Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Heather's Corner: Picking Up The Poop Is The Law

Did you know it's actually against the law to not pick up after your pet?

Under Oro Valley's Town Code, it is a civil infraction for the "owner or person having custody of any dog to fail to immediately remove and dispose of, in a sanitary manner, any solid waste deposited by such dog on public property and/or on any private property without the consent of the person in control of the property." I share this with you as a dutiful pet owner myself who frequents our local parks and trails and is witness to what I once thought just pet owner laziness. Surprisingly it is actually a violation of the law.

So your pet went poop in a public place and you don't feel like picking it up. What's the big deal? The big deal for your first infraction is a fine for no less than $25.00. Let it happen again in a twelve month period and you'll receive a fine for no less than $100.00. Third time? A hefty fine at $200.00 not to exceed $250.00. But here's the kicker: "Any person violating the provisions of this article shall be guilty of a separate offense for each day or portion of a day during which any violation of this article is committed and/or permitted." That means you will be violating and fined separately for each day you leave Fido's waste unattended.

There are other laws regarding your pets as well. It is "unlawful to bring a dog onto the grounds of any school, regardless of whether the dog is restrained by a leash, chain, rope, cord or similar device." That said, any dog in public places such as streets, sidewalks, and parks should "restrained by a leash, chain, rope, cord or similar device." If you own a dog within Oro Valley it must be licensed and vaccinated in accordance with the Pima County Animal Control Code and licensed dogs are required to wear a collar with the license tag affixed. Violations to the above fall under the same fines as previously stated.

It seems much more cost effective to follow the animal control laws and to just scoop that poop when you're out with your pet. A full list of the towns laws for pet owners and animal control including feeding wildlife, vicious or dangerous animals, and procedures can be found on the Oro a Valley Town Code.

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