Why does an animal need to be quarantined?
Any animal involved in an animal bite or scratch incident is required by State of Texas Health & Safety Code Chapter 826 to be quarantined for at least 10 days from the date of the animal bite occurrence. This includes animals that already have their rabies shots. Quarantining limits the animal's contact with other animals and people, reducing exposure if the animal is rabid or sick. Quarantining also allows Animal Care Services to observe the animal for any signs or symptoms associated with rabies. Texas Administrative Code 169.27 subsection 1,2,3,4 list the requirements to qualify for certain types of quarantine.
Where does an animal get quarantined?
You may take your animal to a licensed veterinarian or to Animal Care Services upon notification that the animal has bitten or scratched a person. Quarantine and boarding fees apply. Stray animals are placed in the rabies observation area of Animal Care Services for a period of 10 days. Otherwise, quarantine may take place at the owner’s property if the Local Rabies Control Authority approves home quarantine and the following criteria are met:
- The animal is currently vaccinated for rabies.
- The animal was not “at large” (according to city ordinance) at the time of the bite incident.
- The home is inspected and approved for home quarantine.
- The owner of the biting/scratching animal understands and signs the Home Quarantine Release form.
- The animal and home can be inspected at any time during the quarantine period.
Home quarantine is at the discretion of the Local Rabies Control Authority or Animal Care Services manager. No person may appeal or overrule the decision of the Local Rabies Control Authority or Animal Care Services manager.
How do you quarantine your animal?
- The animal will be kept inside residence at all times, or
- The animal will be kept inside the garage at all times.
- The animal will be housed inside an approved, fenced kennel.
- The animal will be kept away from other animals and people except for those in the immediate household.
- The animal shall not be removed from the specified site for any reason except when directed to do so by the Local Rabies Control Authority or Animal Care Services manager.
- The animal shall not be vaccinated for rabies or given any medication or treatment during the quarantine period, with the exception of heartworm medication.
The Local Rabies Control Authority or Animal Care Services manager shall be immediately notified of any change in behavior or physical condition of the animal.
How is the animal released from quarantine?
The Local Rabies Control Authority, Animal Care Services manager or a licensed veterinarian can release an animal from quarantine. After the 10-day quarantine period has expired, the veterinarian, Local Rabies Control Authority or Animal Care Services manager must examine the animal and confirm that the animal has been vaccinated against rabies before leaving the quarantine.
If the City of Corpus Christi has a leash law, why can cats run loose?
The City of Corpus Christi currently does not have a leash law on cats. Owned cats are allowed to be free roaming as long as they are spay/neutered. Cats must be wearing a rabies tag displayed on either a collar or harness at all times. Otherwise, the cat can be picked up or trapped as a stray animal.
Who do I call about a dead animal in my neighborhood or on the street?
The City of Corpus Christi Animal Care Services does not pick up dead animals. You may contact the City Solid Waste Department by calling the city call center at (361) 826-2489.
Does the City of Corpus Christi have a limit on the number of animals a person can own?
Yes. A person may own any combination of dogs or cats up to six (6) animals over four months of age.
What can I do about wildlife in my yard/house?
Animal Care Services encourages homeowners to find alternative solutions to living peacefully with the wildlife that inhabits the Coastal Bend area. Please visit our Field Services Page to see alternatives and tips.
If a wild animal (raccoon, opossum, etc.) is inside the house and you are able to see it, you may contact the Animal Care Services at (361) 826-2489 to put in a work order. Try to determine where the animal came in at. Exit the home and leave the door open to allow the animal to escape. Remember that they are not there to attack you, and are just as scared as you are.
If you feel you have animals in the walls, basement, underneath the house, or in the attic, contact a wildlife management or removal company. Animal Care Services does not handle wildlife that is not visible or is not an immediate threat to human safety.
If you see a bobcat or coyote, please refer to our Field Services Page for information.
What do I do if my animal is impounded?
Come to the Animal Care Services center at 2626 Holly Rd. between the hours of 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. and identify your animal. Bring photos, vaccination records, and any type of documentation that shows that the animal belongs to you. You will be required to pay all associated fees and may be issued a citation for the animal being at-large. The animal will then be released to you.
Do the Animal Care Services Officers catch feral cats?
An Animal Control Officer will pick up a feral cat only if it is contained in a city-owned trap. They do not actively chase or trap cats.
Can I catch diseases from my animal?
Yes. Animals carry many different diseases that can be passed on to humans, including but not limited to, worms, mange, and rabies.
Can my animal be tethered/chained to a stationary object?
YES and NO. State law restricts tethering to certain times of the day. You cannot chain an animal up 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The chain must be at least ten times the length of the dog from the tip of the nose to the base of the tail, the collar must not be a pinch or prong type collar, and the dog must be provided with a constant source of water, wholesome food, as well as adequate shelter. The dog is not allowed to be chained to a stationary object at night.
Chained or tethered dogs can injure themselves or strangle themselves to death when their chains or tethers become entangled with other objects or their collars become embedded in their necks. Also, chained or tethered dogs can become aggressive due to intense confinement, lack of socialization, and the inability to escape from perceived threats, and are more likely to bite or attack someone who approaches.
However, an owner is permitted to attach a dog to a running line, pulley, or trolley system (except when using a choke collar or pinch collar.) Animal Care Services encourages dog owners to only use these devices temporarily until you can build a fence or adequate kennel for the dog.
What counts as a dog house?
A dog house must be at least three sides and have a roof. The shelter does not have to be store-bought but must give the animal shelter from rain and harsh weather.