Chapter 6.04 - Animal Control

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6.04.010 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following words, unless the context in which they are used indicates otherwise, shall be given the following meanings:
 
“Cat” shall include both male and female whether neutered or sterilized.
 
"Containing device" means a pen, cage, motor vehicle, or similar device which is capable of holding a dog(s) within.
 
"Control" means the physical restraint of a dog by use of a leash or a containing device or under the direct control of a human being.
 
“Direct Control,” over a dog, means control to such a degree that a dog will respond in immediate obedience to its trainer, keeper or owner and that such a dog is prohibited from entering private property.
 
"Dog" includes both male or female whether neutered or sterilized.
 
“Enforcement Agent/License Officer” means the City Manager of the City of Pueblo, Colorado, or his designee, any City of Pueblo Animal Control Officer, the Pueblo County Sheriff or any Pueblo County Sheriff’s Deputy or any other person designated by the Board of County Commissioners of Pueblo County, Colorado.
 
"Fence" means any enclosing structure of whatever construction of sufficient strength and dimension to prevent a dog from straying from within.
 
"Leash" means a thong, cord, rope, chain or similar device which is capable of restraining a dog.
 
"Livestock" means any bovine animal, horse, mule, ass, sheep, goat, fowl or swine.
 
"Lot or parcel of land" means any area of land in Pueblo County under one ownership as shown on the last Assessor’s roll of Pueblo County, or any area of land under the legal control of any person.
 
"Owner" means any person, partnership or corporation, owning any dog(s) or cat(s), or having the same in his, her or its care, custody or control; or who shall cause, encourage or allow any dog(s) or cat(s) to remain on or about their premises for a period of three days or more.
 
"Person" means any individual, partnership, corporation, firm or association. For purposes of this chapter, all members of one household shall be considered as one person.
 
"Premises" means any real property owned, rented, leased, used, kept or occupied by a person or persons, a partnership, corporation, or governmental unit howsoever described.
 
"Running at large" means off the premises, lot or parcel of land of the owner, and not under the direct control of the owner. For purposes of this chapter, a dog within the automobile or other vehicle of its owner or other authorized person shall not be deemed to be running at large. Running at large shall include any dog who is not in the control of a human being, either directly by the physical and reasonably proximate accompaniment of a person, or indirectly by the use of a containing device.
 
"Vaccination" means the inoculation of a dog or cat with a vaccine approved by the Colorado Department of Health for use in the prevention of rabies.
 
"Vicious dog" means any dog that, without provocation, bites or attacks a human being or other animal either on public or private property, or any dog, that in a vicious or terrorizing manner, approaches any human being in an apparent attitude of attack upon the streets, sidewalks, or public grounds or places.
 
"Working dog" means any dog actually working livestock, locating or retrieving wild game in season for a licensed hunter, or assisting law enforcement officers, or while actually being trained for any of these pursuits while under the direct control of a human being. (Res. 05-115 (part); Res. 01-154 (part); Res. 02-242 (part); Res. 92-396 § 1(D))
 

6.04.020 Vaccinations.

A. Every owner of a dog or cat four months old or older within Pueblo County, Colorado, shall have such dog or cat vaccinated against rabies by a licensed veterinarian. If a dog or cat four months old or older whose owner is a nonresident shall remain in the unincorporated areas of Pueblo County or the Towns of Rye and Boone more than thirty (30) days, such dog or cat shall be vaccinated in accordance with the provisions of this chapter. It is unlawful for any dog or cat owner required by this section to fail to have the dog or cat vaccinated.
B. A veterinarian, with the written consent of an animal’s owner, may issue a written exemption waiving the requirement that an animal be vaccinated from rabies if the veterinarian, in his or her professional opinion, determines that the rabies vaccination is contraindicated due to the animal’s health.
C. A valid veterinary-client-patient relationship, as defined under C.R.S. § 12-64-103 (15.5), must have been established between the veterinarian, owner, and animal in order for a veterinarian to issue a written exemption.
D. Upon vaccination, the veterinarian administering the vaccine shall execute in triplicate a signed vaccination certificate upon forms approved by the Enforcement Agent/License Officer. The certificate shall contain the following information:

1. The name, address and telephone number of the owner of the vaccinated dog or cat;
2. The date of vaccination;
3. The breed, age, color and sex of the vaccinated dog or cat;
4. The expiration date of vaccination; and
5. The number of the vaccination tag issued.
  
