Q: What are the laws about barking dogs and them coming on to your property and leaving a mess? Is there a law against people letting their dogs pee on light poles, garbage cans, buildings or sidewalks downtown? And, is there anything wrong with tossing a tied bag of dog waste into a residential trash bin while you're out for your walk?
A: Recently, I received three questions all related to dogs, which I believe fit well together for a combined response.
First, it is unlawful for the owner of any dog and cat to permit such animal to run at large. Any dog or cat shall be deemed to be running at large with the permission of the owner unless it is on a durable leash or chain secured to an object which it cannot move and on the premises of the owner, or on such leash or chain and under the control of an accompanying person of suitable age and discretion, or confined within a motor vehicle, or confined within a building, fence (electronic wireless fences are not allowed) or other enclosure of construction sufficient to prevent the dog or cat from escaping. In the case of a pet defecating on private property of another, the owner/handler must immediately remove the excrement and dispose of it in a sanitary manner.
Secondly, it is illegal for the owner of a pet to fail to keep a dog from barking, howling or whining, or cat from emitting loud or unusual noises for a continuous period of more than five minutes with less than one minute of interruption.
Third, there is no city code against a dog urinating on light poles, building exterior, garbage cans or sidewalks.
Fourth, pet owners/walkers shall not cause or permit a dog, cat, or other animal to defecate upon public property, without immediately removing the excrement and disposing of it in a sanitary manner. An owner/handler must have in their possession the necessary equipment and supplies for excrement removal when pets defecate on public property or the private property of another. Proper disposal would be placement in a public trash receptacle, located in public areas – downtowns and parks -- or carrying the waste home to deposit in your solid waste receptacle. It is illegal to use another person’s solid waste storage container for disposal of refuse without the consent of that person.
1. City of Red Wing, City Code, Chapter 10, Public Protection Crimes and Offenses, located online at http://lf.ci.red-wing.mn.us/weblink/0/doc/159293/Page1.aspx
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