Town of East Hampton, NY
Suffolk County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of East Hampton as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 6-4-1993 by L.L. No. 14-1993]

§ 86-1 Purpose.

The Town of East Hampton finds that the running at large and other uncontrolled behavior of dogs have caused physical harm to persons and damage to property and have created nuisances within the town. The purpose of this article is to protect the health, safety and well-being of persons and property in the town and to protect the health, safety and well-being of animals located in the town by imposing restrictions and regulations upon the keeping, the running at large and the seizure of dogs and animals within the town.

§ 86-2 Legislative authority.

This article is enacted pursuant to the Agriculture and Markets Law.

§ 86-3 Title.

The title of this article shall be the "Animal Control and Welfare Law of the Town of East Hampton."

§ 86-4 Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
AT LARGE
Any dog that meets all three of the following:
A. 
The dog is without supervision.
B. 
The dog is:
(1) 
Causing damage to property;
(2) 
Causing physical harm to persons; or
(3) 
Creating a nuisance within the town.
C. 
The dog is on property open to the public; or on private property not owned or leased by the owner of the dog, unless permission for such presence has been obtained.
BREEDER
A person who harbors four or more unspayed or unneutered dogs over six months of age.
COMMERCIAL ANIMAL ESTABLISHMENT
Any pet shop, grooming shop, riding school or stable, performing animal exhibition or kennel.
DOG CONTROL OFFICER
Any one or more individuals appointed by the Town Board to assist in the enforcement of this article under the enforcement of this article under the provisions of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
GROOMING SHOP
Any commercial establishment where animals are bathed, clipped, plucked or otherwise groomed.
HARBOR
To provide food or shelter to any animal.
KENNEL
Any premises wherein any person engages in the business of boarding, breeding, buying, letting for hire, training for a fee or selling dogs or cats.
OWNER
Any person who harbors, keeps or possesses any animal. In the event that any animal found in violation of this article shall be owned by a person under 18 years of age, the owner shall be deemed to be the parent or guardian of such person (or head of the household in which said person resides). "Owner" also means that the person who has last obtained the issuance of a license for a dog pursuant to the provisions of the Agricultural and Markets Law shall be presumed, for the purposes of this article, to be the "owner" of such dog.
PERFORMING ANIMAL EXHIBITION
Any spectacle, display, act or event, including rodeos, in which performing animals are used.
PERSON
Includes an individual, any combination of individuals, a partnership or a corporation.
PET SHOP
Any person, partnership or corporation, whether operated separately or in connection with another business enterprise, except for a licensed kennel, that buys, sells or boards any species of animal.
PROPER SHELTER
Shelter must be specifically designed for harboring animals. Said shelter shall be weatherproof and shall be appropriate for the breed of animal housed within.
UNREASONABLE NOISE
Acoustic energy that exceeds the standards or restrictions set forth in Chapter 185, Noise, of the Town Code.

§ 86-5 Prohibited acts.

A. 
It shall be unlawful for:
(1) 
Any owner to fail to license any dog which is six months of age or older.
(2) 
Any owner to fail to have any dog identified as required by Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
(3) 
Any person to knowingly affix to any dog any false or improper identification tag, special identification tag for identifying guide, service or hearing dogs or purebred license tag.
B. 
It shall be unlawful for any owner of a dog to allow or permit such dog to:
(1) 
Be at large.
(2) 
Disturb the comfort, peace or repose of any person in the vicinity by unreasonable noise.
(3) 
Cause damage or destruction to property or commit a nuisance upon the premises of a person other than the owner of such dog.
(4) 
Chase or otherwise harass any person in such a manner as to cause reasonable intimidation or to put such person in reasonable apprehension of bodily harm or injury.
(5) 
Habitually chase or run alongside of motor vehicles, bicycles, joggers or pedestrians.
(6) 
Obstruct vehicular traffic.
(7) 
Endanger itself.
(8) 
Walk or permit a dog to be on or upon any Town-owned or maintained cemetery.
[Added 7-17-2008 by L.L. No. 13-2008]
C. 
It shall be unlawful for any person owning, harboring or possessing any animal to:
(1) 
Fail to provide proper shelter for such animal.
(2) 
Cause or permit such animal to enter onto any town-owned property where it is posted that such entry is prohibited; provided, however, that the presence of an animal on a beach, as defined in Chapter 91 of the Town Code, shall be regulated as provided for in said Chapter 91 of the Town Code.
(3) 
Violate, or to allow to permit such animal to be in violation of, any section of this article.

