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Exotic animal ordinance adopted in Coaldale

Published January 13. 2010 05:00PM

if you're thinking a bear, pig, monkey, alligator, weasel, venomous snake or scorpion might be just the pet for you, better think again if you live in Coaldale.

Council on Tuesday adopted an ordinance which bars residents from keeping wild and exotic creatures as pets.

If you already owns such an pet, you have 45 days to apply to the zoning office for a permit and nonconforming status for the animal.

Violating the rules could cost you up to $500 in fines and/or 90 days in jail.

The ordinance does allow ferrets, provided they are de-scented, spayed or neutered, vaccinated, kept leashed or caged when they are outdoors and not bred.

Vietnamese Potbellied Pigs are also allowed, but their owners must obtain a document from a licensed veterinarian that the animal is indeed a Vietnamese Potbellied Pig. the animals also must be spayed or neutered, vaccinated and not bred.

Also, the fostering or keeping of a service animal is permitted, but limited to one animal and its owner must have documentation that is has been trained or is being fostered with a training program administered by a nonprofit organization.

The ordinance further bans the trade, selling, adoption, exchange or transfer of wild or exotic animals. Violators must remove the animal from the borough, or turn it over to a borough official, who is authorized to give it to a zoo, release it to the wild or dispose of it in a humane manner.

The owner is liable for the cost of removing or placing the animal.

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