DOG LAW OF 1919

Act 339 of 1919

AN ACT relating to dogs and the protection of live stock and poultry from damage by dogs; providing for the licensing of dogs; regulating the keeping of dogs, and authorizing their destruction in certain cases; providing for the determination and payment of damages done by dogs to live stock and poultry; imposing powers and duties on certain state, county, city and township officers and employes, and to repeal Act No. 347 of the Public Acts of 1917, and providing penalties for the violation of this act.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919
Compiler's Notes: Near the end of this title, the word "employes" evidently should read "employees".


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The People of the State of Michigan enact:


287.261 Short title; definitions.

Sec. 1.

(1) This act shall be known and may be cited as the “dog law of 1919”.

(2) For the purpose of this act:

(a) “Livestock” means horses, stallions, colts, geldings, mares, sheep, rams, lambs, bulls, bullocks, steers, heifers, cows, calves, mules, jacks, jennets, burros, goats, kids and swine, and fur-bearing animals being raised in captivity.

(b) “Poultry” means all domestic fowl, ornamental birds, and game birds possessed or being reared under authority of a breeder's license pursuant to part 427 (breeders and dealers) of the natural resources and environmental protection act, Act No. 451 of the Public Acts of 1994, being sections 324.42701 to 324.42714 of the Michigan Compiled Laws.

(c) “Owner” when applied to the proprietorship of a dog means every person having a right of property in the dog, and every person who keeps or harbors the dog or has it in his care, and every person who permits the dog to remain on or about any premises occupied by him.

(d) “Kennel” means any establishment wherein or whereon dogs are kept for the purpose of breeding, sale, or sporting purposes.

(e) “Law enforcement officer” means any person employed or elected by the people of the state, or by any municipality, county, or township, whose duty it is to preserve peace or to make arrests or to enforce the law, and includes conservation officers and members of the state police.

(f) “Hunting” means allowing a dog to range freely within sight or sound of its owner while in the course of hunting legal game or an unprotected animal.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5245 ;-- CL 1948, 287.261 ;-- Am. 1959, Act 42, Eff. Mar. 19, 1960 ;-- Am. 1973, Act 32, Imd. Eff. June 14, 1973 ;-- Am. 1996, Act 63, Imd. Eff. Feb. 26, 1996


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287.262 Dogs; licensing, tags, leashes.

Sec. 2.

It shall be unlawful for any person to own any dog 6 months old or over, unless the dog is licensed as hereinafter provided, or to own any dog 6 months old or over that does not at all times wear a collar with a tag approved by the director of agriculture, attached as hereinafter provided, except when engaged in lawful hunting accompanied by its owner or custodian; or for any owner of any female dog to permit the female dog to go beyond the premises of such owner when she is in heat, unless the female dog is held properly in leash; or for any person except the owner or authorized agent, to remove any license tag from a dog; or for any owner to allow any dog, except working dogs such as leader dogs, guard dogs, farm dogs, hunting dogs, and other such dogs, when accompanied by their owner or his authorized agent, while actively engaged in activities for which such dogs are trained, to stray unless held properly in leash.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 322, Eff. Aug. 27, 1925 ;-- CL 1929, 5246 ;-- CL 1948, 287.262 ;-- Am. 1951, Act 173, Imd. Eff. June 8, 1951 ;-- Am. 1969, Act 195, Eff. Mar. 20, 1970


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287.263 Repealed. 1969, Act 195, Eff. Mar. 20, 1970.


Compiler's Notes: The repealed section pertained to confinement of dog at night.


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287.264 Supervision and enforcement.

Sec. 4.

The state livestock sanitary commission shall have the general supervision over the licensing and regulation of dogs and the protection of livestock and poultry from dogs, and may employ all proper means for the enforcement of this act and all police officers of the state, county, municipality or township shall be at its disposal for that purpose. An animal control officer or a law enforcement officer of the state shall issue a citation, summons or appearance ticket for a violation of this act.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5248 ;-- CL 1948, 287.264 ;-- Am. 1969, Act 195, Eff. Mar. 20, 1970 ;-- Am. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973


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287.265 Tags, blanks and license forms.

Sec. 5.

It shall be the duty of the state live stock sanitary commission to purchase from time to time, as may be necessary, a sufficient number of tags for the state of Michigan, which tags shall be purchased from such commission by the treasurers of the counties as the same may be needed to comply with the provisions of this act. Such tags shall be sold at cost to the said treasurers. The state treasurer is hereby authorized to advance to the said commission, out of any funds of the state, such sum of money as may be necessary from time to time to pay for the tags so purchased by the state live stock sanitary commission, which sum shall be repaid to the state treasurer from the money collected from the county treasurers in payment for the tags. The said commission is hereby authorized to extend 30 days' credit to any county treasurer for tags so purchased. The commission shall also furnish to each county treasurer, on or before November fifteenth of each year, a book containing proper forms for issuing dog licenses required in his county, together with the necessary blanks for the use of the supervisors and assessors of such county; such books and blanks shall be furnished to said commission by the board of state auditors without cost to said commission. The tags required by this act shall be not more than 1 1/2 inches in length and uniform in shape throughout the state, the general shape of which shall be changed from year to year; such tags shall have impressed upon them the calendar year for which they are issued and shall bear the name of the county issuing them and shall be numbered consecutively.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5249 ;-- CL 1948, 287.265


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287.266 Dog licenses; application; resolution; provisions; proof of vaccination.

