Village of Suffern, NY
Rockland County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Suffern 2-8-1971 as Ch. 13 of the 1971 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Animals — See Ch. 81.
Noise — See Ch. 175.
Fees — See Ch. A275.

§ 122-1 Leashing; prolonged barking.

[Amended 11-16-1998 by L.L. No. 13-1998]
It shall be unlawful for any person owning, boarding, harboring or otherwise keeping or having in his or her custody a dog within the limits of the Village of Suffern to permit such dog, whether licensed or not, to be at large elsewhere than on the premises of the owner or on the premises of other persons with the knowledge and consent of such other persons, unless said dog, when accompanied by the owner or other person, on a public street, road or highway or on other premises other than the premises of the owner or custodian, in the Village of Suffern, is on a leash, or to permit or keep a dog tied up or confined in such a manner as to cause a nuisance in the area because of the dog's repeated and prolonged barking.

§ 122-1.1 Dogs Prohibited at Public Gatherings.

[Added 7-9-2007 by L.L. No. 11-2007]
No person shall be accompanied by, bring or permit a dog at any parade, event or public gathering attended by 25 or more persons, or at any time when the Suffern Police Department posts a prohibition of dogs at a public gathering. This prohibition shall not apply to seeing-eye dogs, service dogs or dogs necessary to assist a person with a handicap or to dogs actually utilized by emergency service organizations.

§ 122-2 Defecation on public property; conditions for curbing dogs.

[Added 7-24-1972]
No person owning, harboring, keeping or in charge of any dog shall cause, suffer or allow such dog to soil, defile, defecate on or commit any nuisance on any common thoroughfare, sidewalk, passageway, bypath, play area, park or any place where people congregate or walk or upon any public property whatsoever or upon any private property without the permission of the owner of said property. The restriction in this section shall not apply to that portion of the street lying between the curblines, which shall be used to curb such dog under the following conditions:
A. 
The person who so curbs such dog shall immediately remove all feces deposited by such dog by any sanitary method approved by the local health authority.
B. 
The feces removed from the aforementioned designated area shall be disposed of by the person owning, harboring, keeping or in charge of any dog curbed in accordance with the provisions of this chapter in a sanitary manner approved by the local health authority.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Former §§ 13-2 and 13-3, which immediately followed this section and dealt with killing of attacking dogs and the confinement or killing of dogs on order of a Police Justice, were deleted as being superseded by subsequent provisions of this chapter.
C. 
Any person walking, accompanying or having a dog in his custody, possession or charge shall have in his possession a device sufficient to remove feces deposited by such dog.
[Added 4-20-1998 by L.L. No. 5-1998]

§ 122-3 Confiscation of dogs.

[Added 8-15-1977 by L.L. No. 8-1977]
A. 
Pursuant to the authority granted by § 10a(11) of Article 2 of the Municipal Home Rule Law of the State of New York, any dog, licensed or unlicensed, running at large or destroying property or being a public nuisance shall be picked up by the Village Dog Warden and confined in the Village Dog Pound or such pound as the Village shall contract for and designate for such purpose.
B. 
The Dog Warden shall immediately notify the Village Clerk as to the number of the licensed animal. The Village Clerk shall then notify the owner.
C. 
The Dog Warden or any peace officer shall seize any unlicensed dog.
D. 
The fact a dog is without a current dog tag attached to the dog's collar or harness as provided in Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law shall be presumptive evidence that the dog is unlicensed.

§ 122-4 Claiming impounded dogs.

[Added 8-15-1977 by L.L. No. 8-1977; amended 3-12-1990 by L.L. No. 3-1990]
The owner of any such dog as defined in § 122-3B and C claiming such animal at the Village Dog Pound or at such pound or kennel as shall be designated by the Village shall produce a license for the dog and pay the costs involved for the boarding at the Village Pound.

§ 122-5 Unclaimed licensed dogs.

[Added 8-15-1977 by L.L. No. 8-1977]
The owner of any dog so defined in § 122-3B and C of this chapter who shall not claim such within a period of five days from the time the dog is delivered to the Village Dog Pound shall forfeit all rights to thereafter claim such dog, and the same may be disposed of by the Village Dog Warden.

