Dangerous Animals

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The Animal Control and Animal Shelter Ordinance number 15-06 was adopted On May 19, 2015, and amended by Ordinance number 2017-17 which was adopted on October 3, 2017.

The following is the Dangerous Animals section of the Ordinance.

(Scroll down to download the complete Animal Control Ordinance.)

6.04.080 Dangerous Animals

1. Upon receipt of a valid report of a dangerous animal, the Porter County Animal Control shall investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding the allegation that said animal is dangerous and will prepare a written report summarizing the findings and may also impose reasonable conditions on the owner of the animal in order to ensure the effective restraint of the dangerous animal as well as public safety.  If the owner of the dangerous animal agrees to the proposed conditions, then immediate disposition of the animal may be determined.

2. If upon investigation it is determined by the Porter County Animal Control that there is probable cause to believe the animal in question poses a threat to public safety due to vicious behavior, then the Porter County Animal Control has the authority to impound the animal at the Porter County Animal Shelter, at the owner’s expense, until a decision regarding the final disposition of the animal has been made by Porter County Animal Control or the Porter County Animal Shelter Director.

3. If the Porter County Animal Control investigates the allegation of a dangerous animal and finds that the claim is not substantiated then the animal shall be released to its owner after compliance with all impoundment and release procedures and settlement of all impoundment and redemption fees.

4. During the course of the Porter County Animal Control investigation of a report of a dangerous or vicious animal,  the matter may be referred to the Porter County Prosecutor’s Office in accord with any suspected criminal violations under I.C.§ 35-46-3, et seq. of the Indiana Code.

5. It shall be unlawful for any person to own, keep, or harbor any dangerous animal without keeping such animal securely confined on the owner's or keeper's premises and under such restraint that persons lawfully on the premises, or elsewhere, may not be attacked or bitten by such animal. The premises where such an animal is kept shall be adequately posted with warning signs.

6. A dangerous animal, while on the owner’s premises, shall at all times, be kept indoors, or in a  secure enclosure from which the animal cannot escape, and into which children cannot trespass, including but not limited to the following requirements:

(A) The enclosure must be adequately lighted, ventilated and kept in a clean and sanitary condition;
(B) The enclosure shall have secure sides, a secure top and bottom, and inward opening gate to prevent the animal from escaping over, under or through the structure;
(C) The enclosure shall be kept locked at all times to prevent unintentional openings, except when tending to the dangerous animal’s needs such as cleaning the enclosure, and/or providing food and water; and
(D) The enclosure shall provide suitable shelter and protection from the elements, as well as provide for adequate exercise room, light, ventilation, sanitation, and adequate fencing that is not the common fencing associated with the premises existing perimeter fencing, and in the event the premises do not have an already existing perimeter fence, such fencing must be constructed around the enclosure housing the dangerous animal.

7. A dangerous animal may be outside of the enclosure and/or off the owner’s premises only when necessary for its health and well being, and shall be muzzled and restrained on a leash not exceeding three (3) feet in length and must be done under the direct control and supervision of the owner of the dangerous animal.

8. Fines for violating this Section of the Animal Control Ordinance shall be as follows:

(A) First Offense: $150.00
(B) Second and Subsequent Offenses: $300.00

Download Complete Ordinance

CLICK HERE To Download Complete Animal Control Ordinance
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Porter County Animal Control serves all of Porter County EXCEPT FOR THE CITY OF PORTAGE. All information contained in this section of the website is only applicable to the areas served by Porter County Animal Control. If you live in the City of Portage, you will need to contact them directly at (219) 763-1825, as they may have different policies and ordinances.