City of Minneapolis rewrites pet laws with proposed changes

Minneapolis Animal Care and Control officials are rewriting city ordinances to streamline standards for pets and their owners. MACC is in charge of responding to and investigating animal reports throughout the city, as well as operating an animal shelter.

Last year, the Minneapolis city council asked MACC to review the ordinances that govern their practices. After months of research, the department announced in late October they had created an ordinance that would define the standards for pet ownership and animal protection in the city, according to the department’s website.

One of the proposed changes would directly address one of MACC's most frequent complaints: barking dogs: The new ordinance would clarify both the time of day and amount of time an animal must be making noise before the department will intervene.

Here are some of the notable proposed changes: 

Nuisance complaints

  • Noise must be plainly audible across a property line or through partitions common to two residences and must take place for 15 minutes between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. or for 10 minutes between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m.

Leashing and tethering

  • Tethered animals must be monitored and the owner nearby to intervene when necessary to prevent injury
  • Leaving dogs tethered while no one is home is prohibited

License and permit requirements

  • New permits would allow residents to own non-toxic, non-venomous and non-poisonous reptiles and amphibians as pets
  • Dangerous reptiles and amphibians and some larger turtles will continue to be prohibited as pets
  • No licensing requirement for rabbits (but including rabbits in multiple animal permit requirements)

Responsible pet ownership

Pet owners are required to provide:

  • Adequate food, water, and shelter
  • Access to care, treatment, and transportation to veterinary care
  • Appropriate space and exercise
  • Access to care to prevent pain and suffering

Number of pets

  • Up to four animals (no more than three of which can be dogs) per dwelling unit are allowed without the need for a multiple animal permit