Chapter 57—Keeping of Pit Bull Dogs

57.01 Purpose
57.02 Definition
57.03 Keeping of Licensed Pit Bulls

57.01 PURPOSE.

In order to protect the health, safety and welfare of the residents and citizens of the City, the Council has enacted the following provisions.

57.02 DEFINITION.

“Pit bull dog” is defined to mean:

  1. The Bull Terrier breed of dog;
  2. The Staffordshire Bull Terrier breed of dog;
  3. The American Pit Bull Terrier breed of dog;
  4. The American Staffordshire Terrier breed of dog; or
  5. Any dog which has the appearance and characteristics of being predominately of the breeds of Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, American Pit Bull Terrier or American Staffordshire Terrier.
57.03 KEEPING OF LICENSED PIT BULLS.

All pit bull dogs shall be licensed in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 56 of this Code of Ordinances. The keeping of licensed pit bull dogs is subject to the following standards:

  1. Leash and Muzzle. No person shall permit a licensed pit bull dog to go outside its kennel or exercise pen unless such dog is securely leashed with a leash no longer than four (4) feet. No person shall permit a pit bull dog to be kept on a chain, rope or other type of leash outside its kennel or exercise pen unless a person is in physical control of the leash. Such dogs may not be leashed to inanimate objects such as trees, posts, buildings, etc. In addition, all pit bull dogs on a leash outside the animal’s kennel or exercise pen must be muzzled by a muzzling device sufficient to prevent such dog from biting persons or other animals.
  2. Confinement. All licensed pit bull dogs shall be securely confined indoors or in a securely enclosed and locked kennel, except when leashed and muzzled as above provided, or when confined in the owner’s presence in a securely enclosed and locked exercise pen as provided herein. Any such exercise pen or kennel or structure must have secure sides at least five (5) feet high above the bottom or floor at all points, and any such kennel must also have a secure top attached to the sides. All structures used to confine licensed pit bull dogs must be locked with a key or combination lock when such animals are within the structure. Such structure must have a secure concrete or cement bottom or floor attached to the sides of the exercise pen or the sides of the pen must be embedded in the ground no less than one (1) foot. All structures erected to house pit bull dogs must comply with all zoning and building regulations of the City. All such structures must be adequately lighted and ventilated and kept in a clean and sanitary condition.
  3. Confinement Indoors. No pit bull dog may be kept on a porch, patio or in any part of a house or structure that would allow the dog to exit such building on its own volition. In addition, no such animal may be kept in a house or structure when the windows are open or when screen windows or screen doors are the only obstacle preventing the dog from exiting the structure, unless the owner is home and present to prevent the dog from so exiting.
  4. Signs. All owners, keepers or harborers of licensed pit bull dogs within the City shall display in a prominent place on their premises a sign easily readable by the public using the words “Beware of Dog” or “Dog on Premises.” In addition, a similar sign is required to be posted on the kennel or pen of such animals.
  5. Identification Photographs. All owners, keepers or harborers of licensed pit bull dogs must provide to the Clerk two color photographs of the registered animal clearly showing the color and approximate size of the animal.
  6. Reporting Requirements. All owners, keepers or harborers of licensed pit bull dogs must within ten (10) days of the incident, report the following information in writing to the Clerk as required herein:
    1. The removal from the City or death of a licensed pit bull dog;
    2. The birth of offspring of a licensed pit bull dog;
    3. The new address of a licensed pit bull dog owner should the owner move within the corporate City limits.
  7. Sale or Transfer of Ownership Prohibited. No person shall sell, barter or in any other way dispose of a pit bull dog licensed with the City to any person within the City unless the recipient person resides permanently in the same household and on the same premises as the licensed owner of such dog; provided that the licensed owner of a pit bull dog may sell or otherwise dispose of a licensed dog or the offspring of such dog to persons who do not reside within the City.
  8. Irrefutable Presumptions. There shall be an irrefutable presumption that any dog licensed with the City as a pit bull dog is in fact a dog subject to the requirements of this section.
  9. Failure to Comply. It is unlawful for the owner, keeper or harborer of a pit bull dog licensed with the City to fail to comply with the requirements and conditions set forth in this chapter. Any dog found to be the subject of a violation of this chapter shall be subject to immediate seizure and impoundment. In addition, failure to comply may result in the revocation of the license of such animal resulting in the immediate removal of the animal from the City.
  10. Violation and Penalties. Any person violating or permitting the violation of any provisions of this chapter shall be in violation of this Code of Ordinances. In addition, the Court shall order the license of the subject pit bull revoked and the dog removed from the City. Should the defendant refuse to remove the dog from the City, the Judge shall find the defendant owner in contempt and order the immediate confiscation and impoundment of the animal. Each day that a violation of this chapter continues shall be deemed a separate offense. In addition to the foregoing penalties, any person who violates this chapter shall pay all expenses, including shelter, food, handling, veterinary care and testimony necessitated by the enforcement of this chapter.