Sec. 6.

(1) The owner of a dog that is 4 or more months old shall apply to the treasurer of the county or, except as provided in section 14, the treasurer of the township or city where the owner resides, or to the treasurer's authorized agent, for a license for each dog owned or kept by him or her.

(2) Unless the county board of commissioners adopts a resolution under subsection (3), the owner shall apply for a license annually on or before March 1.

(3) The county board of commissioners of a county may adopt a resolution during the 60-day period before the beginning of the county's fiscal year providing when the owner of a dog that is required to be licensed under subsection (1) must apply for a license. Before adopting the resolution, the county board of commissioners shall obtain the county treasurer's written approval of the resolution. Subject to subsection (4), the resolution shall provide for 1 of the following:

(a) That the owner apply for a license by March 1 every year or every third year, at the owner's option.

(b) That the owner apply for a license by June 1 every year.

(c) That the owner apply for a license by June 1 every year or every third year, at the owner's option.

(d) That the owner apply for a license by the last day of the month of the dog's current rabies vaccination, every year.

(e) That the owner apply for a license by the last day of the month of the dog's current rabies vaccination, every third year.

(f) That the owner apply for a license by 1 of the following, at the owner's option:

(i) The last day of the month of the dog's current rabies vaccination every year.

(ii) The last day of the month of the dog's current rabies vaccination, every third year.

(4) A resolution adopted under subsection (3) shall include necessary provisions for conversion to a new licensing schedule. The resolution may extend the effective period of outstanding licenses but shall not shorten the effective period of outstanding licenses or prorate license fees.

(5) The application shall state the breed, sex, age, color, and markings of the dog, and the name and address of the last previous owner. Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, the application for a license shall be accompanied by a valid certificate of a current vaccination for rabies, with a vaccine licensed by the United States department of agriculture, signed by an accredited veterinarian. The certificate for vaccination for rabies shall state the month and year of expiration for the rabies vaccination, in the veterinarian's opinion. If the application for a license is submitted electronically, the owner of the dog is not required to provide a valid certificate of a current vaccination for rabies if the dog was licensed the previous year and the dog's current rabies vaccination on record with the treasurer of the county or, except as provided in section 14, the treasurer of the township or city where the owner resides, or the treasurer's authorized agent, is still valid. A license shall not be issued under subsection (3)(d), (e), or (f) if the dog's current rabies vaccination will expire more than 1 month before the date on which that license would expire. When applying for a license, the owner shall pay the license fee provided for in the county budget. The county board of commissioners may set license fees in the county budget at a level sufficient to pay all the county's expenses of administering this act as it pertains to dogs. For a spayed or neutered dog, the license fee, if any, shall be set lower than the license fee for a dog that is not spayed or neutered. In addition, the license fee may be set higher for a delinquent application than for a timely application.

(6) If a dog is licensed before it becomes 5 months old and is subsequently spayed or neutered before it becomes 7 months old, the owner of the dog may exchange the license for a license for a spayed or neutered dog and receive a refund for the difference in the cost of the licenses. The owner shall exchange the license before the dog becomes 7 months old.

(7) Subsection (6) applies in a county only if the county board of commissioners adopts a resolution to that effect during the 60-day period before the beginning of the county's fiscal year. Before adopting the resolution, the county board of commissioners shall obtain the county treasurer's written approval of the resolution.

(8) The owner of a dog that is required to be licensed under this section shall keep the dog currently vaccinated against rabies by an accredited veterinarian with a vaccine licensed by the United States department of agriculture.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 322, Eff. Aug. 27, 1925 ;-- Am. 1927, Act 53, Eff. Sept. 5, 1927 ;-- CL 1929, 5250 ;-- Am. 1933, Act 79, Imd. Eff. May 19, 1933 ;-- Am. 1935, Act 17, Eff. Sept. 21, 1935 ;-- Am. 1937, Act 47, Imd. Eff. May 18, 1937 ;-- Am. 1947, Act 171, Eff. Oct. 11, 1947 ;-- CL 1948, 287.266 ;-- Am. 1949, Act 35, Eff. Sept. 23, 1949 ;-- Am. 1953, Act 172, Imd. Eff. June 4, 1953 ;-- Am. 1969, Act 195, Eff. Mar. 20, 1970 ;-- Am. 1971, Act 229, Eff. Mar. 30, 1972 ;-- Am. 1998, Act 390, Imd. Eff. Nov. 30, 1998 ;-- Am. 2000, Act 438, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 2001 ;-- Am. 2010, Act 18, Imd. Eff. Mar. 18, 2010


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287.266a Repealed. 1969, Act 195, Eff. Mar. 20, 1970.