The veterinarian shall deliver a copy of the certificate to the owner, retain the original for his or her files, and send a copy to the Enforcement Agent/License Officer. It is unlawful for any owner of any dog to fail or refuse to exhibit his or her copy of the vaccination certificate upon demand to any person charged with the enforcement of this chapter.

E. If the veterinarian determines that an exemption to the requirement for rabies vaccination is appropriate, the veterinarian shall complete and sign the veterinary section of the Exemption from Rabies Vaccination Form available for download from Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. The animal owner shall sign the informed consent section of the Exemption from Rabies Vaccination Form.
F. The veterinarian shall keep a copy of each signed Exemption from Rabies Form in the animal’s medical record and provide a copy to the animal’s owner. The veterinarian shall send a copy of the Exemption from Rabies Vaccination Form to the Shelter Operator. It shall be unlawful for any owner of any dog or cat to fail or refuse to exhibit his or her copy of the Exemption from Rabies Vaccination Form upon demand to any person charged with enforcement of this Chapter.
G. Any exemption issued pursuant to this Section may not exceed a period of three years from the date of issuance. If the medical condition exists beyond a three-year period, and in the professional opinion of a veterinarian licensed in the State of Colorado, the exemption continues to be appropriate, a new waiver may be issued.
H. A veterinarian supplying a waiver exempting an animal from a rabies vaccination, the veterinarian’s assistants and employees, the County, and any person enforcing this Section 6.04.020 shall not be liable for any subsequent accident, disease, injury, or quarantine that may occur as a result of an animal exempted from a rabies vaccination.
I. Upon vaccination, the vaccinating veterinarian shall issue to the owner of the vaccinated dog or cat a vaccination tag furnished by the Enforcement Agent/License Officer. The tag shall be serially numbered. It is unlawful for the owner of a vaccinated dog or cat to fail to attach and keep attached the vaccination tag to a collar, harness or other device; and such collar, harness or other device shall be physically worn by the vaccinated dog or cat at all times. In the event of a loss of a vaccination tag by a dog or cat owner, the owner shall return to the vaccinating veterinarian who shall issue a new vaccination tag and vaccination certificate to the owner. The tag and certificate shall be valid for the unexpired remainder of the lost tag’s term. The issuance of said certificate shall in all other manners conform to the provisions of subsection D of this section.
J. All dogs and cats must have a current vaccination. The shape of the vaccination tag issued in any calendar year shall not be used for vaccination tags issued in the subsequent four calendar years. Dog or cat vaccinations are not transferable, and it is unlawful for any person to attach any vaccination tag to any animal other than the animal for which such tag was originally issued. It is also unlawful for any person to make use of or have in his or her possession, or under his or her control, a stolen, counterfeit or forged dog or cat vaccination tag or vaccination certificate. (Res. 11-108 § 1; Res. 05-115 (part); Res. 01-154 (part); Res. 92-396 § 2)

 

6.04.030 Rabies.

A. Whenever the Board of County Commissioners, upon recommendation of the Pueblo City-County Health Department, shall apprehend the danger of rabies in the county, it shall issue a proclamation requiring every person owning a dog, cat, or other animal to confine it securely on his or her premises unless such dog, cat, or other animal shall be leashed and shall have a muzzle of sufficient strength to prevent its biting any person or animal. Any dog running at large or cat found at-large during the pendency of such proclamation shall be seized and impounded by the Enforcement Agent/License Officer.

