The purpose of this article is to provide for the licensing and identification of dogs. Effective January 1, 2011, the State of New York has relinquished the responsibility of the dog licensing function to local municipalities and eliminated the Animal Population Control Fund. Local municipalities will now be required to adopt legislation relating to this issue.
This article is enacted pursuant to the provisions of Article 7 of the Agriculture and Markets Law and the Municipal Home Rule Law of the State of New York, as amended by Part T of Chapter 59 of the Laws of 2010, and as may be subsequently amended and supplemented.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- The delivery to any natural person 18 years of age or older for the purpose of harboring a dog, seized or surrendered, from the Town's animal shelter.
- ANIMAL/DOG CONTROL OFFICER
- Any individual appointed by the Town Board to assist in the enforcement of this chapter.
- The Town Clerk, or Deputy Town Clerk, of the Town of Delaware, where licenses are to be validated or issued.
- DETECTION DOG
- Any dog that is trained and is actually used for such purposes or is undergoing training to be used for the purpose of detecting controlled substances, explosives, ignitable liquids, firearms, cadavers, or school or correctional facility contraband.
- Any member of the species canis familiaris.
- GEESE DOG
- Any dog that is trained to aid the Animal/Dog Control Officer in the control of geese within the boundaries of the Town.
- GUIDE DOG
- Any dog that is trained to aid a person who is blind and is actually used for such purpose, or any dog owned by a recognized guide dog training center located within the State of New York during the period such dog is being trained or bred.
- To provide food or shelter to any dog.
- HEARING DOG
- Any dog that is trained to aid a person with a hearing impairment and which is actually used for such purpose, or any dog owned by a recognized training center located within the State of New York during the period such dog is being trained or bred for such training.
- IDENTIFICATION TAG
- A tag which sets forth an identification number, as required by the provisions set forth in this article.
- Any person who harbors or keeps any dog.
- PERSON WITH DISABILITY
- Any person with a disability as that term is defined in Subdivision 21 of § 292 of the New York State Executive Law.
- POLICE WORK DOG
- Any dog owned or harbored by any municipal police department or any state or federal law enforcement agency, which has been trained to aid law enforcement officers and is actually being used for police work purposes.
- SERVICE DOG
- Any dog that has been or is being individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with disability, provided that the dog is or will be owned by such person or that person's parent, guardian or other legal representative.
- THERAPY DOG
- Any dog that is trained to aid the emotional and physical health of patients in hospitals, nursing homes, retirement homes and other settings and is actually used for such purpose, or any dog owned by a recognized training center located within the State of New York during the period such dog is being trained or bred for such purpose.
- Town of Delaware, including incorporated areas.
- WAR DOG
- Any dog which has been honorably discharged from the United States armed services.
- WORKING SEARCH DOG
- Any dog that is trained to aid in the search for missing persons and is actually used for such purposes; provided, however, that such services provided by said dog shall be performed without charge or fee.
Licensing of dogs.
The owner of any dog reaching the age of four months shall immediately make application for a dog license. No license shall be required for any dog under the age of four months that is not at large. A license shall be renewed after a period of one year beginning with the first day of the month following the date of issuance. Renewal shall be for one year, based on the validation term of the rabies vaccination.
Application for a dog license shall be made to the Clerk and shall be accompanied by the appropriate license fee.
The application shall state the sex, actual or approximate year of birth, breed, color(s), and official identification number of the dog, and other identification markers, if any, and the name, address, telephone number, county and town of residence of the owner, and such other information as deemed necessary by the Clerk.
The application shall be accompanied by a license fee and a valid certificate of rabies vaccination or statement in lieu thereof. In the case of a spayed or neutered dog, every application shall also be accompanied by a certificate signed by a licensed veterinarian showing that the dog has been spayed or neutered; such certificate shall not be required if the same is already on file with the Clerk.
The fees for a dog license shall be as follows:
Unspayed/unneutered dog: as set by resolution of the Town Board at its annual reorganization meeting.
Spayed/neutered dog: as set by resolution of the Town Board at its annual reorganization meeting.
Replacement identification tag: as set by resolution of the Town Board at its annual reorganization meeting.
Upon submission of proper documentation, there shall be no fee charged for the license issued for any detection dog, geese dog, guide dog, hearing dog, police work dog, service dog, therapy dog, war dog or working search dog.
Upon validation by the Clerk, the application shall become a license for the dog described therein. Once an application has been validated, no refund shall be made.
The Clerk shall provide a copy of the license to the owner and retain a record of the license in either paper or electronic format.
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. The original issued identification tag shall remain the same for the life of the dog.
No dog can be adopted out of the Town's animal shelter without first obtaining a license from the Clerk.
Purebred licenses. There will not be distinct purebred licenses as previously provided for by the state. Any and all existing purebred licenses will now be required to comply with § 90-13A of this article.
Rabies vaccination. The Clerk, at the time of issuing any license pursuant to this article, shall require the applicant to present a statement certified by a licensed veterinarian showing that the dog or dogs have been vaccinated to prevent rabies or, in lieu thereof, a statement certified by a licensed veterinarian stating that, because of age or other reason, the life of the dog or dogs would be endangered by the administration of vaccine. The Clerk shall make or cause to be made from such statement a record of such information and file such record with a copy of the license.
Enumeration. In addition to other applicable fees, any person applying for a dog license for a dog identified as unlicensed during an enumeration shall pay a fee of $5. Such additional fee shall be used to pay the expenses incurred by the Town in conducting the enumeration. In the event 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 Town for any other lawful purpose.
Each dog licensed shall be assigned, at the time the dog is licensed for the first time, a permanent official identification number. Such identification number shall be carried by the dog on an identification tag which shall be affixed to a collar on the dog at all times.
The official identification number shall constitute the official identification of the dog to which it is assigned, regardless of changes of ownership, and the number shall not be reassigned to any other dog during the lifetime of the dog to which it is assigned.
At the time a dog is first licensed, one identification tag shall be furnished to the owner at no charge. Any replacement tag shall be obtained by the owner at his expense at a fee in such amount as shall be fixed from time to time by resolution of the Town Board in accordance with this article.
No tag carrying an official identification number shall be affixed to the collar of any dog other than the one to which that number has been assigned.
The identification tag shall be imprinted with the "Town of Delaware," a unique identification number, and the telephone number of the Clerk's office.
In the event of a change in ownership of any dog which has been assigned an official identification number or in the address of the owner of record of any such dog, the owner of record shall notify the Clerk.
If any dog which has been assigned an official identification number is lost or stolen, the owner of record shall notify the Clerk.
In the case of a dog's death, the owner of record shall so notify the Clerk either prior to renewal of license or upon the time of such renewal.
It shall be a violation, punishable as provided in Subsection B of this section, for:
Violations of this article shall be subject to a fine, not to be less than $25 or greater than $250, except that: