Title 6
ANIMALS

Chapters:

6.04 Dog Control

6.08 Livestock Restricted Areas

6.12 Right to Farm

Chapter 6.04
DOG CONTROL

Sections:

6.04.010 Definitions.

6.04.020 License required.

6.04.030 Failure to license.

6.04.040 License term– Tag– Fee.

6.04.050 Recordkeeping by auditor.

6.04.060 Commercial licenses.

6.04.070 Police dogs.

6.04.080 Running in packs.

6.04.090 Running at large.

6.04.100 Impoundment– Authority.

6.04.110 Impoundment– Notice– Disposal.

6.04.120 Impoundment– Redemption fees and charges.

6.04.130 Impoundment– Holding and disposal.

6.04.140 Impoundment– Interference.

6.04.150 Impoundment– Court hearing.

6.04.160 Potentially dangerous animals.

6.04.170 Right of self-help.

6.04.180 Penalty.

6.04.190 Savings clause.

6.04.010 Definitions.

"Harass" means to disturb or irritate persistently.

"Nuisance" means a source of inconvenience, annoyance, vexation or bother.

"Violation notice" means either a written warning or a citation.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part))

6.04.020 License required.

From the time the ordinance codified in this chapter is adopted and thereafter until repealed or amended, it shall be unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation to own, keep, or maintain any dog over the age of six months in the unincorporated areas of Skamania County without paying the license fee and obtaining a license from the Skamania County auditor and keeping the license attached to the dog.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1982-03 § 1: Ord. 1978-02 § 1)

6.04.030 Failure to license.

Any person, firm, or corporation failing to license a dog as required in Section 6.04.020 above may receive a citation by any person authorized under Section 6.04.100 to issue such a citation, charging the person, firm or corporation with failure to license the dog. Thereafter, the person, firm or corporation shall have ten days in which to license the dog and failure to do so within that period of time will result in a civil fine of not less than twenty-five dollars nor more than one hundred dollars.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part): Ord. 1982-03 § 2: Ord. 1978-02 § 2)

6.04.040 License term– Tag– Fee.

A. The dog license referred to in Section 6.04.020 shall be an annual license and shall expire at midnight on the 31st day of December of the year in which the same was issued. It shall be a metal tag bearing an identification number, the words "Skamania County," and a designation of the year it was issued. The tag shall be attached to a dog collar to be worn by the dog at all times.

B. The fee for such license shall be fifteen dollars a year for nonspayed/nonneutered dogs, and seven dollars and fifty cents a year for spayed/neutered dogs. The fee shall be reduced to three dollars and seventy-five cents a year for senior citizens (age sixty years or older). Dogs that have not been licensed by Skamania County prior to April 1, 1994, are required to show proof of spay or neuter to qualify for spayed/neutered dog fees. A current rabies certificate for the dog must be shown to obtain a license. Duplicate tags can be purchased for one dollar.

C. Licenses purchased for the redemption of a dog shall be paid in full regardless of the date, age of owner, or proof of neuter or spay.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1994-01 (part); Ord. 1990-02 § 1; Ord. 1982-03 § 3: Ord. 1978-02 § 3)

6.04.050 Recordkeeping by auditor.

The Skamania County auditor shall keep a record of all dog licenses, showing the number of each license, the name, address and telephone number, if any, of the applicant or owners, and the sex and a general description of each dog so licensed.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1982-03 § 4: Ord. 1978-02 § 4)

6.04.060 Commercial licenses.

A. Any person, corporation or partnership may apply for a commercial license and, upon receiving the same, shall be exempt from the licensing provisions of this chapter. A commercial license will be issued for kennels, owners of commercial racing dogs, or other commercial reasons as outlined by the pertinent ordinance. The ownership of more than three dogs shall entitle the owner to a presumption that the dogs are owned for commercial purposes. For ownership of three dogs or less, the commercial purpose must be established by the owner at the time the owner applies for the commercial license.

