The Township of Millstone has a shared service agreement with Western Monmouth Animal Control, which is a regional animal control service administered by the Manalapan Township Department of Health. Animal Control responds to domestic animal complaints, problems and issues. The first priority of the animal control’s duties is to help injured or sick animals. All other calls regarding animals follow in priority.
Western Monmouth Animal ControlMon-Fri 8:30 am to 4:00 pm
732-446-7414 (Millstone Township Clerk's Office)
732-446-8344 (Leave voicemail during business hours)
If your pet is lost, please report it to Animal Control via the Clerk's Office at 732-446-7414 during normal hours. After working hours, please call the NJ State Police at 609-584-5000. You can leave a voicemail message on 732-446-8344. This will only be used during business hours.
- Contact the intake shelter for Millstone Township, Monmouth County SPCA (732-542-0040).
- Search Facebook: Lost and Found Pets of New Jersey or Lost Pets of Monmouth and Ocean County and post your lost pet on these sites.
- If you pet is microchipped, please contact your microchip company to let them know the pet is missing
- At the same time, we advise everyone to contact all surrounding shelters in case the pet was picked up by someone else and taken to a different shelter
- Contact any 24-hour emergency vet hospitals in the surrounding areas
If you see a stray dog, please report it by calling the Animal Control via the Clerk's Office at 732-446-7414 during normal hours. After working hours, please call the NJ State Police at 609-584-5000. Stray dogs are transported to Monmouth County SPCA (732-542-0040). If you lost an dog, please call Animal Control or the Shelter. If you encounter an injured dog or cat, please call Animal Control at 732-446-7414 during normal hours. If you encounter an injured wild animal, contact an licensed wildlife rehabilitator. The list of animal rehabilitators in NJ can be found on NJ Division of Fish, Game & Wildlife website at http://www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/pdf/rehab_list.pdf.
All bites by animals, whether by domestic or wild animal are reported to the Monmouth County Health Department at 732-431-7456 and Animal Control. Monmouth County Health Officials and Animal Control Officers work collaboratively to verify that the biting animal does not have rabies. In absence of this information, the officials will assist in the determination of whether post-exposure vaccinations are warranted to protect against the possibility of rabies.
Rabies is a very serious threat to human health. With rare exception once an exposure to the disease progresses to active symptoms it almost always results in death. Thus, working early in the timeframe following a possible exposure to determine if medical intervention is warranted is critical. An animal may be infected with rabies for a long time before it shows symptoms, anywhere from two weeks to many months. (The incubation period is usually two to three weeks.). If the biting animal is available to observe for illness no medical intervention is probably warranted. However, when the biting animal is not available, public health officials and animal control officers will work together to provide the best and most appropriate post-bite recommendations.
Here are some of the symptoms of rabies to be aware of when observing animals:
- Unprovoked aggression ("furious" rabies). Some animals may attack anything that moves, or even inanimate objects.
- Unusual friendliness ("dumb" rabies).
- Animal may stumble, fall, appear disoriented or uncoordinated, or wander aimlessly.
- Paralysis, often beginning in the hind legs or throat. Paralysis of the throat muscles can cause the animal to bark, whine, drool, choke, or froth at the mouth.
- Vocalizations ranging from chattering to shrill scream.
- Nocturnal animals may become unusually active during the day (remember, some daytime activity is normal, especially when nocturnal animals are feeding their young).
Rabies Vaccination Clinics
Family pets require love and regular care. The Township sponsors two (2) free rabies vaccination clinic for dogs and cats. They are scheduled in January and June. Please check the website or contact 732-446-7414 for the specific dates, location and times.
Wild Animals and Residential Wildlife Control
There are many species of wild animals in our community. Wild animals are generally well accepted and a large part of what makes the community attractive and desirable. The Township does not provide services to remove healthy residential wildlife. As a precaution, never leave food outside your house. Otherwise, it will attract various wildlife to your doorstep. If interested or needing to remove nuisance wildlife please contact a residential wildlife control company to assist you with problems. There are many private contractors that provide these services. Names of contractors are available by searching the internet for Wildlife Control in Monmouth County, NJ. However, if the wild animal is acting unusual, injured, or sick, please contact Animal Control.
Feral Cats and their colonies
Animal Control receives many calls of cat colonies in residential areas of Millstone. In New Jersey, cats are the third highest species of animal to become infected with rabies. Many of the stray cats in residential neighborhoods are not vaccinated against rabies and risk encounter with wild raccoons at night which can have rabies. Therefore, the Township discourages residents from feeding feral cats due to this potential risk of rabies and a higher likelihood that a rabid cat can expose humans to the disease as opposed to a wild animal.