§ 86-6 Confinement of female dogs.

Any owner of any female dog in heat shall confine such female dog in a building or secure enclosure in such a manner that such female dog cannot come into contact with another animal except for planned breeding.

§ 86-7 Animal care.

A. 
No person shall beat, cruelly ill-treat, torment, overload, overwork or otherwise abuse an animal or cause, instigate or permit any dogfight, cockfight, bullfight or other combat between animals or between animals and humans.
B. 
No owner of an animal shall abandon such animal.

§ 86-7.1 Feeding geese prohibited.

[Added 6-5-2014 by L.L. No. 15-2014]
A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to place, deposit, scatter, spread, distribute or otherwise disseminate on public property any type of foodstuff, including but not limited to corn, wheat or other grains, bread, crackers, popcorn, scraps, or any other substance or foodstuff, as to make it available to be eaten by a goose or geese.
B. 
Notwithstanding the provisions of Subsection A immediately above, nothing contained within this section shall make it unlawful to place, deposit, scatter, spread, distribute or otherwise disseminate corn, wheat or other grains, plants and/or seeds on public property in conjunction with lawful and legitimate agricultural, fishing or hunting activities.

§ 86-8 Performing animal exhibitions.

A. 
No performing animal exhibition shall be permitted in which animals are induced or encouraged to perform through the use of chemical, mechanical, electrical or manual devices in a manner which will cause or is likely to cause physical injury or suffering. The following devices are specifically prohibited at all such exhibitions, rodeos and similar events: electric prods or shocking devices, flank or bucking straps, wire tie-downs, sharpened spurs and bullwhips.
B. 
All equipment used on a performing animal shall fit properly and be in good working condition.

§ 86-9 Issuance of permits for commercial animal establishments and for breeders.

A. 
No person, partnership or corporation shall operate a commercial animal establishment or be a breeder without first obtaining a permit in compliance with this article.
B. 
Upon a showing by an applicant for a permit that he or she is willing and able to comply with the Agriculture and Markets Law, this article of the Town Code, and with any regulations promulgated by the Town Dog Control Officer, a permit shall be issued by the Town Clerk upon payment of the application fee.
C. 
The permit shall be effective for one year, except in the case of a performing animal exhibition, where the permit shall be issued and effective for the duration of the event, which may be a single day or several consecutive days.
D. 
Any person, partnership or corporation operating a commercial animal establishment or acting as a breeder shall be required to renew its annual permit by submitting a new application and a new permit fee to the Town Clerk on or before the expiration date of its current permit.
E. 
Permits are nontransferable.
F. 
Annual permits for commercial animal establishments and for breeders shall be issued upon payment of the applicable fee set forth below. A person who operates more than one commercial animal establishment or who operates a commercial animal establishment and who acts as a breeder shall indicate its multiple activities on the permit application. Such person shall be liable for the payment of only one fee, said fee being the higher of the two or more applicable fees.
(1) 
Breeder: $100.
(2) 
Kennel: $100.
(3) 
Pet shop: $10.
(4) 
Grooming shop: $10.
G. 
A per event permit for a performing animal exhibition shall be issued upon payment of the applicable fee set forth below:
(1) 
Performing animal exhibition: $100.
H. 
It shall be a condition of the issuance of any permit that the Dog Control Officer or its designee, any town police officer or any peace officer acting pursuant to his specified duties shall be permitted to inspect all animals and the premises where animals are kept at any time.
I. 
No person who has been convicted pursuant to § 86-5C(1) or 86-6 of this article or Article 26 of the Agriculture and Markets Law shall be issued a permit to act as a breeder or to operate a commercial animal establishment.

§ 86-10 Revocation of permits.