B. The annual fee for a commercial license shall be twenty dollars for the first three dogs and three dollars for each additional dog, said license to include the following:

1. Each dog shall be described by breed, sex and color.

2. The license tax shall be affixed in a permanent manner to a collar to be worn in the field. (A commercial tag shall be distinct from the general county dog tag.)

3. All transactions and records pertaining to commercial licenses shall be made and kept in the county auditor's office.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1982-03 § 5: Ord. 1978-02 § 5)

6.04.070 Police dogs.

In addition to the statutory protections granted to a police dog and found in RCW 9A.76.200; it is unlawful to harass a police dog regardless of duty status, while said police dog is confined in its quarters, an automobile kennel, fenced area, training area, or while it is under the control of a dog handler.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part))

6.04.080 Running in packs.

A. From and after the passage of the ordinance codified in this chapter it shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation, being the owner or custodian of any dog, to permit such dog, or dogs, to run with a pack, or in packs, as that term is defined in subsection B of this section, upon any public street, highway or public place, or upon private property owned by any person or persons other than the owner or custodian of such dog or dogs, within the corporate limits of Skamania County, excluding the corporate limits of any town within Skamania County. Such running in packs by dogs constitutes a public nuisance.

B. "Pack," for the purposes of this chapter, means three or more dogs congregating, grouping or running together. Hounds, licensed under Section 6.04.060, are excluded from this definition, provided that identification is attached to the hounds when they are out of the kennel or compound.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1982-03 § 6: Ord. 1978-02 § 6)

6.04.090 Running at large.

A. All dogs found to be running at large upon a public place, as that term is defined in subsection B of this section, within Skamania County, constitute a public nuisance within the meaning of this chapter, unless the dogs are under control by means of a chain or leash or are in a vehicle and under the personal control of the owner or custodian of the vehicle, and any such dog running at large may be impounded.

B. Public Place. The term "public place," for the purposes of this chapter, shall mean any of the following places located within Skamania County but without the corporate limits of any town within said county: in any building to which the public is invited to do business or conduct activities, including but not limited to schools and school grounds, and the surrounding grounds, streets and parking areas adjacent to said buildings and grounds. Such buildings, grounds, parking areas and streets shall be public places whether owned publicly or privately.

C. It is a violation of this chapter for the owner of any dog or dogs to fail to restrain his dog or dogs from running at large upon any property not owned by the owner of the dog or dogs, unless the dog or dogs are under control by means of a chain or leash or are in a vehicle under the personal control of the owner or custodian of said vehicle, and any such dog, or dogs, found running at large as set out above may be impounded upon the complaint of any person.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1990-02 § 2; Ord. 1982-03 § 7: Ord. 1978-02 § 7)

6.04.100 Impoundment– Authority.

Any person employed by the county as an animal control officer, or any deputy sheriff of Skamania County, or any person contracted with for such services, is authorized to impound any dog found in violation of any of the sections of this chapter, whether or not the dog is licensed as provided for in this chapter, and is authorized to impound any unlicensed dog or dogs without a license displayed on their collar, found running at large, whether or not in violation of any other provisions of this chapter. Further, any person authorized to impound any dog is also authorized to issue a citation for failure to license, as referred to in Sections 6.04.020 and 6.04.030 of this chapter. In addition, any dog that has bitten any person, or has harmed any other animal, shall constitute a nuisance and may be impounded by such person.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part): Ord. 1990-02 § 3)

6.04.110 Impoundment– Notice– Disposal.

A. Whenever any dog is impounded under the authority of this chapter, a written notice shall be sent to the owner or custodian of such dog if such owner or custodian is known. Such owner or custodian shall have three days after the mailing of such notice to reclaim the dog and if he fails to do so within such time and pay the fees provided for herein, such dog shall be sold or humanely disposed of at the expiration of such period. If the dog owner is unable to reclaim the dog within three days, he may notify the animal control office to retain that dog for up to two additional days, provided the owner pays all impounding fees in advance, at which time the officer will then instruct the pound to hold the dog up to a total of five days.

