Animal Bites and How to Prevent Them
The Stafford County Animal Shelter receives animal bite reports on a daily basis. Whether the animal belongs to you, a friend or family member, or a stray you found wondering loose, accidents can happen at anytime. It is your duty to report all animal bites and scratches, that broke skin, to animal control. All animal bite reports reported to us are immediately turned over to the health department for review. It is the law to report all animal bites.
Animals that have bitten, scratched, or have broken skin must be quarantined for a minimum of 10 days. Confinement can be completed at the owner's residence or the animal shelter. The animal must not leave the property during the 10 days and the health department must be notified of where the animal will be kept during it's confinement. If the animal must leave the property for whatever reason, the health department must be notified immediately for approval. Individuals that do not live at the residence are the only ones allowed to have contact with the animal during the 10 days. If a visitor stops by the residence, the animal must be kept in a separate part of the household until the visitor leaves. The animal is not to leave the property for any reason during quarantine (dog park, walks, car rides, etc.) but may only be allowed to use the bathroom outside, supervised on it's own property. At the end of the 10 day confinement, the health department will follow up with the owner or facility that is housing the biting animal.
How to Report a Bite
If you, someone you know, or your child has been bitten by your own animal or someone else's, please contact us immediately. If you are bitten outside Stafford County you must still make a report with the jurisdiction you were bitten in. To file a report you can call the shelter directly at (540)658-7387 or (540)658-4400 and provide as much information as possible. If you seek medical attention, medical staff will require you to complete a bite report in their office and that report is normally sent to our office to be followed up on the next business day. If you need a copy of the bite report for your records, you will have to submit a FOIA request at (540)658-4450. The animal shelter does not provide copies of the report without a FOIA request.
Individuals wanting to quarantine their animal at the animal shelter during it's 10 day confinement will be charged a non-refundable $50.00 boarding fee made payable to at the time of drop off. The animal shelter is not responsible for any illnesses contracted during the quarantine. You are responsible for keeping your pet's vaccines updated. You must sign the right's to the animal over to the shelter at time of drop off. You will be allowed to pick the animal up at the end of the quarantine hold (unless otherwise advised by an animal control officer) but you must make arrangements to pick up on the last day. We are not a boarding facility and will not hold the animal past it's 10 day confinement.