[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Schodack as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 3-22-2007 by L.L. No. 1-2007]
Editor's Note: This local law also repealed former Art. I, Control and Running at Large, adopted 10-16-1986 by L.L. No. 3-1986, as amended.
The Town Board finds that the uncontrolled behavior of licensed and unlicensed dogs has caused physical harm to persons, damage to property and nuisances within the Town. The purpose of this article is to protect the health, safety and well-being of persons and property.
The article is enacted pursuant to the provisions of § 124 of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
The title of this article shall be "Dog Control Law of the Town of Schodack."
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- AGRICULTURE AND MARKETS LAW
- The Agriculture and Markets Law of the State of New York
in effect as of the effective date of this chapter, as amended by
the chapter, and as thereafter amended.[Added 12-29-2010 by L.L. No. 2-2010]
- Includes male and female, licensed and unlicensed member of the species Canis familiarias.
- IDENTIFICATION TAG
- A tag issued by the Town Clerk which sets forth the identification
number, together with the name of the Town and state, the telephone
number of the Town Clerk and any other information deemed necessary
by the Town Clerk.[Added 12-29-2010 by L.L. No. 2-2010]
- Any person who harbors or keeps a dog. In the event that any dog found in violation of this article is found to 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 the head of household in which said person resides. Any person harboring a dog for a period of one week prior to the filing of any complaint charging a violation of this article shall be held and deemed to be the owner of such dog for the purposes of this article.
- RUN AT LARGE
- To be unrestrained in a public place or on land other than that of the owner.
No owner or person shall permit any dog to run at large. The owner or person having the dog in possession shall maintain the dog under control and on a leash, which shall not be in excess of 12 feet in length.
All dogs shall be confined to the property of the owner or the person having the dog in possession, except that such dog shall be allowed off the property of such person if held on a leash not in excess of 12 feet in length.
The owner or person having the dog in possession shall remove and properly dispose of any and all fecal matter or other waste of his/her dog, whether on public property or private property other than that of owner.
No owner or person shall keep or harbor any dog that howls or barks continuously for 30 minutes.
No owner or person having the dog in possession shall permit or allow such dog to chase or otherwise harass any person in such a manner as to reasonably cause intimidation or to put such person in reasonable apprehension of bodily harm or injury to any person.
No owner or person having the dog in possession shall permit any dog to cause any damage to any property or destroy or deface such property within the Town. It shall be considered property damage for a dog to dig holes on improved real property, including but not limited to lawn, gardens, shrubs and ornamental flowers, or to destroy or tear, chew or scratch any personal property other than that of the owner.
No owner or person shall release any dog within the geographical limits of the Town of Schodack and leave the same unattended.
All dogs shall be prohibited from running at large in the Schodack Town Park at all times. The owner or person having the dog in possession shall maintain the dog under control and on a leash, which shall not be in excess of six feet in length.
Establishment of the fact or facts that the owner or person in possession of a dog has allowed or permitted such dog to commit any of the acts prohibited by this article shall be presumptive evidence against the owner or person harboring such dog that he or she has failed to properly confine or control the dog.
[Amended 12-29-2010 by L.L. No. 2-2010]
Any dog found in violation of the provisions of this article may be seized pursuant to the provisions of § 117 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
Every dog seized shall be properly cared for, sheltered, fed and watered for the redemption periods set forth in § 117 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
Seized dogs 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 the impoundment fees set forth in § 117 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
Any dog unredeemed at the expiration of the appropriate redemption period shall be made available for adoption or euthanized pursuant to the provisions in § 117 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
Any person upon whose property a violation of this article occurs or who is aggrieved by any prohibited activity by any dog under this article, or any Dog Control Officer, Animal Control Officer, peace officer, member of the Rensselaer County Sheriff's Department, Schodack police officer or New York State Police force in whose presence a violation of this article occurs may file a complaint under oath with a Justice of the Town of Schodack specifying the nature of the violation, the date thereof, and a description of the name and residence, if known, of the owner or person in possession of the dog. Said Justice shall order a hearing to be held after giving due notice to the complainant and to the owner or person in possession of the dog. Such complaint may serve as the basis of enforcing the provisions of this article.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this article, it shall be a defense to a complaint charging a violation of § 109-5, Subsection A or B that the dog was being used for hunting. To establish such a defense, a person must show that the dog was actually being used to assist in hunting; that the person using the dog was a properly licensed hunter; that the hunting was being done legally and in season; and that the hunter had the permission of the property owner to be on his or her land.
Any person who violates any provision of this article shall, upon conviction thereof, be subject to the following fines:
First violation: written warning only.
Second violation: fine not to exceed $50 per dog per violation.
Third violation: fine not to exceed $100 per dog per violation.
Fourth and subsequent violation: fine not to exceed $250 per dog per violation or imprisonment for a term not to exceed 15 days, or both. Dogs shall be removed from possession of the owner or person having possession thereof, and impounded in accordance with this article.
For purposes of determining a violation of this article, each incident of a dog running at large, without regard to whether such incident occurs on the same day as other such incidents, shall be a separate violation of this article.
The Town may also maintain an action or proceeding, in a court of competent jurisdiction, to compel compliance or to restrain by injunction any violation of this article, and these remedies shall be in addition to penalties otherwise prescribed by law.
[Adopted 12-29-2010 by L.L. No. 2-2010]
Editor's Note: This local law also repealed former Art. II, License Fees, adopted 11-14-1991 by L.L. No. 5-1991.
This article is enacted pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 59, Part T, of the Laws of 2010, Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law and the Municipal Home Rule Law of the State of New York.