A. 
A permit issued pursuant to § 86-9 shall be revoked by the Town Clerk upon any of the following occurring:
(1) 
The permit holder has been convicted pursuant to § 86-5C(1) or 86-6 of this article or Article 26 of the Agriculture and Markets Law regarding one or more animals.
(2) 
The permit holder has failed to fulfill the requirement of § 86-9H by refusing to grant the Dog Control Officer or its designee, town police officer or peace officer acting pursuant to his specified duties permission to inspect all of the permit holder's animals and the premises where such animals are kept.
B. 
The Town Clerk shall provide the permit holder with written notice that states that the permit has been revoked and the date of the revocation. The permit holder's receipt of the Town Clerk's notice shall not be construed as altering the date of revocation set forth in said written notice, the effective date of the revocation being the occurrence of either one of the events set forth in § 86-10A(1) or (2).
C. 
A person whose permit has been revoked pursuant to § 86-10A(1) shall not be issued a new permit.
D. 
A person whose permit has been revoked pursuant to § 86-10A(2) may obtain a new permit only after the occurrence of both of the following:
(1) 
The person has demonstrated, to the satisfaction of the Dog Control Officer, that such person is in compliance with this article, the Agriculture and Markets Law, and the regulations promulgated by the Town Dog Control Officer; and
(2) 
The person has submitted a new permit application and paid a new permit fee to the Town Clerk pursuant to § 86-9.
E. 
Any person whose permit is revoked pursuant to § 86-10A(1) shall, within 10 days thereafter, humanely provide for the adoption, relocation or euthanization of all animals owned, kept or harbored, and no part of the permit shall be refunded.
F. 
Any person whose permit is revoked pursuant to § 86-10A(2) and who does not seek to obtain a new permit pursuant to § 86-10D shall, within 10 days of the revocation of the permit, humanely provide for the adoption, relocation or euthanization of all animals owned, kept or harbored, and no part of the permit shall be refunded.
G. 
If any person whose permit has been revoked fails to provide for the adoption, relocation or euthanization of all animals within the time period set forth in § 86-10E and F above, then said animals shall be seized pursuant to Article 26, § 373, Subdivision 2, of the Agriculture and Markets Law. Said person whose permit has been revoked shall be responsible for all associated costs of said seizure and subsequent care given to such animals by the town, including, without limitation, the provision of shelter, medical services and food.

§ 86-11 Seizure, redemption and voluntary surrender.

A. 
Any owner of any dog found in violation of the provisions of § 86-5 or 86-6 of this article may have his or her dog seized pursuant to the provisions of § 118 of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, except that no dog violating § 86-5B(2) shall be seized on the basis of said violation. Any owner of any dog found in violation of § 86-7 or any provisions of Article 26 of the Agriculture and Markets Law may have his or her dog seized pursuant to § 373, Subdivision 2, of said Article 26.
B. 
Every dog seized shall be properly cared for, sheltered, fed and watered for the ten-day redemption period, except for a dog seized under Article 26, § 373, Subdivision 2, of the Agriculture and Markets Law, in which case § 374 of Article 26 shall apply.
C. 
Dogs seized for a violation of § 86-5 or 86-6 of this article may be redeemed by producing proof of licensing and identification pursuant to the provisions of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law and by paying an impoundment fee. Fees to be paid by the owner shall be as follows:
[Amended 2-20-2001 by L.L. No. 1-2001; 4-16-2009 by L.L. No. 10-2009]
(1) 
Twenty-five dollars for the first 24 hours or part thereof and $15 for each additional twenty-four-hour period or part thereof for the first impoundment of any dog owned by that person.
(2) 
One hundred dollars for the first 24 hours or part thereof and $40 for each additional twenty-four-hour period or part thereof for the second impoundment, within one year of the first impoundment, of any dog owned by that person.
(3) 
One hundred fifty dollars for the first 24 hours or part thereof and $50 for each additional twenty-four-hour period or part thereof for the third and subsequent impoundments, within one year of the first impoundment, of any dog owned by that person.
D. 
If the owner of an unredeemed dog is known, such owner shall be required to pay the impoundment fee set forth in Subsection C of this section and the license fee, if owed, whether or not such owner chooses to redeem his or her dog.
E. 
If the owner of an unredeemed, injured dog is known, such owner shall be required to pay the impoundment fee set forth in Subsection C of this section, the license fee, if owed, and any fees due and owing for veterinary services before the dog is released from an animal hospital, whether or not such owner chooses to redeem his or her dog.
F. 
Any dog which is unredeemed at the end of the ten-day redemption period shall be made available for adoption or euthanized pursuant to § 118 of the Agriculture and Markets Law. The fees for adoption of said animals shall be set from time to time by the Town Board.
G. 
Voluntary surrender shall give authority to the Dog Control Officer to accept and dispose of unwanted, owned dogs if the following conditions are met:
(1) 
The owner agrees to dispense with the usual redemption provisions when turning in an unwanted, licensed dog.
(2) 
The owner executes a consent and/or affidavit in a form prescribed by the town agreeing to the disposition of said dog. Such consent and/or affidavit shall include the following:
(a) 
Unless specifically requested by the owner, the adoption or destruction of said dog shall be at the discretion of the Dog Control Officer, absolving the Dog Control Officer and the town of all liability.
(b) 
The maximum number of days an adoptable dog shall be held before being euthanized shall be 30 days.
(3) 
The owner has purchased the appropriate license in order to establish proof of ownership, absolving the town of all liability.
(4) 
The owner agrees to pay a fee for the surrender of such dog. Such surrender fee shall be set from time to time by the East Hampton Town Board.
(5) 
The Dog Control Officer shall have the authority to discontinue the service of voluntary surrender at such times when accepting dogs would create a condition whereby seized dogs could not be properly sheltered and cared for.

