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Unleashed – PAWsitive Stories from Salt Lake County Animal Services

Teach Your Dog To Pose For Family Photos

November 24, 2020

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holiday photo

It's the time of year where you gather up all the family, the 4-legged ones in particular, to look cute in a holiday photo. Salt Lake County Animal Services will walk you through step-by-step on how to get your pups to look great in a photo.

Including your dog in your next family photo session.

  1. Practice Commands: (recommend sit, stay and down). If your dog has a cute trick that highlights their personality, practice that as well, so that they’re fresh in your dog’s mind. Check out our video on teaching your dog to ‘stay.’
  1. Exercise your dog the day-of: Take them for a walk or hike, let them play at doggy daycare. If weather is bad and you can’t get out to excise them, playing nose games in the house or your yard will help tire them out by using their noses. (we have a nose games video as well)

  2. Bring high value treats that your dog loves: boiled chicken, cheese, hot dogs, etc. This will help them stay focused. You can also bring a toy for your dog: but if your dog is highly toy motivated and gets distracted by them easily, wait until the end of the session to get photos of your dog with their toy.

  3. Bring a squeaker toy for photographer to get your dogs attention. Practice teaching your dog to stay in position around squeaky toys so that they don’t get up to get the toy

  4. Make sure pet is cleaned and groomed beforehand. If your dog has a lot of dandruff that shows, you can take a lint roller and lightly roll it down your pets back to pick up the dandruff. It’s also good to have one on hand to use on your clothes right before photos if your pet sheds.

Don’t worry if your dog isn’t doing what you ask, never stress a pet by asking it to do something that it’s not comfortable doing. Stress will show in the photos. A good photographer will be able to use the unpredictability of pet photoshoots and make them fun! What is important is that your dog’s personality and the tender moments between you and your pet are captured.


Volunteer Highlight: Sundyn Woolf

November 18, 2020

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sundyn woolf

Salt Lake County Animal Services has amazing people who volunteer and foster for our organization. They help socialize pets, groom them, walk them, and foster. Meet this months Volunteer Highlight, Sundyn Woolf, she volunteers and fosters! Find out more about her experience and become a VOLUNTEER or FOSTER.

Q&A with Sundyn:

What brought you to Salt Lake County Animal Services?
I have thought about volunteering at a shelter for years, but haven't had the time. Now I'm more available and happy to have the opportunity to help out.

What is your favorite thing about volunteering?
I love meeting all the different cat personalities. From sweet to salty, they all have something special.

What do you like to do in your spare time? 
I enjoying snowboarding, reading, Bikram yoga and creating encaustic/found object art.

Tell us about your family and fur kiddos:
Right now I'm living with my sister and “Double Trouble”. “Double Trouble” are my two bunnies Jax and Harley. Jax is a Holland lop and Harley is a Holland lop/lion head mix. Jax is pretty laid back. Harley is the independent, sassy type.

What advice do you have for new SLCoAS volunteers?
Approach each animal with a blank slate. They are all different and I wouldn't assume one animal is like another. Let them lead the relationship.

Do you have a favorite adoption story?
I'm currently fostering Semi who is a cat with Cerabeller Hypoplasia. His adoption will be my favorite. He's such a special guy.

Tell us something unique about you:
I've been learning how to communicate with animals telepathically for about a year. I stumbled onto it and because of some very cool experiences I've had, I'm a believer.

Where is your favorite place to travel?
I went to France when I was 16. I would love to go back.

Adopt A Senior Pet Month

November 05, 2020

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senior pet promo

November is National Adopt A Senior Pet Month — a month dedicated to helping older pets find loving forever homes. Shelters and rescues across the country hope those looking to adopt a new furry friend will consider adding a senior pet to the family this month. Check out Salt Lake County Animal Services senior pets online

Senior pets have trouble finding adoptive homes and while we can all agree that puppies and kittens are adorable, older pets are just as loving and loyal as their younger counterparts. Not to mention, adopting a senior animal companion comes with some great advantages:  

*Senior pets are typically calmer than puppies and kittens

*Senior pets are typically already House trained and past the teething stage

*Senior pets typically know all of their basic commands but are still willing to learn some more.

