Pima County Dog Laws


As a pet owner, you have many responsibilities, like taking your dog for walks, providing them a space to play, and making sure they’re well-fed. One often overlooked responsibility of owning a dog is understanding the laws around pet ownership.

Pima County has established dog laws to protect pets, their owners, and others. Understanding the laws around dog ownership ensures the welfare of pets and the safety and comfort of everyone else. Negligence surrounding dog ownership can have harsh legal consequences for dog owners if an incident arises.

Pima County Dog Laws

The vast majority of laws that govern pet ownership in Pima County are actually created by the county itself. While dog bite laws and animal cruelty to canines are covered at the state level, Pima County has added a whole series of laws that relate to pet ownership. These laws cover two key areas: 

Treatment of animals – Laws in Pima County protect animals against inhumane treatment from their owners or others.

Liabilities related to your pet – Liabilities cover the risks involved with the actions of your pet, like disturbing the peace or injuring another party.

Pet owners must be aware of these laws, as even if you do not have a clear understanding of how the law operates, you are still liable for ensuring that you are abiding by the ordinances and guidelines set up by the County. You may be caught off guard or find yourself facing a legal contest due to negligence if you are not fully aware of the laws surrounding pet ownership.

Pima County Animal Noise Ordinances

Pima County has created a series of laws to ensure that your dog is safe within the community and is not a nuisance to your neighbors or community as a whole by disturbing the peace. For example, there are ordinances that govern such things as the noise that your dog creates, including barking and howling, which make you liable for your dog’s actions. 

Under statute 6.04.160, Pima County prohibits owning or harboring animals that continuously or frequently howl, bark, or make other sounds. If the sounds can be heard clearly and audibly beyond the property line, it’s against the law.

Violations of animal noise ordinances can result in such things as a ticket or fine of no less than $50 and no more than $500. Repeated nuisance violations like this can result in extensive fines that become quite costly over time and even lead to court hearings.

Pima County Leash Laws

Leash laws are another important ordinance covered by Pima County. According to statute 6.04.030, your dog is expected to be on a leash whenever it is out of your house or yard area. If a dog is found off a leash or out of an enclosure, it is considered “at large”.

Keeping your dog on a leash is not only a protection for your pet,  ensuring that it does not run out in the street and get hit by a car, but it also protects other dogs as well as people that may come near them. Failure to keep your pet on a leash can often result in a hefty fine and a criminal charge.

If your pet is found on the streets, public property, your property, or other private property without a leash, you can face a fine of no less than $100 and no more than $750. A violation is also considered a class 2 misdemeanor.

Dog Yard Escapes

The same statute that applies to leashes also applies to keeping your pet in the yard or enclosure of your property. You should also know that you become liable if your dog somehow escapes from your yard or home. 

Yard escapes are, in fact, one of the primary means by which people find themselves liable for the actions of their pet. While they are away at work or out somewhere else, the animal figures out a way to get out of its yard and begins to cruise through the neighborhood. 

If discovered by the police or another governmental agency, you can face a hefty fine as well as having to pay to have your dog returned to you from the animal shelter. As with leash laws, a punishment can include a fine of $100 to $750 and a class 2 misdemeanor.

Consider the following tips to prevent dog yard escapes:

  • Supervise your pet whenever they are outside
  • Bring your dog inside when you are not home
  • Establish an enclosure around your yard that cannot be jumped over or passed through
  • Regularly inspect your yard for gaps in the wall or fence

What To Do If You’ve Been Injured By a Dog

Dog owners must take close care of their dogs in order to ensure the safety of their pet and the others around them. Pima County has several laws around dog ownership, and it’s the responsibility of pet owners to ensure they follow local regulations.

At JacksonWhite Law we offer support and guidance in cases of injury involving dogs in Pima County. Whether you’re the victim of a dog attack or your dog was involved in an incident, we can support you in navigating the legal process so we can secure the best possible outcome.

Call our Personal Injury team at (480) 378-8802 to discuss your case today.

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