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Laws for Your Dogs To Live By

Pet Law -  NYC Administrative Code Sec. 27-2009.1:  If you sneak in a dog in violation of your building’s house rules or lease,you may still be able to keep it because under the law if you openly and notoriously harbor the pet, and the owner or its agents have knowledge of this and fail witihin three months to begin an action against you, then the no-pet provision is deemed waived and you and your dog are home free.

The law applies to all co-ops in the City, but due to a split in the courts, only to condos in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island, not to those in Manhattan and the Bronx. (See, Just Visiting.)

To read the law, click here.

Pooper Scooper Law - NYS Public Health Law Sec. 1310: You have to pick up after your dog, and if you don’t you can be subject to a fine of up to $250.

To read the law, click here.




The NYC Health Code was amended on March 16, 2010, and makes a number of changes to the laws governing dogs. (It also now makes it legal to have honey bees.)

Leash Law – NYC Health Code: Sec. 161.05: Dogs in public must be restrained by a leash not more than six feet long, and notices of violation may now be issued by special patrol men or women delegated such duties by their employers.

To read the law click here



Off-Leash: With proof of current dog license and rabies vaccination, dogs can run off leash in designataed areas of certain parks from the time the park opens until 9 a.m. and from 9 p.m. until the park closes.

Get the details here.



Licenses - NYC Health Code Sec. 161.04 requires every dog owner to have a NYC license tag attached to the dog’s collar when in public. Recent amendments authorize: issuance of licenses for service dogs without a fee, sale of dog licenses in any manner, including electronically, and issuance of violations by special patrol men and women.

You can get more information and obtain or renew a license application online.

To read the law click here.



Rabies Vaccination – NYC Health Code Sec. 161.06 requires all dogs and cats three months of age and older to get a primary vaccination against rabies, and re-vaccination or booster vaccination for the life of the dog or cat in accordance with Sec. 11.29 of this Code.

To read the law click here.



Dangerous Dog:  The recent amendments repeal NYC Health Code Sec. 161.07  and recodifies the section in its entirety.  It now specifies procedures for addressing the problem of dogs that are a  danger because their owners are unable or unwilling to control them.  The new section also provides a hearing to any owner disagreeing with the Department’s assessment of his dog, among other things.

To read the law click here.

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