*Senior pets low-key nature makes them great fit for homes with small children, so long as the children know how to gently interact with an animal

*They are less demanding and usually fit into many households, including apartments.

From November 5-30, 2020 - Salt Lake County Animal Services is offering:
$40 Dog Adoption Fees for dogs over 5 years-old
$11 Cat Adoption Fees for cats over 5 years-old


Understanding the personality of a pet is key in finding a perfect match and a successful adoption. Puppies and kittens are still developing their personalities, with a senior pet what you see is what you get. You will know if a senior dog is a “Lovebug” or if your Senior Cat is an “Independent Companion” You will not need to worry about drastic personality changes, too much energy or how big they may get.

Bringing any animal into your home you should expect that you will need to face unique challenges, all pets will need regular vet visits, dental care and checkups to stay in good health.

Senior pets often make the most grateful adoptees, they seem to know that you opened your heart and your home to them, and they are loved and will be cared for. We have often heard once a person has adopted a senior and seen the love and gratitude, they have they will always adopt a senior.

If you are interested in adopting a senior pet please visit our website at to view all of our wonderful animal hoping to find their forever homes.

Interested in fostering? Email our Foster Coordinator at to find out more.

Our Senior to Senior program offers adopters 55 years of age or older adoption an animal 5 years of age or older a free adoption. Find out more at

Giving Tuesday Challenge: Cats Vs Dogs

November 02, 2020

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giving tuesday challenge

Salt Lake County Animal Services will be participating in Giving Tuesday on December 1st but starting November 3, we will begin a friendly challenge to see who can raise more money for our Injured Animal Fund, CAT people or DOG people? We have a goal of $10,000!

During this year’s Giving Tuesday, help support the hundreds of injured animals that enter Salt Lake County Animal Services every year. Our on-site veterinary clinic treats everything from colds, abscesses, minor surgeries, and amputations, and we bring in outside orthopedic surgeons to help us with other major surgeries. In 2020, we spent over $20,000 to help these animals either return home or be adopted out to new families.

There are two different ways to DONATE:

  1. Simply text "adoptutahpets" to phone number 56651. Follow the prompts to make and pay for your donation.
    • In the comment section enter “cats” or “dogs”
  1. Visit the online portal and enter in your information:
    • Enter the amount of your donation in the "Injured Animal Fund."
    • In the comments section enter "cats" or "dogs."
    • Share your donation with your friends and family and encourage them to donate.
    • Follow Salt Lake County Animal Services Facebook page to find out more about the pets our Injured Animal Fund has helped.

Donate over $50 and we will give you a goody bag for your pet! Stay tuned, we will send you an invite to a drive-thru pick-up party in December. Questions? Email

GivingTuesday emphasizes opportunities to give back to communities and causes in safe ways that allow for social connection and kindness even while practicing physical distancing.

brownie injured animal

Halloween Pet Safety Tips

October 22, 2020

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halloween pet safety

The Halloween season can be scary for pets, especially dogs, when they encounter spooky houses or people in costumes. Please be prepared and prevent your dog from getting lost or injured during this time. Here are some tips from Salt Lake County Animal Services to use during this Halloween. Check out our video below as well.


  • Make sure tags and microchip are current
  • Write phone number on collar
  • Write phone number on duct tape and then wrap it around collar (If you don’t have time to get somewhere to get a new tag)

On Your Walk:

  • Get walks in early
  • Take your dogs favorite treats with you in case they see anything scary
  • Emergency lure: take a bunch of treats in your hand, glue it to your dogs’ nose and lure them out of the situation
  • Have two points of contact on your dog:
  • One leash on collar and one on harness
  • Hook two carabiners together and clip one to harness and one on collar and use one leash on either collar or harness
  • If you see a stray pet while on your walk, please be cautious before approaching, especially if you have on a costume that can scare them. Scared animals may either bolt or bite.
  • If you restrain a lost pet, please call your local animal control. In Salt Lake County: 801-840-4000.

