The Wall Lake City Council has approved an update of their vicious animal ordinance to bring it more in line with other communities in the state. Under the previous code, wild or venomous animals were generally prohibited within city limits, but it also barred residents from owning specific breeds of canine, including pit bulls, certain terriers and other similar varieties. The new language, which was approved at Monday’s meeting, removes the breed-specific section in the code and updates the definition of a vicious dog to be an animal that has a history of unprovoked attacks or has been trained for dog fighting or other violent responses. The ordinance’s second reading passed unanimously with the third reading waived by the council. It will go into effect once published, which is scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 24. The full ordinance language can be found included below.
ORDINANCE NO. 2020-06
AN ORDINANCE CHANGING THE DANGEROUS AND VICIOUS ANIMAL REGULATIONS AND AMENDING
THE 2020 CITY OF WALL LAKE CODE OF ORDINANCES
BE IT ENACTED by the City Council of the City of Wall Lake, Iowa:
SECTION 1. SECTIONS MODIFIED. The 2020 City of Wall Lake Code of Ordinances is amended by changing Section 4-1-6 entitled “DANGEROUS ANIMALS”, and 4-1-7 entitled “KEEPING A VICIOUS ANIMAL” respectively, to reflect new regulations in Wall Lake, which shall become effective immediately following publication. The Section is modified to hereafter read as follows:
4-1-6 DANGEROUS ANIMALS.
- Dangerous Animals Prohibited. No person shall keep, shelter, or harbor for any purpose within the City limits, a dangerous animal.
- A dangerous animal is:
- Any animal which is not naturally tame or gentle, and which is of a wild nature or disposition, and which is capable of killing, inflicting serious injury upon, or causing disease among human beings or domestic animals, and having known tendencies as a species to do so.
- The following are animals which shall be deemed to be dangerous animals per se:
- Lions, tigers, jaguars, leopards, cougars, lynx, and bobcats;
- Wolves, coyotes, and foxes;
- Badgers, wolverines, weasels, skunks, and mink;
- Monkeys, chimpanzees, and apes;
- Alligators and crocodiles;
- Scorpions and Gila monsters;
- Snakes that are venomous or constrictors;
- Pit bulls meaning any dog that is an American Pit Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, or any dog displaying the majority of physical traits of any one or more of the above breeds (more so than any other breed), or any dog exhibiting those distinguishing characteristics which substantially conform to the standards established by the American Kennel Club or United Kennel Club for any of the above breeds.
- Any domestic animals that has proven itself to be a dangerous or vicious animal by a history of attacking or biting human beings or other animals.
- Any cross breed of such animals which have similar characteristics of the animals specified above.
- Any animals declared to be dangerous by the City Council.
- Dangerous Animals Exceptions. The keeping of dangerous animals shall not be prohibited in the following circumstances:
- The keeping of dangerous animals in a public zoo, bona fide educational or medical institution, humane society, or museum where they are kept as live specimens for the public to view, or for the purpose of instruction, research or study, and has obtained the written approval of the City Council.
4-1-7 KEEPING A VICIOUS ANIMAL.
- It shall be unlawful for any person or person to harbor or keep a vicious animal within the City. A vicious animal is deemed so when it shall have attacked or bitten any person without provocation, or when the propensity to attack or bite persons or other animals shall exist and such propensity is known or ought reasonable be known to the owner thereof.
- Definitions: A vicious animal is:
- Any animals which has attacked a human being or domestic animal without provocation while at large;
- Any animals with a history to cause injury or to otherwise endanger the safety of human beings or domestic animals while at large;
- Any animal that has been trained for dog fighting, animals fighting or animal baiting or is owned or kept for such purposes;
- Any animals trained to attack human beings, upon command or spontaneously in response to human activities, except dogs owned by and under the control of the Police Department, a law enforcement agency in the State of Iowa or of the United States or a branch of the armed forces of the United States.
SECTION 2. SEVERABILITY CLAUSE. 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 3. WHEN EFFECTIVE. This ordinance shall be in effect from and after its final passage, approval, and publication as provided by law.
PASSED BY THE WALL LAKE CITY COUNCIL.
November 23, 2020
Date: Introduction & First Reading
December 14, 2020
Date: Second Reading
Waived Date: Third & Final Reading Mayor Steven Druivenga
ATTEST: City Clerk Chris Rodman
December 24, 2020
Date of Publication