Compiler's Notes: The repealed section pertained to proof of vaccination for rabies.


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287.267 Dog license; tag, approval; kept on dog.

Sec. 7.

The county treasurer shall then deliver to said owner a license and also 1 of the tags approved by the director of agriculture, before mentioned, such tag to be affixed to a substantial collar to be furnished by the owner, which with the tag attached, shall at all times be kept on the dog for which the license is issued, except when such dog is engaged in lawful hunting accompanied by its owner or custodian.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5251 ;-- CL 1948, 287.267 ;-- Am. 1951, Act 173, Imd. Eff. June 8, 1951


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287.268 Dog license; unlicensed and young dogs; application; fee after certain date.

Sec. 8.

A person who becomes owner of a dog that is 4 or more months old and that is not already licensed shall apply for a license within 30 days. A person who owns a dog that will become 4 months old and that is not already licensed shall apply for a license within 30 days after the dog becomes 4 months old. In a county in which section 6(2) or section 6(3)(a) applies, if a person applies for an annual license under this subsection after July 10 of a calendar year, the license fee shall be 1/2 the fee provided for under section 6.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 322, Eff. Aug. 27, 1925 ;-- CL 1929, 5252 ;-- CL 1948, 287.268 ;-- Am. 1998, Act 390, Imd. Eff. Nov. 30, 1998 ;-- Am. 2000, Act 438, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 2001


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287.269 Dog license; contents.

Sec. 9.

Each dog license issued under this act shall display all of the following:

(a) An expiration date. Subject to section 6(4), the expiration date for a license issued under section 6(2) or 6(3)(b) shall be 1 year after the date on or before which the license was required to be obtained under section 6, and for a license issued under section 6(3)(a) or 6(3)(c) shall be 1 year or 3 years after that date. Subject to section 6(4), the expiration date of a license issued under section 6(3)(d), (e), or (f) shall be the earlier of the following:

(i) One year or 3 years, as applicable, after the date on which the license was required to be obtained.

(ii) The expiration date of the dog's rabies vaccination.

(b) A serial number corresponding to the number on the metal tag furnished to the owner.

(c) The name of the county issuing the license.

(d) A full description of the dog licensed.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5253 ;-- CL 1948, 287.269 ;-- Am. 1998, Act 390, Imd. Eff. Nov. 30, 1998 ;-- Am. 2000, Act 438, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 2001


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287.269a Production of proof of license.

Sec. 9a.

A person who owns or harbors a dog shall produce proof of a valid dog license upon request of a person who is authorized to enforce this act.


History: Add. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973


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287.270 “Kennel” defined; kennel license; fee; tags; certificate; rules; inspection; exception.

Sec. 10.

For the purposes of this act, a kennel shall be construed as an establishment wherein or whereon 3 or more dogs are confined and kept for sale, boarding, breeding or training purposes, for remuneration, and a kennel facility shall be so constructed as to prevent the public or stray dogs from obtaining entrance thereto and gaining contact with dogs lodged in the kennel. Any person who keeps or operates a kennel may, in lieu of individual license required under this act, apply to the county treasurer for a kennel license entitling him to keep or operate a kennel. Proof of vaccination of dogs against rabies shall not be required with the application. The license shall be issued by the county treasurer on a form prepared and supplied by the director of the department of agriculture, and shall entitle the licensee to keep any number of dogs 6 months old or over not at any time exceeding a certain number to be specified in the license. The fee to be paid for a kennel license shall be $10.00 for 10 dogs or less, and $25.00 for more than 10 dogs. A fee of double the original license fee shall be charged for each previously licensed kennel, whose kennel license is applied for after June 1. With each kennel license the county treasurer shall issue a number of metal tags equal to the number of dogs authorized to be kept in the kennel. All the tags shall bear the name of the county issuing it, the number of the kennel license, and shall be readily distinguishable from the individual license tags for the same year.

