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Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick
Status of Legislation - First Reading Bill
# Restricted Dogs Act +
 
Legislature :
55
Session :
1
Bill No. :
55
Member :
Mr. Lamrock
First Reading :
2004-5-28
Second Reading :
Committee of the Whole :
Amended :
Third Reading :
Royal Assent :
Download PDF :
  Bill 55         
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Text of Bill :
Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick, enacts as follows:



Definitions

1                           The following definitions apply in this Act.



"animal protection officer" means a person designated as an animal protection officer under the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, or any municipal by-law. (agent de la protection des animaux)



"licence" means a permit issued in a form prescribed by regulation. (permis)



"licence tag" means a metallic identification tag, appropriate to be worn on a dog's collar. (médaille d'identification)



"Minister" means the Minister of Public Safety. (ministre)



"owner" includes any person



(a)               named on a licence; or



(b)               in actual or apparent control or possession of property where a restricted dog resides. (propriétaire)



"peace officer" means any person designated as a peace officer under the Provincial Offences Procedures Act. (agent de la paix)



"qualified owner" means any owner of a restricted dog who



(a)               is of the age of majority in the Province of New Brunswick;



(b)               has furnished proof that he or she has met all conditions precedent to ownership established in this Act with regards to liability insurance; and



(c)               is not disqualified from ownership by any other provision of this Act. (propriétaire qualifié)



"restricted dog" means any dog that is certified by, or would be certified upon request of, a veterinarian licensed to practice veterinary medicine in New Brunswick to be primarily of the breed



(a)               Staffordshire Bull Terrier;



(b)               American Staffordshire Terrier;



(c)               Rottweiler; or



(d)               Akita. (chien sous restriction)



Administration

2(1)                   The Minister is responsible for the administration of this Act.



2(2)                   The Minister may delegate, in writing, any of the powers or duties he or she has under this Act, to any person he or she deems appropriate.



Licencing of restricted dog breeds

3(1)                   The owner of a restricted dog shall obtain a licence for the restricted dog unless the restricted dog is under the age of three months.



3(2)                   The Minister, or the Minister's delegate, shall issue a licence to every qualified owner who applies for a licence.



3(3)                   A licence shall display the name and address of the owner, as well as the breed, date of birth, and colour of the restricted dog.



3(4)                   A licence shall be accompanied by a licence tag, in a form prescribed by regulation, and the licence tag shall be worn on the collar of the restricted dog.



3(5)                   Where an owner changes his or her address the owner must notify the Minister of the change of address within ten days.



3(6)                   Where the ownership of a restricted dog is transferred, whether or not in exchange for consideration, the transferor of the ownership of the restricted dog shall provide the Minister, in writing and within ten days, the name and address of the transferee of the ownership of the restricted dog.



3(7)                   Upon the request of a peace officer or animal control officer, an owner shall present and deliver into the hands of the peace officer or animal control officer the licence for the restricted dog within twenty-four hours of the request.



3(8)                   Any person who fails to comply with subsection (1), (5), (6), or (7) commits a Category F offence under the Provincial Offences Procedures Act.



Liability insurance

4(1)                   The owner of a restricted dog shall have liability insurance specifically covering any damages for personal injury caused by the restricted dog in an amount not less than one million dollars.



4(2)                   Upon the request of a peace officer or animal control officer, an owner shall present and deliver into the hands of the requesting peace officer or animal control officer proof of liability insurance pursuant to subsection (1) within twenty-four hours of the request.



4(3)                   An owner shall furnish proof of liability insurance pursuant to subsection (1) when applying for a licence.



4(4)                   Any person who fails to comply with subsection (1) or (2) commits a Category D offence under the Provincial Offences Procedures Act.



Strict liability

5(1)                   The owner of a restricted dog shall ensure that the restricted dog does not



(a)               damage property;



(b)               chase, attack, or bite any person; or



(c)               chase, attack, or bite any animal causing physical injury.



5(2)                   The common law defence of scienter is hereby abolished with respect to restricted dogs.



5(3)                   The owner of a restricted dog shall be strictly liable for any personal injury caused by the restricted dog, and in any civil action it shall be no defence to a claim for personal injury that the restricted dog had not previously bitten, attacked, or chased any person.



5(4)                   Subsection (3) does not apply if the chase, attack, bite, or property damage is a direct result of the restricted dog being provoked by a person of the age of majority.



