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S*1130
Session 113 (1999-2000) 

S*1130(Rat #0304, Act #0293 of 2000)  General Bill, By Leventis

Similar(H 3998) A BILL TO AMEND ARTICLE 1, CHAPTER 3 OF TITLE 47, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO REGULATION BY COUNTIES OF DOGS AND OTHER DOMESTIC PETS, SO AS TO, AMONG OTHER THINGS, MAKE THE ARTICLE SPECIFICALLY APPLICABLE TO CATS, PROVIDE FOR IMPOUNDING AND ADOPTION OF ANIMALS, INCREASE THE MAXIMUM PENALTY FOR VIOLATING SECTION 47-3-50, PROVIDE FOR THE PROMULGATION OF CERTAIN REGULATIONS BY THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROL, PROVIDE THAT WHENEVER AN ANIMAL SHELTER ACCEPTS OR COMES INTO POSSESSION OF A DOG OR CAT, THE SHELTER IMMEDIATELY AND THOROUGHLY MUST SCAN THE ANIMAL FOR ANY IMPLANTED MICROCHIP, OR SIMILAR DEVICE, WHICH PROVIDES EVIDENCE OF OWNERSHIP AND, UPON FINDING THIS DEVICE, IMMEDIATELY MAKE A GOOD FAITH EFFORT TO CONTACT THE IDENTIFIED OWNER, AND PROVIDE FOR RELATED MATTERS; AND TO AMEND ARTICLE 7, CHAPTER 3 OF TITLE 47, RELATING TO ANIMAL EUTHANASIA, SO AS TO AMONG OTHER THINGS, REVISE THE PROVISIONS OF LAW REGARDING THE ALLOWABLE METHODS OF EUTHANASIA AND AUTHORIZE A CERTIFIED EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES TO ADMINISTER EUTHANASIA, INCREASE THE MAXIMUM PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS OF THIS ARTICLE, AND AUTHORIZE THE ATTORNEY GENERAL TO BRING AN ACTION TO ENJOIN A VIOLATION OF THIS ARTICLE; AND TO PROVIDE THAT TRAINING REQUIRED PURSUANT TO THIS ACT MUST BE COMPLETED WITHIN EIGHTEEN MONTHS OF THIS ACT'S EFFECTIVE DATE.-AMENDED TITLE 02/09/00 Senate Introduced and read first time SJ-3 02/09/00 Senate Referred to Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources SJ-3 03/09/00 Senate Committee report: Favorable with amendment Agriculture and Natural Resources SJ-14 03/21/00 Senate Amended SJ-27 03/29/00 Senate Amended SJ-19 03/29/00 Senate Read second time SJ-19 03/29/00 Senate Ordered to third reading with notice of amendments SJ-19 03/30/00 Senate Read third time and sent to House SJ-12 04/04/00 House Introduced and read first time HJ-6 04/04/00 House Referred to Committee on Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs HJ-7 04/19/00 House Committee report: Favorable with amendment Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs HJ-7 04/26/00 House Requests for debate-Rep(s). Fleming, Cato, Trotter, Whatley and Knotts HJ-23 05/03/00 House Requests for debate removed-Rep(s). Fleming, Cato and Whatley HJ-26 05/03/00 House Requests for debate-Rep(s). Cotty HJ-27 05/03/00 House Amended HJ-27 05/03/00 House Read second time HJ-27 05/04/00 House Read third time and returned to Senate with amendments HJ-15 05/04/00 Senate Concurred in House amendment and enrolled SJ-60 05/16/00 Ratified R 304 05/19/00 Signed By Governor 05/19/00 Effective date 05/19/00 06/05/00 Copies available 06/09/00 Act No. 293




(A293, R304, S1130)

