City of Smithville, MO
Clay County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
Cross Reference — As to additional animal regulations, including housing of poultry, exotic or dangerous wild animals and cruelty to animals, ch. 240.

Section 235.010 Definitions.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015[1]]
Definitions of terms as used in this Chapter, unless the context otherwise indicates, are as follows:
ABANDON
Any instance where the owner or keeper leaves a dog or cat without demonstrated or apparent intent to recover or to resume custody; or leaves a dog or cat for more than twelve (12) hours without providing for adequate food, water and shelter for the duration of the absence; or turns out or releases a dog or cat; or dumps or releases a dog or cat from a vehicle.
AT LARGE
Off the premises of the owner and not under the control of the owner or a member of his immediate family by leash, cord, chain or otherwise.
CAT
Both male and female felines.
CITY POUND
Any facility designated by the City for the impounding of dogs or cats.
DOG
Both male and female canines.
EXCESSIVE NOISE
Any noise produced by an animal which is so loud and continuous or untimely as to disturb a neighbor.
NEIGHBOR
An individual residing in a residence structure which is within one hundred (100) yards of the property on which the animal is kept or harbored and who does in writing state that he will testify under oath to the animal making excessive noise.
OWNER
Any person or persons, firm, association or corporation owning, keeping or harboring a dog or cat.
1. 
Any animal (or group of animals which contains any animal) which:
a. 
Molests any passerby or chases passing vehicles, including bicycles.
b. 
Attacks any other dog or cat.
c. 
Is in heat and not properly confined as provided in this Chapter.
d. 
Damages public or private property.
e. 
Barks, whines, howls, meows or creates any other disturbance which is continuous or untimely so as to disturb an individual who is a neighbor and who does, in writing, state that he will testify if called upon to testify about such matter under oath. For purposes of this Subsection, a "neighbor" is defined as an individual residing in a residential structure which is within one hundred (100) yards of the property on which the animal is kept or harbored.
f. 
Is on public property without a permit or which obstructs or interferes with vehicular or pedestrian traffic.
g. 
Causes injury to a person.
h. 
Threatens or causes a condition which endangers public health or safety.
i. 
Impedes refuse collection by ripping any bag or tipping any container of refuse.
2. 
Any animal or fowl which defecates on public or private property other than that of the owner, keeper or harborer.
RESTRAINT
Any animal secured by a leash or lead or under control of a responsible person and obedient to that person's commands.
STRAY
Any dog or cat whose owner is not known or is not discernible.
VICIOUS DOG
Any dog that constitutes a physical threat to human beings or other animals. Any dog, except one assisting a Peace Officer in law enforcement duties, which demonstrates the following behavior:
1. 
An attack which requires a defensive action by any person to prevent bodily injury or property damage when such person is conducting himself or herself peacefully and lawfully.
2. 
An attack which results in property damage or in an injury to a person when such a person is conducting himself or herself peacefully and lawfully.
3. 
An attack on another animal, livestock or poultry which occurs on property other than that of the owner of the attacking dog.
4. 
Any behavior which constitutes a threat of bodily harm to a person when such person is conducting himself or herself peacefully and lawfully.
[1]
Editor's Note: Section 1 of this ordinance repealed former Ch. 235, Dog and Cat Regulations, as adopted and amended by Ord. No. 903 §§1 — 12, 14 — 20, 9-15-1983; Ord. No. 1087 §1, 12-8-1987; Ord. No. 1565 §1, 8-16-1994; Ord. No. 1907-99 §19, 12-21-1999; Ord. No. 2035-01 §1, 10-30-2001; Ord. No. 2253-04 §1, 3-16-2004; Ord. No. 2915-15 §4, 2-3-2015. Section 3 of this ordinance provided an effective date of 11-1-2015.
[2]
Editor's Note: Section 2 of Ord. No. 2936-15 also provided an effective date of 11-1-2015.

Section 235.020 Administration and Enforcement.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
Unless otherwise provided in this Section, it shall be the duty of the City Administrator, or his or her designated representative, to enforce and administer the terms and provisions of this Chapter, and in carrying out such duty and responsibility shall have the authority to establish, maintain and operate a City pound; and to perform such other duties and possess such authority as may be necessary to effectively carry out, administer and enforce the terms and provisions of this Chapter; and/or contract with organizations to perform duties deemed necessary for the enforcement of this Chapter.