§ 122-6 Dangerous and vicious dogs.

[Added 8-15-1977 by L.L. No. 8-1977; amended 11-18-2002 by L.L. No. 7-2002]
A. 
Definitions. As used in the section, the following words and terms shall have the following meanings:
(1) 
Any dog:
(a) 
Which, when unprovoked, approaches any person upon the streets, sidewalks or on any public grounds or places in a vicious or terrorizing manner or in any apparent attitude of attack.
(b) 
With a known propensity, tendency or disposition to attack unprovoked, to cause injury or to otherwise endanger the safety of human beings or domestic animals.
(c) 
Which bites, inflicts injury, assaults or otherwise attacks a human being or domestic animal without provocation on public or private property.
(d) 
Which has been ordered confined pursuant to the provisions of § 121 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
(2) 
Notwithstanding the foregoing, except pursuant to Subsection 1(d) above, no dog may be considered to be a dangerous/vicious dog by reason of any injury or damage sustained by a person when such person was teasing, tormenting, abusing or assaulting the dog or was committing or attempting to commit a crime; any injury or damage sustained by a domestic animal which, at the time such injury or damage was sustained, was teasing, tormenting, abusing or assaulting the dog; or any injury or damage caused by the dog in protecting or defending a human being within the immediate vicinity of the dog from an unjustified attack or assault.
KEEPER
Any person other than the owner of a dangerous/vicious dog who harbors or has in his or her possession a dangerous/vicious dog or manages, controls or cares for a dangerous/vicious dog.
OWNER
Any person or legal entity having a possessory property right in an animal or who harbors, cares for or exercises control over an animal or knowingly permits an animal to remain on premises occupied by him.
UNCONFINED
Outside the confines of a residence or commercial structure commonly occupied by human beings or an enclosure of at least six feet in height with secure sides, top and bottom or, if there is no bottom, with sides which extend at least one foot underground, and which shall be locked and designed to prevent the escape of the animal or the entry of young children.
(1) 
Any dog owned, harbored or trained primarily or in part for the purpose of dog fighting.
(2) 
Any dog owned, harbored or trained primarily or in part for the purpose of attacking a human being or domestic animal upon command.
(3) 
Any dog known by the owner to be or identifiable as, in whole or in part, of a breed commonly known as a "pit bull," which shall include dogs wholly or partly of the breeds known as "American Staffordshire terrier," "American pit bull terrier," "bull terrier" and "Staffordshire bull terrier," but shall not include any purebred dog of the breed "bull terrier" or "Staffordshire bull terrier" which is registered as such with the American Kennel Club.
B. 
Restrictions. No person should suffer, permit or allow any dangerous/vicious dog to remain unconfined on property within the Village of Suffern to go beyond the boundaries of such property unless such dog is securely muzzled and restrained with a chain having a minimum tensile strength of 300 pounds and not exceeding three feet in length and is under the direct control and supervision of the owner of the dog. The owner or keeper of a dangerous/vicious dog shall post conspicuous notices on the perimeter of the property where such dog is kept to warn persons of the nature of the dog confined therein.
C. 
Exceptions. The provisions of this section shall not apply to:
(1) 
Animal shelters designated by the Department of Health to keep or hold animals, including all shelters operated by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
(2) 
Facilities which are maintained by or are under the control of the Village.
(3) 
Places of public exhibition, contest or show sponsored by a dog club association or similar organization and persons who have brought a dog temporarily within the jurisdiction of the Village of Suffern for the purpose of showing a dog to such an exhibition, contest or show or for other entertainment purposes as defined in regulations promulgated by the Village Board, provided that the sponsor of the exhibition, contest, show or entertainment has obtained written permission from the Village Board and has provided protective measures adequate to prevent dogs from escaping or injuring the public.
(4) 
Laboratories operated pursuant to § 504 of the Public Health Law or educational or scientific institutions.
(5) 
Persons authorized to enforce the provisions of this section.
D. 
Registration. The owner of any dangerous/vicious dog shall register such dog with the office of the Village Clerk no later than 180 days after the effective date of this section.
E. 
Insurance required. No owner of any dangerous/vicious dog shall be allowed to register said animal unless such owner produces proof that he has obtained liability insurance in the amount of at least $100,000 covering any damage or injury which may be caused by such dog during the twelve-month period for which registration is sought. The owner of a dangerous/vicious dog shall maintain liability insurance in full force and effect at all times unless he shall cease to own, keep or harbor the dog prior to the expiration of such registration.
F. 
Enforcement.
(1) 
Any police officer or code enforcement officer of the Village of Suffern is authorized to issue an appearance ticket or uniform appearance ticket for the violation of any provision of this section.
(2) 
Any animal which is observed running at large in violation of the provisions of this section may be picked up or captured by a dog warden, animal control officer, police officer or by any other person or agency duly designated by the Village of Suffern to perform such service. Any such dog warden, animal control officer, police officer or the authorized person or agency who picks up or captures such animal shall be empowered to exercise such degree of force as shall be necessary to effect such pickup or capture without intentionally injuring or harming the animal.
(3) 
When the animal seized is a dog, it shall be held, cared for and disposed of in a manner consistent with § 118 of the Agriculture and Markets Law of New York.
(4) 
Every reasonable effort will be made by the Village of Suffern to locate and notify the owner of the pickup or capture of his or her animal. Upon such location and notification to the owner, the Village or custodian will return the animal to its owner within a prompt and reasonable period of time, provided that such return of the animal is not contrary to the provisions of this section. The Village may require reasonable proof of ownership. The return of such animal to its owner shall be deemed proof of ownership unless such animal has a valid license tag pursuant to the provisions of the Agriculture and Markets Law of the State of New York, in which case such tagging shall be deemed proof of such ownership.
(5) 
Any person who shall violate any provision of this section shall be liable for a fine of not more than $2,500 or imprisonment for a period not exceeding 10 days, or both.

