Lubbock CODE OF ORDINANCES - Chapter 4 - Animals



Section 4-22. Possession of dangerous animals.

(a) No person shall knowingly sell, offer for sale, breed, possess, buy, or attempt to buy a dangerous animal within the City of Lubbock, unless such animal has been permitted pursuant to this chapter.

(b) No person shall knowingly own, harbor, sell or offer for sale any animal which is to be used for the purpose of fighting, or to be trained, tormented, badgered or baited for the purpose of causing or encouraging said animal to attack human beings or domestic animals when not provoked, except this section shall not apply to guard dogs.

Section 4-23. Complaint about dangerous animal.

(a) Upon receipt of a written complaint by any person charging that a particular animal is a dangerous animal, the public health administrator or his designee shall conduct a hearing to determine whether such animal is dangerous unless the matter is resolved by agreement of all parties prior to such hearing.  Such written complaints shall contain at least the following information:

  1. Name, address and telephone number of complainants and witnesses;
  2. A brief descriptin of the incident or incidents which cause the complainant to believe such animal is a dangerous animal, including date, time and location;
  3. A description of the animal and the name, address and telephone number of the owner of the animal, if known; and
  4. Any other facts that the complainant believes to be important.

(b) Such hearing to determine if an animal is a dangerous animal shall be conducted within twenty (20) days after receipt of the complaint or seizure of the animal, whichever occurs later.  Such animal may be seized pursuant to such complaint and impounded at the owner's expense in the event that the animal has caused injury to a person requiring medical treatment.  An animal causing such injury may be held pending the outcome of the hearing and determination of whether such animal is a dangerous animal.

(c) Notice of such hearings shall be provided by the public health administrator to the owner of the animal by certified mail, return receipt requested, and to the complainant by regular mail.  At such hearing all parties shall be given opportunity to present evidence on the issue of whether such animal is dangerous.

(d) Upon conclusion of a hearing to determine if an animal is a dangerous animal, the public health administrator may find that the animal is not dangerous, in which case it shall be promptly returned to the owner if it is in custody, or the public health administrator may find that the animal is a dangerous animal and may order that the owner comply with one or more of the following  requirements:

  1. Removal of the dangerous animal from [within] the city limits;
  2. Humane destruction of a dangerous animal at the owner's expense; or
  3. Spaying or neutering of a dangerous animal at the owner's expense;
  4. Registration and compliance with all requirements of this article, including obtaining liability insurance coverage or showing financial responsibility in an amount of at least one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000.00) to cover damages resulting from an attack by the dangerous animal causing bodily injury to a person or for damages to any person's property resulting from the keeping of such dangerous animal.  A certificate of insurance or other evidence of meeting the above requirements shall be filed with the City of Lubbock Animal Control facility before said dangerous animal shall be returned to the owner if it is being held by the City of Lubbock or a veterinarian.

(e) All owners of dangerous animals required to be registered with the City of Lubbock shall provide the name and address of the owner; the breed, age, sex, color and any other identifying marks of the animal; the location where the animal is to be kept if it is not at the address of the owner; two (2) color photographs of the dangerous animal; and the aforementioned certificate of liability insurance.

(f) The owners of permitted dangerous animals shall not allow the animal to go outside of its cage, pen or enclosure unless the animal is under physical restraint.  No person shall permit a dangerous animal to be kept outside of its cage, pen or enclosure on a chain, rope or other type of leash unless a person is in physical control of the chain, rope or leash.  Dangerous animals shall not be leased to inanimate objects, such as trees, posts, buildings, etc.  All dangerous animals outside their cage, pen or enclosure must be securely muzzled to prevent the animal from biting other animals or human beings.  A sign giving notice of a dangerous animal on the premises shall be prominently displayed by the owner of a dangerous animal at both front and rear property entrances.

(g) The cage, pen or enclosure for a dangerous animal must have secure sides; a secure top attached to the sides; and a secure bottom which is either attached to the sides of the structure must be embedded in the ground no less than two (2) feet.

(h) In the event that any owner of an animal declared to be dangerous violates any order of the public health administrator, the animal may be immediately seized and impounded by the public health administrator.  In addition, the animal shall be seized immediately if the animal bites, injures or attacks a human being or another animal.  Any animal already declared to be dangerous which is seized for causing injury to a human being or another animal may be ordered removed from the city or humanely destroyed and may not continue to be a registered dangerous animal.

(i) No animal shall be declared a dangerous animal if the threat, injury or damage caused by the animal was the result of a willful trespass upon another's property, or the person injured was tormenting, abusing or assaulting the animal or its owner, or was committing or attempting to commit a crime at the time of injury.

(j) Orders of the public health administrator pertaining to dangerous animals may be appealed to the City of Lubbock Permit and License Appeal Board by filing a written notice of appeal within five (5) days with the city manager's office.  During the pendency of such appeal, the order of the public shall be suspended, provided that the owner shall [take] the animal to the Animal Control Facility or to a veterinarian for observation.  Decisions of the permit and license appeal board shall be final.


(Ord. No. 9485, 1, 11-14-91)