- Public Safety
- Police Department
- Animal Control
- Animal Care
- Animal Ordinances
the purpose of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply
unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.
ANIMAL CONTROL AUTHORITY. The Chadron Police Department.
ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICER. Any individual employed, appointed, or authorized by an Animal Control Authority for the purpose of aiding in the enforcement of this chapter or any other law or ordinance relating to the licensure of animals, control of animals, or seizure and impoundment of animals and shall include any state or local law enforcement officer or other employee whose duties in whole or in part include assignment that involves the seizure and impoundment of any animal.
ANIMAL SHELTER. Any premises designated by the City of Chadron for the purpose of impounding and caring for all dogs and animals found running at large.
AT LARGE. Any dog not confined by an adequate fence or on a leash either tied to a stationary object or held by a competent person on public or private property.
BITE or BITES. To cut, tear, puncture, or lacerate skin with the teeth of an animal.
CHIEF OF POLICE. An individual who is hired on an interim or full time basis to serve the duties as prescribed by the Chadron job description for the Chief of Police, and as authorized by law. For the purpose of enforcement of this chapter, the Chief of Police may authorize a designee to serve in his or her place at times of his or her absence.
DANGEROUS DOG. Any dog that, according to the record of an Animal Control Authority: has killed or inflicted injury that requires medical treatment on a human being; has killed a domestic animal without provocation; or has been previously determined to be a potentially dangerous dog by an Animal Control Authority and the owner has received notice of the determination and the dog again inflicts an injury on a human being that does not require medical treatment, injures a domesticated animal, or endangers the safety of humans, or domestic animals. A dog shall not be defined as a DANGEROUS DOG if the injury, damage or threat was sustained by a person who, at the time, was committing a willful trespass as defined in Neb. RS 20-203, 28-520, or 28-521, or any other tort upon the property of the owner of the dog, or who was tormenting, abusing, or assaulting the dog, who has, in the past, been observed or reported to have tormented, abused, or assaulted the dog, or who has committing or attempting to commit a crime.
DOG. Any canine over the age of six months.
DOMESTIC ANIMAL. Any cat, or dog, or livestock. Livestock includes buffalo, deer, antelope, fowl or any other animal in any zoo, wildlife park, refuge or any nature center intended to be an exhibit.
DOMESTICATED ANIMAL. A tame animal that is subject to the dominion and control of an owner and accustomed to living in or near human habitation without requiring extraordinary restraint or unreasonably disturbing the human habitation.
EXPOSED TO RABIES. A dog or any other animal has been EXPOSED TO RABIES if it has been bitten by, or exposed to, any animal known to have been infected with rabies.
HABITUALLY RUNNING AT LARGE. Any dog or other animal that has been impounded in the City Animal Shelter or a warning or citation issued to the owner more than two times in any 12-month period and is again found running at large shall be considered to be habitually running at large within the City. All dogs or other animals owned by the same owner shall be considered collectively for designation as HABITUALLY RUNNING AT LARGE, and where any and all dogs or other animals owned by the same owner have been impounded in the City Animal Shelter or have caused a warning or citation to be issued more than two times in any 12-month period, all other dogs or other animals of the same owner that are found running at large shall be considered to be HABITUALLY RUNNING AT LARGE within the City.
KENNEL. Any person, firm, or corporation harboring, keeping, or owning more than three dogs at any one time.
LICENSED VETERINARIAN. Any person practicing veterinary medicine and licensed under the Nebraska Veterinary Practice Act.
MEDICAL TREATMENT. Treatment administered by a physician or licensed health care professional.
MUTILATION. Intentionally causing permanent injury, disfigurement, degradation of function, incapacitation, or imperfection to an animal. MUTILATION does not include conduct performed by a veterinarian licensed to practice veterinary medicine and surgery in the state or conduct that conforms to acceptable veterinary practices.
OFFICER. Any police officer, special services officer, or person employed by the City to enforce this chapter.
OWNER. Any person, firm, corporation, organization, political subdivision, or department possessing, harboring, keeping, or having control or custody of a domestic or domesticated animal.
POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS DOG. Any dog that:
(a) When unprovoked, inflicts an injury that does not require medical treatment on a human or injures a domestic animal either on public or private property, or chases or approaches a person upon streets, sidewalks, or any public grounds in a menacing fashion or apparent attitude of attack; or
(b) Is known to have a propensity, tendency, or disposition to attack, when unprovoked, to cause injury, or to threaten the safety of humans or domestic animals.
