City will handle Animal Control Jan. 1

If you have pets and live within the Tacoma city limits, you’ve got mail — or you will have mail soon. The City of Tacoma’s new Animal Control and Compliance service sent out the first round of license renewal notices to city residents who own pets this week.

Beginning Jan. 1, 2006, City residents will need to license their pets and receive animal control services through the City of Tacoma. The service will include pet licensing through the Finance Department’s Tax and License Division as well as enforcement of the City’s Municipal Code relating to animals through a newly hired animal control and compliance team that will work under the umbrella of the Tacoma Police Department. The enforcement team will include five people — one supervisor and four compliance officers — that will work regular shifts daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. and also offer 24-hour response for emergency situations. The animal control team will not be staffed by police officers, but the team will be able to communicate with police officers and will work out of a police station on McKinley Avenue.

The City of Tacoma previously contracted with the Tacoma-Pierce County Humane Society for animal control and licensing, but the local Humane Society announced in early 2005 that it would no longer provide those services. The City will continue to contract with the Humane Society for kenneling stray animals.

For more information about the City’s Animal Control and Compliance services, or to report a problem animal in your neighborhood, call 627-PETS or check the Web site at