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Ordinance Amending City Code Chapter 14

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During the November 13, 2019 City Council Meeting, Council unanimously approved a request to adopt an ordinance amending City Code Chapter 14 to add new definitions of “Adequate Food, Water, and Shelter;” “Necessary Veterinary Care;” and “Sanitary Conditions;” and creating the Class C misdemeanor offense of “Animal Neglect,” which holds persons in control of animals responsible for providing conditions to ensure proper animal care.

New definitions: 

Adequate Food means a sufficient quantity of non-contaminated and nutritionally healthy
sustenance that is appropriate to the species, breed, size, age, and health of the animal, or at the
direction of a licensed veterinarian, which is sufficient to prevent starvation, malnutrition, or risk
to the animal's health. Garbage, spoiled, rancid, or contaminated food is not adequate food.

Adequate Shelter means a protective covering for an animal that is of adequate size and
provides adequate protection to maintain the animal in a state of good health, and that prevents
pain, suffering, or significant risk to the animal's health. Adequate shelter shall consist of a
completely enclosed structure with at least three solid sides with a door opening on the fourth
side, a constructed floor, and a roof. It should also be clean, dry, and compatible with current
weather conditions, in addition to age, size, species, breed, and condition of the animal. The
structure should be of sufficient size to allow the animal to stand, turn around, lie down, and go
in and out of the structure comfortably.

Adequate Water means clear, drinkable water in adequate supply. Examples of inadequate
water include, but are not limited to: snow, ice, and rancid/contaminated water.

Necessary Veterinary Care means veterinary medical attention appropriate to the
circumstances, whenever an animal is known or suspected to have suffered an injury, accidental
or deliberate, or exhibits signs of disease process such as shock, temperature fluctuation, tremors,
swelling, broken bones, open wounds, inability to eat or drink, blistering, irregular or abnormal
breathing, partial or total paralysis, abnormal discharge or bleeding, mange, or other signs of
health problems.

Sanitary Conditions means an animal living space, shelter, or exercise area that is not
contaminated by health hazards, irritants, pollutants, items, or conditions that endanger or pose a
risk to an animal's health.

Animal Neglect
a. Any Animal or Livestock Owner who fails to provide Adequate Water, Adequate Food,
Adequate Shelter, Sanitary Conditions, or Necessary Veterinary Care shall be deemed in
violation of this section.
b. Any animal control officer or other officer empowered to act by law may, at the officer’s sole
discretion, impound any animal found to neglected, as defined by this section.
c. Violations of this section may result in the filing of Class C misdemeanor criminal Animal
Neglect citations; written warnings; or filing higher level criminal offenses with the District
Attorney’s office.

Read the full amendment of Ordinance No. O-2019-98