B. Any dog impounded for having bitten any person shall not be released until the expiration of a ten-day period to allow an appropriate check for rabies; provided, however, that if a dog is picked up and the dog has a valid current license tag indicating the owner of the dog, prior to taking the dog to any holding facility outside the county, a reasonable opportunity shall be afforded to the owner to pick the dog up by paying whatever penalties are appropriate according to this chapter; and, provided further, that this provision shall not apply to second or repeated offenses in any one year.

C. Whenever a dog is impounded and the owner or custodian thereof is unknown, a notice shall forthwith be posted in the area post office where the dog is found and placed on file at the county sheriff's office, animal control office and the county auditor's office. The notice shall contain a general description of the impounded dog showing the probable breed, sex, color and markings, and shall designate the date and place where the dog was picked up, and the date and place where the described dog shall be sold or otherwise disposed of unless sooner claimed and redeemed. Such date shall be not less than three days after impounding of the dog.

D. If no claim or redemption by the owner or custodian of the described dog is made within the time fixed by the notice, such dog shall be sold or humanely disposed of at the expiration of such period.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1990-02 § 4; Ord. 1982-03 § 9: Ord. 1978-02 § 9)

6.04.120 Impoundment– Redemption fees and charges.

Any dog impounded under authority of this chapter may be released to the owner or custodian thereof upon payment of the following fees and charges:

A. A basic redemption fee of twenty dollars will be charged for each impounding.

B. For the second and/or subsequent impounding of the same dog, belonging to the same person, in addition to the basic fee of ten dollars, an additional fee of twenty dollars shall be added, so that on a second impounding, the redemption fee shall be thirty dollars, on a third impounding, the redemption fee shall be fifty dollars, and so on.

C. The dog's board bill for the time he has been impounded, at the rate authorized by resolution of the board of county commissioners from time to time, based on an analysis of actual costs.

D. The license fee as fixed in this chapter if the dog has not theretofore been licensed for the current year.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1994-01 (part); Ord. 1982-03 § 10: Ord. 1978-02 § 10)

6.04.130 Impoundment– Holding and disposal.

All impounded dogs that are not claimed pursuant to the provisions of this chapter shall become subject to the regulations of the particular jurisdiction wherein the pound is located and shall be held, claimed, disposed of or otherwise managed in accordance with the regulations of that pound as they exist as of the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter or are thereafter amended.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1982-03 § 12: Ord. 1978-02 § 12)

6.04.140 Impoundment– Interference.

It is unlawful for any person to interfere in any way with any deputy sheriff, police officer, or any other person employed to act as an animal control officer who is engaged in seizing or impounding any dog under authority of this chapter; and the penalty for any such shall be a misdemeanor and a fine not exceeding one hundred dollars and imprisonment for not more than ten days may be imposed, or any part thereof.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part): Ord. 1982-03 § 13: Ord. 1978-02 § 13)

6.04.150 Impoundment– Court hearing.

In all cases where the owner or custodian of any impounded dog files with the Skamania County animal control officer's office, a written notice or demand for hearing before the expiration of the time herein provided for the disposal of such dog, such person shall be entitled to a hearing before the District Court Judge upon the question of rightful impounding of such dog. Upon receipt of such notice the Skamania County animal control officer shall forward the demand or notice forthwith to the District Court Judge, who shall proceed to a trial of the question of the right to impound such dog under the terms of this chapter and, upon the completion of such hearing, shall enter judgment sustaining such impounding or directing the release of such impounded dog as the evidence submitted warrants. Upon entry of judgment sustaining said impounding the dog shall be sold or disposed of in the manner provided in this chapter unless the owner or custodian redeems such dog.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1990-02 § 5)

6.04.160 Potentially dangerous animals.

A. "Potentially dangerous" shall mean any dog that has injured another domestic animal or person or has been seen by two or more persons on the same or different occasions menacing a person or domestic animal under circumstances not exempted by R.C.W. 16.08.