Section 235.030 Issuance of License Tags.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
The City Administrator, or designated representative, may authorize the issuance of license tags and the collection of user fees owed the City for licensure by persons, corporations and veterinarians. Persons, corporations and veterinarians may be authorized to issue tags and collect fees pursuant to this Section regardless of whether they are located inside or outside the territorial jurisdiction of the City.
[Ord. No. 2935-15, 10-20-2015]
B. 
Any person, corporation or veterinarian issuing a license tag pursuant to this Section shall collect the user fee specified in this Chapter and retain a three-percent handling fee to recover the cost incurred by the person, corporation or veterinarian in issuing the tag. No monies in excess of the user fee shall be collected for issuing a pet license tag. All user fees collected pursuant to this Section shall be deposited into the City treasury.

Section 235.040 License for Dogs — Required.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
It shall be the duty of every person owning, keeping or harboring in the City any dog over six (6) months of age to procure a license. The receipt issued for the license shall constitute a certificate of registry and evidence of licensure for the keeping of such dog within the City. No refund will be made for licenses for dogs deceased or otherwise removed from the City during a period of licensure.
B. 
Any other Section of this Chapter notwithstanding, the licensing provisions of this Chapter shall not apply to any non-resident owner or keeper of a dog while such non-resident is passing through the City, provided such dog shall remain on a leash or otherwise effectively physically restrained, as in a closed vehicle.
C. 
For the issuance of each dog license required by this Chapter, the owner or keeper shall pay to the City such license fee as is provided for in this Chapter, except that, when any such owner, keeper or other applicant for such license shall submit such proof as may be required by the Commissioner of Revenue that a dog is fully trained as a guide dog or a hearing dog and is regularly used in the service of a blind or deaf person, or that a dog is fully trained as a service dog, as defined in Section 209.150(4), RSMo., for physically disabled persons, or that a dog is owned by a governmental unit, but instead shall be registered as such.
D. 
The license required pursuant to this Chapter shall be sold and due in the same month that such license was purchased in the previous one-year licensing period. The license tag shall indicate the year when the license expires.
E. 
Before any license or tag for a dog is issued, the owner or keeper thereof shall file a certificate from a licensed veterinarian showing that the dog is properly immunized against rabies in accordance with the Compendium of Animal Rabies Prevention and Control issued annually by the National Association of State Public Health Veterinarians (NASPHV).

Section 235.050 Wearing of License or Identification Tag Required for Dogs; Removal of Collar or License Tag.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
No owner or keeper of any dog shall allow or permit such dog to be outside the residence of the owner or keeper, at any time other than when enclosed on all sides in a cage or covered run with a roof and bottom, without having attached to a collar about the neck of such dog or to a secure body harness the license tag provided for in this Chapter except when such dog is being handled in the course of an organized dog training or exhibition program.
B. 
No person shall remove, or cause to be removed, the collar, harness or the license tag from any licensed dog without the consent of the owner or keeper thereof.

Section 235.060 Limitation on Number of Dogs and Cats.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
It shall be unlawful and a public nuisance for any person in charge of a residence to keep or allow to be kept more than six (6) licensed dogs or six (6) cats, or any combination of such animals exceeding six (6) in number at such residence.

Section 235.070 Abuse or Neglect.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
Adequate Care. No owner, keeper or harborer of an animal shall fail to provide the animal with adequate care, adequate food, adequate water, adequate health care and adequate shelter. Such shelter shall be clean, dry, shaded and compatible with the condition, age and species. An animal must also have the opportunity for adequate daily exercise as determined by the Supervisor of Animal Health and Public Safety. This requires that an owner, keeper or harborer must offer some freedom from continuous chaining, stabling and tethering. Any restraint placed on an animal must be such that it prevents the animal from being tangled or injured by the restraint. Grooming of animals is also required so that they are free from dangerous matting which can affect their health. The area where animals are kept must also be kept free from unsanitary conditions, vermin-harboring debris, junk or any other dangerous protuberances which can provide an opportunity for injury or a danger to the animal's health.
B. 
Abuse. No person shall beat, cruelly ill treat, torment, tease, overload, overwork or otherwise abuse an animal.
C. 
Inspection of Adequate Care or Abuse. Any owner, keeper or harborer of an animal in this City, by the act of owning, keeping or harboring such animal, does thereby authorize the Supervisor of Animal Health and Public Safety to enter the yard where such animal is kept if the Supervisor of Animal Health and Public Safety reasonably believes that the animal is kept in an unlawful, negligent, cruel, abusive or inhumane manner, and to examine such animal and to seize and impound such animal at the municipal animal shelter when, in the examiner's opinion, it is being kept in an unlawful, negligent, cruel, abusive or inhumane manner. If an Animal Health and Public Safety Officer cannot view and observe the animal in plain sight, the owner, keeper or harborer, upon request, must exhibit for inspection any and all animals which are not in plain sight but are on or inside the premises.
D. 
Rescue of Animals Left in Vehicle Under Dangerous Weather Conditions. Whenever any animal is found confined in a motor vehicle in a public place under weather conditions that endanger its life as determined by Police, the Police are hereby authorized to enter such vehicle and rescue such animal and thereafter impound the animal in accordance with this Chapter. A prominent written notice shall be left on or in the vehicle advising that the animal has been removed and impounded under the authority of this Chapter. If the Police are required to forcibly enter a vehicle to rescue the animal, and the vehicle can no longer be secured, the Police shall cause the vehicle to be towed. In no event shall the Police be liable to the animal's owner for damage to the animal, nor liable to the vehicle's owner for tow fees, storage fees or damage to the vehicle when the Police act pursuant to this provision.

