Skip to code content (skip section selection)
It is the purpose of this chapter to promote the safety, health and general welfare, by requiring that all dogs and cats owned by residents of the city be inoculated against rabies and licensed to ensure ease of identification of any dog or cat in the event of loss, theft, impoundment or the biting of persons or other animals, and to recover the costs of administration of this title.
A. It is unlawful for any person to own a dog that does not have a current license as specified in this section or a cat that does not have a current license as specified in this section. Each dog or cat must have a separate, unexpired license.
B. The requirements of a license shall not apply if the owner establishes that the dog or cat has been owned for a period of less than 30 days or has not yet reached the age of 6 months.
C. The owner of a cat or dog must apply for a license by completely filling out a written application provided by the city’s Designated Animal Control Authority. The written application must require the applicant to state the name and address of the owner and the name, breed, color, age and sex of the dog or cat. An application for a license must be accompanied by a rabies immunization certificate showing that the dog or cat for which the license is to be issued has been vaccinated for rabies, and the appropriate fees as set by resolution of the Council. An application for a license is not complete unless it is accompanied by the following:
1. A rabies immunization certificate showing that the dog or cat named in the application has been vaccinated for rabies; and
2. The appropriate license fee as set by resolution of the Council.
D. The city’s Designated Animal Control Authority will have the discretion to approve completed applications. A license may be denied if the ownership of the dog or cat would be in violation of the Rapid City Municipal Code or an agreement by the city.
E. The expiration date of the license shall be December 31 of the year in which the license was purchased.
F. Upon the approval of the license, a numbered metal or plastic license tag shall be issued to the person who payed the fee. The tag shall be stamped with the number and year for which issued. The tag shall be affixed to the licensed animal in conjunction with the rabies tag in a secure manner anytime the animal is outside. The owner shall contact the city’s Designated Animal Control Authority to report change in ownership, loss or death of a licensed animal.
G. In the event that the licensed tag issued for a dog or cat is lost, the owner may obtain a duplicate tag upon the payment to the city’s Designated Animal Control Authority of a fee to be set by resolution of the Council.
H. If there is a change of ownership of a dog or cat during the licensed year, the new owner may have the current license transferred in his or her name upon application to the city’s Designated Animal Control Authority.
I. The licensing and vaccination requirements of this chapter shall not apply to any animal belonging to a nonresident of the city and kept within the city for not longer than 30 days; provided, all such animals shall at all times while in the city, be kept within a building, enclosure or vehicle, or be under restraint by the owner.
(Ord. 6456 (part), 2021: Ord. 3289, 1996: Ord. 3147, 1994: Ord. 2900 (part), 1991: prior code § 6-34)