Manatee County Pet Rules


 Manatee County Animal Services has a new animal ordinance which took effect May 14, 2012. We would like to provide the animal owners as well as the citizens of Manatee County a highlight of the ordinance. Rabies vaccinations are required for all dogs, cats and ferrets. A Manatee County license tag is required annually for dogs and cats, which they are required to wear.  

Dogs and cats are not allowed to run at large. Your dog or cat must be on a leash no longer than eight (8) feet in length when the dog or cat is off the property of the owner and must be under the physical control of the owner or custodian. All dogs and cats must be under the direct control of the owner or custodian while on the property of the owner or custodian. This means the dog or cat must be confined on the property by a fence (the ordinance does recognize invisible fences, provided they are in working order), chain, leash, or cord of sufficient strength to restrain the animal or the animal shall be attended and supervised by a competent person by hand or voice control when on the property of the owner or custodian or property the owner or custodian has the right to use.  

The ordinance requires pet owners to remove feces deposited by their animal from any public property or private property of another. Animals are not allowed to be left in vehicles unattended. The extreme heat could kill your pet. Animals are also not allowed to be left in the open bed of a pickup truck or similar vehicle without being confined in a carrier or restrained by a minimum of two tethers, each attached to opposite sides of the truck or other vehicle. 

If an animal owner is issued a citation, he or she can elect to pay the citation or contest it in court. The person cited is allowed 30 days to make this decision, however, after this time period, if the citation is not paid or contested, they no longer have the right to contest the citation and may end up in jail if the fine is not paid.