Bats play a major role in our ecosystem. However, bats are associated with several diseases that can cause harm to humans. Rabies is perhaps the most well known disease associated with bats. Along with animals such as foxes, raccoons, and skunks, bats are one of the primary animals that transmit rabies. Some bats live in buildings, and may continue to do so with little risk to inhabitants if they are unable to access living areas and the potential for contact with people is low. However, bats should always be prevented from entering rooms of your home. The first strategy to preventing bats entering your home is to "bat proof" your home or living quarters to prevent bats from using your home for a roosting site. For best results, contact an animal control officer or wildlife conservation agency and ask for assistance.
Here are some “bat proofing” techniques:
- Carefully examine your home for holes that might allow bats entry into your living quarters.
- Any openings larger than a quarter-inch by a half-inch should be caulked.
- Fill electrical and plumbing holes with stainless steel wool or caulking. Ensure that all doors to the outside close tightly.
- Most bats leave in the fall or winter to hibernate, so these are the best times to "bat-proof" your home. During summer, many young bats are unable to fly. If you exclude adult bats during this time, the young may be trapped inside.
If a bat is in your home, please contact Animal Control for assistance in capturing the bat or after hours contact the NJ State Police. Residents are discouraged from letting the animal fly free from the home if there is any chance the animal could have been in the residence overnight or any time residents could have been sleeping. Capturing the bat is important for rabies testing.
The most common foxes found in New Jersey are the Red Fox and the Gray Fox. These animals cause problems for people since they prey on small animals such as chipmunks, field mice and moles and even domestic animals like cats. They have the potential to carry disease including rabies. Foxes are attracted onto residential properties due to the well maintained lawns which can be a possible habitat for them to live in and find prey. Foxes are not generally aggressive towards humans. People becoming uncomfortable with fox sightings should remove attractions, put up fences, and perform scaring techniques. If you’re concerned about a possible fox nuisance, please call a residential wildlife control company to evaluate the best way to remove the animal.
The most common species of rats in the United States are the Norway Rat and Roof Rat. Rats can be a nuisance in many people’s homes due to their habits of living in the house and gnawing. Here are some tips for rat control. Inspection is very important, since it allows you to find the location of the rats, so you can set traps and bait. Exclusion is used to stop rats from entering your house. Small openings in walls should be sealed so that rats cannot enter the house. Trapping or baiting are often used to stop rat populations.Trapping does have some advantages over baiting. It provides an alternative for those who do not want to place rodenticides. If the rat population is small enough, trapping can yield quick results when done properly. Finally, trapping ensures that you can dispose of the dead rats before their odor becomes a problem in an inaccessible area.Rodenticides are poison baits and should be used in areas where domestic animals and children can't access them. For protection against accidental poisoning, use tamper-resistant bait stations that hold the baits in place and keep children and pets out. It is a national law and guideline to use tamper-resistant bait stations in areas where children or pets can access.
If a coyote is seen on your property or any other wildlife, just monitor the situation. If the wildlife is just passing through without showing signs of injury or aggression (possible rabid) then there is no need to call the Animal Control Department. Link for more info: http://www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/coyote_info.htm
The most common bear problem New Jersey's residents experience is black bears getting into their garbage. Bears are attracted to neighborhoods by garbage odors, so properly securing your garbage is one of the best ways to prevent bears from becoming a nuisance in your community.
Residents are encouraged to work within their community to make sure all garbage is secured and kept away from bears. For tips on proper garbage management and coexisting with bears, visit: www.njfishandwildlife.com/bearfacts_avoid.htm
Black bears by nature tend to be wary of people. However, if you encounter a black bear in your neighborhood or outdoors while hiking or camping, follow these common-sense safety tips.
- Never feed or approach a bear!
- Remain calm if you encounter a bear.
- Make the bear aware of your presence by speaking in an assertive voice, singing, clapping your hands, or making other noises.
- Make sure the bear has an escape route.
- If a bear enters your home, provide it with an escape route by propping all doors open.
- Avoid direct eye contact, which may be perceived by a bear as a challenge. Never run from a bear. Instead, slowly back away.
- To scare the bear away, make loud noises by yelling, banging pots and pans or using an air horn. Make yourself look as big as possible by waving your arms. If you are with someone else, stand close together with your arms raised above your head.
- The bear may utter a series of huffs, make popping jaw sounds by snapping its jaws and swat the ground. These are warning signs that you are too close. Slowly back away, avoid direct eye contact and do not run.