B. Any person having knowledge of a dog or cat bite shall immediately report the incident to the Pueblo City-County Health Department, Animal Control Officer, Pueblo County Sheriff’s Department, or Enforcement Agent/License Officer. Any dog or cat which has bitten a person shall be observed for a period of fourteen (14) days from the date of the bite. The procedure and place of observation shall be designated by the investigating officer. If the dog or cat is not confined to the owner’s premises, confinement shall be in the Pueblo Animal Shelter or at any veterinary hospital of the owner’s choice. Such confinement shall be at the expense of the owner. Stray dogs or cats whose owners cannot be located shall be confined in the Pueblo Animal Shelter. The owner of any dog or cat that has been reported as having inflicted a bite on any person shall, upon demand, produce the dog or cat for quarantine as prescribed in this section. Refusal to produce the dog or cat constitutes a violation of this section, and each day of such refusal shall constitute a separate and individual violation hereof. It is unlawful for any person to remove from any place of confinement any dog or cat which has been isolated or quarantined as authorized by this section without the prior written consent of the impounding agency. (Res. 05-115 (part); Res. 92-396 § 3)

 

6.04.040 Control of dogs.

A. It shall be unlawful for any dog to run at large without the accompaniment of the owner or person having custody of the dog, and being competent to restrain such dog, within the county of Pueblo and the Towns of Rye and Boone, except those portions of the county which are in the city limits of any incorporated municipality within Pueblo County. A dog shall be deemed to be running at large when off or away from the premises, lot or parcel of land of its owner or person having custody of the dog, and not under the control of such owner or person. A dog found running at large, and not in the control of such owner or person, shall be impounded by the Enforcement Agent/License Officer. Additionally, dogs injured on public property shall be impounded and given adequate veterinary medical treatment pending notification of the owner of the dog.
B. It shall be deemed that a dog is not under the control of its owner, and is running at large, when the dog inflicts damage or injury to the person or property of another or is harassing, chasing or attacking people, livestock (or worrying livestock as defined in Section 35-43-126, C.R.S.), or wildlife, except in the defense of the owner or person having custody of the dog, their family, or property.
C. Any unspayed female dog in the stage of estrus (heat) shall be confined during such period of time in a secure structure or enclosure of sufficient construction so as to prevent other dogs from gaining access to the confined dog; provided, however, that this subsection shall not operate to prohibit the controlled breeding of such dog with another dog if the owner of such other dog consents to the breeding of the dogs. The owner or any person having custody of any such dog who fails to confine the same as required by this section may be ordered by an Enforcement Agent/License Officer to have the dog confined in a boarding kennel, veterinary hospital, or animal shelter. All expenses of such confinement shall be the sole responsibility of the owner or any person having custody of the dog.
D. It shall be unlawful for any vicious dog to be outside of the fenced confines of the owner’s premises, lot or parcel of land, unless such dog is muzzled and upon a leash and under the immediate supervision and control of a person capable of handling such dog. It is unlawful for the owner or any person having custody of a dog to place or maintain any dog which has been trained to attack in any area for the protection of persons or property unless the dog is physically confined to a specific, limited area or is under complete and absolute physical control. Any area, premises, lot, or parcel of land upon which a guard dog is confined shall be conspicuously posted with warning signs bearing letters of not less than two inches in height, which signs shall state “WARNING: ATTACK DOG ON PREMISES.” For purposes of this subsection, “guard or attack dog” means any dog, which has been trained to attack in any area for the protection of persons or property.
E. It is unlawful for the owner or any person having custody of a dog to keep or permit upon any premises, lot or parcel of land in the unincorporated areas of Pueblo County and the Towns of Rye and Boone, any dog which by any sound, or cry, or offensive odor disturb the peace and comfort of any neighborhood, or in any other manner present a nuisance or menace to the public health or safety.
For the purposes of this section, it shall be presumed that the barking, whining, howling, baying or crying of any dog continuously for a period of time in excess of five minutes or intermittently for a period of time in excess of one hour, which is plainly audible from neighboring properties constitutes a nuisance. The presumption may be rebutted by evidence that such barking, whining, howling, baying or crying was caused, at the relevant time, by either taunting of the dog by a person or persons other than the owner, or a person in control of the dog, injury to the dog, trespass upon the premises where the dog is kept, or other such evidence.
F. The control provisions of this chapter shall not apply to dogs while actually working livestock, locating or retrieving wild game in season for a licensed hunter, or assisting law enforcement officers, or while actually being trained for any of these pursuits under the direct control of a human being. (Res. 05-115 (part); Res. 01-154 (part); Res. 92-396 § 4)
 