RESIDENTIAL UNIT or DWELLING UNIT.
(a) Any apartment, duplex, house, or other structure that serves as a place of permanent or temporary residence. RESIDENTIAL UNIT and DWELLING shall be treated as one in the same and are interchangeable for purposes of this chapter.
(b) A single unit providing complete independent living facilities for one or more persons, including permanent provisions for living, sleeping, eating, cooking and sanitation.
RESTRAINT. A dog or any other animal is under restraint within the meaning of this chapter if it is controlled by a leash or chain held by a competent person, on or within a vehicle being driven or parked on public property, or within an adequate fence on the property limits of its owner or keeper.
REPEATED BEATING. Intentional successive strikes to an animal by a person resulting in serious bodily injury or death to an animal.
TORTURE. Intentionally subjecting an animal to extreme pain, suffering, or agony. TORTURE does not include conduct performed by a veterinarian licensed to practice veterinary medicine and surgery in this state or conduct that conforms to accepted veterinary practices.
DOGS §6-201 - §6-214
§ 6-201 DOG LICENSE; APPLICATION; IMMUNIZATION REQUIRED.
No person shall own, keep, or harbor any dog over the age of six months, within the City limits, unless the dog is licensed as herein provided. Application for the license shall be made within 30 days after obtaining the dog, or the dog becomes six months old, and within 30 days after the beginning of each calendar year thereafter, and shall state the name, telephone number and address of the owner and the name, breed, color, age, and sex of the dog. At the time of the application for the license, the owner shall present to the City a certificate of a licensed veterinarian showing that the dog has been immunized against rabies for the calendar year.
§ 6-202 DOG LICENSE; YEAR; ANNUAL FEE.
Upon payment of the license fee, there shall be issued to the owner a numbered metallic tag, stamped with the number and the year for which issued, which should be securely fastened to the dog’s choke chain, collar, or harness for identification purposes. The license year for all dog licenses shall be the calendar year and the annual license fee shall be as cited in the Chadron Fee Ordinance.
§ 6-203 DOG TAG; IDENTIFICATION; DUPLICATE.
In the event that the license tag issued for a dog shall be lost, the owner may obtain a duplicate tag upon payment of one-half the annual fee.
§ 6-204 RESTRAINT; OWNER’S DUTY.
The owner shall keep his or her dog under restraint and shall not permit the dog to be at large.
§ 6-205 RUNNING AT LARGE; OWNER’S DUTY.
It shall be unlawful for the owner of any dog or the owner of any property where a dog resides within the City to allow the dog to run at large within the City.
§ 6-206 HABITUALLY RUNNING AT LARGE; OWNER’S DUTY.
It shall be unlawful for the owner of any dog or the owner of any property where a dog resides within the City to allow the dog to habitually run at large within the City.
§ 6-207 RUNNING AT LARGE; IMPOUNDMENT.
Unlicensed dogs or dogs found running at large shall be picked up by the City Animal Control Authority and impounded in the City Animal Shelter, and there confined in a humane manner until disposed of in the manner provided in § 6-403.
§ 6-208 CONFINEMENT OF DANGEROUS DOGS AND FEMALE DOGS IN HEAT.
The owner shall confine within a building or secure enclosure every vicious and dangerous dog and shall not take the dog out of the building or secure enclosure unless the dog is muzzled. The owner shall confine every female dog in heat within a building or secure enclosure, or in a veterinary hospital or boarding kennel, in the manner that the female dog cannot come in contact with another animal, except for breeding purposes.
§ 6-209 HOWLING AND YELPING DOGS; NUISANCE.
It shall be unlawful for any person to own, keep, or harbor any dog which by loud, continued, or frequent barking, howling, or yelping shall annoy or disturb any neighborhood, person, or persons. This section shall not apply to the Humane Society or the business premises of any licensed veterinarian.
§ 6-210 POISONING DOGS UNLAWFUL.
It shall be unlawful for any person to administer poison to any dog or to knowingly place or leave any poisonous substance of any kind or ground glass in any place with intent to injure or kill any dog, provided that nothing herein contained shall prohibit an owner from mercifully putting to death his or her own dog or delivering it to the animal shelter for disposition.
§ 6-211 MAXIMUM DOGS ALLOWED.