Section 235.080 Abandonment.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
It shall be unlawful for the owner of any dog or cat to abandon such dog or cat within the corporate limits of the City of Smithville for any reason.

Section 235.090 Sanitation.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
Every person lawfully keeping or harboring any dog or cat shall keep or cause to be kept all manure or offal therefrom, which shall be deposited or accumulated from such animal, securely and closely confined in such manner as will prevent it from being scattered from such place of deposit, into or upon any street, sidewalk, alley or gutter of the City and shall so care for it as to prevent any malodorous or offensive condition to exist and to prevent any nuisance to arise therefrom.

Section 235.100 Running at Large Prohibited.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person owning, keeping or harboring any dog to permit, suffer or allow the dog to run at large within the City.
B. 
It shall be unlawful for any owner, keeper or harborer of a dog to allow said dog to be restrained in any such manner as to allow the animal to be upon the private property of another person without that person's permission. In duplexes, triplexes, fourplexes, townhouses, apartment buildings and all such other residential structures where more than one (1) party occupies a property, no animal may be leashed, chained, fenced or otherwise restrained in a common-ground area shared by more than one (1) tenant.
C. 
A legally blind, deaf or physically disabled person using a guide, hearing or service dog in the customary manner shall be deemed to be in compliance with this Section.
D. 
Official use of dogs by any governmental unit shall be deemed in compliance with this Section.

Section 235.110 Excessive Animal Noise.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
No person shall own or keep any animal which by making excessive noise disturbs a neighbor. If a general ordinance summons is issued charging violation of this Section, a subpoena shall also be issued to the disturbed neighbor to testify in the matter.

Section 235.120 Vicious Dogs.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to own or allow to be upon any premises occupied by him/her or under his/her control any dog of a dangerous, vicious or ferocious disposition without such dog being confined to and within the property lines of the premises of such person behind a fence or within an enclosure from which it cannot escape or securely fastened to a chain limiting the movement of such dog to an area ten (10) feet within the property lines of the premises of such person.
B. 
Persons required to confine and control dogs of dangerous, vicious or ferocious disposition shall post a sign with letters at least two (2) inches high containing the following words: "Beware of Dog" at the place of confinement of such dog as to warn the public of the nature of the animal so confined.
C. 
If a Police Officer shall be notified of a dog of a dangerous, vicious or ferocious disposition and upon investigation shall find such a dog not within a fully enclosed or fenced area from which it cannot escape, or not on a leash or tether of sufficient strength to confine the dog to the yard or premises of the owner, the dog shall be captured and impounded or killed by a Police Officer. Identification of the dog as the subject of the notification shall be made as is practical under the circumstances. Before killing said dog, the Police Officer shall first determine if capture and impoundment of the dog is reasonable. If capture and impoundment of the dog is reasonable, the dog shall be captured and impounded pending resolution of the matter in Municipal Court. If capture of the dog is determined to be unreasonable, a Police Officer shall have full authority to kill the dog. However, the Police Officer shall not put himself/herself in any position of danger of being attacked. If the Police Officer shall determine the dog to be a dog of dangerous, vicious or ferocious disposition and shall find such dog to be fastened to a leash or tether that permits the dog to come within ten (10) feet of the property lines of the premises, the dog shall be captured and impounded pending resolution of the matter in Municipal Court but the dog shall not be killed. Identification of the dog as one of a dangerous, ferocious or vicious disposition shall include an independent appraisal of the disposition of the dog by the Police Officer as is practical under the circumstances.
D. 
Persons aggrieved or threatened by a dog of a dangerous, ferocious or vicious disposition may file a written complaint with the Police Department requesting an order declaring the dog to be of a dangerous, ferocious or vicious disposition. If an owner of said accused dog can be reasonably located, the owner shall be notified in writing by certified mail of said complaint and the date of the hearing. If an owner cannot be reasonably located, notice of the complaint and the date of the hearing shall be given by publication once a week for two (2) consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation within the City of Smithville. Upon receipt of the complaint, if the Municipal Court determines that the dog is of a dangerous, vicious or ferocious disposition as defined by this Chapter, the Municipal Court shall:
1. 
Issue an order declaring the dog to be a dog of a dangerous, vicious or ferocious disposition; and
2. 
Issue an order requiring that the dog be captured and impounded or killed if capture is unreasonable, if said dog is found not confined to and within the property lines of the premises of the owner behind a fence or within an enclosure from which it cannot escape, or not securely fastened to a chain limiting the movements of such dog to an area ten (10) feet within the property lines of the premises of such person after the date of the order, except that, if the dog is found securely fastened to a chain which permits the dog to come within ten (10) feet of the property lines of the premises, the dog shall be captured and impounded but not killed; or
3. 
Adopt a plan proposed by the owner and acceptable to the Municipal Court for control or removal of the dog as a threat or grievance. The court shall withhold further action while said plan is executed. If the plan is executed, the court may dismiss the complaint; or
4. 
If the court shall determine that the subject dog should be immediately destroyed, the court shall order the dog to be destroyed.
E. 
Any dog owner aggrieved by an order of the court may appeal such order pursuant to Chapter 536, RSMo.
F. 
Police Officers of the City of Smithville have the authority to destroy any vicious dog attacking any person or in self-defense while performing their duties in the line of animal control.