The county treasurer or county animal control officer shall not issue a kennel license for a new kennel under the provisions of this act unless the applicant furnishes an inspection certificate signed by the director of the department of agriculture, or his authorized representative, stating that the kennel to be covered by the license complies with the reasonable sanitary requirements of the department of agriculture, and that the dogs therein are properly fed and protected from exposure commensurate with the breed of the dog. The director of the department of agriculture shall promulgate reasonable rules with respect to the inspections in the manner prescribed by law. The inspection shall be made not more than 30 days before filing the application for license. The provisions of this act shall not be effective in the counties of this state that are operating under the provisions of section 16 wherein the board of supervisors have appointed a county animal control officer with certain powers and duties, unless the counties by a resolution duly adopted by the board of supervisors accept the provisions of this act.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 322, Eff. Aug. 27, 1925 ;-- CL 1929, 5254 ;-- Am. 1933, Act 79, Imd. Eff. May 19, 1933 ;-- Am. 1945, Act 245, Eff. Sept. 6, 1945 ;-- CL 1948, 287.270 ;-- Am. 1953, Act 172, Imd. Eff. June 4, 1953 ;-- Am. 1969, Act 195, Eff. Mar. 20, 1970 ;-- Am. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973
Admin Rule: R 285.129.1 of the Michigan Administrative Code.


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287.270a Repealed. 1969, Act 195, Eff. Mar. 20, 1970.


Compiler's Notes: The repealed section pertained to vaccination of dog sold by licensed kennel.


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287.270b Kennel licensing ordinance.

Sec. 10b.

Any city, township or village having in its employment a full-time animal control officer may adopt an ordinance providing for the issuance of kennel licenses by the animal control officer on the same terms, conditions and fees as is provided in section 10. Upon the adoption of the ordinance the city, township or village shall be excepted from the provisions of sections 10 and 11 of this act.


History: Add. 1966, Act 132, Eff. Mar. 10, 1967 ;-- Am. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973


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287.271 Rules governing kennel dogs.

Sec. 11.

The licensee of a kennel shall, at all times, keep 1 of such tags attached to a collar on each dog 4 months old or over kept by him under a kennel license. No dog bearing a kennel tag shall be permitted to stray or be taken anywhere outside the limits of the kennel. This section does not prohibit the taking of dogs having a kennel license outside the limits of the kennel temporarily and in leash, nor does it prohibit the taking of such dogs out of the kennel temporarily for the purpose of hunting, breeding, trial or show.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5255 ;-- CL 1948, 287.271


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287.272 Lost tags.

Sec. 12.

If any dog tag is lost, it shall be replaced without cost by the county treasurer, upon application by the owner of the dog, and upon production of such license and a sworn statement of the facts regarding the loss of such tag.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5256 ;-- CL 1948, 287.272


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287.273 License and tag; transferability.

Sec. 13.

No license or license tag issued for 1 dog shall be transferable to another dog. Whenever the ownership or possession of any dog is permanently transferred from 1 person to another within the same county, the license of such dog may be likewise transferred, upon notice given to the county treasurer who shall note such transfer upon his record. This act does not require the procurement of a new license, or the transfer of a license already secured, when the possession of a dog is temporarily transferred, for the purpose of hunting game, or for breeding, trial, or show, in the state of Michigan.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5257 ;-- CL 1948, 287.273


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287.274 Application for license blanks and tags; issuance of dog licenses and tags; fee; return of unused tags, books, and receipts; contents of receipt; paying over money; resolution providing that clerk perform duties of treasurer.

Sec. 14.

(1) Every township or city treasurer shall, on or before December 1 each year, apply to the county treasurer for necessary license blanks and tags for the ensuing year and shall issue dog licenses and tags in a manner prescribed for issuing licenses by the county treasurer. Every township or city treasurer shall receive for the services of licensing dogs a reasonable fee at a rate determined by the county board of commissioners for each dog license issued.

(2) Each township or city treasurer shall not later than March 1 each year, or June 1 each year for a county operating under section 6(3)(b) or (c), return to the county treasurer all unused tags, and the book or books from which dog licenses have been issued, containing receipts properly filled out, and showing the name of the person issued each license and the number of each license issued and a full description of each dog licensed. The township or city treasurer shall on or before March 1 each year, or June 1 each year for a county operating under section 6(3)(b) or (c), pay over all money received for issuing licenses less the amount set by the board of commissioners to be retained by the township or village for each license issued.

(3) A city may, by resolution of its legislative body, provide that its clerk shall perform the duties by this act imposed on the treasurer. Upon the adoption of the resolution, the treasurer of a city is not required to issue licenses under this act but the clerk of the city shall perform, in the manner and under the terms and conditions, and with the same compensation, all of the duties imposed upon city treasurers by this act.

(4) A township treasurer, city treasurer, or city clerk may enter an agreement with the county treasurer for the county treasurer to perform the duties of the township treasurer, city treasurer, or city clerk under this act.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1921, Act 310, Eff. Aug. 18, 1921 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 322, Eff. Aug. 27, 1925 ;-- CL 1929, 5258 ;-- Am. 1933, Act 79, Imd. Eff. May 19, 1933 ;-- Am. 1947, Act 168, Eff. Oct. 11, 1947 ;-- CL 1948, 287.274 ;-- Am. 1977, Act 317, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1978 ;-- Am. 1998, Act 390, Imd. Eff. Nov. 30, 1998 ;-- Am. 2000, Act 438, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 2001


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287.274a Issuance of dog license; information to be provided to dog owner; definitions.