It shall be unlawful for more than three dogs to be harbored, kept, possessed, or owned at any one time per residential or dwelling unit within the City of Chadron irrespective of the owner of the dog. Any residential unit or dwelling unit exceeding the maximum limit of three dogs per residential unit or dwelling unit, where zoning allows, shall comply with kennel licensing regulations as provided in §§ 6-212 and 6-213. Fostering a pregnant dog and her eventual litter is a temporary exception to this rule. Litters may be kept a maximum of six months under this exception, after which the animals are considered individual dogs and must comply with the licensing and limitations requirements of this article. Hospitals, clinics, and licensed veterinarians are exempt from this rule.
§ 6-212 KENNEL; APPLICATION; IMMUNIZATION REQUIRED; INSPECTION.
Every person, firm, or corporation engaged in the operation of a kennel shall pay an annual license fee. Application for the license shall be made within 30 days after the commencement of the operation and within 30 days after the beginning of each calendar year thereafter, and shall state the name and address of the operator, and the name, breed, color, sex, and age of each dog kept. It shall be the duty of the operator of any kennel to have each dog over the age of six months immunized against rabies, and a certificate of such shall be kept on the premises available for inspection, at any reasonable hour, by the City.
§ 6-213 KENNEL; LICENSE YEAR; ANNUAL FEE.
The license year for all kennels shall be the calendar year and the annual license fee shall be as cited in the Chadron Fee Ordinance.
§ 6-214 LICENSE REQUIREMENTS; EXCEPTION.
The licensing requirements of this article shall not apply to hospitals, clinics, and licensed veterinarians, or to any dog belonging to a nonresident of the City and kept within the City for not longer than 30 days, provided all the dogs shall at all times while in the City be kept within a building enclosure or vehicle, or be under restraint.
ANIMALS §6-301 - §6-309
§ 6-301 ANIMAL CARE; OWNER’S DUTY.
It shall be unlawful for the owner of any animal within the City to:
(1) Fail to provide the animal with sufficient good and wholesome food and water, proper shelter and protection from the weather, or veterinary care when needed to prevent suffering;
(2) Beat, cruelly ill treat, torment, overload, overwork, or otherwise abuse an animal, or cause, instigate or permit any dogfight, or other combat between animals, or animals and humans; or
(3) Abandon the animal.
§ 6-302 ANIMAL POISON UNLAWFUL.
It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly expose any known poisonous substance, whether mixed with food or not, so that same shall be liable to be eaten by any animal, except for the person to expose on his or her own property, common rat poison mixed only with vegetable substances.
§ 6-303 ANIMAL WASTE UNLAWFUL.
It shall be unlawful for the owner of every animal to fail to remove any excreta deposited by his or her animals on public walks, recreation areas, or private property.
§ 6-304 UNLAWFUL TO KEEP WILD ANIMAL; EXCEPTIONS.
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation to keep or permit to be kept on his or her premises, any wild or vicious animal for display or for exhibition purposes, whether gratuitously or for a fee, except zoological parks, performing animal exhibitions, or circuses.
§ 6-305 WILD ANIMAL EXHIBITIONS UNLAWFUL.
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation to maintain or have an animal exhibition or circus which shall permit or in which animals are induced or encouraged to perform through the use of chemical, mechanical, electrical, or manual devices in a manner which will cause, or is likely to cause, physical injury or suffering.
§ 6-306 ANIMAL ABUSE UNLAWFUL.
It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to intentionally abuse any animal.
Penalty, see § 6-701
§ 6-307 ANIMALS; PERSONAL PROPERTY; OWNER LIABLE FOR DAMAGES.
Dogs and other animals are hereby declared to be personal property for all intents and purposes, and the owner or owners of any dog or dogs, animal or animals, shall be liable for any and all damages that may accrue to any person, other than a trespasser, by reason of having been bitten by any such dog or dogs, animal or animals, and to any person, firm, or corporation by reason of such dog or dogs, animal or animals, killing, wounding, injuring, worrying, or chasing any person or persons or any sheep or other domestic animals belonging to such person, firm or corporation. Such damage may be recovered in any court having jurisdiction or the amount claimed.
§ 6-308 ANIMALS; REASONABLE FORCE.
Use of force is acceptable against any dog or animal, other than a police animal which is working, including killing, capture or restraint, if the animal is outside the owned or rented property of its owner or custodian, is injuring or posing an immediate threat to any person or other animal.
§ 6-309 ANIMALS; OWNED BY A MINOR.
When an animal is owned by a minor child, the parent of such minor child with whom the child resides or legal guardian with whom the child resides shall be subject to the penalties applicable to any and all ordinances in this chapter.
