Stray animal fees to increase in January

Fees are set on a graduated scale and increase with the number of times an animal is picked up

VANCOUVER – The fees to reclaim a lost pet picked up in unincorporated Clark County by Clark County Animal Protection and Control or community members will increase on Jan. 1, 2021, by $15 per animal.

The county partners with the Humane Society for Southwest Washington to provide high-quality, full-service sheltering and care during impound periods.

Dogs and cats in Clark County must be licensed on an annual basis, and owners are required to make sure pets wear their license tag at all times. Photo by Andi Schwartz
Dogs and cats in Clark County must be licensed on an annual basis, and owners are required to make sure pets wear their license tag at all times. Photo by Andi Schwartz

Fees are set on a graduated scale and increase with the number of times an animal is picked up. The increases are as follows: 

  • First impound in a 12-month period – from $25 to $40
  • Second impound in a 12-month period – from $50 to $65
  • Third or more impound in a 12-month period – from $100 to $115

Clark County charges an impound fee which is collected by HSSW at the time of redemption. This includes all animals found or picked up in the unincorporated area of Clark County and housed by HSSW. This money goes toward Animal Control services, services to intake, house and return animals to their families.

Pet owners reclaiming their animals at the shelter must pay all applicable fees at the time of redemption, including impoundment and boarding fees. Transportation, medical and licensing fees may also apply. The complete fee schedule is on the Humane Society website at https://southwesthumane.org/lost-found/stray-and-lost-pets/.

“While owner redemption fees do not cover what the county pays HSSW 100 percent, they are in line with other regional animal shelters. The cost of housing and care is subsidized by county taxpayers and HSSW’s donors,” said Animal Protection and Control manager Susan Anderson. “The annual increase over the next four years mirrors the increases in impound fees.”

Vancouver and smaller cities have separate contracts for animal sheltering services. The Humane Society sheltered approximately 1,850 animals for Clark County in 2019.

“We have a long history of working with Clark County Animal Protection and Control to reunite families with their pets,” said Megan Dennis, vice president of Shelter Operations. “HSSW provides high-quality, compassionate care to animals as they are reconnected with their families or rehomed. Providing this service to the community costs money. An increase in the redemption fee will help support the animal control services, veterinary care, housing, and reuniting or rehoming efforts to the community’s animals.”

Clark County Animal Protection and Control provides essential animal services to the community, which includes investigating animal cruelty, impounding injured, abandoned, lost or dangerous animals, capturing injured or sick wildlife, and enforcing local and state laws. The county provides animal services in unincorporated Clark County, the city of Vancouver and the town of Yacolt.

Dogs and cats in Clark County must be licensed on an annual basis, and owners are required to make sure pets wear their license tag at all times. This tag, along with a microchip and name tag containing the pet owner’s contact information, can save a trip to the animal shelter if a pet strays from home. Licenses and microchips also help reunite animals with families quicker, avoiding longer stays at HSSW. 

Visit the county’s pet licensing website for more details https://clark.wa.gov/code-administration/pet-licensing.

Information provided by Clark Co. WA Communications.

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