Section 235.130 Procedure in Case of Dog or Cat Bite.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
Pursuant to Section 273.036, RSMo., the owner or possessor of any dog that bites, without provocation, any person while such person is on public property, or lawfully on private property, including the property of the owner or possessor of the dog, is strictly liable for damages suffered by persons bitten, regardless of the former viciousness of the dog or the owner's or possessor's knowledge of such viciousness. Owners and possessors of dogs shall also be strictly liable for any damage to property or livestock proximately caused by their dogs. If it is determined that the damaged party had fault in the incident, any damages owed by the owner or possessor of the biting dog shall be reduced by the same percentage that the damaged party's fault contributed to the incident.
B. 
Should any person be bitten by a dog or cat, upon the written complaint to a Police Officer, such dog or cat immediately shall be placed in the City pound or any reputable animal hospital for a period of ten (10) days for observation. If the owner of such dog or cat wishes it to be held in an animal hospital, he shall make request in writing to the officer taking care of such dog or cat, and the officer may deliver the dog or cat to a reputable animal hospital after arrangements for the expense of caring for and keeping such dog or cat are agreed upon by the owner of the dog or cat and the management of the animal hospital. If such dog or cat be placed in an animal hospital and is found to be in normal health after ten (10) days, the owner may redeem such dog or cat by paying all fees due the animal hospital and all other fees herein provided for. If such dog or cat be placed in the City pound and is found to be in normal health after ten (10) days, the owner may redeem such dog or cat after paying required fees. If the owner does not redeem such dog or cat after ten (10) days, it may be transferred to an organization for charitable purposes.
C. 
It shall be unlawful for the owner, keeper or person harboring the animal involved in such incident to release it from his custody or to hide or conceal such animal or to take or allow such animal to be taken beyond the limits of the City, until the period of confinement and observation required in this Section is completed. The owner or keeper of such an animal involved in an incident shall be liable for the cost of confinement and observation or confinement other than described in this Section as a licensed veterinarian finds medically appropriate, providing such animal will be controlled and observed in accordance with the owner's signed agreement, but only if such dog or cat has a current vaccination for rabies and is duly licensed as provided by this Chapter. Exceptions to such confinement requirement may be granted in the following cases: if the investigating officer determines that the incident occurred while the animal involved was confined and legally kept upon the property of the owner; the person injured was upon the property without the express or implied consent of the owner and was not there performing functions of a job; or other circumstances exist which in the judgment of the supervisor create an exceptional situation.

