[Amended 11-6-2010 by L.L. No. 5-2010]
The Town Board of the Town of Fishkill, to protect the people of the Town from physical harm to persons, damage to property, and certain nuisances caused by dogs running at large and other uncontrolled behavior of licensed and unlicensed dogs, enacts the following restrictions on the harboring of dogs within the Town, pursuant to the provisions of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law of the State of New York.
All terms not specifically defined herein shall have the meanings assigned to such terms within § 108 of the Agriculture and Markets Law of the State of New York; specifically, the following terms shall have the meanings given to them within that statutory section: "adoption"; "dog"; "domestic animal"; "euthanize"; "guide dog"; "harbor"; "identification tag"; "identified dog"; "official identification number"; "owner"; "owner of record"; "person"; "police work dog"; "war dog"; "hearing dog"; "service dog"; and "person with a disability."
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICER
- The same meaning assigned to "dog control officer" in § 108 of the Agriculture and Markets Law of New York State.
- Town Clerk.
- RUN AT LARGE
- To be an unleashed dog off of the premises of the owner.
- Town of Fishkill.
Pursuant to Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, no person shall own or harbor a dog within the Town of Fishkill unless such dog is licensed. Such license shall be renewed annually at fees determined by the Town Board of the Town of Fishkill. There shall be no fee for any license issued for any guide dog, hearing dog, service dog, war dog or police work dog, and copies of any license for such dogs shall be conspicuously labeled as such by the person issuing the license.
In accordance with Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets law, the following are exempted from the licensing requirement:
Dogs under the age of four months, which are not at large, shall not require a license;
Dogs residing in a pound or shelter maintained by or under contract or agreement with the state or any county, city, town or village, duly incorporated society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, duly incorporated humane society or duly incorporated dog protective association.
The application shall state the sex, actual or approximate age, breed, color and municipal identification number of the dog, and other identification marks, if any, and the name, address, telephone number, county and town, city or village of residence of the owner.
The application shall be accompanied by the license fee and a certificate of rabies vaccination or a statement certified by a licensed veterinarian stating that, because of old age or other reason, the dog's life would be endangered by the vaccine. In the case of a spayed or neutered dog, every application shall also be accompanied by a certificate signed by a licensed veterinarian or an affidavit signed by the owner showing that the dog has been spayed or neutered, provided that such certificate or affidavit shall not be required if the 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 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 for spayed or neutered dogs.
Dogs will be licensed for a one-year license period. The expiration date will be the last day of the month of issuance, one year from the date of issuance.
No license shall be issued by a pound, shelter, or any other entity on behalf of the Town of Fishkill.
The Town of Fishkill will not issue purebred licenses. All dogs will be licensed individually in accordance with this article.
Dog licenses issued by another agency, municipality or shelter will not be recognized by the Town of Fishkill. The Town of Fishkill does not credit unexpired terms of licenses issued by another municipality, nor does it refund licensing fees for any reason, including, but not limited to, dogs and dog owners that relocate to a municipality other than the Town of Fishkill, dogs that are no longer alive, dogs that are relinquished or transferred to another owner and dogs that are missing, gone or lost.
Upon validation by the Clerk, the application shall become a license for the dog described therein. Once an application has been validated, no refund therefor shall be made.
The Clerk shall provide a copy of the license to the owner and retain a copy in the Town Clerk's office.
No license shall be transferable. Upon the transfer of ownership of any dog, the new owner shall immediately make application for a license for such dog.
In the event of a change of ownership of any dog which has been licensed pursuant to this article, or a change of address of the owner of record of any such dog, the owner of record shall, within 10 days of such change, notify the Town Clerk of such change.
If any dog which has been licensed pursuant to this article is lost or stolen, the owner of record shall, within 10 days of the discovery of such loss or theft, notify the Town Clerk of such loss or theft. The owner of record of any such dog shall not be liable for any violation of this article committed after such notification.
In the case of a dog's death, the owner of record shall so notify the Town Clerk either prior to the renewal of licensure or upon the time of such renewal.
Dog licensing fees shall be determined by the Town Board of the Town of Fishkill and may be amended at any time by said Town Board. All revenue derived from such fees is the sole property of the Town of Fishkill and shall be used for the purposes permitted by Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
In addition to the fees set by the Town Board of the Town of Fishkill, an additional $1 shall be assessed to a license for an altered dog and an additional $3 shall be assessed to a license for an unaltered dog. This additional charge is assessed for the purposes of carrying out animal population control efforts. As the Town of Fishkill does not have its own animal control program, these surcharge dollars will be remitted by the Town Clerk to the state animal population control fund, as required by Agriculture and Markets Law § 117-a, Subdivision 7.
