County Animal Services temporarily ceases acceptance of owner surrendered animals

County shelters experiencing overcrowding due to increased owner surrenders, department developing intervention program to support families in keeping animals in their homes

Effective Wednesday, February 3rd, Contra Costa County Animals Services Department (CCCASD) will be temporarily ceasing the acceptance of owner surrendered animals at their shelters in Martinez and Pinole due to the volume of animals at both facilities. Certain exceptions to this temporary freeze will be made for animals that are injured, unhealthy, under twelve weeks of age, or as otherwise required by law. The agency has also indefinitely closed its night deposit boxes for animals that are surrendered during hours that the department is closed to the public.

“Surrendering an animal to the shelter should be a last resort,” says Beth Ward, Contra Costa County Animal Services’ Director.  “High owner surrender rates leads to overpopulation in our shelters, which increases the possibilities that animals will get disease and/or experience behavior problems. Properly managing shelter inventory and the health of the pets in our care improves the chances of finding homes for the animals in our care.”

CCCASD expects this temporary freeze on accepting owner surrendered animals to be in effect for roughly a month, during which time the department will be developing an intervention program to help support families in keeping their animals in their homes. During this period, CCCASD will continue to receive and impound animals that are sick, injured or abandoned, as well as strays and animals that are confiscated as a result of active investigations or impounded by other law enforcement agencies in Contra Costa County.

Families in need can email or call (925) 335-8300 to determine if CCCASD can accept their pet. There is a fee of $50.00 for unlicensed animals surrendered by their owners. The fee for surrendering a licensed animal is $30.00.

County residents can visit to view a list of online resources to support them in keeping their pets.

To adopt a pet, call them at (925) 335-8300 or visit the shelter at 4800 Imhoff Place in Martinez.

Contra Costa Animal Services is the largest animal welfare organization in Contra Costa County. The department operates two shelters, in Martinez and Pinole, where they provide high-quality animal care services, shelter homeless, abandoned and lost animals, place animals in safe, caring homes, and provide education and services to enhance the lives of people and their animal companions. Additionally, the department’s Field Services Division plays a crucial role in protecting the health and safety of all people and animals in our community through enforcement of state and laws, protecting the public from animal injury and working to prevent animal cruelty, abuse and neglect.

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