Sec. 14a.

(1) When issuing a dog license pursuant to section 14, a county treasurer, city clerk, city treasurer, township treasurer, or the authorized agent of a city or township treasurer, including, but not limited to, a licensed veterinarian, an animal control shelter, or an animal protection shelter, shall also provide information to the dog owner regarding both of the following:

(a) The availability of microchip implantation and registration for dogs by a licensed veterinarian, an animal control shelter, or an animal protection shelter.

(b) The availability of a statewide tattoo identification registry for dogs maintained by the state department of agriculture.

(2) As used in this section, "animal control shelter" and "animal protection shelter" mean those terms as defined in section 1 of 1969 PA 287, MCL 287.331, and are facilities registered with the state department of agriculture pursuant to section 6 of 1969 PA 287, MCL 287.336.


History: Add. 2006, Act 551, Eff. Mar. 30, 2007


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287.275 County treasurer's record; inspection.

Sec. 15.

The county treasurer shall keep a record of all dog licenses, and all kennel licenses, issued during the year in each city and township in his or her county. Such record shall contain the name and address of the person to whom each license is issued and the expiration date of each license. For an individual license, the record shall also state the breed, sex, age, color, and markings of the dog licensed; and for a kennel license, it shall state the place where the business is conducted. The record is a public record and shall be open to inspection during business hours. The county treasurer shall also keep an accurate record of all license fees collected by the county treasurer or paid over to him or her by any city or township treasurer.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5259 ;-- CL 1948, 287.275 ;-- Am. 1998, Act 390, Imd. Eff. Nov. 30, 1998


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287.276 Listing of dogs; compensation of supervisor; appointment, duties, and compensation of animal control officer.

Sec. 16.

The supervisor of each township and the assessor of every city, annually, on taking his assessment of property as required by law, may make diligent inquiry as to the number of dogs owned, harbored or kept by all persons in his assessing district; and on or before June 1, make a complete report to the county treasurer, for his county, on a blank form furnished by the director of agriculture, setting forth the name of every owner, or keeper, of any dog, subject to license under this act, how many of each sex are owned by him, and if a kennel license is maintained such fact shall be also stated. Every supervisor or assessor shall receive for his services in listing such dogs at a rate determined by the board of supervisors for each dog so listed, which sums shall be paid out of the general fund of the county. In any city having a population of 5,000 or more, the county board of supervisors may by resolution appoint for a term of 2 years, an animal control officer, who shall perform in and for the city all the duties which this act prescribes for the supervisors of townships, and who shall receive the same compensation as is herein provided for supervisors. The board of supervisors of any county may, by resolution, appoint for the county for a term of 2 years an animal control officer whose duties and compensation shall be such as shall be prescribed by the board of supervisors and who may be delegated the duties required by this section to be performed by the supervisors and assessors without extra compensation.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 322, Eff. Aug. 27, 1925 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 327, Imd. Eff. May 26, 1925 ;-- CL 1929, 5260 ;-- Am. 1933, Act 79, Imd. Eff. May 19, 1933 ;-- Am. 1941, Act 278, Eff. Jan. 10, 1942 ;-- Am. 1947, Act 168, Eff. Oct. 11, 1947 ;-- CL 1948, 287.276 ;-- Am. 1967, Act 197, Eff. Nov. 2, 1967 ;-- Am. 1968, Act 38, Eff. Jan. 1, 1969 ;-- Am. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973


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287.277 Identification and location of unlicensed dogs; public nuisance; list; commencement of proceedings.

Sec. 17.

The county treasurer may, based on records of the dogs actually licensed in each city or township of the county and any report under section 16, identify and locate all unlicensed dogs. A dog required to be licensed under this act that is unlicensed is a public nuisance. The county treasurer shall immediately list all unlicensed dogs identified under this section and shall deliver copies of the list to the prosecuting attorney of the county. Upon receipt of the name of an owner of an unlicensed dog from the county treasurer, the prosecuting attorney shall commence proceedings against the owner of the dog as required by this act.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 322, Eff. Aug. 27, 1925 ;-- CL 1929, 5261 ;-- Am. 1933, Act 79, Imd. Eff. May 19, 1933 ;-- CL 1948, 287.277 ;-- Am. 1967, Act 197, Eff. Nov. 2, 1967 ;-- Am. 1968, Act 38, Eff. Jan. 1, 1969 ;-- Am. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973 ;-- Am. 1998, Act 390, Imd. Eff. Nov. 30, 1998 ;-- Am. 2014, Act 32, Imd. Eff. Mar. 11, 2014


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287.278 Killing of dog molesting wildlife.

Sec. 18.