6.04.050 Administration.

A. Those individuals defined as "enforcement agents/license officers" in Section 6.04.040 shall have the nonexclusive authority to enforce the provisions of this chapter, and within the meaning of Section 30-15-102(3), C.R.S., as amended, shall be considered County Animal Control Officers. Whenever a County Animal Control Officer has probable cause to believe that a violation of Section 30-15-102(2), C.R.S., has been committed or has personal knowledge of any other violation of Section 30-15-101, et seq., C.R.S., or of this chapter, he or she may issue a citation or summons and complaint to the violator, stating the nature of the violation with sufficient particularity to give notice of the charge to the violator.

B. An animal shelter shall be provided for the purpose of boarding and caring for any dog or cat impounded under this chapter and such shelter shall be constructed to facilitate cleaning and sanitizing and shall provide fenced runs and adequate heating, food and water supply.
 

C. It shall be the duty of any Enforcement Agent/License Officer to seize and impound in the Pueblo Animal Shelter any and all dogs found running at large without the accompaniment of the owner or any other person having direct control of the dog within the unincorporated area of Pueblo County, Colorado, including the Towns of Rye and Boone. If any dog is found running at large or off the premises, lot or parcel of land of the owner or any person having custody of the dog in violation of this chapter, or when any such dog is followed back to the premises, lot or parcel of land, it may be taken up and impounded and/or the owner or person having custody of the dog may be fined as provided herein. Those persons who have the authority to enforce the provisions of this chapter may pursue any dog running at large across private property without liability for trespassing.
D. As soon as is practical after the impoundment of any dog or cat, notice of the impoundment shall be posted in a conspicuous place at the animal shelter for five (5) consecutive days. If the owner or person having custody of the impounded dog or cat can be determined by examination of vaccination tags or from other identifying tags or markings, immediate notice shall be given to said owner or person. Any impounded dog or cat may be redeemed by the owner or person having custody thereof upon payment of the impound fee, care and feeding charges, veterinary charges, if any, and such other charges as are periodically set by the City of Pueblo or designated Shelter Operator. If the dog or cat has not been vaccinated for rabies and is required by the provisions of this chapter to be so vaccinated, the owner or person having custody of the dog or cat shall not be given custody of the dog or cat until steps are taken to so vaccinate the dog or cat. The following redemption amounts shall be charged:

1. For impounding any animal, thirty dollars ($30.00) for the 1st offense, forty dollars ($40.00) for the 2nd offense, and sixty dollars ($60.00) for the 3rd offense and any subsequent offenses in any twelve month period.
2. In addition, for the care and feeding of any dog or cat, ten dollars ($10) per day and for any dog or cat quarantined at the shelter, the care and feeding shall be fifteen dollars ($15) per day.  

If a dog or cat is not redeemed within five (5) days after the receipt of notice by the owner or within five (5) days after impoundment if the owner cannot be determined, the dog or cat shall be deemed abandoned and may at once be put up for adoption in accordance with the normal procedures of the Pueblo Animal Shelter. Upon adoption and payment of any adoption fee, and execution by the purchaser of a written promise to have the animal spayed or neutered, the animal shall be released to the purchaser and the purchaser shall be provided with a spay/neuter certificate which shall state the name of the purchaser, the date of purchase and a description of the animal. Any dog or cat which has not been redeemed or adopted within a reasonable time, or any dog or cat which is ill or in pain as determined by the director of the Pueblo Animal Shelter, may be humanely destroyed under the direction of the director of the Pueblo Animal Shelter, and removed and buried or cremated; provided, that no dog or cat shall be put up for adoption or destroyed until the owner has been notified either orally or in writing, if the whereabouts of such owner are known or can be ascertained from a license tag or other identification found on the dog or cat. Any humane destruction of a dog or cat based upon its infection with rabies or other infectious or contagious disease shall be done only upon the recommendation of a licensed veterinarian.
E. Nothing contained in this chapter shall be construed so as to hold the City of Pueblo or County of Pueblo, Colorado, their officers, agents or employees, or any other person authorized to enforce the provisions of this chapter responsible for any damage to persons or property, or for any accident or subsequent disease that may occur to a dog or cat in connection with the administration and enforcement of this chapter.
F. No person shall interfere with or hinder the Board of County Commissioners or its authorized representatives in the discharge of their duties as herein prescribed. Any such interference shall constitute a violation of this chapter, and any person violating this chapter will be subject to the penalties set forth herein.  (Res. 11-48 (part) Res. 05-115 (part); Res. 01-154(part); Res. 04-147; Res. 92-396 § 5)
 

