Animal Control


Animal FAQs

What is the leash law in Los Alamos County?

This falls under "Animals at Large" in the Los Alamos County Code book.

  1. No person shall allow any animal to roam or stray or to be off the keeper’s premises unless it is at all times under verbal control or physical restraint of a responsible person.

  2. All unattended dogs shall at all times be confined or physically restrained. Such confinement or restraint shall not allow the dog access beyond the boundaries of the premises available for the exclusive private use of the dog’s owner or keeper.

  3. Except within the premises available for the exclusive private use of its owner or keeper and except in R-A zoned areas and designated dog-training zones, a dog located in an inhabited area shall at all times be confined or physically restrained on a secure leash not exceeding eight feet in length. A dog located in an R-A zoned area or a designated dog-training zone shall at all times be under verbal control of its keeper if not confined or restrained.

  4. The Parks Department shall formulate and issue regulations for designation of dog-training zones and shall post signs appropriate therefor.

Does my dog or cat need a county license?

Los Alamos County Animal Control no longer requires a county license. Your dog or cat must have current rabies vaccinations.

Should I worry about hantavirus?

There have been no documented cases of hantavirus in Los Alamos County. However, it is always good practice to use caution when cleaning in an area where rodents may dwell. Hantavirus Hotline – 1-800-879-3421 or in Santa Fe at 505-827-0006. The Office of Epidemiology will provide you with information on risk and cleanup and will also answer other questions you may have.

How do we control the coyote population?

Problems with coyotes are referred to Animal Damage Control/Wildlife Services at (toll-free) 1-888-580-5512.

Is the Los Alamos County animal shelter a no-kill shelter?

No; however, if an animal needs to be euthanized it is done by a licensed veterinarian. The Los Alamos County Animal Shelter uses the Animal Clinic of Los Alamos for this service.

Adopt a Pet

Step 1.You can meet adoptable animals at the Los Alamos Animal Shelter or online:

Adopt a Pet


Step 2.Pay the fee and take your fur-ever friend home!







7 years and older


$ 60.00

6 months to 6 years


$ 75.00

Under 6 months



Included in adoption fees

Spay or Neuter, Rabies Vaccination, FVRCP Vaccination, FELV/FIV Test, FELV Vaccination, Deworming and a Microchip



Spay or Neuter, Rabies Vaccination, Da2pp (Parvo-distemper) Vaccination, Heartworm Test Bordetella Vaccination (Kennel Cough), Deworming and a Microchip.


Lost Pets or Roaming Animals

Step 1.Call (505) 662-8222 or (877) 261-4090.

TTY capable and translation services.

Call for roaming animals as well.

Step 2.To claim your pet, you must provide the following:

Paperwork providing current rabies vaccination.

Paperwork providing proof of sterility.

Step 3.Pay the fees.

$20.00 Capture Fee

$  5.00 Boarding Fee per Day



Step 1.Voice and Sight Control Maps(PDF, 3MB)

Shows park areas where voice/sight control is allowed for pets

Step 2.Trail Network Map(PDF, 495KB)

Shows where voice and sight control is allowed on trails (495 KB PDF document)


Mission Statement

To provide all animals in our care with the 5 freedoms of animal welfare. Freedom from hunger, thirst, and malnutrition, freedom from discomfort and exposure, freedom from pain, injury, and disease, freedom from fear and distress, and freedom to express normal and natural behavior. To provide our community with support for animal care and control, animal rescue and rehabilitation, and to place adoptable pets in forever homes.


Dog Owners Guide to Ordinances

BROCH_Animal Ordinance_Cover Image

Dog Owners Guide to LA County Ordinances(PDF, 386KB)

What will happen if I let my dog bark? What can I do about a nuisance dog? Can I take my dog to parks or on trails? What does County Code say about dogs?

Volunteer Opportunites

The Los Alamos County Animal Shelter has an extensive volunteer program. The volunteers walk dogs, socialize cats, groom and bathe animals, and foster animals that have been at the shelter for too long a period of time.

For information on volunteering call us!

(505) 662-8179