Care and control of restricted dogs

6(1)                   The owner, or any other person having care and control of any restricted dog, shall at all times when the restricted dog is off the property of the owner, have the restricted dog



(a)               under control;



(b)               muzzled; and



(c)               held on a leash not exceeding two metres in length.



6(2)                   The owner, or any other person having care and control of any restricted dog shall, at all times when the restricted dog is on the property of the owner, have the restricted dog



(a)               indoors;



(b)               outdoors, secured in a fully enclosed pen; or



(c)               outdoors, muzzled and secured by a chain fixed to the property that prevents the restricted dog from coming closer than two metres to the apparent boundary of the property.



6(3)                   No person may keep, or permit any other person to keep, on his or her property, a restricted dog if



(a)               that person resides with a child who is the subject of a protection order under paragraph 32(2)(d) of the Family Services Act; or



(b)               that person has been convicted two or more times under this Act.



6(4)                   No person may keep, or permit any other person to keep, on his or her property, more than two restricted dogs.



6(5)                   Subsection (4) shall not apply to a person engaged in, and holding a valid licence to be engaged in, a business established for the boarding of dogs, in respect of property used to operate such a business.



6(6)                   Any person who fails to comply with subsection (1), (2), (3), or (4) commits a Category E offence under the Provincial Offences Procedures Act.



Seizure of restricted dogs

7(1)                   A peace officer or animal control officer who encounters a restricted dog whose owner is in apparent violation of any provision of this Act may seize the restricted dog, for a period not to exceed thirty days, if the officer believes that the restricted dog will pose a threat to any other person if not seized.



7(2)                   A peace officer or animal control officer who has a reasonable and honest belief that a dog is a restricted dog within the meaning of this Act may proceed as if the dog were a restricted dog under this Act and enforce the terms of this Act accordingly.



7(3)                   A restricted dog apprehended under this section shall be treated as a seized animal under the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, except where inconsistent with this Act.



7(4)                   If a prosecution under this Act is commenced the restricted dog shall remain seized until the matter is disposed of by a court of competent jurisdiction.



7(5)                   In the event of a dispute regarding the breed of a dog that is the subject of a court proceeding under this Act, a court of competent jurisdiction may order the determination of the dog's primary breed by a veterinarian licenced to practice veterinary medicine in New Brunswick.



7(6)                   Upon any conviction under this Act, the presiding judge may



(a)               order the restricted dog returned to its owner, if the judge is convinced that the return of the dog will pose no ongoing risk to the safety of any other person, and upon such conditions as the judge may deem necessary to ensure the safety of other persons;



(b)               order the restricted dog to the custody of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, if the judge is not convinced that the return of the dog to its owner will pose no ongoing risk to the safety of any other person; or



(c)               at his or her discretion, order the restricted dog destroyed, if



(i)         the restricted dog has bitten, attacked or chased any person; or



(ii)       the judge is convinced that the restricted dog cannot be controlled in a manner that poses no ongoing risk to the safety of any other person.



Deemed owner

8                           In prosecutions under this Act, or in any civil action arising from personal injury caused by a restricted dog, a person in apparent care and control of a restricted dog shall be deemed to be the owner of the restricted dog unless it can be demonstrated that another person is the actual owner of the restricted dog.



Application

9                           This Act shall apply to all persons owning or in care and control of restricted dogs except



(a)               the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and its branch societies or associations;



(b)               any person engaged in, and holding a valid licence to be engaged in, the general business of a pet store, while in any premises used for that purpose;



(c)               any person engaged in, and holding a valid licence to be engaged in, the general business of the breeding of dogs, in any premises used for that purpose; or



(d)               any person licenced to practice veterinary medicine, while in any premises used for the practice of veterinary services.



Regulations

10                        The Lieutenant-Governor in Council may make regulations,



(a)               respecting licences and licence applications;



(b)               respecting acceptable forms of licence tags;



(c)               respecting fees for licences and licence tags;



(d)               establishing conditions regulating an individual's right to obtain a licence for a restricted dog;



(e)               adding one or more breeds to the list of restricted dogs established in this Act;



(f)                generally, to give effect to the purpose of this Act.



11                        This Act or any provision of it comes into force on a day or days to be fixed by Proclamation.
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Legend
* Private Bill
** Bill referred to Standing Committee on Law Amendments
+ Private Member's Public Bill
++ Motion for second reading defeated
+++ Debate at second reading adjourned
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