Any person owning, possessing or harboring a dog four months of age or older, unless otherwise exempted, in the Town shall obtain a current license for said dog and shall place and keep on such dog a collar to which shall be securely attached a valid identification tag for that dog, in accordance with the requirements of this chapter or previously issued by the State of New York. Notwithstanding the foregoing, any person owing a dog under four months of age found running at large shall be required to obtain a license.
No license is required for a dog confined to a public or private hospital devoted solely to the treatment of sick animals, or residing in a dog pound or animal shelter or facility operated by a duly incorporated dog protective service.
The Town does not allow the licensing of dogs by a shelter. Any shelter shall send the adoptive owner of a dog that will be harbored in the Town of Schodack to the Town Clerk to obtain the appropriate license for any dog released to such owner.
An application for license or renewal shall be in the form prescribed by the Schodack Town Clerk and shall provide for the following minimum information:
The name, residence address and telephone number of each owner; and
The name, sex, approximate age, breed, color, markings and other identifying details of the dog; and
State whether the dog has been spayed or neutered; and
Such other information or documentation deemed necessary by the Town Clerk to effectuate the purpose of this chapter.
Applications for a license or a renewal thereof shall be accompanied by a nonrefundable processing fee of $7 for an altered or spayed dog, which includes the assessment of a mandated state surcharge in the amount of $1 for the purpose of carrying out a program of animal population control. Such fees may be changed by resolution of the Board as necessary.
Applications for a license or a renewal thereof shall be accompanied by a nonrefundable processing fee of $15 for an unaltered or unspayed dog, which includes the assessment of a mandated state surcharge in the amount of $3 for the purpose of carrying out a program of animal population control. Such fees may be changed by resolution of the Board as necessary.
No fee is required of service dogs (guide dog, hearing dog, service dog, war dog, work and search dog, detection dog, police work dog, therapy dog) as the term is defined in Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, or successor law. The person owning, possessing or harboring such dog bears the burden of demonstrating to the satisfaction of the Town Clerk that the dog is a service dog and exempt from licensing fees. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the fees assessed under Subsections B and C of this section, requiring the payment of a mandated state surcharge for a program of animal population control, must be paid by the owner at the time of applying for a license for such service dog.
[Amended 4-27-2017 by L.L. No. 1-2017]
When the Town Board determines the need for a dog enumeration, an additional fee of $5 will be assessed to the owner of any dog found unlicensed or for which the license has not been renewed at the time enumeration is conducted.
The Town of Schodack will not be issuing purebred or kennel licenses. All dogs will be licensed individually as per the fee system set forth herein.
The application for a license or renewal shall be accompanied by proof that the dog has been vaccinated against rabies or an exemption statement from a licensed veterinarian that such application would endanger the dog's life, in which case vaccination shall not be required for the time period as stated by said veterinarian.
In the case of a spayed or altered dog, every application shall be accompanied by a certificate signed by a licensed veterinarian or a sworn affidavit signed by the owner in the form acceptable to the Town Clerk stating that the dog has been spayed or neutered, except that such certificate or affidavit is not required if same is already on file with the Town Clerk. In lieu of the spay or neuter certificate, an owner may present a statement certified by a licensed veterinarian stating that he or she has examined the dog and found that because of old age or other reason, the life of the dog would be endangered by spaying or neutering. In such case, the license fee for the dog shall be the same as an altered/spayed dog.
No individual under the age of 18 years shall be deemed an owner of record and be issued a dog license.
All fees shall be used in funding the administration of this chapter in the Town of Schodack.
Upon validation by the Town Clerk or authorized Dog Control Officer, a dog license shall be issued and a record of its issuance retained in the office of the Town Clerk. Such record shall be made available upon request to the State Commissioner of Agriculture and Markets, or successor thereof.
No license shall be transferrable. Upon the transfer of ownership of any dog, the new owner shall immediately apply for a new license for the dog. A license cannot be transferred to another dog.
The Town Clerk shall assign an identification number to a dog when it is first licensed. Such identification number shall be carried by the dog on an identification tag which shall be affixed to the collar of the dog at all times, except that the tag is not required to be worn while the dog is participating in a dog show. The tag shall have "Town of Schodack," the telephone number of the Town Clerk and the identification number assigned by the Clerk.
No Town of Schodack identification number tag shall be affixed to the collar of any dog other than the one to which the number has been assigned.
Any person wishing to replace a tag previously issued shall pay the sum of $3 to the Town Clerk for a replacement tag.
All licenses issued pursuant to this article, and any renewal thereof, shall be valid for a period of one year and shall expire on the last day of the last month of the period for which they are issued. No license shall be issued for a period expiring after the last day of the 11th month following the expiration date of the current rabies certificate for the dog being licensed. In the event an applicant for a license or renewal presents an exemption statement certified by a licensed veterinarian, in lieu of a rabies certificate, then the license or renewal shall be issued; however, that does not exempt the owner from rabies for one year from the date of the statement.
Change in owner or address. In the event of a change in ownership of any dog which has been licensed pursuant to this chapter or change of address of the owner of record of any dog, the owner shall, within 10 days of the change, file with the Town Clerk a written notification of such change. Such owner of record shall be liable for any violation of this chapter until such filing is made or until the dog is licensed in the name of the new owner.
Lost or stolen dog. If any dog which has been licensed is lost or stolen, the owner of record shall, within 10 days of discovery of such loss or theft, file with the Town Clerk a written notification of such event. In the case of loss or theft, the owner of record shall not be liable for any violation of this chapter committed after such notification has been made.
Death of dog. In case of the death of a licensed dog, the owner of record shall notify the Town Clerk of the dog's death either before or upon receipt of a renewal notice from the Town Clerk.
Any person who violates any provision of this article shall, upon conviction thereof, be subject to the following fines: