Raleigh’s city council has voted to implement a ban of “dangerous wild animals”. Under the new ordinance a “dangerous wild animal” is considered by the city to be “any non-domesticated animal, which is normally found in the wild state, is inherently dangerous to person or property, and which generally does not live in or about the habitation of humans.” The city’s definition specifically mentions “medically significant venomous snakes” and “crocodilians”. However, it also states that the species named are “including but not limited to”, meaning additional restrictions may be added nearly ad hoc at any time. The ordinance bans future ownership of “dangerous wild animals”, but does provide a grandfather clause for those who already own these animals.
Grandfather clause requirements:
- Detailed inventory of animals with descriptions and photo(s) of animals
- Requirement to notify the City when the animal is moved to another location
- Plan for transfer of ownership or destruction if owner can no longer care for the animal
- Maintain health records of the animal
- Proof of ownership, such as a bill of sale
- Certifies that owner will only keep up to 10 medically significant venomous snakes
- Must possess liability insurance
- Will immediately report the escape of any dangerous wild animals in their possession
- Criminal background check for previous felony charges or history of animal abuse
The penalty for violating the ordinance is a $500 fine per animal, per day the ordinance is violated. Owners are responsible for paying any costs the city incurs while impounding, attempting to recapture, shelter, or euthanizing an escaped animal. Anyone who fails to register animals they already own is subject to a $500 fine per animal, per day they fail to register.
The ordinance goes into effect in two months. Owners have until July 1, 2023 to register their animals.
Mayor Pro Tem Nicole Stewart and councilmember Storme Forte voted against the ordinance.
You can read the final version of the ordinance at http://ncark.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/07/2022-Raleigh-final.pdf