Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Animal Rules Simplified Code Protects Menagerie, Quiet

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Animal Rules Simplified Code Protects Menagerie, Quiet

Article excerpt

Don't dye your dogs in Jacksonville.

And don't let them bark for more than 59 minutes straight, either.

While you're at it, keep your female cat off the street when she's ready for romance.

And if you must have a pig around the house, it better have the right type of belly.

Those are just a few of the many animal ordinances on the books in Duval County. Here's a quick rundown of what's OK and what's not in the River City when it comes to winged and four-legged friends:

Don't color your animals.

It is unlawful to artificially color any animal or fowl -- even on Halloween, according to the city of Jacksonville's Ordinance Code. The penalty: an $80 fine.

Jacksonville Animal Care and Control Center Educator John Farrar speculated that in the past, animals were dyed during holidays.

"When I was a kid, I remember people would color little chicks to sell them during Easter," he said. "They were dressed up to tempt people who wouldn't usually want to care for them, and after Easter, they were abused and neglected."

The poisonous compounds in the coloring process may kill them, officials said.

On you mark, get set, bark.

It may be beneficial to keep track of how long your animal barks or makes other noises, just in case neighbors start complaining.

Animals cannot bark, meow, whine or howl, continuously for an one hour or more, city nuisance ordinances state. But if they take a break from making noise before one hour has elapsed, the clock starts again. Fines for animal noise range from $80 to $250.

Cool down your kitties.

Owners of a female cat or dog in heat beware: they can't roam the streets. Instead, the ordinance code says they must be secured inside a building.

"These creatures of impulses are hard to control, especially when their hormones are raging," Farrar said. …

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