We would like to remind pet owners of some of the Delta County Animal Ordinances that are in place. Some of these mirror Michigan State Law. For example, all dog and cats over the age of four months are required to have a rabies vaccine administered by a licensed veterinarian. Along with that, Delta County requires all dogs and cats to be licensed. Licenses are available for the period of one year and three years, to coincide with the rabies vaccine.
As a pet owner, it is the responsibility of the owner to provide a safe and healthy environment for their pets. Owners are required to provided, for example, adequate food, water and shelter from the sun, wind, rain, sleet, snow, and cold. Any act that prevents these and results in unjustifiable pain and suffering may constitute animal cruelty.
It is also unlawful for citizens to own, possess, shelter or harbor more than four dogs or four cats over the age of four months at any one residence, licensed kennels and animal shelters are excluded.
Pets are considered under restraint while within the owner's property. Owners must keep their animals under restraint of a leash while off the property. At the same time, when taking a dog for a walk, owners are responsible to remove excrement or other solid waste deposited in locations such as streets, sidewalks, parking lots, private yards, and public parks. Disposable pet waste bags are provided by the Bay de Noc Kennel Club at the Escanaba Park for this reason.
As seen many times during the summer, if an owner decides to bring their pet along for a ride in the back of a vehicle or partial topped vehicle, the pet must be safely enclosed within the vehicle. The restraint can be a pet carrier or a leash to prevent the animal from falling or jumping from the motor vehicle. This is to protect fellow motorists and the animal. At the same time, no one shall leave any animal in a parked vehicle in such a way to endanger the animal's welfare. For example, if it is too hot or too cold out, leave your pets at home when running errands. Law enforcement is authorized to use reasonable force to remove the animal from the vehicle whenever it appears that the animal's welfare is endangered.
These ordinances are necessary to preserve the public health, safety, and welfare of Delta County and its inhabitants. For the complete Delta County Animal Ordinance, visit www.deltacountymi.org/pages.php?ID=17 or contact local law enforcement with any questions.