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            Anacortes Police - Animal Control

APDlogoServices Provided by Community Service  Officer Zabrina Nybo



In the Animal Control section (Title 6) of the City of Anacortes Municipal code, it provides detailed information about control and protection, kennels, dangerous dogs, keeping of hens, hoofed animals, and potentially dangerous wild animal

Services Provided

  • Lost and found animals
  • Respond to dogs running at large
  • Dog licenses
  • Barking dog complaints
  • Animal waste problems
  • Investigate animal cruelty and neglect
  • Control aggressive / dangerous animals
  • Nuisance wildlife information
  • Deceased domestic animals in roadway
  • Provide education and training tips


To contact Animal Control

Immediate problems call 911. For ongoing issues you can contact dispatch at 360-428-3211. Officer Nybo is available Monday-Friday from 8:00 am until 4:00 PM. After those hours, calls are handled by Patrol Officers, if necessary.

Lost and Found Animals

Please report lost or found animals through dispatch by calling 360-428-3211. Found dogs will be picked up by the Animal Control Officer or an available Patrol Officer.

If the dog is not wearing a current City of Anacortes dog license, it will be taken to the city pound and held for 72 hours. Cats are not picked up unless they are sick, injured or deceased. Unclaimed animals may be adopted out, taken to a rescue organization or euthanized (depending on a variety of factors).

If the dog is wearing a current City of Anacortes license, and time permits, Officers will attempt to return it home. This will save the owner the cost of impound fees and will keep the dog out of the city pound.

It is very important to report a missing pet right away. If you report a lost pet and it is not in our custody, the information will be added into our file of lost pets (to be used as a reference when an animal is reported found).

Impound Fees

Before an animal may be released from the city pound the following fees must be paid to the Anacortes Police Department:

  • Impound fee of $35.00 for the first day
  • Boarding cost of $15.00 each additional day.
  • Licensing fee, if applicable
  • Rabies vaccination fee of $15.00, if applicable
  • Emergency medical expenses due to illness, injury, or disease, if applicable
  • Cost of Rabies quarantine, if applicable

Note that all redemption fees are the obligation of the owner even if the animal is abandoned or relinquished.

Dog Licenses

All dogs within the City of Anacortes over 16 weeks of age are required have a current City of Anacortes dog license. All licenses expire December 31st of every year, no matter the date of purchase. They are available for purchase at City Hall in the Finance Department or at the Anacortes Police Department. Note that written proof from your veterinarian's office of a current rabies vaccination and spay/neuter (when applicable) are required. A serially numbered metal license tag will be issued and should be placed securely on your dog's collar.

2017 Licensing fees:

  • Spayed/Neutered dogs: $10.00 per year
  • Intact dogs: $50.00 per year
  • Intact dogs under 8 months old OR over 9 years old: $10.00 per year
  • Replacement tags: $2.00 per year
  • Service dogs: Free (still require yearly renewal)
  • Hobby Kennel: $20.00 per year (each dog also must be individually licensed, see AMC 6.04.055)

Download a Dog License Application

Download a Hobby Kennel License Application

Maximum number of animals allowed per dwelling unit

  • Up to 4 dogs (16 weeks of age or older)
  • Up to 6 cats  (16 weeks of age or older)
  • Or a combination of dogs and cats; not exceeding 4 dogs and 6 total animals


Hobby Kennel License

In the City of Anacortes we offer the option of applying for a Hobby Kennel License. They are defined as a noncommercial kennel at, or adjoining a private residence, where up to six adult dogs (over 16 weeks of age) are bred and/or kept for hunting, training, exhibition for organized shows, field, working, obedience trials or for enjoyment of the species. See AMC 6.04.055 for further details.

Download a Hobby Kennel License Application


Leash Law

There is a leash law within the city limits of Anacortes. Any time a dog or miniature pig is off the owner’s property, it must be restrained by a physical control device (leash no longer than 15’ or carrying cage). This applies to all sidewalks, streets, private property, beaches, schools, and parks (with the exception of posted off-leash dog parks).

Additionally, it is unlawful to allow a dog or miniature pig to roam, stray, or be away from the owner's property. If you let your dog outside into an unfenced yard, you will need to stay outside and supervise them.


