§16- 25. Animal Abandonment
Unless otherwise specified by this Ordinance, animals, including domestic and livestock, that have been abandoned
by their owner shall become the property of the County. For the purpose of this Ordinance, an abandoned animal
shall be defined as an animal that is on public property or is reported on private property by the property owner
whose owner is unknown and cannot be determined by a reasonable search by Enforcement Officers.
Adoption and Euthanasia. Animals that have been abandoned shall be held by the Animal Services
Department for 72 hours unless otherwise specified by this Ordinance. After 72 hours, Animal
Services may adopt out or humanely destroy any abandoned animal.
Redemption. Any person claiming to be the owner of an animal must pay the reclaim fee, boarding
fee, any veterinary costs and any other costs incurred by the County for the animal prior to the
animal being released. Redemption is defined as reclaim for lost, abandoned animals, or animals
that have violated the Animal Ordinance and shall not include animals held under quarantine. In
the case of cats and dogs, no animal shall be released without being micro chipped. In the case of
livestock, Animal Services may require some proof from the person of ownership of this animal
prior to its release.
Owner Search. Enforcement Officers shall conduct a reasonable search for the owner of the
abandoned animal which may include but is not limited to a microchip scan, an investigation of
the neighborhood, information supplied on the Animal Services website, or notices on local media
Willful Abandonment. Any person found to be willfully releasing animals into the community,
including but not limited to leaving animals by the side of the road, releasing animals into parks or
leaving animals in parking lots shall be guilty of a misdemeanor as defined elsewhere in this
Ordinance and may incur civil and criminal penalties. People may lawfully relinquish animals to
the Animal Services Center without penalty.