B. Any animal control officer may, upon his/her determination, declare a dog as "potentially dangerous" and furnish the owner or reputed owner of said dog, written notice of such determination and declaration. After such notice has been given, and to the extent not otherwise dealt with under state law, it shall be unlawful for any person to keep a potentially dangerous dog for any purposes unless said person complies with the following:

1. All potentially dangerous dogs shall be restrained by a physical device or structure, in a manner that prevents the dog from reaching any public sidewalk, or adjoining property, and must be located so as not to interfere with the public's legal access to the owner's property whenever the dog is outside the owner's home and not on a leash or otherwise physically restrained; and

2. Any such dog shall be confined within a secure enclosure whenever the dog is not on a leash or inside the home of the owner. The secure enclosure must be located so as not to interfere with the public's legal access to the owner's property. In addition, the officer may require the owner to obtain and maintain proof of public liability insurance.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1990-02 § 6)

6.04.170 Right of self-help.

This chapter shall not affect the rights of owners of property, or others, to use self-help for the protection of their property, domestic animals, or persons, which they now have by virtue of state law; but, this chapter shall be cumulative rather than in limitation of those rights.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1982-03 § 16: Ord. 1978-02 § 6)

6.04.180 Penalty.

Any violation of this chapter is a civil infraction and the punishment shall be as provided by Section 1.16.020 of the Skamania County Code.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part): Ord. 1990-02 § 7)

6.04.190 Savings clause.

In the event that any section of this chapter is found by any court of competent jurisdiction to have been illegally adopted, or illegal in its application to any individual, it shall be disregarded by the court but the balance of this chapter shall remain in full force and effect. Nothing herein is intended to affect state laws with regard to dangerous animals, including dangerous dogs.

(Ord. 2007-07 (part); Ord. 1990-02 § 8)

Chapter 6.08
LIVESTOCK RESTRICTED AREAS

Sections:

6.08.010 Livestock defined.

6.08.020 Stock restricted area designated.

6.08.030 Livestock running at large prohibited.

6.08.040 Enclosures required for livestock.

6.08.050 Violation– Penalty– Compensation for damage.

6.08.010 Livestock defined.

For the purposes of this chapter, "livestock" shall be defined as horses, cows, pigs, goats, sheep, oxen, mules, or any other domestic animal, but shall not include dogs, cats or poultry.

(Ord. 1981-01 § 3)

6.08.020 Stock restricted area designated.

All of Skamania County, outside the boundaries of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, as illustrated on the map attached to the ordinance codified in this chapter is, and same is designated as, a stock restricted area.

(Ord. 1981-01 § 1)

6.08.030 Livestock running at large prohibited.

After March 23, 1981, the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter, it shall be unlawful to allow any or all livestock of any kind to run at large.

(Ord. 1981-01 § 2)

6.08.040 Enclosures required for livestock.

From and after March 23, 1981, all livestock shall be kept in an enclosed, fenced pasture or barn, and shall not be allowed to run at large; the presence of livestock at large in an unfenced area shall be prima facie evidence of an inadequate and unlawful fence.

(Ord. 1981-01 § 4)

6.08.050 Violation– Penalty– Compensation for damage.

That violation of this chapter, or any portion thereof, shall be subject to that penalty prescribed in Skamania County Code Section 1.01.150; and in addition to that penalty, where private property is destroyed or damaged, any person found in violation of this chapter shall be required to make full and complete restitution to the owners of said property.

(Ord. 1981-01 § 5)

Chapter 6.12
RIGHT TO FARM

Sections:

6.12.010 Title.

6.12.020 Purpose.

6.12.030 Definitions.

6.12.040 Policy on agricultural and forestry nuisances.

6.12.050 Recommended practices.

6.12.010 Title.

This chapter shall be cited as the Skamania County right to farm chapter.

(Ord. 2006-15 (part))

6.12.020 Purpose.

It is the purpose of this chapter to promote and protect agriculture, farm forestry, commercial agriculture, and industrial forestry and its dependent rural communities through the enhancement, protection and perpetuation of the ability of the private sector to produce food and fiber in accordance with RCW 7.48.305. It is also the purpose of this chapter to recognize and encourage subsistence farming on all parcels of land within Skamania County.

(Ord. 2006-15 (part))

6.12.030 Definitions.

Unless specifically defined below, words or phrases used in this chapter shall be interpreted so as to give them the meaning they have in common usage and to give this chapter its most reasonable application.