AN ACT TO AMEND ARTICLE 1, CHAPTER 3 OF TITLE 47, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO REGULATION BY COUNTIES OF DOGS AND OTHER DOMESTIC PETS, SO AS TO, AMONG OTHER THINGS, MAKE THE ARTICLE SPECIFICALLY APPLICABLE TO CATS, PROVIDE FOR IMPOUNDING AND ADOPTION OF ANIMALS, INCREASE THE MAXIMUM PENALTY FOR VIOLATING SECTION 47-3-50, PROVIDE FOR THE PROMULGATION OF CERTAIN REGULATIONS BY THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROL, PROVIDE THAT WHENEVER AN ANIMAL SHELTER ACCEPTS OR COMES INTO POSSESSION OF A DOG OR CAT, THE SHELTER IMMEDIATELY AND THOROUGHLY MUST SCAN THE ANIMAL FOR ANY IMPLANTED MICROCHIP, OR SIMILAR DEVICE, WHICH PROVIDES EVIDENCE OF OWNERSHIP AND, UPON FINDING THIS DEVICE, IMMEDIATELY MAKE A GOOD FAITH EFFORT TO CONTACT THE IDENTIFIED OWNER, AND PROVIDE FOR RELATED MATTERS; TO AMEND ARTICLE 7, CHAPTER 3 OF TITLE 47, RELATING TO ANIMAL EUTHANASIA, SO AS TO, AMONG OTHER THINGS, REVISE THE PROVISIONS OF LAW REGARDING THE ALLOWABLE METHODS OF EUTHANASIA AND AUTHORIZE A CERTIFIED EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES TO ADMINISTER EUTHANASIA, INCREASE THE MAXIMUM PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS OF THIS ARTICLE, AND AUTHORIZE THE ATTORNEY GENERAL TO BRING AN ACTION TO ENJOIN A VIOLATION OF THIS ARTICLE; AND TO PROVIDE THAT TRAINING REQUIRED PURSUANT TO THIS ACT MUST BE COMPLETED WITHIN EIGHTEEN MONTHS OF THIS ACT'S EFFECTIVE DATE.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:

Regulation of domestic pets

SECTION 1. Article 1, Chapter 3 of Title 47 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:

"Article 1

Regulation by Counties and Municipalities

Section 47-3-10. For the purpose of this article:

(1) 'Animal' is defined as provided for in Chapter 1;

(2) 'Animal shelter' includes any premises designated by the county or municipal governing body for the purpose of impounding, care, adoption, or euthanasia of dogs and cats held under authority of this article;

(3) 'Dog' includes all members of the canine family, including foxes and other canines;

(4) A dog is deemed to be 'running at large' if off the premises of the owner or keeper and not under the physical control of the owner or keeper by means of a leash or other similar restraining device;

(5) A dog is deemed to be 'under restraint' if on the premises of its owner or keeper or if accompanied by its owner or keeper and under the physical control of the owner or keeper by means of a leash or other similar restraining device;

(6) 'Cat' includes all members of the feline family;

(7) 'Vicious dog' means any dog evidencing an abnormal inclination to attack persons or animals without provocation.

Section 47-3-20. The governing body of each county or municipality in this State may enact ordinances and promulgate regulations for the care and control of dogs, cats, and other animals and to prescribe penalties for violations.

Section 47-3-30. The governing body of the county or municipality is authorized to establish an animal shelter for the county or municipality for the purpose of impounding and quarantining dogs and quarantining cats and shall employ such personnel, including enforcement personnel, as may be necessary to administer the provisions of this article. If an animal shelter is established, funds to establish and operate the shelter and employ necessary personnel may be provided in the annual county or municipal appropriations.

Section 47-3-40. The county or municipal animal shelter personnel or governmental animal control officers shall pick up and impound or quarantine any dog running at large or quarantining any cat. To obtain release of his dog or cat, an owner or keeper must satisfy the animal shelter personnel that the dog or cat is currently inoculated against rabies and also pay an impound or quarantine fee determined by the governing body of the county or municipality. Payment of this fee bars prosecution under Section 47-3-50. All fees collected must be delivered to the county or municipal treasurer for deposit in the general fund of the county or municipality.

Section 47-3-50. (A) It is unlawful in any county or municipality adopting penalty provisions pursuant to the provisions of this article for any dog or cat owner or other keeper of a dog or cat to:

(1) allow his dog to run at large off of property owned, rented, or controlled by him;

(2) keep a vicious or unruly dog unless under restraint by a fence, chain, or other means so that the dog cannot reach persons not on land owned, leased, or controlled by him;

(3) release or take out of impoundment or quarantine without proper authority any dog or cat or resist county or municipal shelter personnel engaging in the capture and impoundment or quarantine of a dog or quarantining of a cat.

(B) Any person who violates the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined fifty dollars for a first offense and not more than one hundred dollars for each subsequent offense.

Section 47-3-55. (A) If an animal shelter accepts or comes into possession of a dog or cat, the shelter immediately and thoroughly must scan the dog or cat for a tatoo, any implanted microchip, or similar device, which provides evidence of ownership and, upon finding it, immediately must make a good faith effort to contact the identified owner as required by Section 47-3-540.

