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Welcome to Vernon, a celebrated place to live, work and visit. 

Animal Control

 The officers of the Animal Control Department enforce state laws and town ordinances relating to animals. The department also responds to complaints involving sick wildlife. The officers also maintain the Animal Control Facility and care for the animals sheltered there.

Jerold Casida, Animal Control Officer
James Lockhart, Assistant Animal Control Officer

Routine animal control calls: 860-872-9126
Shelter and adoption: 860-870-3558
Department E-mail address:

Compliments or complaints about an officer

Town of Vernon Animal Shelter
100 Windsorville Road, Vernon

Shelter Hours:
Saturday through Tuesday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Wednesday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

See pets available for adoption and lost pet notices on our Facebook page:

Frequently Asked Questions


  • What do if you are approached by a strange dog

If you are ever approached by a strange dog, whether it is running at you or just walking, Vernon Animal Control recommends that you remain still. The dog may come up to you and stiff you, bark, growl, and/or show its teeth. It important to remain still and not look directly at the dog. Once it has identified you as not being a threat, it should back away. When it does, you can then slowly walk away. It is important to remain as calm as you can. Never turn and run from a dog. If you do, there is a chance you may be bit.

These guidelines have worked well over the years by the Animal Control staff. If you encounter this type of situation please follow the above guidelines and don’t forget to call the Animal Control Department to report if you know where the dog lives.  

  • What to do if you encounter "abandoned" baby wildlife

Please leave baby wildlife where you find it. People often assume a creature has been abandoned if its mother is not present. This is often not the case. Mothers leave their babies for a variety of reasons, such as to forage for food.

The Animal Control office receives calls from well-meaning people who find fawns and baby bunnies. Unless you know their mother has been killed, do not assume they are orphaned. Their best hope for survival is to be left alone. There are rare exceptions to this rule.

  • How to handle wildlife

This Town of Vernon Animal Control will only handle animals that are sick (rabies). In all other situations you will need to hire a Nuisance Wildlife Control Operator (NWCO) to come in to take care of the problem. NWCOs are licensed by the state to take care of nuisance animals. There will be a cost associated with the services they provide.

  • How to handle snapping turtles

June is when it is common to see turtles come out to lay their eggs. These turtles are commonly snapping turtles that usually weight between 15 and 30 pounds. Their goal is to lay their eggs. They will not bother you if you do not bother them. These creatures are not fast movers on land. If you find one in your yard, keep pets indoors and keep a close eye on your children.  Once they are finished laying their eggs, they will leave. Animal Control will only become involved in removing a snapping turtle when it poses a threat to the surrounding areas. For example, in 2012 a turtle buried itself in a playscape at a town playground. Due to the potential threat to anyone who stepped near the turtle, it was removed by Vernon Animal Control.

  • Dog license information

June is dog licensing month at the Town Clerk's office at Town Hall, 14 Park Place. All dogs 6 months and older must be licensed. The fee is $8 for a neutered or spayed dog, and $19 for an unaltered. There is a late fee of $1 per month after June. If you move to Vernon from another town, you can transfer your dog license for $1.

When you go to Town Hall to register you dog, be sure to bring a copy of your dog's current rabies certificate and spay or neuter certificate. For more information, call the Town Clerk at 860-870-3662.

  • Pet adoption policy

Vernon Animal Control adopts out dogs and cats. The animal must be at least 8 weeks of age. The adoption fee is $50 per animal. We only accept cash or check as payment. You will need to present your ID so a State of Connecticut Animal Population Control Program Voucher can be filled out. This voucher will assist with the cost of two vaccinations and the cost to spay or neuter the animal. The voucher must be used at a participating veterinarian.

The voucher provides $50 for a male cat, $70 for a female cat, $100 for a male dog, and $120 for a female dog. It will also provide for two pre-surgery vaccinations. This program is only for Connecticut residents. Please contact the shelter for further information at 860-870-3558 or E-Mail

  • How to file a barking dog complaint and what to do if a barking dog complaint is filed against you

The Town of Vernon has a policy, outlined below, for Barking Dog Complaints

Connecticut General Statutes Sec. 22-363 states:

Nuisance. No person shall own or harbor a dog or dogs which is or are a nuisance by reason of vicious disposition or excessive barking or other disturbance, or, by such barking or other disturbance, is or are a source of annoyance to any sick person residing in the immediate vicinity. Violation of any provision of this section shall be an infraction for the first offense and such person shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than thirty days or both for each subsequent offense and the court or judge may make such order concerning the restraint or disposal of such dog or dogs as may be deemed necessary.

Often, pet owners are not aware their dog(s) are causing an inconvenience to others. Once aware, many dog owners take steps to correct the problem. We ask that neighbors seek an amicable solution before involving Vernon Animal Control.


If a neighborly attempt to address the problem fails, our Animal Control Officer will issue a courtesy verbal warning to the dog owner, and provide suggestions on how the owner may be able to modify the dog(s) behavior. 

Once this courtesy verbal warning has been issued, we allow 48 hours for the dog owner to receive the information and correct the problem before we proceed to the next step. 

If we are not contacted after we issue a courtesy verbal warning, we will assume the problem has been resolved and will take no further action.  


If the barking problem is not corrected after 48 hours, you may file a formal complaint, at which time our Animal Control Officer will issue a written warning to the dog owner.  If we are not contacted after we issue the written warning, we will assume the problem has been solved, and will take no further action.


If the barking problem is not corrected after the written warning has been issued,  the Animal Control Officer will request a Bark Log be initiated. Click here to download a Bark Log.

The log should reflect substantial continuous barking and be kept for 7-10 days within a 30 day period.

A completed log is required in order to proceed to step 4.

Once completed, a copy of the Bark Log must be provided to the Animal Control Officer. After submission of this log to Animal Control, a second written warning will be issued to the dog owner. 


If the nuisance barking continues after the second written warning, the Animal Control Officer will then issue a citation ($75.00) to the dog owner.  The dog owner may choose to pay the infraction or contest it in a court of law, at which time the reporting party will need to appear in court with the Bark Log.


If the barking continues, the reporting party will need to provide additional evidence of continuing nuisance barking violations.  With sufficient evidence of a new violation, our Animal Control Officer will issue a misdemeanor summons.

Please be advised that Courts will decide the amount of any fines and any progressive consequences to remedy the nuisance barking.

As in Step 4, the reporting party will also need to appear in court with the bark log.

Barking Dog Log

Click here to download a Bark Log.