In Your House:

  • Set up baby gates or ex-pens around doorways to prevent pets escaping
  • If dressing up pets, make it positive! Play with them, feed them their favorite treats, give them breaks
  • Some signs of stress: lip licking, yawning, shaking off and panting. Wearing a costume may stress out your pet.
  • Safe place to go such as bedroom or crate, with music/tv playing and a frozen Kong
  • Keep candy out of reach! Supervise pets if candy is out, ask dogs to leave it, send them to their beds. If you can’t supervise, make sure candy is stored up high, preferably in a cabinet and out of reach. Xylitol and chocolate are toxic. If your pet ingests either of those things call your local animal hospital for further instructions.


Vote: Cutest Pittie Pageant Photo Contest

October 16, 2020

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pittie pageant began

Who's the cutest pittie of them all? Salt Lake County Animal Services has 35 Contestants! (some of them were so cute, they're parents entered in two photos) As we continue to celebrate National Pit Bull Awareness Month join us by VOTING for 1 or more of the 30 plus Pit Bulls entered into our Pittie Pageant Photo Contest! Check out the Pittie Pageant Album on Facebook.
Every $1 will count as 1 vote and you can vote as many times as you want! All funds raised from this event will go directly towards our enrichment program to help the animals in our care.
To view their profiles and begin voting click on the VOTE NOW button below! 1st and 2nd prize winners will win some wonderful gift baskets generously donated by The Dogs Meow and Paw Paws self-serve dog wash and boutique. Winners will be announced via Facebook Live November 2nd. Let's show them some love!
We will tally and update numbers on the page at 10 AM & 5 PM, Mon-Fri.
If you have any questions please email
Voting closes at 5 PM on October 31, 2020.

Foster Highlight: Elizabeth Stallings

October 14, 2020

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october foster highlight

Opening your home, heart, and time to pets in need can be rewarding. Every year, hundreds of pets grow healthy and strong in a foster home, enabling them to be adopted into a new home. Find out more about fostering from our kitten foster, Elizabeth Stallings, our October Foster Highlight.

Q & A with our Foster: Elizabeth

How long have you been fostering?
Two years at the Salt Lake County Animal Services, 7 years at a different organization prior.

What had you interested in joining our foster program?
Salt Lake County Animal Services is an incredible asset to the community and I wanted to be a part of it. 

What types of animals have you fostered?

What is the most rewarding aspect of fostering?
Watching their little personalities bloom. They are the most fun to watch, play with and love on! 

What advice would you give to a new foster in the program?
Old towels and rags are a must.

Learn the signs of illness.

Check their weight every few days.

Spend all the time you can just enjoying them.

What is your favorite foster memory?
My very favorite is teaching my nieces and nephews to love and respect animals. 


Pittie Pageant Photo Contest

October 05, 2020

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Pittie Pageant

Salt Lake County Animal Services wants to see your Pitties! Tell us why they are amazing, loving members of your family, submit a photo and let the voting begin! Enter our Pittie Pageant Photo Contest through Oct 15. Voting will begin Oct 16. The top 2 winners will receive gift baskets from our contest sponsors The Dogs Meow & Paw Paws Dog Wash.
How To Enter
A $10 donation is required to enter. Please follow the directions below:
1. Click "Donate" at the top of this page.
2. Enter $10 in the donation amount.
3. Fill out your contact information and submit your donation.
4. Email a photo of your pet to 1 photo per entry.
*All submissions are due no later than October 15th at 5PM. Questions? Email
How to Vote! 
The winning photos will be determined by the number of votes.
Voting will be open to the public beginning October 16th at 10AM and will close October 31st at 5PM.
Every $1 counts as 1 vote and you can vote as many times as you want!
We will announce the 1st and 2nd place prize winners Monday, November 2nd via Facebook Live. Both will be receiving a basket full of goodies for their winning pet!
*If there is a tie between photos the winner will then be determined by the number of individual votes.
This is a fundraiser sponsored by Salt Lake County Animal Services. Donations raised from this event will go directly towards our enrichment program for the many bully breeds that have a layover in our building while we search for a new furever family for them.
October is National Pit Bull Awareness Month and rescues, shelters and pet parents of Pit Bull type dogs will be participating, educating, advocating and of course celebrating our favorite blocky headed fur friends. The goal of National Pit Bull Awareness Day/Month is to promote the truth about pit bulls. Knowledge is power!
As breed advocates we routinely find ourselves educating and advocating just by including our dogs in our daily routines. You can show others that every dog is a product of the environment and upbringing they are in and that a “pit bull” is just a dog. Salt Lake County Animal Services will be celebrating Pit Bull Awareness through the month of October and we hope you will join us in celebrating!
Questions? Email