IMPOUNDMENT §6-401 - §6-404
§ 6-401 NOTICE.
Unrestrained dogs and nuisance animals found to be running at large shall be taken by an officer and impounded in the City Animal Shelter and there confined in a humane manner. If, by a license tag or other means, the owner of an impounded animal can be identified, the officer shall immediately upon impoundment notify the owner by telephone or mail.
§ 6-402 FEES.
The owner reclaiming an impounded, licensed animal shall pay a fee and a per day boarding charge for each day the animal has been impounded. Upon proof that the animal is properly licensed, the City shall waive the fee for the animal’s first impoundment. In the event the animal is unlicensed, the owner shall pay the impoundment fee, the proper license fee and show proof of a current rabies shot, and, if unable to show the proof, the animal shall receive a rabies shot at the cost of the owner before being removed from impoundment. The owner shall be responsible for any and all costs incurred during impoundment of the animal connected with impoundment, boarding or any other fees, to be paid in full at the time of release. The impoundment fee and boarding charge shall be determined by the City Council.
§ 6-403 FIVE DAYS.
Any animal not reclaimed by its owner within five working days shall become the property of the City, and shall be placed for adoption in a suitable home or humanely euthanized.
§ 6-404 CITY ANIMAL SHELTER; PROHIBITED ACTS.
It shall be unlawful for any person to break and enter and retrieve, or attempt to break and enter to retrieve, an impounded animal from the City Animal Shelter or transporting vehicle.
RABIES §6-501 - §6-504
§ 6-501 ANIMAL BITE; QUARANTINE.
Every animal which bites a person or another domesticated animal shall be promptly reported to the Police Department, and shall thereupon be securely quarantined at the direction of the Chief of Police for a period of ten days, and shall not be released from the quarantine except by written permission of the Chief of Police. In the case where an animal bites a person or another domesticated animal while on the owner’s premises, the location of the quarantine shall be at the discretion of the Chief of Police and may be on the premises of the owner in which the animal will be securely confined, in a humane manner, indoors or in a securely enclosed and locked pen or structure suitably designed to prevent the entry of young children and to prevent the dog from escaping, at the shelter designated as the City Animal Shelter, or in a veterinary hospital at the owner's option. In the case where an animal bites a person or another domesticated animal while not on the owner’s premises, the location of the quarantine shall be at the shelter designated as the City Animal Shelter, or in a veterinary hospital. In the case of stray animals, or in the cases of animals whose ownership is not known, the quarantine shall be at the shelter designated as the City Animal Shelter or in a veterinary hospital. The owner, upon demand made by the Chief of Police, shall forthwith surrender any animal which has bitten a human, or another domesticated animal, or which is suspected as having been exposed to rabies, for supervised quarantine which expense shall be borne by the owner, and may be reclaimed by the owner if adjudged free of rabies.
§ 6-502 ANIMAL UNDER QUARANTINE; RABID PROCEDURE.
an animal under quarantine has been diagnosed as being rabid, or
suspected by a veterinarian as being rabid, and dies while under
observation, the Chief of Police should immediately send the head of the
animal to the appropriate approved testing laboratory for pathological
examination, and shall notify the proper public health officer of
reports of human contacts, and the diagnosis made of the suspected
animal, and shall proceed as follows:
(1) Upon such diagnosis of rabies, every animal bitten by an animal adjudged to be rabid shall be forthwith destroyed, or at the discretion or supervision of a licensed veterinarian, based on the most current recommendations from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, shall be treated for rabies infections and/or held for 180 days of quarantine in the same manner as other animals are quarantined in § 6-501, at the owner's expense.
§ 6-503 RABIES CONTROL; OTHER REGULATIONS.
For the purposes of rabies control, the City hereby adopts the following regulations.
(1) No person shall kill, or cause to be killed, any rabid animal, any animal suspected of or having been exposed to rabies, or any animal biting a human, except as herein provided, nor remove the same from the City limits without permission from the Chief of Police. This provision does not apply to any licensed veterinarian.
(2) The carcass of any dead animal exposed to rabies shall, upon demand, be surrendered to the Chief of Police.
(3) The Chief of Police shall direct the disposition of any animal found to be infected with rabies.
(4) No person shall fail or refuse to surrender any animal for quarantine or destruction as required herein when demand is made therefore by the Chief of Police.
(5) It shall be the duty of every physician to report to the Chief of Police the names and addresses of persons treated for bites inflicted by animals, together with any other information as will be helpful in rabies control.