"Agricultural activity" means a condition or activity which occurs on a farm in connection with the production of farm and timber products and includes, but is not limited to, marketed produce at roadside stands or farm markets; noise; odors; dust; fumes; smoke; operation of machinery and pumps; movement of stock, including but not limited to the use of current county roads and ditches, streams, rivers, canals, and drains, and use of water for agricultural activities; ground and aerial application of seed, fertilizers, conditioners and plant protection products; employment and use of labor; roadway movement of equipment and livestock; protection from damage by wildlife; prevention of trespass; construction and maintenance of buildings, fences, roads, bridges, ponds, drains, waterways and similar features and maintenance of stream banks and watercourses; and conversion from one agricultural activity to another.

"Farm" means the land, buildings, manure lagoons, ponds, freshwater culturings and growing facilities, and machinery used in the production of farm products.

"Farmland" means land or freshwater ponds devoted primarily to the production of livestock, freshwater aquaculture or other agricultural commodities.

"Farm product" means those plants and animals (and the products thereof) useful to human beings which are produced on farms and include, but are not limited to forages and sod crops, grains and feed crops, dairy and dairy products, poultry and poultry products, livestock including breeding, grazing and feed lots, fruits, vegetables, flowers, seeds, grasses, nursery products, trees and forest products, including Christmas trees and timber, freshwater fish and fish products, rabbits, apiaries, equine and similar products, or any other product which incorporates the use of food, feed, fiber or fur.

"Forest land" means lands devoted primarily to the production of timber products and other forest commodities.

"Forestry use" means the generally accepted practice that is governed by and performed in accordance with RCW 76.09 (The Washington State Forest Practices Act) and the regulations promulgated thereunder. The following is a representative, nonexclusive list of forestry uses: road and trail construction, including on-site obtaining of materials; final and intermediate harvesting, pre-commercial thinning; reforestation; fertilization; prevention and suppression of disease and insects; salvage of trees; and brush control.

"Generally accepted agricultural and management practices" means sound economically feasible farming techniques and practices as defined and/or recommended by the American Society of Agronomy, United States Department of Agriculture Soil Conservation Service, Washington State Cooperative Extension Service, and other professional or industrial agricultural organizations.

"Person" means an individual, firm, co-partnership, association, corporation, or other legal entity, including any federal, state, or local municipal corporation, agency, or special purpose district.

(Ord. 2006-15 (part))

6.12.040 Policy on agricultural and forestry nuisances.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision in this chapter, agricultural activities conducted on farmland, if consistent with good and generally accepted agricultural and management practices are presumed to be reasonable and shall not be found to constitute a nuisance unless the activity has a substantial adverse effect on the public health and safety and is located on less than two acres of land.

B. If that agricultural activity is undertaken in conformity with generally accepted agricultural and management practices and with federal, state and local laws and regulations and health department guidelines, it is presumed to be good agriculture practice and not adversely effecting the public health and safety.

C. A farm operation shall not be restricted in its activities to time of day or days of week, but shall be conducted according to generally accepted agricultural and management practices.

D. Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, forestry use conducted on forest land, if consistent with RCW 76.09 and other state and federal laws and management practices shall not be found to constitute a nuisance unless the activity has a substantial adverse effect on public health and safety.

(Ord. 2006-15 (part))

6.12.050 Recommended practices.

A. To minimize possible adverse environmental effects, those engaged in agricultural activities shall apply chemical products in accordance with all label instructions and shall abide by all applicable state and federal laws and regulations as well as with generally accepted agricultural and management practices.

B. A farm or farm operation shall not be found to be a public or private nuisance if the farm or farm operation conforms to generally accepted agricultural and management practices, recognizing that those practice may be subject to varying conditions including, but not limited to, geographic location, weather, soil types and conditions, type of crop or livestock, and management systems.

C. Forest use must be conducted under RCW 76.09, the Washington Forest Practices Act, and the regulations officially created thereunder and other applicable state and federal laws.

(Ord. 2006-15 (part))