Animal Permit

Animal Permit Ordinances
Pursuant to the City’s Animal Permit Ordinance, relevant portions of which are reprinted below, persons desiring to keep animals which are normally wild and only uniquely a pet must apply for a permit to keep such animals. Animal Permit Applications should be submitted to the City Clerk’s Office. The City Clerk will notify the County Health Inspector of your application. Upon recommendation of the County Health Officer, the City Clerk will advise as to whether your permit application has been approved or denied. Fill out and print our Animal Permit Application.

Ordinance 794-79
Section 17, 18 & 19
(SSFMC Chapter 9.08)

Read the ordinance (PDF)

Section 17 – Keeping of Certain Animals Unlawful:  Permit Required  
No person, firm, or corporation shall keep or allow to be kept on his or its premises within the City any live chickens, geese, ducks, turkeys, pigeons, doves, squabs, peacocks, pheasants, or similar fowl; nor any hares, rabbits, monkey, cows, cattle, steer, horses, goats, sheep, or similar animals; nor any lions, snakes or other animals which are normally wild and only uniquely a pet, except as herein otherwise provided.  

Section 18 – Permit Required  
A.      Every person, firm, or corporation keeping any of the animals or birds enumerated in the preceding section shall first make application to the City Clerk for and be issued a permit by the City.

All applications for such permits shall be in writing and shall give the following information

1.  Name of applicant
2.  Address of applicant
3.  Number and kinds of animals or birds kept or proposed to be kept by applicant and the location of their keeping.

B.      Immediately upon receipt of any such application, the City Clerk shall notify the Health Officer who shall inspect the premises and submit his findings to the City Clerk within fifteen (15) days after being notified to inspect.  If the Health Officer finds that the premises where said animals or birds are proposed to be kept is maintained in a clean and sanitary condition and they conform to the other requirements of this Ordinance, the City Clerk shall issue a permit for the keeping of said animals and birds.  Such permit shall be renewed.

C.      If the Health Officer find that the premises inspected does not meet the requirements of this Ordinance, or that the keeping of the animals and birds listed on the application would constitute a public nuisance, or if said animals or birds would jeopardize the health of persons or expose persons or other animals to bodily injury if the animals or birds listed on the application were to escape their enclosure and run or fly at large, the City Clerk shall not issue a permit.

D.      The Health Officer’s determination, recommending that the permit be denied, shall be subject to an appeal to the City Council.  Notice of such appeal shall be filed with the City Clerk within ten (10) days after denial of said permit.  Upon failure to file such notice within ten (10) day period, the determination of the Health Officer shall be final and conclusive.

E.      A unique pet shall be defined, for the purpose of this Ordinance, as any bird, fowl reptile or animal which normally lives in a wild habitat and is a curiosity to the local community when kept in captivity in said community, whether wild or domestic at the time of its keeping.  The Health Officer shall make the initial determination as to the uniqueness of said birds, fowls, reptiles or animals, with the advice of the Humane Officer.  Said determination shall be subject to the appeal to the City Council.  Notice of such appeal shall be filed with the City Clerk within ten (10) days after the Health Officer’s initial determination.      

Section 19 – Enclosure Required:  Animals Not Permitted at Large
A.      No person shall allow or permit any animal, hereinabove mentioned in Section 17, to run, crawl or fly at large.  Said animals shall be confined to an escape proof enclosure, cage, house, coop with runaway or aviary.  When not so confined, said animals shall be kept under direct physical control by their owner or keeper by mean of a leash, tether or bridle, and they shall not be allowed or permitted by said owner or keeper to constitute a public nuisance by interfering with the comfortable enjoyment of life or property by any considerable number of persons.

B.      Said enclosures, houses, coops or runaways and aviaries shall at all times be maintained in a clean and sanitary condition by said owner or keeper, shall be cleaned once a week, or oftener if necessary, and shall at all times be kept free of offensive-odors.

No part of any such enclosure, cage, house, coop, runway or aviary shall be less than forty (40) feet from any street, nor less than ten (10) feet from the side lines of any adjacent lot, and no such enclosure, cage, house, coop, runway or aviary shall be less than forty (40) feet from any dwelling or place of business unless such dwelling or place of business is occupied by the person, company or corporation owning or renting the property upon which the same is situated and maintaining the animals herein above mentioned, except as provided in the following section where the space and distance requirement are greater.