Wicomico Enacts New Animal Welfare Regulations

dog and water bottleWicomico County has announced a broad range of new animal control regulations. The sweeping changes intended to protect animal welfare, update everything from licensing requirements and tethering regulations to trap and neuter programs and adoption programs.

As announced in a county news release:

  • Provisions from the State of Maryland Animal Care and Cruelty Law
  • A Trap, Neuter and Return Program (TNR) for community cats
  • Tighter regulations on tethering an animal.
  • Protection of animals in unsafe weather conditions to include wind chill factor and heat index
  • Animals At-Large Prohibited (previously only pertained to dogs)
  • Animals must be on a leash no longer than 6 feet while on school grounds or at a public recreation area.
  • An Animal Control Officer, upon impounding an animal, must record the breed, color, sex and license-status of the animal. This information shall be posted on the Animal Control Authority’s website within 24 hours after impounding the animal.
  • If a female dog or cat in heat or an unneutered male dog or cat belonging to the same owner is impounded twice within 12 months, the dog or cat will become the property of the Animal Control Authority unless the owner pays for the spaying or neutering of the dog or cat by the animal control authority within one week after notice.
  • New provisions on breeder license.
  • New provisions on the Sale of a Puppy or Kitten
  • New provisions on Disposal of Dead Animals
  • To adopt a dog or cat from the Animal Control Authority, the adopter must pay or reimburse the Animal Control Authority to neuter or spay the animal (If not already done), and other reasonable charges and fees. In addition the adopter must certify in writing under penalty of perjury that he or she has not been convicted of animal cruelty or neglect by a court of law.
  • New requirement to obtain a County dog license and tag from the Wicomico County Humane Society if not provided with rabies vaccination.

For more information read the county news release.