Public Nuisance

Public Nuisance

Should you want to file a Public Nuisance complaint with the Elk Grove Police Department's Animal Control Unit involving a barking dog., this information is designed to answer common questions related to the process of filing a formal complaint, possible investigation/enforcement action by the Animal Control Unit, local and state laws related to definitions, timeframe, conditions of a barking dog, and documentation required to complete this process.

Our goal is to provide resources and information to both you and the animal owner to help resolve this situation in a peaceful manner. Please remember it is important that you as the person reporting the issue participate in the process. This includes completing all required documentation and returning it to our office within 30days from the date paperwork is turned in.


California Civil Code section 3480:

A public nuisance is one which affects at the same time an entire community or neighborhood, or any considerable number of persons, although the extent of the annoyance or damage inflicted upon individuals may be unequal.

Elk Grove Municipal Code section 8.01.020: Definitions.

For the purposes of this title, the following terms, phrases, words, and their derivations shall have the meanings given in this chapter, unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning:

P. "P" Definitions

6. "Public nuisance" means any animal which either:

a. Molests passersby or passing vehicles;

b. Attacks other animals or humans;

c. Trespasses on school or park grounds;

d. Is repeatedly at large, not under the custody, control, or possession of the owner, or not properly confined on the owner's property;

e. Damages public property;

f. Disrupts the peace by continuously and incessantly barking, howling, crying, yelping , baying, or making any other noise at any time during the day or night to the disturbance of any other person. "Continuous and incessant" is defined as frequent barking, howling, crying, yelping , baying, or any other noise of ten (10) minutes or more duration within a thirty (30) minute period; provided, that at the time of the complaint no person or persons were trespassing or threatening to trespass upon the private property of the owner or the animal was not being teased or provoked in any manner;

g. Is allowed to run at large while in the stage of heat;

h. Is allowed to defecate or urinate on public property or on private property without the consent of the owner.

Elk Grove Municipal Code section 8.02.180: Animals designated as public nuisances prohibited - Abatement procedures.

A. Public Nuisance Prohibited. It is unlawful for any person to keep, have upon premises owned, occupied, or controlled by him or her within the City, any animal found to be a public nuisance as defined by this title.

B. Public Nuisance Abatement.

1. Whenever an Animal Control Officer has reasonable cause to believe that a public nuisance, as defined in this section, exists, an Animal Control Officer may conduct an investigation of such alleged nuisance.

2. If, upon such investigation, an Animal Control Officer determines that a nuisance does not exist, no further action shall be taken. If the complaining party wishes to pursue the matter, he or she may pursue such other remedies as provided by law.

C. Violation. Every person who maintains, permits, or allows a public nuisance to exist upon his or her property or premises, and every person occupying or leasing the property or premises of another who maintains, permits, or allows a public nuisance to exist thereon, after reasonable notice in writing from an Animal Control Officer, District Attorney, City Attorney or prosecuting attorney to remove, discontinue or abate the same has been served upon such person which shall be punishable pursuant to EGMC Chapter 1.04. The existence of such nuisance of each and every day after the service of such notice shall be deemed a separate and distinct offense, and it is the duty of the Animal Control Officer or the City Attorney to prosecute all persons guilty of violating this section by continuous prosecutions until the nuisance is abated. [Ord. 4-2013 §2, eff. 4-12-2013; Ord. 7-2009 §3, eff. 5-1-2009; Ord. 48-2008 §3, eff. 11-7-2008]

Elk Grove Municipal Code section 1.04.010:

It is unlawful for a person to violate a provision, or to fail to comply with a requirement, of this code. The City may enforce any such violation of the provisions of this code by any one (1) or more of the following methods, at the City's discretion:

A. Criminal penalties pursuant to this chapter.

B. Denial, forfeiture, or revocation of any permit granted by the City.

C. Administrative citation and penalties, to the extent authorized by this code.

D. Any other remedy available to the City, including civil injunction or abatement of public nuisance

To file a report regarding a bark nuisance, please contact our office Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 4:00 pm at (916) 687-3042.

When filing a report, we will mail out to you bark logs which you and, at least, one other neighbor will be required to keep a bark log. Each Barking Log will require a minimum of 7 days and maximum of 10 days of dates and times of when the dog is barking.

Once our office receives the completed paperwork from both parties the case will be reviewed by a member of our staff. Based on all documentation received, a determination will be made on how best to resolve the matter. A member of our staff will be in contact with you if there are any further questions as well as the final determination of the case.

Thank you for your cooperation in this matter. If you have any further questions or concerns please feel free to contact our office at (916) 687-3042.