Animal bites & rabies
Residents of Monterey County are reminded about the ongoing public health threat presented by rabid wildlife in our community.
Rabies is a preventable viral disease of mammals most often transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal. It infects the central nervous system, causing encephalopathy and ultimately death. Once symptoms develop, rabies is fatal. The vast majority of rabies cases reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) each year occur in wild animals like raccoon’s, skunks, bats, and foxes
Did you know? September 28 is World Rabies Day, and it’s goal is to raise awareness about the burden of rabies and bring together partners to enhance prevention and control efforts worldwide.
If you live within the incorporated boundaries of a city (inside the city limits), please contact your local Animal Control Agency, City of Salinas Animal Services or service provider for that city.
Report Animal Cruelty
If it is an emergency, call 911!
Did you know? Deliberate cruelty and injury to an animal is punishable by law by the state of California. If convicted of PC 597 animal cruelty as a misdemeanor, the potential consequences are up to one year in a county jail and a maximum $20,000 fine.
The penalties for felony animal abuse in California are 16 months, or two, or three years in the California state prison and the same maximum fine.
Dead Animal Blocking Roadway
The Monterey County Department of Public Works has responsibility to remove dead animal from the roadway on local “public roads” in the unincorporated area of Monterey County. During normal working hours, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, the routine activity should be reported by calling (831) 647-7748 Monterey or (831) 755-4800 Salinas. Private roads are generally the responsibility of a homeowners association or legal owner of record of the road.
Have a close encounter with the wild kind?
Depending on where you live in Salinas, you can come into contact with wild animals like bobcats, deer, opossums, hawks, owls, and pelicans, to small animals, including squirrels, turtles, hummingbirds, swallows, and more. Unless they are injured, acting oddly, or causing a problem, the best thing to do is to leave them be.
If you need help assistance or find a wild animal in need, don’t move it. Contact your local wildlife rescue group, like the SPCA Wildlife center, and get assistance.
Great resources from the SPCA of Monterey Wildlife Center:
- What to do if you find a wild animal in need
- Learn if a baby bird needs rescue
- How can you help wild animals?
- Wildlife frequently asked questions
For more great information regarding wildlife, like “Living with Deer” or “Living with Raccoons”, check out the SPCA of Monterey Wildlife Center’s website at http://www.spcamc.org/wildlife/. or visit the website of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife at www.wildlife.ca.gov/Living-with-Wildlife.
Can I Keep it?
As cute as it may be, the best place for a wild animal is in the wild. Also in most areas, it is against the local county code to feed or keep wild animals.
Feeding of wildlife is prohibited by Monterey County Code, with the exception of bird feeders.
Feral Cats & the Community Cats Program
Cats in the shelter
Cats end up in the shelter for many reasons: abandoned, lost, feral, or injured. But the Monterey County Animal Services only has the ability to provide a live outcome for about 15-20%, comparable to most animal shelters –because there just aren’t enough adoptable cats, and people willing to adopt them, to increase this dismal 80-85% euthanasia rate.
Some better options
Instead of taking the cat to the shelter, consider these options:
- Leave the cat where it was found, put up fliers in the area, and report the animal to the local shelter. You can also search Pet harbor to see if anyone has posted a listing for a lost cat.
- Trap-Neuter-Release (TNR) feral or un-owned cats in your neighborhood.
- If cats are a nuisance, use recommended cat deterrents like sprinkling fresh citrus peels or spreading or planting rue.
More information and resources can be found on the Community Cats page