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Pasadena Public Health Department

Animal and Rabies Control FAQ's

Who takes care of animal control in the City?

The City has contractual agreement with the Pasadena Humane Society and SPCA to provide all animal control activities in the City. The Humane Society will respond to calls about stray and injured animals, barking dog, dog bites, pet lost and found, cruelty investigations, feral cat trap-neuter-return, assisting homeowners with the removal of wildlife (raccoons, opossums and coyotes), and picking up dead animals on public streets. The Pasadena Humane Society also offers additional services to Pasadena residents including: affordable spay/neuter services, vaccination clinics, microchipping, pet adoption, dog daycare, dog boarding, dog behavior and training classes; and humane education classes.

More information about Pasadena Humane Society can be reached at http://www.pasadenahumane.org/ or call their office at (626)792-7151

What is a public nuisance dog?

A public nuisance dog means any dog that unreasonably annoys humans, endangers the life or health of other animals or persons, or substantially interferes with the rights of citizens, other than their owners or family members, to the enjoyment of life or property. Dog owners or caretakers need to ensure that their dogs do not cause an annoyance within the community.


The Pasadena Municipal Code defines a “public nuisance dog” as any dog that:

  1. When unprovoked, in a vicious or terrorizing manner, approaches any person and attempts to attack upon private or public property, except inside an owner’s home or fenced rear yard to which all gates or other places of general ingress or egress to the fenced area are each posted with a warning sign stating that a dog is on the premises. The letters on said sign shall be at least 1 inch in height and said sign shall be visible within 10 feet of the entrances to the fenced area
  2. Has a propensity or disposition to attach unprovoked or to cause injury to human beings or domestic animals and the owner of the dog is aware of said propensity or disposition
  3. Bites, inflicts injury, assaults or otherwise attacks a human being or domestic animal without provocation on public or private property, except inside a home or fenced rear yard to which all gates or other places of general ingress or egress to the fenced area are each posted with a warning sign stating that a dog is on the premises. The letters on said sign shall be at least 1 inch in height and said sign shall be visible 10 feet of the entrance to the fenced area
  4. Is owned or harbored primarily or in part for the purpose of dog fighting or any dog trained for dog fighting
  5. Is repeatedly found at large
  6. Damaged the property of any other than its owner
  7. Molests or intimidates pedestrians, bicyclists, or passersby
  8. Chases vehicles, pedestrians, joggers and others on transportation devices
  9. Makes excessive and unprovoked disturbing noises, including, but not limited to, continued and repeated howling, barking, whining, or other utterances causing unreasonable annoyance, disturbance or discomfort to neighbors or others in close proximity to the premises where the animal is kept or harbored
  10. Causes fouling of the air by odor and thereby creates unreasonable annoyance or discomfort to neighbors or others in close proximity to the premises where the dog is kept of harbored
  11. Causes unsanitary conditions in enclosures or surroundings where the dog is kept or harbored
  12. Is offensive or dangerous to the public health, safety or welfare by virtue of it being maintained with a number and/or types of other dogs and/or other animals

Who do I call about getting a license for my dog?

Dog owners can bring their dog’s license application and rabies certificate directly to the Pasadena Humane Society & SPCA, 361 South Raymond Ave., Pasadena, CA 91105. The agency is open from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Tuesday through Friday; 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Saturday, and 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Sunday. They are closed on Mondays. As an alternative, a new drop box will be available at City Hall’s Municipal Services Payment Office for easy payment drop-offs. The box will be checked and processed weekly by PHS licensing officers.

For more licensing information, contact PHS at (626) 792-7151, ext. 115, or visit www.pasadenahumane.org/licensing

 

How can I protect my pet from rabies?

There are several things you can do to protect your pet from rabies.

  1. Visit your veterinarian with your pet on a regular basis and keep rabies vaccinations up-to-date for all cats, ferrets, and dogs.
  2. Maintain control of your pets by keeping cats and dogs under direct supervision.
  3. Spay or neuter your pets to help reduce the number of unwanted pets that may not be properly cared for or vaccinated regularly.
  4. Call the Pasadena Humane Society and SPCA at 626-792-7151, to remove all stray animals from your neighborhood since these animals may be unvaccinated or ill.

Why does my pet need the rabies vaccine?

Although the majority of rabies cases occur in wildlife, most humans are given rabies vaccine as a result of exposure to domestic animals. This explains the tremendous cost of rabies prevention in domestic animals in the United States. While wildlife are more likely to be rabid than are domestic animals in the United States, the amount of human contact with domestic animals greatly exceeds the amount of contact with wildlife.
Your pets and other domestic animals can be infected when they are bitten by rabid wild animals. When “spillover” rabies occurs in domestic animals, the risk to humans is increased. Pets are therefore vaccinated by your veterinarian to prevent them from acquiring the disease from wildlife, and thereby transmitting it to humans.

What happens if a neighborhood dog or cat bites me?

You should seek medical evaluation for any animal bite. However, rabies is uncommon in dogs and cats in the United States. Very few bites by these animals carry a risk of rabies. If the cat or dog appeared healthy at the time you were bitten, it can be confined by its owner for 10 days and observed. No anti-rabies prophylaxis is needed. No person in the United States has ever contracted rabies from a dog or cat held in quarantine for 10 days.

If a dog or cat appeared ill at the time it bit you or becomes ill during the 10 day quarantine, it should be evaluated by a veterinarian for signs of rabies and you should seek medical advice about the need for anti-rabies prophylaxis.

What happens if my pet is bitten by a wild animal?

Any animal bitten or scratched by either a wild, carnivorous mammal or a bat that is not available for testing should be regarded as having been exposed to rabies.

Unvaccinated dogs or cats exposed to a rabid animal may need to be euthanized immediately. If the owner is unwilling to have this done, the animal should be placed in strict isolation for 6 months and vaccinated 1 month before being released.

Animals with expired vaccinations need to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Dogs and cats that are currently vaccinated are kept under observation for 45 days.

How do people get rabies?

People usually get rabies from the bites of a rabid animal. It is also possible, but quite rare, that people may get rabies if infectious material from a rabid animal, such as saliva, gets directly into their eyes, nose, mouth, or a wound.

What animals get rabies?

Any mammal can get rabies. The most common wild reservoirs of rabies are raccoons, skunks, bats, foxes, and coyotes. Domestic mammals can also get rabies. Cats, cattle, and dogs are the most frequently reported rabid domestic animals in the United States.

What is the risk of rabies from squirrels, mice, rats, and other rodents?

Small rodents (such as squirrels, rats, mice, hamsters, guinea pigs, gerbils, and chipmunks) and lagomorphs (such as rabbits and hares) are almost never found to be infected with rabies and have not been known to cause rabies among humans in the United States. Bites by these animals are usually not considered a risk of rabies unless the animal was sick or behaving in any unusual manner and rabies is widespread in your area.