Section 235.140 Confinement and Observation for Rabies.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
If a dog or cat is believed to have rabies or has been bitten by a dog or other animal suspected of having rabies, such dog or cat shall be placed under the observation of a licensed veterinarian at the expense of the owner for a period of ten (10) days. If, after impoundment in a veterinarian clinic or hospital, a licensed veterinarian diagnoses an animal to be rabid, it shall be at the discretion of such veterinarian whether to continue kenneling the animal until death or to euthanize the animal, either of which at the owners' expense. In either case, the veterinarian shall have the animal tested by means prescribed by State law for final determination of rabies, at the owners' expense.
B. 
It shall be unlawful for any person knowing or suspecting a dog or cat has rabies to allow such dog or cat to be taken off his premises beyond the limits of the City. Every owner or other person, upon ascertaining a dog or cat is rabid, shall immediately report it to the Police.
C. 
If any dangerous, fierce or vicious dog or cat believed to be rabid cannot be safely captured or prevented from escaping by usual means, such dog or cat may be slain by a Police Officer if such is the officer's judgment. In all cases where such animal may have exposed a person to rabies and is slain before the completion of the observation period stipulated, it shall be the duty of any person slaying such animal to forthwith deliver or cause to be delivered all the remains of such animal to a veterinarian clinic or hospital, where a licensed veterinarian shall have the animal tested by means prescribed by State law for final determination of rabies.

Section 235.150 Impoundment.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
Any unrestrained dog or any animal defined as a public nuisance by this Chapter may be taken by the Police and impounded at a designated holding place and be there confined in a humane manner pending further action pursuant to this Chapter or other law. If an owner or keeper is present, in lieu of impoundment a general ordinance summons may be issued to that person, and such person may retain possession of the animal if it is the belief of the officer issuing such summons that such possession is not in conflict with any other Section of this Chapter.
B. 
Whenever any animal is confined by authority of this Chapter, release of the animal is contingent upon satisfactory proof that the party claiming the animal is entitled to possession thereof and upon payment to the City Treasury of all applicable fees that may be required by this Chapter. The fee for the care of any animal during the period of impoundment shall be at the rate specified in this Chapter; however, such fee shall be increased by the actual amount of any unusual expenses incurred in either the impoundment or the care of the animal. An owner or keeper must pay these fees in full to obtain custody of the animal, but this payment is not required for animal adoption. However, if an animal is deemed to be vicious or a danger to the public health and safety, the Supervisor of Animal Health and Public Safety may retain such animal and refuse redemption or sale of such animal, and dispose of such animal in a humane fashion.
C. 
An owner of an impounded dog must pay in full all incurred fees before redemption is allowed. If the owner of an impounded dog does not pay such fees after a minimum of five (5) business days from the time such dog is confined in the City pound, the dog may be placed available for adoption or be transferred to an organization for charitable purposes. If evidence indicates that a person has abused or neglected the animal or has been convicted of animal abuse or severe neglect, or more than three (3) other animal violations, within a five-year period, the supervisor may refuse to redeem a pet to such a person based on his or her being an unfit owner.
D. 
If it is determined by a licensed veterinarian that the impounded animal is diseased or disabled beyond recovery, human compassion requires that the suffering be promptly ended. In such instance such time period shall not apply, and the animal will be humanely euthanized to prevent needless suffering.
E. 
No animal will be given to the custody of a person who, in the judgment of the Supervisor, is requesting the animal with the intent to transfer ownership, sell it, or use it for laboratory or experimental purposes. The transfer of ownership restrictions do not apply when, at the discretion of the Supervisor, an animal is given to a not-for-profit charitable organization incorporated in the State which has as part of its mission the placement of animals in a good home. Any such organization shall comply with all the requirements set forth in this Chapter regarding the spaying or neutering, vaccination, and licensing of animals.
F. 
Pursuant to Section 273.403, RSMo., provisions shall be made for the sterilization of all dogs and cats released for adoption. All costs of sterilization shall be paid by the prospective adopter or purchaser, unless otherwise provided.

Section 235.160 Notice of Impoundment.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
After the impoundment of any animal where a general ordinance summons has not been issued to the owner or keeper, the owner shall be promptly notified, if the owner can be determined and located by reasonable investigation. The owner of an impounded animal who does not redeem his or her animal may still be proceeded against for violation of any applicable Section of this Chapter or any other applicable ordinance.

Section 235.170 Penalties Generally.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
A. 
Any person violating any provision of this Chapter shall be deemed guilty of an ordinance violation, and upon conviction of any such violation shall, unless another specific penalty or specific penalty range be provided by another Subsection of this Section, be punished by a fine of not less than seventy-five dollars ($75.00) and not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000.00), or by imprisonment in the municipal correctional institution for a term not to exceed one hundred eighty (180) days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
B. 
All fees imposed by this Section are owed the City when due and may be recovered by the City as any other debt is recoverable.

Section 235.180 Fees.

[Ord. No. 2923-15 §§1 — 2, 5-19-2015]
Fees authorized in this Chapter shall be approved in the schedule of fees adopted by the Board of Aldermen on an annual basis.