- An animal that habitually barks, howls, screams, or makes other bothersome noises any time of day or night; Any animal that, by its conduct or behavior, including but not limited to habitual or repeated destruction, desecration, or soiling on any public or private property, habitual chasing of persons, cars, or other vehicles, or running at large, causes a disturbance of the peace or causes injury or threat of injury to persons or property.
- A sworn animal control officer or other law enforcement officer upon receipt of sworn affidavits of complaint from three (3) people residing in separate households alleging a violation of this chapter, shall investigate and may issue a citation to any animal owner or custodian alleged to be in violation of this chapter. Said affidavits shall be made under oath before an individual authorized to take acknowledgements, setting forth the nature and date of the act, the owner or keeper of the animal, the address of the owner or keeper, and a description of the animal.
Animal Control recognizes that most nuisance complaints will be investigated on a case by case basis. No complaint affidavit will automatically result in the issuance of a violation. Complaints will be investigated by an Animal Control Officer upon receipt of a completed affidavit.
Animal Control Officers will investigate the complaint with the following guidelines in mind:
- Habitual barking is generally defined as three times within a fourteen day period for more than fifteen minutes. Such barking shall be at such time as to inhibit the normal activities of life. The complaint must be specific as to the time and date. The Animal Control Officer will pay specific attention to the question of provocation.
- Habitual, for the purpose of the remainder of the nuisance complaints, is defined as committing the same type of incident twice in a three year period.
- Animal Control Officers will question the complainant and determine their location in regard to the incident.
- The owner of the animal causing the alleged nuisance will be notified of the complaint against him/her, and will be requested to correct the nuisance situation within seventy-two (72) hours.
- If, after seventy-two hours, the nuisance is not corrected, the complaining party should contact the investigating officer for further action.
- All complaints are public records and may be examined upon request.
Prior to filling out an affidavit, make sure that the animal owner is aware that there is a situation that, in your opinion, meets the requirements of the law and policy as stated on this page. It would not be fair for the person if they are unaware that their animal is causing you problems.
If the owner refuses to correct the situation, then proceed to record information. We need three witnesses residing in separate dwellings to sign the complaint. Make sure that all of the information is complete. Items 24 to 28 are to record as many instances as possible yet policy requires at least 2 episodes for non-noise violations and for 3 noise violations. For Questions you can call Animal Control: Key West, 305-294-4857; Marathon. 305-743-4800; or Key Largo, 305-451-0088 for more information.
Download and print the Nuisance Affidavit here.