§ 122-7 Interference with officers.

[Added 8-15-1977 by L.L. No. 8-1977]
Any person or persons who shall hinder, molest or interfere with any officer or agent of the Town or Village in the performance of any of the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed guilty of a violation of this chapter.

§ 122-8 Penalties for offenses.

[Amended 8-15-1977 by L.L. No. 8-1977]
A. 
Any person found guilty of violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be punished by a fine of not more than $250 nor less than $50.
[Amended 10-26-1981 by L.L. No. 3-1981; 4-20-1998 by L.L. No. 5-1998]
B. 
Appearance tickets.
(1) 
The Dog Warden or any peace officer of the Village of Suffern or of the Town of Ramapo is hereby authorized to issue an appearance ticket pursuant to Article 150 of the Criminal Procedure Law of the State of New York for any violation of this chapter.
(2) 
Any person served with such appearance ticket may answer said ticket by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, within five days of the violation in lieu of a personal appearance, subject to the provisions of Subsection B(3) and (4) hereafter.
(3) 
A person served with such an appearance ticket may admit to the violation charged and complete the form set forth on the back of said appearance ticket as prescribed hereinafter and by accompanying said ticket with a check or money order in an amount set forth on the back of said appearance ticket and as established herein.
(4) 
If the person so charged denies the violation charged in the appearance ticket, he may complete an appropriate form provided for that purpose on the back of the appearance ticket and forward the ticket to the office specified on the appearance ticket. The Village office receiving such answer shall, by return mail, notify said person so charged of a new return date at which a personal appearance of the person charged shall be required.

§ 122-9 Recovery of damages.

[Added 8-15-1977 by L.L. No. 8-1977]
No action shall be maintained to recover the possession or value of a dog or for damages for injury or destruction of a dog not wearing a tag attached to a collar as provided in this chapter.

§ 122-10 Enforcement.

[Amended 8-15-1977 by L.L. No. 8-1977; 7-9-2007 by L.L. No. 11-2007]
This chapter shall be enforced by the Village of Suffern Police Department and a Dog Warden who shall be appointed by the Board of Trustees to serve at the will of the Board of Trustees and shall be paid such compensation as duly fixed for such services plus expenses, not exceeding, however, the amounts set forth in the budget therefor. Such Dog Warden shall have all the powers of a constable or other peace officer in enforcing this chapter and the applicable provisions of the Agriculture and Markets Law.