§ 86-12 Issuance of licenses; fees.

[Amended 4-16-2009 by L.L. No. 10-2009; 12-16-2010 by L.L. No. 13-2010]
A. 
Dog licenses and tags shall be issued by the Town Clerk pursuant to and in accordance with the provisions of Section 109 of the Agriculture and Markets Law. Licenses and renewals shall expire on the last day of the month one year after the date of issuance, provided that such expiration date shall not be after the last day of the 11th month following the expiration date of the current rabies certificate. Applications for licenses shall include all information required pursuant to Section 109 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, together with such other and further information as the Town Clerk may require. Licenses issued by the Town Clerk shall have the following information:
(1) 
Identification number;
(2) 
Town of East Hampton, State of New York;
(3) 
Owner's contact information, including telephone number.
B. 
The basic license fee for licensing of dogs shall be as set forth by resolution of the Town Board duly adopted from time to time. The basic license fee shall include a differential in the amount of at least $5 for an unspayed or unneutered dog which shall be used towards the costs of controlling dogs and enforcing the provisions of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law of the State of New York and any regulations adopted pursuant to such section, as well as to subsidize spaying or neutering or the provision of public humane education programs.
C. 
Any guide dog, hearing dog, service dog, war dog, working search dog, detection dog, police work dog or therapy dog shall be exempt from licensing fees, and the license shall be conspicuously marked with the applicable exempt category. Special tags will be issued for such dogs in such shape, size, color and form of imprint as may be determined by the Town Clerk to distinguish such tags from the official standard identification tag.
D. 
Dogs participating in a dog show shall be exempt from the requirement of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law requiring that all dogs shall have their license identification tags affixed to their collar at all times.
E. 
In addition to the basic license fee and any other applicable fees set forth in this article, a surcharge of not less than $1 for altered dogs, and not less than $3 for unaltered dogs shall be imposed, on all licenses and renewals, such funds to be utilized for purposes of carrying out animal population control efforts.

§ 86-13 Filing of complaint.

Any person who observes a dog in violation of this article may file a complaint under oath with a Justice of the town, or file a complaint with a police officer, any Dog Control Officer in the employ of or under contract to the town or any peace officer acting pursuant to his specified duties, specifying the nature of the violation, the date thereof, a description of the dog and the name and residence, if known, of the owner of such dog. Such complaint may serve as the basis for enforcing the provisions of this article.

§ 86-14 Appearance tickets.

Any Dog Control Officer, peace officer acting pursuant to his or her special duties or police officer in the employ of or under contract to the town, having reasonable cause to believe that a person has violated this article, shall issue and serve upon such person an appearance ticket for such violation.

§ 86-15 Penalties for offenses.

A. 
Any person who violates a provision of § 86-5A shall, upon conviction, be subject to the penalties set forth in Section 119 of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, said penalties being the following:
[Amended 12-16-2010 by L.L. No. 13-2010]
(1) 
For a first offense, a fine of not less than $25.
(2) 
For a second offense of § 86-5A within the preceding five years, a fine of not less than $50.
(3) 
For a third or subsequent offense of § 86-5A within the preceding five years, a fine of not less than $100.
B. 
Any person who violates a provision of § 86-7 shall be subject to prosecution pursuant to Article 26 of the Agriculture and Markets Law and subject to the penalties set forth in said Article 26.
C. 
Any person who violates any other provision of this article shall, upon conviction, be subject to the following penalties.
(1) 
For a first offense, a fine of not more than $50.
(2) 
For a second offense, a fine of not less than $50 nor more than $100.
(3) 
For each subsequent offense, a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $250.

§ 86-16 Severability.

Should any section or provision of this local law be decided by the courts to be unconstitutional or invalid, such decision shall not affect the validity of the local law as a whole or any part thereof other than the part so decided to be unconstitutional or invalid.

§ 86-17 When effective.

This local law shall take effect immediately upon filing with the Secretary of the State of New York.