or (iii) chases or approaches a person upon streets, sidewalks, or any public grounds in a menacing fashion or apparent attitude of attack or (b) any specific dog with a known propensity, tendency, or disposition to attack when unprovoked, to cause injury, or to threaten the safety of humans or domestic animals.
Laws 1989, LB 208, § 1; Laws 2008, LB 1055, § 16, eff. April 22, 2008; Laws 2009, LB 494, § 8, eff. Aug. 30, 2009.
(1) A dangerous dog that has been declared as such shall be spayed or neutered and implanted with a microchip identification number by a licensed veterinarian within thirty days after such declaration. The cost of both procedures is the responsibility of the owner of the dangerous dog. Written proof of both procedures and the microchip identification number shall be provided to the animal control authority after the procedures are completed.
(2) No owner of a dangerous dog shall permit the dog to go beyond the property of the owner unless the dog is restrained securely by a chain or leash
(3) Except as provided in subsection (4) of this section or for a reasonable veterinary purpose, no owner of a dangerous dog shall transport such dog or permit such dog to be transported to another county, city, or village in this state.
(4) An owner of a dangerous dog may transport such dog or permit such dog to be transported to another county, city, or village in this state for the purpose of permanent relocation of the owner if the owner has obtained written permission prior to such relocation from the animal control authority of the county, city, or village in which the owner resides and from the county, city, or village in which the owner will reside. Each animal control authority may grant such permission based upon a reasonable evaluation of both the owner and the dog, including if the owner has complied with the laws of this state and of the county, city, or village in which he or she resides with regard to dangerous dogs after the dog was declared dangerous. An animal control authority shall not grant permission under this subsection if the county, city, or village has an ordinance or resolution prohibiting the relocation of dangerous dogs. After the permanent relocation, the animal control authority of the county, city, or village in which the owner resides shall monitor the owner and such dog for a period of at least thirty days but not to exceed ninety days to ensure the owner's compliance with the laws of this state and of such county, city, or village with regard to dangerous dogs. Nothing in this subsection shall permit the rescindment of the declaration of dangerous dog.
Source: Laws 1989, LB 208, § 2; Laws 2008, LB1055, § 17. Effective date April 22, 2008 Sec. 18.
(1) No person, firm, partnership, limited liability company, or corporation shall own, keep, or harbor or allow to be in or on any premises occupied by him, her, or it or under his, her, or its charge or control any dangerous dog without such dog being confined so as to protect the public from injury.
(2) While unattended on the owner's property, a dangerous dog shall be securely confined, in a humane manner, indoors or in a securely enclosed and locked pen or structure suitably designed to prevent the entry of young children and to prevent the dog from escaping. The pen or structure shall have secure sides and a secure top. If the pen or structure has no bottom secured to the sides, the sides shall be embedded into the ground at a depth of at least one foot. The pen or structure shall also protect the dog from the elements. The pen or structure shall be at least ten feet from any property line of the owner. The owner of a dangerous dog shall post warning signs on the property where the dog is kept that are clearly visible from all areas of public access and that inform persons that a dangerous dog is on the property. Each warning sign shall be no less than ten inches by twelve inches and shall containthe words warning and dangerous animal in high-contrast lettering at least three inches high on a black background.
Source: Laws 1989, LB 208, § 3; Laws 2008, LB1055, § 18. Effective date April 22, 2008 Sec. 19.
Any dangerous dog may be immediately confiscated by an animal control officer if the owner is in violation of sections 54-617 to 54-624. The owner shall be responsible for the reasonable costs incurred by the animal control authority for the care of a dangerous dog confiscated by an animal control officer or for the destruction of any dangerous dog if the action by the animal control authority is pursuant to law and if the owner violated sections 54- 617 to 54-624.
Laws 1989, LB 208, § 4; Laws 2008, LB 1055, § 19, eff. April 22, 2008; Laws 2009, LB 494, § 9, eff. Aug. 30, 2009.
In addition to any other penalty, a court may order the animal control authority to dispose of a dangerous dog in an expeditious and humane manner.
Source: Laws 1989, LB 208, § 5.
Except as provided in section 54-622.01, any owner who violates sections 54- 617 to 54-621 shall be guilty of a Class IV misdemeanor.
Laws 1989, LB 208, § 6; Laws 2009, LB 494, § 10, eff. Aug. 30, 2009.
(1) Any owner whose dangerous dog inflicts on a human being a serious bodily injury as defined in section 28-109 is guilty of a Class I misdemeanor for the first offense and a Class IV felony for a second or subsequent offense, whether or not the same dangerous dog is involved.
(2) It is a defense to a violation of subsection (1) of this section that the dangerous dog was, at the time of the infliction of the serious bodily injury, in the custody of or under the direct control of a person other than the owner or the owner's immediate family.
Laws 2009, LB 494, § 13, eff. Aug. 30, 2009.
(1) Any owner convicted of a violation of sections 54-617 to 54-624 shall not own a dangerous dog within ten years after such conviction. Any owner violating this subsection shall be guilty of a Class IIIA misdemeanor, and the dog shall be treated as provided in subsection (2) of this section.
(2) Except as provided in section 54-622.01, if a dangerous dog of an owner with a prior conviction under sections 54-617 to 54-624 attacks or bites a human being or domestic animal, the owner shall be guilty of a Class IIIA misdemeanor. In addition, the dangerous dog shall be immediately confiscated by an animal control authority, placed in quarantine for the proper length of time, and thereafter destroyed in an expeditious and humane manner.
Laws 1989, LB 208, § 7; Laws 2008, LB 1055, § 20, eff. April 22, 2008; Laws 2009, LB 494, § 11, eff. Aug. 30, 2009.
Each county shall designate an animal control authority that shall be responsible for enforcing sections 54-617 to 54-624 and the laws of such county regarding dangerous dogs.
Laws 2008, LB 1055, § 22, eff. April 22, 2008; Laws 2009, LB 494, § 12, eff. Aug. 30, 2009.
Nothing in sections 54-617 to 54-623.01 shall be construed to restrict or prohibit any governing board of any county, city, or village from establishing and enforcing laws or ordinances at least as stringent as the provisions of sections 54-617 to 54-623.01.
Laws 1989, LB 208, § 8; Laws 2008, LB 1055, § 21, eff. April 22, 2008; Laws 2009, LB 494, § 14, eff. Aug. 30, 2009.