Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What should I do if I see a stray animal?

A. When calling the City of Longview Animal Control about a stray animal, please give a detailed description of the animal (Breed, Color, Size, Collar, Tags, etc.). If you know where the stray animal belongs, let us know the address so we can make contact with the owner. Please provide your name, phone number and/or address in case the Animal Control Officer needs to get more information from you about your complaint. Your information will be kept confidential.

Q: Where do the Animal Control Officers take the animals they pick up?

A: Animal Control takes all dogs and cats to the Animal Care and Adoption Center. Wildlife picked up by Animal Control Officers is relocated and released in accordance with state and local laws. Loose livestock such as horses and cows are taken to the Longview Livestock Commission. Smaller livestock such as hogs and goats are normally taken to the Animal Care and Adoption Center.

Q: My pet has gotten loose and is missing. What can I do to find him?

A: Immediately go to the Animal Care and Adoption Center to see if your pet has been brought in. If your pet is not there, file a lost report with the staff. You will need to come back to the shelter every 2­3 days to see if your pet has been brought in. Check with your neighbors to see if they have seen your dog. You may also want to check the lost and found section of the local newspapers and place ad there yourself.

Q: Is it illegal for an animal to be left in a car?

A: It is illegal to leave any animal in any standing or parked vehicle in such a way as to endanger the animal's health or safety. Any animal control officer, police officer, or firefighter is authorized to use reasonable force, including the breaking of a window, to remove an animal from the vehicle whenever the officer reasonably believes that the animal's health or safety is, or soon will be, endangered, and said animal shall be impounded. An officer who removes an animal in accordance with this law is not liable for any resulting property damage. Outside air temperatures above 75 degrees Fahrenheit shall serve as prima facie evidence for such endangerment.

Q: I received a summons from an Animal Control Officer. How much will the fine be?

A: Contact the City of Longview Municipal Court at 903-237­-1175 to determine the amount of the fine. Remember, you have ten (10) days from the date the summons was given to you to respond to the Municipal Court.

Q: When do I have to vaccinate my dog/cat against rabies?

A: Local Ordinance requires that the owner or custodian (excluding animal shelters) of each domestic dog or cat shall have the animal vaccinated against rabies before four months of age and once a year after. The vaccination must be administered by a licensed veterinarian. Failure to vaccinate your dog or cat against rabies can result in a fine and/or summons to Municipal Court. Remember, vaccinating your pets is your family’s first line of defense against rabies. Your pets are more likely to have contact with a wild animal than you.

Q: What is Rabies?

A: Rabies is an acute viral disease that attacks the nervous system, resulting in paralysis and almost certain death once the symptoms appear. The rabies virus is present in the saliva of the rabid animal. The most common way the disease is spread is by a bite from an infected animal. Though rare, rabies also can be spread if the infected animal’s saliva comes in contact with fresh scratches, open wounds or mucous membranes such as the lining of the eyelid. If left untreated it is almost always fatal.

Q: My dog/cat got into a fight with a wild animal.  What do I do?

A: If your dog or cat has been in contact with one of the following high risk animals: skunk, raccoon, bat, fox or coyote, contact the Animal Care and Adoption Center immediately for guidance. If the wildlife animal is dead or can be caught then it may be shipped for testing. You are also advised to consult with your veterinarian. You pet may need vet care for injuries, and may need to be given a booster rabies vaccination if he is currently vaccinated, or a series of vaccinations if he is not currently vaccinated.

Q: Can my dog be loose as long as he stays on my property?

A: Your dog must be confined at all times, even on your property by a sufficient fence and/or humanely chained in such a manner that he cannot leave your property. Failure to properly confine your dog can result in a fine and/or summons to Municipal Court.

Q: How many dogs or cats may I have in the city limits of Longview.

A: You may own a total of 6 dogs, cats, or combination in the city limits.

Q: There are a lot of stray cats hanging around my property. Is there a leash law for cats?

A: The city ordinance says that ANY animal that runs at large and creates a public nuisance is in violation of the law. Owners of cats that allow them to roam free are subject to the same fines as dog owners. Animal Control has a cat trap program to assist you in trapping and removing stray cats on your property. This is a free service. We will only pick up cats that are caught or confined.

Q: Is it legal to own chickens and roosters (or any other type of fowl) in the city limits?

A: The only way to legally own chickens, roosters, or fowl in the city limits is the keep them confined at all times and the place where they are confined must be a minimum of 100 feet from the nearest property line (this includes the street).

Q: What about livestock (cows, goats, horses, pigs, and sheep)?

A: Livestock must be kept 500 feet from the nearest property line including the street. Livestock that gets loose is subject to the same fines as any other loose animal.

Q: I’m having problems with skunks, raccoons, opossums, armadillos, etc. What can I do?

A: If wildlife is frequenting your property, then you need to identify what is attracting them. Wildlife is common in this part of Texas, they typically will not hang out at your house unless you are providing them with some type of food, water or shelter. Pet food left out during the evening hours and open garbage containers is a typical example of this problem. Removing their food source will often make them go away.

If some type of wildlife is digging up your lawn, it is usually an armadillo or skunk digging for grubs, worms, etc. Treat your yard with a pesticide to kill off their food source.

If you have crawl space under your house or damage to your roof that has open access holes, you are inviting wildlife to move in. Cover and repair all areas of access with solid, sturdy material. If you already have an animal living under your house or in your attic call us and we may be able to assist with its removal. If not, we may be able to refer you to a wildlife removal specialist. All areas will have to be immediately fixed to prevent further problems.

We do not trap and remove healthy wildlife unless it is living in a space occupied by people. Any wildlife trapped by accident or without our approval will be released in the same area it was caught in.