Frequently Asked Questions

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If you have questions that are not listed below please call the Jackson County Animal Control Office at 618-634-5558


I live or have recently moved into Jackson County or I have recently acquired a dog/cat and reside in Jackson County:

When do I need to have my animal vaccinated?

The State of Illinois requires that all dogs four (4) months of age or older be currently vaccinated against rabies.  At the time of vaccination dogs shall be issued a rabies tag reflecting the current vaccination status of the animal.  This tag is to be worn at all times.

What are the tagging requirements for Jackson County residents?

Most Jackson County communities have their own corporate body animal regulations which must be enforced by the city/village enforcement officers.  In Jackson County the cities of Murphysboro and Carbondale require that animals within their city limits be licensed and tagged with city registration tags.  Therefore, dogs within these corporate city limits must have two (2) tags attached to their collar or harness at all times.

Replacement tags are available free of charge for as long as your vaccination is valid from the Jackson County Animal Control office.  You can call 618-687-7235 to have it mailed to you or to set up a time to pick it up.

Registration tags for the cities of Murphysboro and Carbondale are available at the Police Department of each city. 


I live inside the city limits of a town/village/city in Jackson County:

Do we have more restrictive regulations that rural (unincorporated) areas and who do I contact in these towns/villages/cities?

Most incorporated taxing bodies (town and villages) have Animal Control Ordinances passed by their town/village boards/councils.  These ordinances should be enforced by appointees of their respective towns/villages.  Complaints, therefore, regarding at large/stray animals in these communities should be directed to the law enforcement officer or the village hall of the town/village.  (See references for local corporate governing bodies)

Map of Animal Control areas Feb19

I am concerned about the living conditions or health of an animal in Jackson County:

            Who should I contact for concerns about the welfare of a dog?

Animal welfare checks for injured, sick, or dogs without proper shelter are done by local animal control officers (see contact listing for local governing bodies) and State of Illinois inspectors.  State requirements are such that an owner must provide a sufficient quantity of food, water, shelter as well as veterinary care as needed to prevent suffering.  Concerns regarding care and checks should be reported to your local Animal Control agency.

What is the difference between a stray dog and a straying dog?

A straying dog is an owned dog who has wandered from the supervision/property of the owner.  A stray dog is an animal for which no owner/caretaker can currently be determined.  Note: Stray dogs may become straying dogs if an owner/caretaker can be identified.

I am concerned about the numbers of stray cats in my neighborhood. 

Is there anything I can do about this situation?

Most of the towns/villages/cities have regulations regarding cats.  These ordinances must be enforced by the enacting body (i.e. the town board or city council).  The State of Illinois nor Jackson County have any requirements regarding vaccination and control of felines.  Therefore, no action (except in the case of a bite) is taken regarding cats other than providing spay/neuter information and deterrents so as to prevent digging into gardens/flower beds, etc.

A neighboring farmer/livestock owner allows his animals to free forage (run loose) and they intrude onto my property, or livestock are chronically on a public roadway, what can be done about this issue?

The Illinois Department of Agriculture and local Animal Control work together to enforce the Domestic Animals (Livestock) At Large Act.  Incidences of livestock at large should be reported to local law enforcement agencies if they represent a hazard on roadways and then reported to either the IL Dept. of Agriculture office or local Animal Control for follow up.  Owners of livestock are required to maintain fences or holding areas so as to prevent their stock from wandering and causing damage or representing a safety hazard.

I know someone who has been bitten/attached by a dog or cat:

            How do I report a bite/attach or how is this handled?

Bites are mandated to be reported by the doctor or medical group providing the care/treatment of the victim. 

Biting animals are held/assigned to a ten (10) day observational quarantine from the date of the bite and must be examined and released by a licensed veterinarian at the end of the quarantine period.

Most bites have behavioral justifications for an animal to bite (food/injury/territorial defense); however, each incident is considered for causality, violence, and whether the incident is acute or a chronic problem.

I have concerns about wildlife (raccoons, opossums, groundhog, etc.) causing damage/concerns around our residence:

What can we do to correct this?

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources has been issuing commercial permits to individuals/businesses which provide removal of nuisance wildlife.  In addition, private citizens may obtain free individual permits, subject to the permit restrictions to remove the animal yourself.  The IDNR/Illinois Extension Service/Illinois Animal Control Association has developed a website providing information regarding nuisance wildlife complaints. (

Who do I contact if there is a dead animal in the road?

The government entity that maintains the section of road where the animal is located.  If it is a county road then you would contact the County Highway Department, if it’s a State road you would contact IDOT (618-549-2171), if it is a city road contact the city highway or road department and if it is a township road contact the township.  (See the contact listing for local governing bodies)

I am a landlord and a previous renter left an animal:
Who should I contact to have the animal removed?

Since pets are considered personal property this is a matter for the legal system.  You should contact your attorney to see what can be done.