As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICER
- A certified Municipal Animal Control Officer or, in the absence of such an officer, the chief law enforcement officer of the Borough, or his designee.
- Any dog or dog hybrid.
- POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS DOG
- Any dog or dog hybrid declared potentially dangerous by a Municipal Court pursuant to this article and N.J.S.A. 4:19-23.
- VICIOUS DOG
- Any dog or dog hybrid declared vicious by the Municipal Court pursuant to N.J.S.A. 4:19-22.
The Animal Control Officer shall seize and impound the dog if he finds that the dog:
Attacked a person and caused death or serious bodily injury as defined in N.J.S.A. 2C:11-1b to that person.
Caused bodily injury as defined in N.J.S.A. 2C:11-1a to a person during an unprovoked attack and poses a serious threat or harm to persons or domestic animals.
Engaged in dogfighting activities.
Has been trained, tormented, badgered, baited or encouraged to engage in unprovoked attacks upon persons or domestic animals.
The dog shall be impounded until the final disposition as to whether the dog is vicious or potentially dangerous. Subject to the approval of the Municipal Health Officer, the dog may be impounded in a facility or other structure agreeable to the owner.
The Animal Control Officer, or such other person as designated by the Borough, shall notify the Municipal Court and the Borough Health Officer when a dog has been seized and impounded or that he has reasonable cause to believe there has been a violation of § 97-19 of this chapter. A reasonable effort shall be made to determine the identity of the owner. If the owner cannot be identified within seven days, the dog may be humanely destroyed.
In the event that the Animal Control Officer, or such other designee of the Borough, determines who the owner of the dog is, the person shall, within three working days, notify the owner. If the owner desires a hearing, the hearing will be conducted in accordance with N.J.S.A. 4:19-20b.
The Municipal Court shall declare the dog vicious if it finds by clear and convincing evidence that the dog committed any of the acts as indicated in § 97-19. If the Municipal Court declares a dog to be vicious, and no appeal is made of this ruling, the dog shall be destroyed in a humane and expeditious manner, except that no dog shall be destroyed during the pendency of an appeal.
The Municipal Court shall declare a dog to be potentially dangerous if it finds by clear and convincing evidence that the dog is in violation of § 97-19 of this chapter.
The Borough shall register a potentially dangerous dog by a registration number and red identification tag along with a potentially dangerous dog license upon a demonstration of sufficient evidence by the owner to the Animal Control Officer or other designated persons that he has complied with the Court's order.
The Borough shall publicize a telephone number for reporting violations of this article.
The Borough shall charge an annual sum of $700 for a potentially dangerous dog license and each renewal thereof.
The provisions of this article shall not apply to dogs used for law enforcement activities.