Chapter 8.04


8.04.010    Definition of terms.

8.04.020    Charges, fees and penalties.


For the purposes of this title, unless it is apparent from the context that a different meaning is intended, certain terms used herein are as follows:

(a)    “Animal” shall mean any mammal, bird, reptile, fish or other vertebrate creature, domestic or wild.

(b)    “Animal at large” shall mean:

(1)    While on the owner’s premises, or while on the premises of a third party with the permission of that party, any animal which is not confined to the premises by a leash, tether, adequate fence or other physical control or constraint or which is not under the immediate custody and control of its owner. The phrase “immediate custody and control” shall be construed narrowly. Any dog which is not within both sight and range of verbal command of its owner while on the owner’s premises shall be presumed to be outside of the immediate custody and control of its owner and shall be presumed to be “at large.”

(2)    While off the owner’s premises, any animal: (i) not restrained by a leash, tether or other physical control not exceeding six feet in length; and (ii) not under the physical control of a person, shall be presumed to be “at large.”

(c)    “Animal control officer” shall mean the poundmaster, deputy poundmaster, State Humane Officer and such deputies as they may appoint to carry out their duties.

(d)    “Animal exhibitions” shall mean to present any animal for public view for the purpose of entertainment, sale or competition and includes but is not limited to rodeos, circuses, zoos and animal auctions.

(e)    “Bucking strap” or “flank strap” shall mean any device, strap or object generally made of leather and sometimes padded with a woolen lining which is placed around the flank regions of a horse or bull, behind the rib cage and just forward of the hind legs, and which is tightened immediately before the animal is scheduled to perform.

(f)    “Cat” shall mean any member of Felis domesticus and shall be considered personal property.

(g)    “Director” shall mean the executive director of the Santa Cruz County animal services authority (“ASA”) or such other officer as the city council shall appoint to administer this chapter.

(h)    “Dog” shall mean any member of the Canis familiaris and other Canis species including but not limited to wolf-dog or coyote-dog crosses.

(i)    “Impounded” shall mean having been received into the custody of the animal shelter, any authorized agent or representative thereof or any duly sworn law enforcement officer in the course of his/her duty.

(j)    “Leash” shall mean a device specifically manufactured, sold, designed and intended to lead or restrain animals that takes the form of a line or cord composed of leather, rope or similar strong and durable material with a clip that attaches to the animal’s collar.

(k)    “Livestock” shall mean animals kept for husbandry including but not limited to horses, mules, burros, asses, cattle, sheep, swine and poultry.

(l)    “Owner” shall mean any person, firm or corporation owning, having an interest in or having control, custody or possession of any animal.

(m)    “Person” shall mean any natural person, association, partnership or corporation.

(n)    “Pet shop” shall mean any store, department of any store or any place of business where dogs, cats, monkeys, birds, reptiles or any other animals are kept for hire or sale.

(o)    “Poundmaster” shall mean an independent contractor, including the Santa Cruz County animal services authority, or employee of the city having custody of the animal shelter and animals therein.

(p)    “Sexually unreproductive” shall mean being incapable of reproduction by reason of age or physical condition or incapable by reason of being subjected to a medical procedure to be rendered unproductive and certified by a licensed veterinarian as such.

(q)    Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (“SPCA”). All references in this title to the “Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals” or “SPCA” shall be superseded and replaced by “Santa Cruz County animal services authority” or “ASA.”

(r)    “Unlicensed dog” shall mean any dog for which a current license fee has not been paid or to which the tag provided for in this chapter is not attached.

(s)    “Vicious animal” shall mean any animal, except a dog assisting a peace officer engaged in law enforcement duties, which bites any human being or any domestic animal or which demonstrates menacing behavior toward human beings or domestic animals but does not include an animal which bites, attacks or menaces a trespasser on the property of its owner or harms or menaces anyone who has tormented, tortured, or exhibited cruelty to such animal as such terms are defined in Section 599(b) of the California Penal Code.

(Ord. 2011-08 § 1, 2011: Ord. 88-63 § 1, 1988: Ord. 85-61 § 1, 1985: Ord. 70-7 (part), 1970).


Any reference in this title to charges, fees or penalties incurred or imposed pursuant to any provision of this title shall now refer to charges, fees and penalties promulgated by the Santa Cruz County animal services agency (“ASA”) as documented in a schedule of such charges, fees and penalties duly adopted by the ASA board of directors.

(Ord. 2011-08 § 5, 2011).