Barking complaints

The City of Anacortes has an animal noise control ordinance that applies 24 hours a day. It is unlawful for any person to cause or allow to originate from the property frequent, repetitive, or continuous howling, barking or other noises made by any animal covered in this chapter which disturbs the peace and quiet of the surrounding area. See AMC Title 6 for more information.

If you are having a problem with a barking dog in your neighborhood, consider speaking to the dog owner first. Let them know how the barking is bothering you and allow them time to try and address the issue. If the problem persists and you need assistance from an Officer, please report the barking when it is in progress through dispatch by calling 9-1-1.


Animal Waste

Dog owners are required to immediately pick up fecal matter deposited by their dog on public or private property before leaving the immediate area. They must then properly dispose of it as well. Additionally, it is unlawful for any owner or keeper to allow animal waste to accumulate on said owner’s or keeper’s property to the extent that neighbors are adversely affected by odor or runoff.

If you are having an issue with a neighbor not picking up after their pet, consider speaking with them first. If you need Officer assistance, you may contact Animal Control via dispatch at 9-1-1.


Animal Cruelty / Neglect

If you suspect animal cruelty / neglect, call and report it to 9-1-1.  An Officer will investigate. Documenting what you have observed can help that investigation.

Please note that there are new tethering restrictions within the City of Anacortes. See AMC 6.02.090 (b) for more information.


Animal Bites /Attacks

All animal bites to a human must be reported to Animal Control. If a person is bitten by an animal, provide the appropriate first aid and call 9-1-1. An Officer will respond to take a report, determine the animal involved, contact the animal owner and determine what action needs to be taken.

If you or your animal has been attacked by another animal call 9-1-1 immediately.


Wildlife Problems

Animal Control Officers do not handle nuisance wildlife complaints. If you are having a problem with raccoons, skunks or other small animals, you have a few options. First is the USDA Wildlife Services, which can be privately contracted out to assist homeowners with trapping and disposal of nuisance wildlife. For more information visit:

The second option, Nuisance Wildlife Control Operators (NWCO), are trained and regulated by Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife. They provide assistance for services that Fish and Wildlife do not have the staffing and/or funding to provide itself.  Because NWCO’s are private businesses, they normally charge a fee for their services. The full list, including Skagit County, can be found online here:

Another great resource for living with all wildlife is the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife website:

Disaster Planning If a disaster struck today, what would happen to your pet? Your family plan should include your pets too! These are things you can do now to prepare:

  • Take a color picture of your pets and store them in a re-sealable, plastic bag.
  • Set aside a week’s supply of food and water for each pet along with your own emergency supplies. If your pet eats canned food, get the kind with a pull-off lid. Set aside dishes to feed them from and store small animal food in plastic, airtight containers.
  • If your pet requires medication, have a week’s worth stored with the emergency kit. Keep up to date on the medication’s expiration date.
  • If you have a cat or ferret, set aside litter and a litter pan.
  • Be sure your pet is wearing identification NOW. This is the single, most important provision you can make for your pet.
  • Keep a leash and chain/cable tie-out in your emergency kit and car. If walls are not standing and fences are down, containing your pet could be a real problem.
  • Have an animal crate large enough for each pet to comfortably stay in.
  • Keep your vet’s name and number and vaccination records in your pet’s first aid kit.
  • Talk with your neighbors on how to handle emergency arrangements.


Keeping of Hens

The keeping of hens is permitted within the City of Anacortes, with specific guidelines. Note that roosters are prohibited. You may keep up to a maximum of six hens (with the exception of R1 zone which may have up to 12 hens). See AMC 6.10.010 for additional information.


Hoofed Animals

For more information on hoofed animals (horses, ponies, mules, donkeys, bovine animals, sheep, goats, etc.) see AMC 6.14.



Animal owners who are in violation of an animal municipal code may be issued a civil infraction and, in some cases, a criminal citation. The following infraction fee schedule applies within a 12 month period:

  • 1st  Offense         $103.00
  • 2nd Offense         $257.00
  • 3rd Offense         $513.00
  • 4th Offense         $1026.00 (plus removal of the animal )  


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