6.04.060 Violations--Penalties.

A. Any person who violates any provision of this chapter not involving bodily injury to any person shall be guilty of a Class 2 petty offense and, upon conviction, shall be punished by a fine of not more than three hundred dollars ($300.00), or by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than ninety (90) days, or by both such fine and imprisonment for each separate offense.
B. The Board of County Commissioners of Pueblo County, Colorado, adopts the penalty assessment procedure set forth in Section 16-2-201, C.R.S., as amended, and any Enforcement Agent/License Officer enforcing the provisions of this chapter may follow the penalty assessment procedure for any violation of this chapter constituting a Class 2 petty offense. The following shall be the schedule of fines imposed for violations of the provisions of this chapter constituting a Class 2 petty offense:
First offense, twenty-five dollars ($25.00);
Second offense, fifty dollars ($50.00);
Third offense, one hundred dollars ($100.00);
Fourth offense, two hundred dollars ($200.00);
Five or more offenses, three hundred dollars ($300.00) each.
C. Any person who violates any provision of this chapter involving bodily injury to any person by a dog shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished as provided in Section 18-1-106, C.R.S., for each separate offense as is provided below:
Minimum sentence, three months imprisonment or two hundred fifty dollar ($250.00) fine, or both.
Maximum sentence, twelve (12) months imprisonment or one thousand dollar ($1,000.00) fine, or both.

D. All fines and forfeitures connected with any violation of this chapter, and all moneys collected by or on behalf of Pueblo County for licenses or otherwise shall be paid over to the Pueblo County Treasurer immediately upon the receipt thereof by the individual or entity receiving such moneys. Upon receipt of such moneys, the Pueblo County Treasurer shall deposit the same into the County General Fund. (Res. 92-396 § 6)

6.04.070 Licenses.

 

A. It shall be unlawful and a violation under Section 6.04.060 of this Chapter 6.04 for any person to own, keep, or harbor a dog or cat over the age of six (6) months within Pueblo County without obtaining a license for such dog or cat.

B. This Section shall not apply to dogs or cats;

    1. Temporarily within Pueblo County for not more than thirty (30) days;
    2. Located in licensed pet shops or at licensed dog racing facilities; or
    3. Held for redemption or sale by a licensed animal shelter. (Res. 09-141)
 

6.04.080 License application; issuance.

 

A. Applications for licenses shall be made on forms furnished by the License Officer.

B. Upon presentation of an application together with a copy of the vaccination certificate or the Exemption from Rabies Vaccination Form issued for the dog or cat, pursuant to Section 6.04.020, to the License Officer, or a veterinarian or licensed animal shelter, designated in writing by the License Officer, and payment of the appropriate license fee, a license receipt for the dog or cat and tag bearing a number corresponding to that of the receipt shall be issued. If an application is made to license a spayed/neutered dog or cat, the applicant shall, in addition, furnish satisfactory evidence that the dog or cat had been spayed/neutered, which evidence may consist of a certificate signed by a veterinarian or an affidavit of the owner that the dog or cat has been spayed/neutered. Without such evidence, the license issued and fee paid shall be for a dog or cat which has not been spayed/neutered.

C. The person issuing the license shall complete a license receipt on forms furnished by the License Officer, file the original with the License Officer, and deliver a copy to the owner.

D. Licenses may be renewed upon payment of the necessary fees and presentation of a current vaccination certificate issued pursuant to Section 6.04.020. If a license is not renewed within sixty (60) days after the license expires, a completed application for a new license must be made pursuant to subsection B. above.

