Dickinson County Courthouse, 1802 Hill Ave, PO Box 214, Spirit Lake, IA 51360

Dickinson County Animal Ordinance




SECTION I. The Code of Ordinances of Dickinson County, Iowa, is hereby amended by including an additional Chapter, entitles “Animal Protection and Control”.

SECTION II.  PURPOSE. The purpose of this Ordinance is to establish policies and regulations governing the control of domesticated animals and protection of the public thereby.

SECTION III.  DEFINITIONS. The following terms are defined for use in this Chapter:

  1. “Animal” means a non-human vertebrate.
  2. “At large” means off the premises of the owner and not under the control of a competent person, restrained within a motor vehicle, or housed in a veterinary hospital or kennel.
  3. “Owner” means any person owning, keeping, sheltering or harboring an animal.
  4. “Restraint” means that any dog or cat shall be deemed to be under restraint if on the premises of its owner, or if accompanied by a responsible person and under that person’s control.

SECTION IV:  AT LARGE PROHIBITED. It is unlawful for any owner to allow an animal to run at large within all zoning districts in Dickinson County, except Agricultural (A-1).

SECTION V.  PRESUMPTION OF OWNERSHIP. In the event any animal is found running at large or not under restraint, it shall be presumed that the owner or harborer of said animal has permitted said animal to run at large and consented thereto and the burden of proof shall be upon said owner or harborer to prove otherwise.

SECTION VI:  DAMAGE OR INTERFERENCE. It shall be unlawful for the owner of an animal to allow or permit such animal to pass upon the premises of another thereby causing damage to, or interference with, the premises.

SECTION VII.  ANNOYANCE OR DISTURBANCE. It is unlawful for the owner of a dog to allow or permit such dog to cause annoyance or disturbance to any person or persons by frequent and habitual howling, yelping, barking, or otherwise; or, by running after or chasing persons, bicycles, automobiles or other vehicles.

SECTION VIII.  VICIOUS DOGS. It shall be unlawful for any person to harbor or keep a vicious dog within Dickinson County.  A dog is deemed to be vicious when it has attacked or bitten any person without provocation, or when propensity to attack or bite a person exists and is known or ought reasonably to be known to the owner.

SECTION IX.  AT LARGE:  IMPOUNDMENT. Animals found at large in violation of this chapter shall be seized and impounded, or at the discretion of the peace office, the owner may be served a summons to appear before a proper court to answer charges made there under.  Impoundment may be in any animal shelter designated by the Dickinson County Board of Supervisors.  In the event no such designation is made, the designated animal shelter shall be the Humane Society of Northwest Iowa.

SECTION X.  DISPOSITION OF ANIMALS. When an animal has been impounded, written notice shall be given to the owner, if known, within two days (48 hours).  Impounded animals may be recovered by the owner upon payment of impounding costs, and if an unvaccinated animal, by having it immediately vaccinated.  If the owner does not redeem the animal within seven days of the date of notice, or if the owner cannot be located within seven days, the animal may be humanely destroyed or otherwise disposed of in accordance with law.

SECTION XI.  IMPOUNDING COSTS. Impounding costs are charged directly to the owners by the Humane Society, or by such other animal shelter as may be designated by the Dickinson County Board of Supervisors.

SECTION XII.  SEVERABILITY. If any section, provision, or part of this Ordinance shall be adjudged invalid or unconstitutional, such adjudication shall not affect the validity of the Ordinance as a whole or any section, provision, or part thereof not adjudged invalid or unconstitutional

SECTION XIII.  EFFECTIVE DATE. This Ordinance shall be effective after its final passage, approval and publication as required by law.

David Gottsche, Chair, Dickinson County Board of Supervisors

Nancy Reiman, Dickinson County Auditor

Published in Dickinson County News on August 9, 2006.