A law enforcement officer may kill a dog determined to be molesting wildlife and not hunting as defined in this act.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 322, Eff. Aug. 27, 1925 ;-- CL 1929, 5262 ;-- CL 1948, 287.278 ;-- Am. 1973, Act 32, Imd. Eff. June 14, 1973


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287.279 Killing of dog pursuing, worrying, or wounding livestock or poultry, or attacking person; damages for trespass; effect of license tag.

Sec. 19.

Any person including a law enforcement officer may kill any dog which he sees in the act of pursuing, worrying, or wounding any livestock or poultry or attacking persons, and there shall be no liability on such person in damages or otherwise, for such killing. Any dog that enters any field or enclosure which is owned by or leased by a person producing livestock or poultry, outside of a city, unaccompanied by his owner or his owner's agent, shall constitute a trespass, and the owner shall be liable in damages. Except as provided in this section, it shall be unlawful for any person, other than a law enforcement officer, to kill or injure or attempt to kill or injure any dog which bears a license tag for the current year.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5263 ;-- CL 1948, 287.279 ;-- Am. 1959, Act 42, Eff. Mar. 19, 1960 ;-- Am. 1973, Act 32, Imd. Eff. June 14, 1973


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287.279a Killing dog or other animal; use of high altitude decompression chamber or electrocution prohibited.

Sec. 19a.

An animal control officer or other person killing a dog or other animal pursuant to the laws of this state shall not use a high altitude decompression chamber or electrocution for that killing.


History: Add. 1980, Act 382, Eff. Mar. 31, 1981


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287.280 Loss or damage to livestock or poultry caused by dogs; complaint; examination; summons; proceedings; killing of dog; liability of owner or keeper.

Sec. 20.

If a person sustains any loss or damage to livestock or poultry that is caused by dogs, or if the livestock of a person is necessarily destroyed because of having been bitten by a dog, the person or his or her agent or attorney may complain to the township supervisor or a township officer or other qualified person designated by the township board of the township in which the damage occurred. The complaint shall be in writing, signed by the person making it, and shall state when, where, what, and how much damage was done, and, if known, by whose dog or dogs. The township supervisor or a township officer or other qualified person designated by the township board shall at once examine the place where the alleged damage was sustained and the livestock or poultry injured or killed, if practicable. He or she shall also examine under oath, or affirmation, any witness called. After making diligent inquiry in relation to the claim, the township supervisor or a township officer or other person designated by the township board shall determine whether damage has been sustained and the amount of that damage, and, if possible, who was the owner of the dog or dogs that did the damage. If during the course of the proceedings the owner of the dog causing the loss or damage to the livestock becomes known, the township supervisor or a township officer or other person designated by the township board shall request the district court judge to immediately issue a summons against the owner commanding him or her to appear before the township supervisor or township officer or other person designated by the township board and show cause why the dog should not be killed. The summons may be served anyplace within the county in which the damage occurred, and shall be made returnable not less than 2 nor more than 6 days from the date stated in the summons and shall be served at least 2 days before the time of appearance mentioned in the summons. Upon the return day fixed in the summons the township supervisor or township officer or other person designated by the township board shall proceed to determine whether the loss or damage to the livestock was caused by the dog, and if so he or she shall immediately notify the sheriff or the animal control officer of the county of that fact and upon notification the sheriff or the animal control officer shall kill the dog wherever found. Any owner or keeper of the dog or dogs shall be liable to the county in a civil action for all damages and costs paid by the county on any claim as provided in this section.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5264 ;-- Am. 1937, Act 47, Imd. Eff. May 18, 1937 ;-- CL 1948, 287.280 ;-- Am. 1968, Act 38, Eff. Jan. 1, 1969 ;-- Am. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973 ;-- Am. 1989, Act 45, Imd. Eff. June 12, 1989


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287.281 Report of examination.

Sec. 21.

If after making the examination required in section 20, the township supervisor or other person designated by the township board has determined that damage has been sustained by the complainant, the township supervisor or other person designated by the township board, upon payment to him or her of his or her costs up to that time by the complainant, shall deliver a report of the examination and all papers relating to the case to the county board of commissioners of the county in which the loss was sustained. The report shall be filed in the office of the county board of commissioners. If the complainant has not paid the costs, the township supervisor or other person designated by the township board shall state that fact in the report and the amount of the unpaid costs.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1929, Act 131, Eff. Aug. 28, 1929 ;-- CL 1929, 5265 ;-- CL 1948, 287.281 ;-- Am. 1980, Act 223, Imd. Eff. July 18, 1980


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287.282 Damage to livestock or poultry by dogs; fees of justice, inclusion in damages.

Sec. 22.

Justices of the peace, for the services rendered under this act, shall receive $4.00 for each case, and 10 cents per mile for each mile traveled, to be paid by the claimant in each case. In all cases where damages are awarded, the fees paid by claimants shall be included in the amount of such damages.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5266 ;-- CL 1948, 287.282 ;-- Am. 1958, Act 26, Eff. Sept. 13, 1958


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287.283 Payment for amount of loss or damage; costs; investigation.

