618.051  PROHIBITIONS CONCERNING COMPANION ANIMALS.
   (a)   As used in this section:
      (1)   "Companion animal" means any animal that is kept inside a residential dwelling and any dog or cat regardless of where it is kept. "Companion animal" does not include livestock or any wild animal.
      (2)   "Cruelty", "torment" and "torture" have the same meanings as in Ohio R.C. 1717.01.
      (3)   "Federal Animal Welfare Act" means the "Laboratory Animal Act of 1966", Pub. L. No. 89-544, 80 Stat. 350 (1966), 7 U.S.C.A. 2131 et seq., as amended by the "Animal Welfare Act of 1970), Pub. L. No. 91-579, 84 Stat. 1560 (1970), the "Animal Welfare Act Amendments of 1976", Pub. L. No. 94-279, 90 Stat. 417 (1976), and the "Food Security Act of 1985", Pub. L. No. 99-198, 99 Stat. 1354 (1985), and as it may be subsequently amended.
      (4)   "Residential dwelling" means a structure of shelter or the portion of a structure or shelter that is used by one or more humans for the purpose of habitation.
      (5)   "Practice of veterinary medicine" has the same meaning as in Ohio R.C. 4741.01.
      (6)   "Wild animal" has the same meaning as in Ohio R.C. 1531.01.
      (7)   “Serious physical harm” means any of the following:
         A.   Physical harm that carries an unnecessary or unjustifiable substantial risk of death;
         B.   Physical harm that involves either partial or total permanent incapacity;
         C.   Physical harm that involves acute pain of a duration that results in substantial suffering or that involves any degree of prolonged or intractable pain;
         D.   Physical harm that results from a person who confines or who is the custodian or caretaker of a companion animal depriving the companion animal of good, wholesome food and water that proximately causes the death of the companion animal.
   (b)   No person shall knowingly torture, torment, needlessly mutilate or maim, cruelly beat, poison, needlessly kill, or commit an act of cruelty against a companion animal.
   (c)   No person who confines or who is the custodian or caretaker of a companion animal shall negligently do any of the following:
      (1)   Torture, torment, needlessly mutilate or maim, cruelly beat, poison, needlessly kill, or commit an act of cruelty against the companion animal.
      (2)   Deprive the companion animal of necessary sustenance, confine the companion animal without supplying it during the confinement with sufficient quantities of good, wholesome food and water, or impound or confine the companion animal without affording it, during the impoundment or confinement, with access to shelter from heat, cold, wind, rain, snow, or excess direct sunlight, if it can reasonably be expected that the companion animal would become sick or suffer in any other way as a result of or due to the deprivation, confinement, or impoundment or confinement in any of those specified manners.
   (d)   No person shall knowingly cause serious physical harm to a companion animal.
   (e)   Divisions (b) and (c) of this section do not apply to any of the following:
      (1)   A companion animal used in scientific research conducted by an institution in accordance with the Federal Animal Welfare Act and related regulations;
      (2)   The lawful practice of veterinary medicine by a person who has been issued a license, temporary permit, or registration certificate to do so under Ohio R.C. Chapter 4741;
      (3)   Dogs being used or intended for use for hunting or field trial purposes, provided that the dogs are being treated in accordance with usual and commonly accepted practices for the care of hunting dogs;
      (4)   The use of common training devices, if the companion animal is being treated in accordance with usual and commonly accepted practices for the training of animals;
      (5)   The administering of medicine to a companion animal that was properly prescribed by a person who has been issued a license, temporary permit, or registration certificate under Ohio R.C. Chapter 4741.
   (f)   Notwithstanding any section of the Ohio Revised Code that otherwise provides for the distribution of fine moneys, the Clerk of Court shall forward all fines the Clerk collects that are so imposed for any violation of this section to the Treasurer of the political subdivision or the State, whose county humane society or law enforcement agency is to be paid the fine money as determined under this division. The Treasurer to whom the fines are forwarded shall pay the fine moneys to the county humane society or the county, township, municipal corporation, or state law enforcement agency in this State that primarily was responsible for or involved in the investigation and prosecution of the violation. If a county humane society receives any fine moneys under this division, the county humane society shall use the fine moneys to provide the training that is required for humane agents under Ohio R.C. 1717.06.
(Ord. 04-43. Passed 11-15-04.)
   (g)   Whoever violates division (b) of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree on a first offense and a felony of the fifth degree on each subsequent offense.
   (h)   Whoever violates division (c) of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree on a first offense and a misdemeanor of the first degree on each subsequent offense.
   (i)   A court may order a person who is convicted of or pleads guilty to a violation of this section to forfeit to an impounding agency, as defined in Section 618.052, any or all of the companion animals in that person's ownership or care. The court also may prohibit or place limitations on the person's ability to own or care for any companion animals for a specified or indefinite period of time.
   (j)   A court may order a person who is convicted of or pleads guilty to a violation of this section to reimburse an impounding agency for the reasonably necessary costs incurred by the agency for the care of a companion animal that the agency impounded as a result of the investigation or prosecution of the violation, provided that the costs were not otherwise paid under Section 618.052.
   (k)   If a court has reason to believe that a person who is convicted of or pleads guilty to a violation of this section suffers from a mental or emotional disorder that contributed to the violation, the court may impose as a community control sanction or as a condition of probation a requirement that the offender undergo psychological evaluation or counseling. The court shall order the defender to pay the costs of the evaluation or counseling.
(Ord. 07-30.  Passed 7-16-07; Ord. 19-08.  Passed 5-16-19.)