When the Town Board of the Town of Fishkill determines the need for a dog enumeration or dog census, a fee of $30 will be assessed to all dogs found unlicensed or renewed at the time the enumeration is conducted. Such fees shall be the sole property of the Town of Fishkill and shall be used to pay the expenses incurred by the Town in conducting the enumeration. In the event that the additional fees collected exceed the expenses incurred by the Town in conducting an enumeration in any year, such excess fees may be used by the municipality for enforcing this article and for animal population control programs.
In addition to the license fee of this article, each applicant for a dog license shall pay a surcharge of $3, which shall be retained by the Town of Fishkill and used to defray the cost of providing a replacement identification tag.
Pursuant to Agriculture and Markets Law § 107, Subdivision 4, the licensing process and fees set forth in this article do not apply to any dog confined to the premises of any person, firm or corporation engaged in the business of breeding or raising dogs for profit and licensed as a Class A dealer under the Federal Laboratory Animal Welfare Act.
All dogs required to be licensed must wear an identification tag, bearing the municipal identification number, attached to a collar at all times. No dog shall be permitted to be without a collar and an identification tag. All untagged dogs shall be subject to seizure and confinement by the Dog Control Officer. The collars of all dogs four months and over shall also have a tag evidencing rabies vaccination.
No tag carrying an identification number shall be affixed to the collar of any dog other than the one to which that number has been assigned.
Any female dog in heat shall be confined within a protected enclosure on the premises of the owner or person harboring the dog.
All premises occupied or used by dogs shall be kept in a clean and sanitary condition. Failure to provide adequate food, water or shelter shall be a violation of this article and shall constitute grounds for seizure of the animal hereunder. These principles shall apply both to individual owners and to any other persons harboring dogs for training, retail sale or boarding.
It shall be unlawful for any owner of any dog to permit or allow the animal to:
Run at large without control by an adequate leash when the dog is off the property of the owner. If at large or off its leash, such dog shall be subject to seizure and confinement.
Engage in a recurring practice of howling, barking, crying or whining so as to unreasonably disturb the comfort or quiet enjoyment of any person other than the dog's owner. A minimum period of 1/2 hour (30 minutes) of excessive noise shall be deemed necessary to constitute a violation of this section. The person owning or possessing a dog committing an act prohibited herein, with or without the knowledge, consent or fault of such person, shall be guilty of a violation of this section.
Uproot, dig or otherwise damage any lawns, gardens, vegetables, flowers or garden beds on property not belonging to the owner of the dog.
Chase, bite, jump upon or at or otherwise harass any person in such a manner as to reasonably cause intimidation or fear or to put such person in reasonable apprehension of bodily harm or injury.
Engage in a recurring practice of chasing, running along side of or barking at vehicles or bicyclists while on a public street or highway or upon public or private property other than property of the owner or other person in control of said dog.
Cause damage or destruction to private or public property or to create a nuisance by defecating, urinating or digging on public or private property, other than property of the owner or other person in control of the dog.
Kill or injure any domestic animal.
Establishment of the fact or facts that the owner of a dog has allowed or permitted such dog to commit any of the acts prohibited by Subsection A of this section shall be presumptive evidence against the owner or harborer of such dog that he has failed to properly confine, leash or control his dog.
Dogs are permitted in Town parks, when under control of leash, in designated areas only. Owners shall be responsible for immediate cleanup of any excrement deposited by their animals.
When off the property of the owner, owners shall be responsible for immediate cleanup of any excrement deposited by their animals.
Utilization of the town's Friendly Paws Dog Park is by permit only.
[Added 7-20-2016 by L.L. No. 2-2017]
The Town Board hereby reserves the authority to promulgate by resolution such further rules and regulations governing use of the Friendly Paws Dog Park as it may, from time to time, deem advisable.
[Added 7-20-2016 by L.L. No. 2-2017]
No one in the Town of Fishkill shall own or harbor a dog of greater than four months of age unless it has been inoculated against rabies. Upon request of the Animal Control Officer, or, if necessary, by a Town Justice, any person shall produce a current certificate of inoculation.
This article shall be enforced by the Town's Dog Control Officer and by police officers employed by the Town. Those persons shall have the authority to issue appearance tickets or other process set forth within Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
[Amended 12-7-2016 by L.L. No. 3-2017; 12-20-2017 by L.L. No. 7-2017]
Seizure; fines; redemption.