Sec. 23.

(1) When the county board of commissioners of the county receives a report of the township supervisor or other person designated by the township board pursuant to section 21, if it appears from the report that a certain amount of damage has been sustained by the claimant, the county board of commissioners shall immediately draw their order on the treasurer of the county in favor of the claimant for the amount of loss or damage which the claimant has sustained, together with all necessary and proper costs incurred. If the claim filed with the board appears from the report filed to be illegal or unjust, the board may make an investigation of the case and make its award accordingly.

(2) An amount awarded pursuant to this section shall be paid by the county out of its general fund. A payment shall not be made for any item which has already been paid by the owner of the dog or dogs doing the injury. If a payment is made by the county for any livestock or poultry bitten by a dog or dogs, the payment shall not exceed the amount allowed by the county board of commissioners.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1925, Act 31, Eff. Aug. 27, 1925 ;-- Am. 1927, Act 52, Eff. Sept. 5, 1927 ;-- Am. 1929, Act 131, Eff. Aug. 28, 1929 ;-- CL 1929, 5267 ;-- Am. 1931, Act 286, Eff. Sept. 18, 1931 ;-- Am. 1945, Act 233, Eff. Sept. 6, 1945 ;-- CL 1948, 287.283 ;-- Am. 1980, Act 223, Imd. Eff. July 18, 1980


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287.284 Board of county auditors; duties.

Sec. 24.

In a county having a board of county auditors, that board shall receive, audit, and determine all claims for damages under this act, and when a claim is found to be legal and just, the board of county auditors shall order its payment out of the general fund of the county. A township supervisor or other person designated by the township board in a county having a board of county auditors shall deliver the report of investigation under this act to the board of county auditors.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5268 ;-- CL 1948, 287.284 ;-- Am. 1980, Act 223, Imd. Eff. July 18, 1980


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287.285 Saving clause; disposition of dog fund; expense of dog department in cities, payment.

Sec. 25.

Any valid claims for loss or damage to live stock which have accrued under any general or local laws, prior to the taking effect of this act, shall not abate by reason of the repeal of such laws by the operation of this act, but all such claims, and all claims arising under this act and all expense incurred in any county in enforcing the provisions of this act shall be paid out of the general fund of the county. At the time this act takes effect, all moneys then in the “dog fund” in the hands of township or city treasurers, derived from the taxation of dogs under existing laws, shall be turned into the county general fund: Provided, In all cities having a well regulated dog department, the reasonable expense of maintaining the same, shall be borne by said county, duly audited by the board of supervisors, and in any county having a board of county auditors, said board of county auditors shall audit said reasonable bills, to be paid out of the general fund of the county.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5269 ;-- CL 1948, 287.285


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287.286 Penalties; disposition of fines.

Sec. 26.

Any person or police officer, violating or failing or refusing to comply with any of the provisions of this act shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall pay a fine not less than $10.00 nor more than $100.00, or shall be imprisoned in the county jail for not exceeding 3 months, or both such fine and imprisonment. Any person presenting a false claim, knowing it to be false, or receiving any money on such false claim, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction, shall pay a fine of not less than $10.00 nor more than $100.00, or shall be imprisoned in the county jail for not exceeding 3 months, or both such fine and imprisonment. All fines collected under the provisions of this act shall be paid to the treasurer of the county to be credited to the library fund of the county.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5270 ;-- CL 1948, 287.286 ;-- Am. 1969, Act 195, Eff. Mar. 20, 1970


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287.286a Sworn complaint; contents; issuance of summons; hearing; order; penalty for disobedience; costs; audit and payment of claims.

Sec. 26a.

(1) A district court magistrate or the district or common pleas court shall issue a summons similar to the summons provided for in section 20 to show cause why a dog should not be killed, upon a sworn complaint that any of the following exist:

(a) After January 10 and before June 15 in each year a dog over 6 months old is running at large unaccompanied by its owner or is engaged in lawful hunting and is not under the reasonable control of its owner without a license attached to the collar of the dog.

(b) A dog, licensed or unlicensed, has destroyed property or habitually causes damage by trespassing on the property of a person who is not the owner.

(c) A dog, licensed or unlicensed, has attacked or bitten a person.

(d) A dog has shown vicious habits or has molested a person when lawfully on the public highway.

(e) A dog duly licensed and wearing a license tag has run at large contrary to this act.

(2) After a hearing the district court magistrate or the district or common pleas court may either order the dog killed, or confined to the premises of the owner. If the owner disobeys this order the owner may be punished under section 26. Costs as in a civil case shall be taxed against the owner of the dog, and collected by the county. The county board of commissioners shall audit and pay claims for services of officers rendered pursuant to this section, unless the claims are paid by the owner of the dog.


