Chapter 6.10


6.10.010  Scope.

6.10.020  Possession unlawful – Exception – Rules and regulations compliance.

6.10.030  Exotic animal license application.

6.10.040  Premises inspection – Issuance.

6.10.050  Periodic inspection of premises.

6.10.060  License revocation – Notice – Appeal.

6.10.070  Violation – Penalty.

6.10.080  Euthanasia in exigent circumstances.

6.10.090  Exemptions.

6.10.010 Scope.

This chapter shall apply to the harboring or possessing of exotic animals in the city in order to preserve the public peace and safety and to assure the humane treatment of exotic animals. (Ord. 2007-660 § 1)

6.10.020 Possession unlawful – Exception – Rules and regulations compliance.

A. Possession Unlawful. It shall be unlawful for any person to harbor or possess an exotic animal in the city.

B. Exception – Rules and Regulations Complaince. Any person who harbored or possessed the exotic animal on or before March 1, 2007, and applies for an exotic animal license by June 1, 2007, and otherwise complies with the requirements contained in this chapter, such rules and regulations as the animal control authority may adopt regarding the maintenance of such animals, and the Mill Creek Municipal Code, may harbor and maintain that animal for the lifetime of that animal pursuant to the requirements contained in this chapter. (Ord. 2007-660 § 1)

6.10.030 Exotic animal license application.

A. An owner shall apply for an exotic animal license on forms furnished by the animal control authority. The applicant shall specify:

1. A legal or otherwise adequately precise description of the premises which applicant desires to use under the required license;

2. Whether the applicant owns or rents the premises to be used and, if the applicant rents the premises, a written acknowledgment by the property owner that the applicant has the owner’s permission to carry on the activity as described in the license application for the duration of the license;

3. The extent of improvement upon such premises and a map or diagram of such premises showing where the improvements are located thereon;

4. A statement indicating the species of exotic animal which the applicant desires to harbor or possess;

5. A statement indicating how the animal will be caged or otherwise confined and a drawing detailing the dimensions of and the materials used for the cage or similar confinement; and

6. Such further information as may be required by rules and regulations of the animal control authority.

B. All applications shall be accompanied by the required fee specified in Chapter 3.42 MCMC. (Ord. 2007-660 § 1)

6.10.040 Premises inspection – Issuance.

If, upon application, the animal control authority reasonably believes that the applicant is the owner or tenant of or has a possessory interest in the property shown in the application; if applicable, has the written permission of the property owner as specified in MCMC 6.10.030(A)(2); and that the applicant intends in good faith to harbor or possess an exotic animal in accordance with the law and the rules and regulations of the animal control authority; the animal control authority shall issue a license to the applicant describing therein the premises to be used by the licensee and certifying that the licensee is lawfully entitled to use the same for the harboring or possession of the exotic animal specified in such license; provided, that prior to issuing the license the animal control authority shall inspect the cage or other confinement as required by rule or regulation and specified in the licensee’s application in order to determine whether the cage or confinement meets the standard specifications for the classification of the exotic animal. If the cage or confinement is deemed inadequate, the applicant shall make such changes as necessary to meet the standard specifications before the license shall issue. All licenses shall expire one year from the date of the original application. (Ord. 2007-660 § 1)

6.10.050 Periodic inspection of premises.

The animal control authority may make routine periodic inspections of a licensee’s premises and records in order to determine the number, kind, weight, and condition of exotic animal possessed by the licensee, and for purposes of enforcing the provisions of this chapter, the rules and regulations of the animal control authority, and the Mill Creek Municipal Code. (Ord. 2007-660 § 1)

6.10.060 License revocation – Notice – Appeal.

A. The animal control authority may revoke, suspend, or refuse to renew any exotic animal license upon good cause for failure to comply with any provision of this chapter, the rules and regulations of the animal control authority, or the Mill Creek Municipal Code; provided, that the violator shall be first notified of the specific violation or violations, and, if the violation can be remedied, the violator shall have 15 days after receiving the notice of violation to correct the violation.

B. Any owner, applicant, or licensee aggrieved by a decision of the animal control authority to revoke, suspend, or refuse to renew any exotic animal license may file an administrative appeal to the hearing examiner pursuant to Chapter 6.20 MCMC. Failure to appeal will constitute a waiver of all right to an administrative hearing and determination of the matter. (Ord. 2007-660 § 1)

6.10.070 Violation – Penalty.

Any person harboring or possessing an exotic animal in the city without an exotic animal license, or transferring possession of an exotic animal to a person not licensed as provided by this chapter, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by up to 90 days in jail or up to a $1,000 fine or both. (Ord. 2007-660 § 1)

6.10.080 Euthanasia in exigent circumstances.

An exotic animal harbored or possessed in violation of this chapter, the rules and regulations of the animal control authority, or the Mill Creek Municipal Code may be subject to euthanasia if any one of the following exigent circumstances is deemed to exist by the animal control authority:

A. The exotic animal presents an imminent likelihood of serious physical harm to the public and there is no other reasonably available means of abatement; or

B. There is no reasonable basis to believe that the violation can be or in good faith will be corrected and, after reasonable search or inquiry by the animal control authority, no facility as authorized by local, state or federal law is available to house the exotic animal; or

C. The exotic animal suffers from a communicable disease injurious to other animals or human beings; provided, that this subsection shall not apply if the animal is under treatment by a licensed veterinarian and may reasonably be expected to recover without infecting other animals or human beings. (Ord. 2007-660 § 1)

6.10.090 Exemptions.

This chapter shall not apply to any facility possessing or maintaining exotic animals which is owned, operated, or maintained by any city, county, state, or the federal government, including but not limited to public zoos, nor shall it apply to museums, laboratories and research facilities maintained by scientific or educational institutions, nor to private or commercial activities such as circuses, fairs, or private zoological parks which are otherwise regulated by law, nor to any recognized program engaged in the training of exotic animals as defined in this chapter for use as service animals by disabled citizens. (Ord. 2007-660 § 1)