Frequently Asked Questions
When are the animal shelters open to the public?
The County of San Diego operates two animal shelters, find more info here »
How do I complain about a barking dog?
- If you live in unincorporated San Diego County and believe the dog is barking because it is suffering or in distress, call our emergency line: 619-236-2341.
- If the dog does not
seem to be in distress, you can make a noise complaint
to your local agency.
Why do I have to license and vaccinate my dog? He never leaves the house.
and local law requires that all dogs be vaccinated against rabies
- The primary reason is to prevent the spread of rabies. Although not currently widespread, rabies is still prevalent in the wild and is a threat that requires constant vigilance. Animals that transmit rabies like raccoons, skunks and bats, and other cats and dogs can sometimes get into a home or make contact with your pet despite your best effort to prevent it.
- Any dogs can escape, despite the owner’s best efforts. Sometimes those dogs don’t know how to get home. The dog can become disoriented, injured, or found and rescued by an animal services officer. A dog with a license attached to its collar may be returned to the owner the same day it was found.
- License fees help
support efforts to rescue lost and homeless animals.
- State and local law requires that all dogs be vaccinated against rabies and licensed.
My dog lost its license tag. How do I get a duplicate?
Send a $10 check or money order made payable to County Animal Services. Reference your dog‘s license number on the memo portion of the check and mail it to:
Department of Animal Services
Replacement Tag, Licensing Division
5821 Sweetwater Rd.
Bonita, CA 91902
How can I get my dog “fixed?” I don‘t have a lot of money.
- Some veterinarians have agreed to reduce their spay/neuter fees. Please see this list for details and information.
- The San Diego Humane Society offers some low cost and free services, but there are restrictions.
When will an animal control officer respond to my call?
Calls are handled by priority. We will respond to a call about an injured or dangerous animal before we respond to a call about a loose animal that appears non-threatening.
Do your shelters have animals available for adoption?
Yes! At any one time, our shelters may have hundreds of dogs, cats, bunnies, reptiles, and birds available. Bonita and Carlsbad often have livestock such as pigs, goats, chickens and horses available for adoption too.
What can I do about bees on my property?
- Unfortunately the County of San Diego CANNOT remove bees from private property and we do not recommend that you attempt to remove bees yourself. The bees can become agitated, and you and others can be stung. Please contact a private company to remove the bee hive.
- For additional information on bees, contact: County Department of Agriculture, Weights and Measures, 800-486-0010 sdcawm.org
- Whom do I call to get a dead animal removed?
What do I do when I need help with wildlife?
- Please see Project
- We will respond when a wild creature is posing an immediate threat to humans or other animals, or if the wild creature is sick or injured, too young to survive on its own, trapped or stuck in something (like a fence). We do not respond to reports of wildlife simply roaming or “loose.”
- For information on rattlesnakes see brochure »
- Please see »
Can you recommend a trainer who only uses positive reinforcement
Yes. Click here »
- I‘m worried about the Zika virus and my pets. What should I do?