History: Add. 1927, Act 114, Eff. Sept. 5, 1927 ;-- CL 1929, 5271 ;-- CL 1948, 287.286a ;-- Am. 1977, Act 261, Imd. Eff. Dec. 8, 1977


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287.286b Penalty for stealing or confining licensed dog.

Sec. 26b.

Any person who shall steal, or confine and secrete any dog licensed under this act or kept under a kennel license, unless legally authorized to do so, or unless such confining be justifiable in the protection of person, property or game, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof shall be subject to a fine of not less than $50.00 nor more than $100.00, or imprisonment in the county jail for not less than 60 nor more than 90 days, or both in the discretion of the court.


History: Add. 1939, Act 17, Eff. Sept. 29, 1939 ;-- CL 1948, 287.286b


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287.287 Recovery of value of dog illegally killed.

Sec. 27.

Nothing in this act shall be construed to prevent the owner of a licensed dog from recovery, by action at law, from any police officer or other person, the value of any dog illegally killed by such police officer or other person.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5272 ;-- CL 1948, 287.287


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287.288 Common law liability.

Sec. 28.

Nothing in this act contained shall be construed as limiting the common law liability of the owner of a dog for damages committed by it.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5273 ;-- CL 1948, 287.288


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287.289 Dogs imported temporarily.

Sec. 29.

None of the provisions of this act shall be construed to require the licensing of any dog imported into this state, for a period not exceeding 30 days, for show, trial, breeding or hunting purposes.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- CL 1929, 5274 ;-- CL 1948, 287.289


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287.289a Animal control agency; establishment; employees; jurisdiction; contents of animal control ordinance.

Sec. 29a.

The board of county commissioners by ordinance may establish an animal control agency which shall employ at least 1 animal control officer. The board of county commissioners may assign the animal control agency to any existing county department. The animal control agency shall have jurisdiction to enforce this act in any city, village or township which does not have an animal control ordinance. The county's animal control ordinance shall provide for animal control programs, facilities, personnel and necessary expenses incurred in animal control. The ordinance is subject to sections 6 and 30.


History: Add. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973


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287.289b County animal control officers; employment standards.

Sec. 29b.

(1) The board of county commissioners shall adopt minimum employment standards relative to the recruitment, selection and appointment of animal control officers. The minimum standards shall include:

(a) Requirements for physical, educational, mental and moral fitness.

(b) A minimum course of study of not less than 100 instructional hours as prescribed by the department of agriculture.

(2) Subdivision (b) shall not apply if the animal control officer is a police officer or has served at least 3 years as an animal control officer.


History: Add. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973


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287.289c Municipal animal control officers; employment standards.

Sec. 29c.

Any city, village or township adopting or having adopted an animal control ordinance shall provide in the ordinance that the minimum employment standards relative to the recruitment, selection and appointment of animal control officers shall at least equal the minimum standards set forth in section 29b.


History: Add. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973


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287.290 Municipal animal control ordinances; certificate of vaccination.

Sec. 30.

A city, village or township by action of its governing body may adopt an animal control ordinance to regulate the licensing, payment of claims and providing for the enforcement thereof. A city, village, county or township adopting a dog licensing ordinance or ordinances shall also require that such application for a license, except kennel licenses, shall be accompanied by proof of vaccination of the dog for rabies by a valid certificate of vaccination for rabies, with a vaccine licensed by the United States department of agriculture, signed by an accredited veterinarian.


History: 1919, Act 339, Eff. Aug. 14, 1919 ;-- Am. 1921, Act 310, Eff. Aug. 18, 1921 ;-- Am. 1929, Act 329, Eff. Aug. 28, 1929 ;-- CL 1929, 5275 ;-- Am. 1933, Act 189, Imd. Eff. June 28, 1933 ;-- Am. 1941, Act 288, Eff. Jan. 10, 1942 ;-- Am. 1943, Act 209, Imd. Eff. Apr. 17, 1943 ;-- CL 1948, 287.290 ;-- Am. 1949, Act 22, Eff. Sept. 23, 1949 ;-- Am. 1952, Act 125, Eff. Sept. 18, 1952 ;-- Am. 1953, Act 172, Imd. Eff. June 4, 1953 ;-- Am. 1959, Act 211, Eff. Mar. 19, 1960 ;-- Am. 1969, Act 195, Eff. Mar. 20, 1970 ;-- Am. 1971, Act 229, Eff. Mar. 30, 1972 ;-- Am. 1972, Act 349, Imd. Eff. Jan. 9, 1973


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Rendered 8/21/2018 10:32:06 Michigan Compiled Laws Complete Through PA 264 and includes 267-336 of 2018
© 2018 Legislative Council, State of Michigan Courtesy of www.legislature.mi.gov