Animal Control

The Animal Control Division is responsible for the investigation of animal cruelty cases, animal bite reports, rabies exposure, strays, and loose livestock.

Lt. Chad Lanier is in charge of the Animal Control Division which currently consists of three animal control officers:

Fred Redder

Sherry Hartfield

Wendy Sosa

The Animal Control Officers are also responsible for the animal control ordinances for the county, which were passed October 13, 1997. The ordinances apply to all unincorporated areas of the county (outside a municipality.)

County Ordinances:

Vaccinations: No person shall own, keep, or harbor any dog or cat over four months of age in Wise County unless such dog or cat’s owner has current and valid proof of Rabies Vaccination. Each dog or cat must be vaccinated at four months of age and a booster one year after the four month vaccination.

All cats and dogs must be vaccinated according to the Texas Board of Health Rules. If the veterinarian uses a one year vaccine, then the animal must be vaccinated on a yearly basis. It the veterinarian uses a three year vaccine, then the animal must be vaccinated every three years.

It is the sole responsibility of the owner to keep vaccination receipts to prove which vaccine is used. If no proof is available, it will be the determination of Wise County Commissioners Court and the resolution then the one year rule will apply.

Restraint of Animals: All animals shall be kept under restraint (secured by a leash or lead, or confined within the real property limits of its owner). A person commits on offense if he fails or refuses to restrain any animal of which he is the owner. An offense under this section is a Class “C” misdemeanor.

Nuisance: No owner shall fail to exercise proper care an control of his animals in order to prevent them from becoming a public nuisance (nuisance shall describe and animal it: damages, soils, defiles, or defecates on private property other than the owner’s or on public walks and recreation areas unless such waste is immediately removed and properly disposed of by the owner; causes unsanitary, dangerous, of offensive conditions; causes a disturbance by excessive barking or other noise making; chases vehicles,; or molest, attacks, or interferes with persons or other domestic animals). A person commits an offense if he/she permits his/her animal to cause a nuisance. An offense under this section is Class “C” misdemeanor.

Wild Animals: A person commits an offense if he owns, possesses, or harbors a wild animal within Wise County without state permits. Wild animals include the following (vut are not limited to): lion, tiger, lynx, mountain lion, wildcat, bobcat, ocelot, cougar, leopard, cheetah, jaguar, hyena, bear, lesser panda, binturong, wolf ape, elephant rhinoceros, alligator, crocodiles, bears (urisade), wolf, par-wolf dogs, fox, part-fox dogs, coyote, part-coyote dogs, dingo, porcupine, skunks, all sub-humanprimates, raccoons, venomous fish and piranha, venomous snakes or lizards, non-venomous snakes grater than 5 feet when extended, weasels (including martens, volverines, ferrets, badgers, otters, ermine, mink mongoose). There is a separate offense for each wild animal involved. An offense is a Class “C” misdemeanor and punishable by a fine of not less than $200 or more than $2,000.

Impound: It shall be the duty of the Animal Control Officer to impound all dogs, cats, or other animals suspected of being infected with rabies and all animals exposed to, or suspected of being exposed to an animal infected by rabies; animals that have bitten a person; and animals which are strays, at large, or unrestrained. Animals impounded that have license tags or identification will be held ten (10) days; animals bearing no tags or identification will be held three(3) days. Any animal impounded may be redeemed by the owner within three days upon payment of an impoundment fee.

Ownership: Any person who keeps, harbors, feeds, shelters, or otherwise allows any dogs or cats to remain on his property or permits egress and/or ingress for seven (7) or more days without notifying the Animal Control Authority shall be deemed the owner of said animal.

Rabies: When a dog or cat has bitten a human, the animal shall be required to be placed in quarantine for ten (10) days. The ten (10) days observation period will begin on the day of the bite incident. The animal must be examined by a licensed veterinarian, or the Animal Control Authority. No wild animals will be placed in quarantine.

Interference: A person commits an offense if he interferes with, hinders, or molests an Animal Control Officer in the performance of their duty.

Animal Control Fees:


  • Hauling/per head         $50.00
  • Release fee/per head  $25.00

Roundup, loading & care of livestock assessed by contractor:

  • Impound/per head (Large: horse, cow & bull)                               $75.00
  • Impound/per head (Small: goats, sheep, hog & flightless bird)     $50.00
  • Livestock feed/per day/per animal                                                 $  5.00

Exotic or Wild Animals:

No wild or exotic animals allowed in Wise County.