E. Applications for licenses may be made in person, by mail, or electronically, if available.

F. Licenses and tags are not transferable. (Res. 11-108 § 2; Res. 09-141)
 

6.04.090 Licenses; expiration; fees.

 

A. Licenses and tags may be issued and be valid for one (1) year or three (3) years from the date of issuance.

B. The license fee for one (1) year shall be twenty-five dollars ($25.00) for each dog or cat which has not been spayed/neutered or twelve dollars ($12.00) for each dog or cat which has been spayed/neutered.

C. The license fee for three (3) years shall be sixty-five dollars ($65.00) for each dog or cat which has not been spayed/neutered or thirty-three dollars ($33.00) for each dog or cat which has been spayed/neutered.

D. License fees shall not be prorated or refunded.

E. If a license tag or license receipt issued in accordance with this Section is lost or destroyed, a duplicate tag or receipt may be reissued for the payment of five dollars ($5.00).

F. Veterinarians issuing a license under this Section shall retain one dollar ($1.00) for each one-year license issued and three dollars ($3.00) for each three-year license issued, and shall surrender the balance of all license fees collected as the License Officer may direct.

G. No license fee shall be required for:

    1. Guide dogs for the blind or deaf;
    2. Service dogs used by the handicapped; or
    3. Law enforcement service and rescue dogs.

H. The Board of County Commissioners may by resolution increase or decrease the license fees and other fees authorized by this Section.

I. All license fees and other fees shall be paid to and collected by the License Officer. The License Officer shall hold such fees in trust for the use and benefit of Pueblo County and pay and disburse such fees as directed in writing by the Board of County Commissioners. (Res. 11-48 (part) Res. 09-141)

 

6.04.100 License tags.

A. It shall be unlawful and a violation under Section 6.04.060 of this Chapter 6.04 for owner of a dog over the age of six (6) months or older to fail to cause the license tag to be attached to the collar, harness, or other device worn by the licensed dog and to thereafter maintain the license tag upon such dog. If any dog is found not wearing a collar with the license tag attached, the owner of the dog shall be deemed in violation of this Section.

B. It shall not be required of the owner of any cat to affix the license tag to the licensed cat; however, it shall be unlawful and a violation under Section 6.04.060 of this Chapter 6.04 for the owner of a cat to fail or refuse to exhibit the tag issued for the cat and his or her copy of the license receipt upon demand of any person enforcing this Section. (Res. 09-141)

6.04.110 Sale in Public Places.

A. No person shall display any dog or cat for the purpose of selling or giving the dog or cat away:

    1. On any street, highway, alley sidewalk, public place or park; or
    2. In an open area where the public is invited by the owner or person controlling such

        area, including, but not limited to, areas exterior to shops or businesses, carnivals, and

        flea markets.

B. Subsection A.2. above shall not be applicable to the display of any dog or cat for adoption by the Shelter Operator or by a tax-exempt nonprofit organization whose propose is to protect dogs and cats, including the humane treatment and disposition of dogs and cats; provided, however, that such organization:

    1. Holds a current license issued un the Colorado Pet Animal Care and Facilities Act for a

        pet animal facility located in Pueblo County, Colorado.
    2. Does not engage in the business of breeding or raising dogs or cats; and
    3. Does not coax or cajole any person to adopt a dog or cat.

C. It shall be unlawful and a violation under Section 6.04.060 for any person to violate any provision of the Section. (Res. 09-141)
 

6.04.120 Impoundment of stray cats.

In addition to the authority granted elsewhere in this Chapter, any enforcement agents/license officers shall have authority to trap or apprehend, and to impound, any cat found at large or off of its owner’s property if the enforcement agent/license officer has cause to believe that one (1) or more cats in an area are presenting, or may contribute to creation of, a public nuisance. (Res. 09-141)

6.04.130 Exemption.

The requirements of Sections 6.04.070 through 6.04.075 shall not apply to persons engaged in farming or ranching operations on parcels of land of five acres or more. (Res. 09-141)