(B) If an animal shelter or its officers, directors, or staff have made a good faith effort to comply with the provisions of subsection (A), they must be held harmless, as well as the manufacturer, against any action at law or otherwise, civil or criminal, for failure to detect a microchip or similar device and undertake the action specified in subsection (A).

(C) If a dog or cat is adopted or redeemed from an animal shelter, a licensed veterinarian or an animal shelter employee under the direction of a licensed veterinarian may implant a microchip in the dog or cat adopted or redeemed. The animal shelter shall record the date the microchip was implanted, the name, address, and telephone number of the person adopting or redeeming the dog or cat, an identification number unique to the dog or cat adopted or redeemed, the name, address, and telephone number of the animal shelter that sheltered the dog or cat before adoption or redemption, and the date the dog or cat was adopted or redeemed. The animal shelter must keep a record of all microchips implanted pursuant to this subsection.

(D) The animal shelter is not required to adhere to subsection (A), if the necessary scanner is not provided free of charge or at a reasonable cost as determined by the county or municipality.

(E) The owner redeeming his dog or cat must elect to have a microchip implanted.

Section 47-3-60. (A) After any animal has been quarantined pursuant to South Carolina Rabies Control Act and is unclaimed by its owner, after the animal shelter employees have made a good faith effort to contact the identified owner as required by Section 47-3-540, the animal shelter employees, unless the animal must be kept pending disposition of a criminal or civil trial involving the animal or unless a hearing on the disposition of the animal is held prior to the trial, may dispose of the animal by adoption or by euthanasia or the animal may be turned over to any organization established for the purpose of caring for animals, such as the Humane Society.

(B) After any animal has been impounded for five days and is unclaimed by its owner, and after the animal shelter employees have made a good faith effort to contact the identified owner as required by Section 47-3-540, the animal shelter employees, unless the animal must be kept pending disposition of a criminal or civil trial involving the animal or unless a hearing on the disposition of the animal is held prior to the trial, may dispose of the animal by adoption or by euthanasia or the animal may be turned over to any organization established for the purpose of caring for animals, such as the Humane Society.

(C) Complete records must be kept by shelter officials as to the disposition of all animals impounded.

Section 47-3-70. Nothing in this article may be construed to limit the power of any municipality or county to prohibit animals from running at large, whether or not they have been inoculated as provided in this article; and nothing in this article may be construed as to limit the power of any municipality or county to regulate and control further in the county or municipality to enforce other and additional measures for the restriction and control of rabies.

Section 47-3-75. (A) An animal delivered to a veterinarian, a dog kennel, a cat kennel, an animal hospital, another animal care facility, or to a person who boards domestic animals on the person's premises for a fee may be transferred to an appropriate animal shelter ten days after the date the owner failed to pick up the animal as agreed to pursuant to a written contract or agreement. The animal may be transferred only if the written contract or agreement provides for the transfer and if an attempt is made to notify the owner by regular mail and by certified mail at the owner's last known address on the date the owner failed to pick up the animal as agreed.

(B) A person who boards animals of others pursuant to subsection (A) shall post written notice of the provisions of this section at the person's place of business.

(C) A person who fails to pick up an animal as provided for in subsection (A), who fails to pay his boarding fees in a timely manner, or who abandons an animal at an animal hospital, a dog kennel, a cat kennel, another animal care facility, or boarding facility is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, may be imprisoned not more than thirty days or fined not more than two hundred dollars."

Animal euthanasia and tranquilization

SECTION 2. Article 7, Chapter 3 of Title 47 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:

"Article 7

Animal Euthanasia and Tranquilization

Section 47-3-410. The term 'animal shelter' means any place or premises kept for the care, keeping, impounding, housing or boarding of any animal, whether the premises are owned or operated by a municipality, county, private association, institution, humane organization, or any other business or corporation.

Section 47-3-420. (A) Only the following methods of euthanasia may be used to kill animals impounded or quarantined in animal shelters, and the procedure applicable to the method selected must be strictly followed:

(1) Barbituric acid derivatives:

(a) intravenous or intracardial injection of a lethal solution;

(b) intraperitoneal injection of lethal solution when location of an injection into the vein is difficult or impossible;

(c) oral ingestion of powdered barbituric acid derivatives in capsules mixed with food or by manual administration of a solution;

(d) intravenous injection of these solutions must be specifically injected according to the directions of the manufacturers for intravenous injections;

(e) intracardial injection of these solutions must only be administered if the animal has been tranquilized with an approved, humane substance and the animal, at the time of the intracardial injection, is anesthetized or comatose;

