[Added 9-17-2019 by Ord. No. 2019:44]
The purpose of this article is to establish a trap, neuter, vaccinate and release (TNVR) program for the Township of Parsippany-Troy Hills for the purpose of reducing the population of feral and free-roaming cats, benefitting public health, improving the quality of life for residents, and ensuring the humane treatment of community cats.
For the purposes of this article, the following terms shall have the meaning set forth in this section.
- COMMUNITY CAT
- Any free-roaming, feral, or barn cat that may be cared for by one or more residents of the immediate area and which has no discernible form of ownership identification.
- COMMUNITY CAT CAREGIVER
- A person who may provide care, including food, water, shelter or medical care to a community cat.
- EAR TIPPING
- The removal of the 1/4 inch tip of community cat's left ear, performed while the cat is under anesthesia by a licensed veterinarian and designed to be an indication that the community cat has been sterilized and vaccinated for rabies.
- FERAL CAT
- A cat that is born in the wild or is the offspring of an owned or feral cat and is not socialized or is a formerly owned cat that has been abandoned and is no longer socialized.
- FERAL COMMUNITY CAT COLONY
- A group of cats that congregate together outside as a unit. Although not every cat in a colony may be feral, any nonferal cats who congregate with a colony shall be deemed part of it.
- Disturbing the peace by:
- TNVR PROGRAM
- A program pursuant to which feral and stray cats are trapped, neutered or spayed, vaccinated against rabies, microchipped, and returned to the location where they congregate.
Feral cat colonies shall be permitted, and caregivers shall be entitled to maintain them in accordance with the terms and conditions of this article.
The TNVR program shall be run by Township Animal Control Services under the supervision and direction of the Animal Control Officer.
The Township may partner with an organization or entity that shares the common mission in implementing the TNVR program in Parsippany through recruiting and assisting volunteers, soliciting donations, and advocating for and promoting the TNVR program.
Community cats meeting the requirements of this article shall be exempt from any licensing, stray, and at-large provisions of the Township Code. Healthy community cats that have been trapped by Animal Control in accordance with this article shall be considered to be "on the property of the owner" and thus not stray (off the property of the owner) to be impounded. Healthy community cats shall be returned to the location at which they were found or released to a caregiver after being sterilized, vaccinated for rabies, microchipped, and ear tipped while under anesthesia by a licensed veterinarian.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, whenever such cat is visibly injured or diseased and appears to be suffering and it reasonably appears that such cat cannot be expeditiously cured and returned to the field, transferred to a humane society or private animal nonprofit organization or placed in foster care, the cat may be humanely euthanized upon the advice of a licensed veterinarian.
Community cats may be cared for on the private property of the caregiver or upon the property of another with the permission of the owner or property manager.
Caregivers shall take all reasonable steps to have all cats in the colony spayed/neutered, vaccinated against rabies, microchipped, and ear tipped for easy identification.
Caregivers shall provide food and water and, if feasible, suitable shelter for colony cats. Feeding is permitted during daylight hours only. Food must be offered to cats in a container and shall not be dumped on the ground. Any food remaining after cats have eaten must be removed before dark. Feeding areas must be maintained in a clean and sanitary condition.
Caregivers shall observe the colony cats and keep a record of any illnesses or unusual behavior noticed in any colony cats.
In the event that kittens are born to a colony cat, caregivers shall make reasonable attempts to remove young kittens from the field for domestication. Animal Control may be contacted for assistance, advice, and removal of young kittens.
Caregivers shall obtain proper medical attention for any colony cat as necessary.
The Township shall have the following rights:
The right to remove or authorize the removal of any cat from a colony which has not been vaccinated against rabies and which demonstrates signs of the disease or because of immediate public health or safety concerns.
The right to remove or authorize the removal of any cat from a colony which is visibly injured or diseased and appears to be suffering and remains untreated. If it reasonably appears that such cat cannot be expeditiously cured and returned to the field, transferred to a humane society or private animal nonprofit organization or placed in foster care, the cat may be humanely euthanized upon the advice of a licensed veterinarian.
The right to remove or authorize the removal of any cat from a colony which is creating a nuisance as defined herein in accordance with § 91-34 herein.
The right to remove and authorize the removal of a colony of cats when the caregiver regularly fails to comply with the requirements of this article.
The Animal Control Officer, or his/her designee, shall investigate an alleged violation of this article upon the receipt of two sworn affidavits of complaint in a form provided by Animal Control, signed by two unrelated Township residents living in separate dwellings in the close vicinity of the alleged violation. For the enforcement of Subsection B herein, one of the affidavits may be provided by a person who works for a recognized business or agency that regularly or frequently provides service in the close vicinity of the alleged violation. The affidavit shall specify the address or location of the alleged violation, the nature, time and date(s) of the act, the name and address of the owner or custodian, if known, and a description of the animal, if known.
Upon the receipt of two sworn affidavits of complaint as provided for in this article, the Animal Control Officer, or his/her designee, shall make a reasonable attempt to contact the caregiver who shall immediately begin nuisance abatement procedures and make all reasonable efforts to resolve the nuisance in as short a time period as possible, not to exceed 60 days. If the Township is unable to contact the caregiver or if the caregiver fails to resolve the nuisance or remove the cat within 60 days, the Animal Control Officer may issue a citation to the caregiver and/or remove the cat.
The Animal Control Officer is hereby authorized and directed to adopt and enforce any necessary rules and regulations to implement the Township TNVR program.