- If a bear stands on its hind legs or moves closer, it may be trying to get a better view or detect scents in the air. It is usually not a threatening behavior.
- Black bears will sometimes "bluff charge" when cornered, threatened or attempting to steal food. Stand your ground, avoid direct eye contact, then slowly back away and do not run.
- If the bear does not leave, move to a secure area.
- Report black bear damage or nuisance behavior to the DEP's 24-hour, toll-free hotline at 1-877-WARN DEP (1-877-927-6337).
- Families who live in areas frequented by black bears should have a "Bear Plan" in place for children, with an escape route and planned use of whistles and air horns.
- Black bear attacks are extremely rare. If a black bear does attack, fight back!
Adopting a Dog or Cat
Adopting a dog can bring joy and love to your family. Here are some guidelines in adopting a dog:
Things to buy before and after adoption: Food, bowls for water and food, a leash, collar, and bedding. What works best are baby blankets, or thin blankets which can fit in the washing machine. Often cast-off, bulky comforters can be cut into quarters. Consider purchasing an ID tag. Many pet stores have machines where you can create an ID tag immediately. Some rescues and shelters also provide an ID tag. Make sure to get your dog licensed at the Manalapan Health Department – which is another good form of ID!
Your dog’s period of adjustment: The first couple of weeks you and your pet are "getting to know one another". They don’t know why they have come to your home nor what is expected of them. Please be patient with your dog and anticipate problems before they occur. Don't leave tempting shoes, clothing, or children's toys within reach of your dog.
Watch for your dog’s symptoms: When your dog is settling in, they may experience shyness, anxiety, restlessness, excitement, crying or barking. They may exhibit excessive water drinking, frequent urination, or diarrhea. Their appetite may not be good. If any of these symptoms last more than a few days, call your veterinarian.
Be Patient: Your new dog must learn a whole set of new rules. Be patient and be consistent. Don’t allow them to do something one time and forbid it another.
Obedience training: A six to eight week class taking one hour of your time one day a week, and a training lesson with your dog 1/2 hour a day, will teach your dog the simple obedience commands so necessary in having a well-behaved pet. Just as we must teach our children manners, we must also teach our pet. Local training providers are available by searching the internet.
Got a New Cat?
- Make Sure Everyone In The House Is Prepared To Have A Cat: Talk to your family members before bringing a new cat home. Make sure everyone knows that the fun begins only after kitty feels safe and her needs are met. Once you're sure everyone is ready for feeding, litter changing and grooming, you can divvy up chores among family members so everyone is prepared to care for kitty before she arrives.
- Do You Know What Your Cat Is Trying To Tell You?: The average cat has a vocabulary of more than 16 different sounds, including purring, howling, hissing and meowing—not to mention a wide-range of playful and serious body language.
Here are important summer tips for pet care:
Never leave pets in the hot car: It can take MINUTES before a pet can develop heat stroke, and suffocate. It is best advised to leave pets at home during the hot day. If not, bring water and a water dish and take your pet with you.
Make sure your pet is protected: Make regular visits to the vet and have protection against parasites. Parasites include ticks, fleas, and mosquitoes. Otherwise, your dog can have a risk of heartworm.
Watch for the paws: During hot weathers, the surfaces like asphalt or metal can get really hot! Try to keep your pet off of hot asphalt; not only can it burn paws, but it can also increase body temperature and lead to overheating.
Must have access to water: Pets get much thirstier than humans do, when they get hot, and other than panting and drinking, they really have no way to cool themselves down. Also, provide your pet shade as often as possible.
Pets don’t always know how to swim: Dogs and cats may not always know how to swim. It is always advised to keep pets away from swimming pools.
Pets can easily get sunburn: Pets can also get sunburn and it can be as painful. Always watch out for prolonged exposure in the sun.
Always leash: If you can’t trust your pet without a leash, it is always advised to keep them on it. Usually, a unleashed pet may get lost or attacked by other animals. When in doubt, keep your pets on a leash.
Chickens are becoming more popular in the Township, since there are no zoning restrictions. Backyard chickens are low maintenance animals, and only require a coop to live in. Here are some reasons why homeowners own chickens:
- Great tasting nutritious eggs
- A Healthy lawn: Chickens LOVE to range freely, and allowing them to do so kills the proverbial two birds with one stone: they'll eat any garden pest they can get their beaks on (earwigs, grubs, beetles, even moles) and they'll turn that into fertilizer. Chickens will even cut down on the amount of mowing because they love to eat grass.