(6) It shall be the duty of every licensed veterinarian to report to the Chief of Police his or her diagnosis of any animal that has tested positive for rabies.
§ 6-504 EUTHANIZATION; PROCEDURE.
(1) The owner or owners of every animal who has been quarantined as provided under the ordinance of this City shall be notified in writing by the Chief of Police that the animal will be euthanized by the City after a hearing before the Chief of Police, City Manager, and a medical physician.
(2) The euthanization shall occur after the second quarantine period resulting from bite cases.
(3) The notice herein required will be given five days prior to the hearing.
(4) The owner or owners may appear at the hearing to submit any evidence to show cause why the animal should not be euthanized.
(5) The Board, after hearing, shall enter a finding that the animal is a nuisance and should be euthanized, or enter a finding that the animal does not constitute a nuisance and should therefore not be euthanized.
(6) Any person aggrieved from the finding of the hearing as herein set out shall give immediate notice of appeal, and the appeal shall be thereafter perfected in the District Court of Dawes County, Nebraska, within ten days from the date of hearing and/or required by law.
(7) Any and all costs incurred in the hearing or appeal shall be at the cost of the owner or owners and paid within ten days.
(8) Any and all costs incurred under this article, such as the quarantining and euthanization procedures, shall be at the cost of the owner or owners. No quarantined animal shall be released until all costs associated with that animal have been paid in full. The owner or owners of an animal that has been euthanized must pay all costs associated with that animal.
DANGEROUS DOGS §6-601 - §6-605
§ 6-601 RESTRAINT REQUIRED.
No owner of a dangerous dog shall permit the dog to go beyond the property of the owner unless the dog is restrained securely by a chain or leash.
§ 6-602 CONFINEMENT REQUIRED; WARNING SIGN.
While unattended on the owner’s property, a dangerous dog shall be securely confined, in a humane manner, indoors or in a securely enclosed and locked pen or structure suitably designed to prevent the entry of young children and to prevent the dog from escaping. The pen or structure shall have secure sides and a secure top. If the pen or structure has not bottom secured to the sides, the sides shall be embedded into the ground, and be located at least ten feet from any fence or property line. The pen or structure shall also protect the dog from the elements. The owner of a dangerous dog shall post a warning sign on the property where the dog is kept that is clearly visible and that informs person that a dangerous dog is on the property. Warning signs must be at least 10 inches by 12 inches and contain the words “warning” and “dangerous animal” in high contrast lettering at least three inches high on a black background.
§ 6-603 CONFISCATION; WHEN; COSTS.
Any dangerous dog may be immediately confiscated by the Animal Control Authority if the owner is in violation of §§ 6-601 and 6-602. The owner shall be responsible for the reasonable costs incurred by the Animal Control Authority for the care of a dangerous dog, confiscated by the Animal Control Authority or for the destruction of any dangerous dog if the action by the Animal Control Authority is pursuant to law and if the owner violated §§ 6-601 and 6-602.
§ 6-604 SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS; OWNER’S DUTY.
Any dog declared dangerous must be spayed or neutered and implanted with a microchip by a licensed veterinarian within 30 days after the declaration. Written proof of both procedures and the microchip number must be provided to the Animal Control Authority immediately after completion.
§ 6-605 TRANSPORTATION.
Dangerous dogs cannot be transported to another county, city or village in the state except for a reasonable veterinary purpose. An owner who is relocating permanently and wishes to take the dog with them, may be allowed to move a dangerous dog only if the owner obtains written permission from both the Animal Control Authority of jurisdiction of the current residence and the Animal Control Authority of jurisdiction of the new residence. Animal Control Authorities are not required to grant such permission to move dangerous dogs; permission cannot be rescinded.
VIOLATIONS §6-701 – 6-702
§ 6-701 BLANKET PENALTIES.
Any person, firm, or corporation, or their agents or servants, who shall violate any of the provisions of the Municipal Code of Ordinances, chapter, articles, sections, or subdivisions of sections included herein, unless specifically otherwise provided herein, may be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, and when the penalty is not inconsistent with the general laws of the State of Nebraska, may be fined in any sum not exceeding $1,000, and the costs of prosecution.
§ 6-702 ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICER; ISSUANCE OF CITATIONS.
The Animal Control Officer shall be vested with the power to issue, to any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter, a complaint and citation in lieu of arrest on forms by or similar to forms approved for use in the State of Nebraska.