Any dog which is not carrying an identification tag and which is not on the owner's premises, any dog which is not licensed, whether on or off the owner's premises, and any dog in violation of any other provision of this article or which poses an immediate threat to the public safety shall be subject to seizure, redemption, impoundment fees and adoption procedures as set forth in Article 7, § 117, of the Agriculture and Markets Law.
Pursuant to § 117 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, fines and impoundment fees are set by Town Board resolution in their adoption of the Town's Fee Schedule. An owner may redeem their dog within the applicable redemption period specified in Subsection A(3) below upon payment of all fines and impoundment fees and by producing proof that the dog has been licensed.
Pursuant to § 117 of the Agriculture and Markets Law, redemption periods are set as follows:
Where an owner has been personally notified: seven days from the date of such notice.
Where an owner has been sent notice by certified mail, return receipt requested: nine days from the date of such mailing.
Where the dog is unidentified: five days, excluding the day the dog is seized or impounded.
No person shall hinder, resist or oppose the Dog Control Officer or any other person authorized to administer and enforce the provisions of this article in the performance of the person's duties pursuant to this article.
No action shall be maintained against the Town of Fishkill, any duly designated Dog Control Officer or any other agent or officer of the Town to recover the possession or value of any dog, for damages for injury or compensation for the destruction of any dog seized or destroyed pursuant to the provisions of this article.
It shall be the duty of the Dog Control Officer or Officers to feed and care for, at the expense of the Town, any animal seized hereunder until disposure thereof be made as provided herein.
All monies collected as fines or penalties as a result of any prosecution for violations of the provisions of this article, and all bail forfeitures by persons charged with such violations, shall be the sole property of the Town of Fishkill and shall be used only for controlling dogs and enforcing this article.
Fines and impoundment fees may be paid off in installments at the discretion of the Town Board and upon the execution of a promissory note by the owner of the dog.
An owner shall forfeit title to any dog unredeemed at the expiration of the appropriate redemption period, and the dog shall then be made available for adoption or euthanized, provided that no dog shall be delivered for adoption unless it has been licensed pursuant to the provisions of this article prior to its release from custody.
No liability in damages or otherwise shall be incurred on account of the seizure, euthanization or adoption of any dog pursuant to the provisions of this article.
It shall be a violation for:
Any owner to fail to license any dog;
Any owner to fail to have any dog identified as required by this article;
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;
Any owner or custodian of any dog to fail to confine, restrain or present such dog for any lawful purpose pursuant to this article;
Any person to furnish any false or misleading information on any form required to be filed with the Town of Fishkill pursuant to the provisions of this article or rules and regulations promulgated pursuant thereto;
The owner or custodian of any dog to fail to exercise due diligence in handling his or her dog if the handling results in harm to another dog that is a guide, hearing or service dog; and
Any owner of a dog to fail to notify the Town of Fishkill of any change of ownership or address as required by this article.
The Town of Fishkill may elect either to prosecute such actions described in this section as a violation under the Penal Law or to commence an action to recover a civil penalty.
Agriculture and Markets Law § 123 sets forth the applicable procedural and substantive requirements applicable within the Town of Fishkill when a dog is alleged to be dangerous.
Any person who observes a dog in violation of this article may file a complaint under oath with the Animal Control Officer and/or Town Police 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 the dog. Upon receipt by the Dog Control Officer or Town Police of any such complaint, he/she shall summon the alleged owner to appear in person before the Town Court for a hearing, at which both the complainant and owner shall have an opportunity to be represented by counsel and to present evidence. If, after such hearing, the Town Justice decides that further action is warranted, he may, in addition to imposing a penalty pursuant to § 58-16:
[Amended 12-20-2017 by L.L. No. 7-2017]
Upon conviction, a violation of § 58-9A(1), (5), or (6) or of § 58-13A(1), (2), (3), (4), (5) or (7) of this article shall be deemed an offense and shall be punishable by a fine not exceeding $50 for the first offense, $100 for the second offense within the preceding five years, and $250 for each additional offense within the preceding five years or by imprisonment for a period not exceeding 15 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
Upon conviction, a violation of § 58-9A(2), (3), (4), or (7) or of § 58-13A(6) of this article shall be deemed an unclassified misdemeanor and shall be punishable by a fine of between $250 and $500 for the first offense, a fine of between $500 and $1,000 for the second offense and a fine of between $1,000 and $2,500 for each offense thereafter or by imprisonment for a period not exceeding one year, or by both a fine and imprisonment.
Each provision of this article shall be deemed independent of all other provisions herein, and if any provision shall be deemed or declared invalid, all other provisions hereof shall remain valid and enforceable.