- Low Maintenance: Chickens don't need to be walked, brushed, or fed twice a day. Essentially all you have to do is gather eggs daily, fill their food and water containers a couple of times a week and change their bedding once a month!
Are they right for you?
- Can You Dedicate Some Time Each Day?
Although low-maintenance, chickens do require a small amount of daily care as well as some monthly and semi-annual maintenance. Plan on spending 10 minutes a day on your pet chickens, an hour or so per month, plus a few hours twice a year on semi-annual chores. If that sounds like too much, then chickens aren't right for you.
- Do You Have Enough Space?
Chickens don't require a ton of space. If they'll be "cooped up" with no area outside to freely roam, your coop will need to provide a minimum of 10 square feet per bird. On the other hand, if they'll have an outdoor "run" area or will be allowed to range freely, which is preferable, they only require two to four square feet per bird inside the coop, as long as they also have at least 10 square feet per bird in the outside run. That said, the more space the better, both indoors and out! Chickens are great foragers, eating insects, grasses and weeds, and many other tidbits they find in the yard. The more foraging they do, the healthier - and happier - they will be. Also keep in mind that the less outdoor space they have, the more they will destroy the area they do have. Chickens obsessively scratch up the soil, peck at what they find, and scratch some more. They also dig holes for "dust baths". And they REALLY love to eat plants and weeds. Consequently, if their run area is small, they'll make a dustbowl out of it in a week. On the other hand, give them a large run area - or better yet let them range freely, and your yard will benefit immensely. Their scratching behavior aerates the soil; their droppings fertilize it; and they'll eat pests such as grubs and ticks.
Considering Your Neighbors
- If nothing so far has given you pause, you still need to consider your neighbors, especially if they're close by. They may not be educated about chicken-keeping and so could have concerns ranging from noise, or smell. It might be a good idea for you to check in with them early on and address any concerns. Often there are many complaints for male chickens known as roosters which are known to cause noise. Please be considerate when owning a rooster. Many other people wouldn’t want to be annoyed by crowing of the rooster. Other nuisance complaints usually are free ranged chicken exploring their neighbor’s property, and leaving feces. Please be considerate with your neighbors.
Chicken Coop requirements site from (mypetchicken.com)
An adequate chicken coop design must:
- Be predator-proof, not just from the sides, but from above and below as well. Predators that would love chicken wings for dinner include but are not limited to raccoons, foxes, wolves, coyotes and hawks. (Tip from a fellow chicken owner: be sure to select the right wire mesh. The holes in standard "chicken wire" are actually quite large. Yes, it will keep the chickens in, but raccoons can reach through those holes and do some nasty things... Not a pretty sight. We recommend one-half inch square "hardware cloth".)
- Be secure from nasty rodents (yes, rats!) that will be attracted to the feed and droppings. Rodents are burrowing creatures, so you need to block them from slipping into the coop from below. If you coop doesn't have a floor, you need to bury small-mesh fencing down into the ground about 12" all around the coop.
- Be breezy enough to prevent respiratory diseases, to which chickens are especially prone, but not so drafty during winter that they freeze. Chickens can withstand the cold so long as it's not drafty!
- Be easy to clean so bugs and bacteria don't fester
- Provide "roosting poles" for your girls to sleep on (2" wide; rounded edges; allot 5-10" of space per bird side to side and 10" between poles if more than one is necessary; plus ladder-like grading so the pole furthest away is several inches higher than the closest).
- Encourage egg-laying with 1 nest box for every four or five chickens. Nest boxes should be raised off the ground at least a few inches, but lower than the lowest roosting pole. They should also be dark and "out of the way" to cater to the hen's
- Be roomy: at least 4 square feet per bird if birds are able to roam freely during the day, and at least 10 square feet per bird if they are permanently confined.
- Accommodate a feeder and water, which should hang 6-8" off the ground.
- Include a removable "droppings tray" under roosting poles for capture and easy disposal of droppings. (Or should we say for easy access to your lawn fertilizer?)
- Similar to the coop, the sides of the attached chicken run, if you have one, should be buried 12" into the soil to keep predators and rodents from digging their way in. Once again, we recommend chicken wire fencing or half-inch hardware cloth. It's also our strong recommendation that you secure the top of the run with aviary netting or deer netting. This will keep wild birds (which can carry communicable diseases) out and provide further defense against sly predators
Common household hazards for pets, food safety for pets, pet-proofing, and natural disaster preparation for pet owners- http://www.expertise.com/home-and-garden/pet-safety-guide