Ordinance 3: Nuisance Animals

Be it ordained by the Council of the Town of Townsend, State of Delaware, In Council Met:


It shall be unlawful for the owner, custodian or possessor of any farm, or domestic animal to permit such animal to run at large within the limits of the Town.


It shall be unlawful for any owner, custodian, or possessor of any farm, or domestic animal to permit such animal to create a public disturbance by frequent, habitual or continual noise after the said owner, custodian, or possessor has been notified that the noise is creating a public disturbance.


Definition of terms as used in this Ordinance unless the context otherwise indicates:

  • A.) “Dog” Shall mean either male or female:
  • B.) “Owner” Shall mean any person or persons, firm, association or corporation owning, keeping, or harboring a dog;
  • C.) “At Large” Shall mean off the premises of the owner and not under the control of a human being either by leash, cord, chain, rope or otherwise.


Appointment of dogcatchers: impounding dogs:
The President of the Council, of the Town of Townsend, may authorize such persons as he designates to act as dogcatchers. It shall be the duty of every Police Officer and dogcatcher to apprehend any dog found running at large, contrary to the provisions of Section II, and to impound such dog in the Town pound or other suitable place. The police officer or dogcatcher who impounds a dog shall make a record of the breed, color, and sex of such dog, and of its license tag, if any. Compilations of the records of all such dogs caught and impounded shall be maintained for public inspection.

Notice to owner and redemption:
Not more than twenty-four (24) hours after the impounding of any dog the owner thereof, is known or ascertainable from the State License records, shall be notified, if such owner shall be found within the Town of Townsend, and notice of the impounding of such dog describing the dog and the place and time of taking shall be posted for public inspection. The owner of any dog so impounded may reclaim such dog upon payment of the fine and costs imposed for such violation of this Ordinance, and a charge of one ($1.00) per day for keeping and maintaining said dog.

Deposition of unclaimed or infected dogs:
All dogs so impounded shall be kept for a period of six (6) days. If at the expiration of six (6) days from the date of notice to the owner, or posting of notice, such dog shall not have redeemed, it may be destroyed. Any dog which appears to be suffering from rabies or affected with hydrophobia, mange or other infectious disease shall not be released, but may be forthwith destroyed.


Any person who violates any part of this Ordinance shall, for each such offense be punished by a fine of not less than ten dollars ($10.00), nor more than fifty dollars ($50.00) nor more than one hundred dollars ($100.00), or imprisonment for not more than ten (10) days

First Reading: June 13, 1980 Second Reading: July 11, 1978 Third Reading: August 8, 1978 Passed by Town Council: September 17, 1985 Signed by Town Council President: Carlene U. Foraker

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