(f) the solutions may not be administered via intraperitoneal, intrathoracic, intrapulmonary, subcutaneous, intramuscular, intrarenal, intrasplenic, or intrathecal routes or in any other nonvascular injection route except as provided above;

(g) administration of injections must be done only by a licensed veterinarian or by a euthanasia technician or Department of Natural Resources employee, trained and certified for this purpose in a euthanasia training class taught by a licensed South Carolina veterinarian, which must include training in tranquilizing animals. A person certified pursuant to this subitem must continue to maintain his proficiency by successfully completing a training course taught by a licensed South Carolina veterinarian every five years;

(h) all injections must be administered using an undamaged hypodermic needle of a size suitable for the size and species of animal;

(i) an animal shelter, governmental animal control agency, or the Department of Natural Resources (department) may obtain a barbituric acid derivative or tranquilizing agent by direct licensing. The animal shelter, governmental animal control agency, or department must apply for a Controlled Substance Registration Certificate from the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and a State Controlled Substances Registration from the Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC). If an animal shelter, governmental animal control agency, or the department is issued a certificate by the DEA and a registration by DHEC pursuant to this subitem, the animal shelter, governmental animal control agency director or his designee, and the department's applicant are responsible, for maintaining their respective records regarding the inventory, storage, and administration of controlled substances. An animal shelter, governmental animal control agency and its certified euthanasia technician, and the department and its certified employees are subject to inspection and audit by DHEC and the DEA regarding the recordkeeping, inventory, storage, and administration of controlled substances used under authority of this article.

(2) Carbon monoxide gas:

(a) dogs and cats, except animals under sixteen weeks of age, may be killed by bottled carbon monoxide gas administered in a tightly enclosed chamber. The chamber must be equipped with:

(i) internal lighting and a window providing direct visual surveillance of the collapse and death of any animal within the chamber;

(ii) the gas concentration process must be adequate to achieve a carbon monoxide gas concentration throughout the chamber of at least six percent within five minutes after any animal is placed in the chamber. The chamber must have a functioning gas concentration gauge attached to the chamber and a strong airtight seal must be maintained around the door;

(iii) the unit shall include an exhaust fan connected by a gas-tight duct to the outdoors capable of completely evacuating the gas from the chamber before it is opened after each use, except that this provision does not apply to chambers located out-of-doors;

(iv) animals must be left in the chamber for a period of no less than fifteen minutes from the time the gas concentration throughout the chamber reaches six percent.

(b) no person may euthanize an animal by gas emitted from any engine exhaust system.

(c) in all instances where a carbon monoxide chamber is used:

(i) no incompatible or hostile animals, or animals of different species, may be placed in any chamber simultaneously;

(ii) every chamber must be thoroughly cleaned after the completion of each full cycle. No live animals may be placed in the chamber with dead animals;

(iii) all animals must be examined by a veterinarian or certified euthanasia technician to ensure they are dead upon removal from the chamber;

(iv) all chambers must be inspected quarterly by an independent, qualified technician who is thoroughly knowledgeable with the operation and maintenance of the particular euthanasia chamber being used;

(v) an operational guide and maintenance instructions must be displayed in the room with the euthanasia chamber.

(3) Shooting:

Shooting may be used as a means of euthanasia only in an emergency situation to prevent extreme suffering or in which the safety of people or other animal life is threatened or where it is considered necessary by the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources to eliminate or control the population of feral animals.

(B) In any of the previously listed methods, an animal may not be left unattended between the time euthanasia procedures have commenced and the time death occurs, and the animal's body may not be disposed of until death is confirmed by a certified euthanasia technician.

Section 47-3-430. All animal shelters are subject to the provisions of Chapter 1 of Title 47.

Section 47-3-440. No person may kill any animal impounded or quarantined in an animal shelter by any means except as provided by this article. Any person who violates the provisions of this article is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, is subject to the penalty provisions in Chapter 1, Title 47 for each animal killed. The Attorney General of South Carolina may bring an action to enjoin a violation of this article.

Section 47-3-450. The provisions of this article do not apply to persons engaged in scientific endeavors by institutions of higher education."

Training period

SECTION 3. Any training required of personnel employed on the effective date of this act, which training is necessary to bring the employee into compliance with the provisions of this act, must be completed within eighteen months of the effective date of this act.

Time effective

SECTION 4. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.

Ratified the 16th day of May, 2000.

Approved the 19th day of May, 2000.

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Legislative Services Agency
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