ACO Cares Earns National Achievement Award

September 30, 2020

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aco cares

Salt Lake County, UT – The Animal Control Officer (ACO) Cares Program has been recognized with an Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties (NACo). The awards honor innovative, effective county government programs that strengthen services for residents.

The National Association of Counties (NACo) is pleased to grant Salt Lake County a 2020 Achievement Award for its program titled “ACO Cares Program” in the category of Human Services. Salt Lake County Animal Services operates a much-valued program wherein Animal Control Officers can identify patrons in our community that are in the most need of special services and opt to provide veterinary assistance when appropriate.  The Officers carry special cards that they can distribute to residents who need spay and neuter services and the residents can then work with our Clinic to schedule these services. The ACO Cares Program has become one of many tools Animal Control Officers use to help serve the public. Since implementing the program in 2018, nearly 400 animals have received surgeries via this opportunity.

“Salt Lake County Animal Services is constantly looking for ways to improve the lives of the pets and people served within the jurisdiction. Ultimately, their programming and educational opportunities have helped change the image of a municipal shelter both in our area, and across the country,” says Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson.

NACo President Mary Ann Borgeson said, “We are seeing firsthand now more than ever that counties work tirelessly to support our residents. This year’s Achievement Award-winning programs showcase how counties build healthy, safe and vibrant communities across America.”

Nationally, awards are given in 18 different categories that reflect the vast, comprehensive services counties provide. The categories include children and youth, criminal justice and public safety, county administration, information technology, health, civic engagement and many more.

Started in 1970, NACo’s annual Achievement Awards program is designed to recognize county government innovations. Each nominee is judged on its own merits and not against other applications received.

Salt Lake County Animal Services is located at 511 W 3900 S, SLC. Hours of operation are Mon-Sat, 10 AM – 6 PM. Due to Covid-19, all services are done by appointment. For additional information call 385-468-7387, email, visit




About Salt Lake County Animal Services:  Salt Lake County Animal Services adopted a No-Kill philosophy in 2010. Our mission is to provide comprehensive service and care to the animals and citizens we serve in the Salt Lake County Municipal Services District and the cities of Bluffdale, Holladay, Midvale, Millcreek, Murray, and Salt Lake.

About Naco: The National Association of Counties (NACo) unites America’s 3,069 county governments. Founded in 1935, NACo brings county officials together to advocate with a collective voice on national policy, exchange ideas and build new leadership skills, pursue transformational county solutions, enrich the public’s understanding of county government and exercise exemplary leadership in public service. Learn more at

Pitbull Awareness Month 2020

September 28, 2020

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Pitbull Awarness Month

October is National Pit Bull Awareness Month and Salt Lake County Animal Services will be holding a variety of programs this month to educate, advocate and of course celebrate our favorite blocky headed fur friends.

Through the years it has gained momentum and Pit Bull pet guardians and advocates decided to make the month of October National Pit Bull Awareness month with National Pit Bull Awareness Day falling on October 24th this year. 

Look at what Salt Lake County Animal Services has planned:
October 1st-31st Pittie Pageant:

We will be kicking off the festivities with our very own Pittie Pageant Photo Contest starting on October 1st.  This is a photo contest for you to show off your Pitties.  

Submit Photos Oct 1st - 15th: For a $10 donation you can submit a photo of your dog and then let voting begin.

Voting Runs Oct 16th - 31st: Tell you friends, family, neighbors and have them go and submit a dollar to vote for your pup. The Dogs Meow and Paw Paws self-serve dog wash and boutique have both generously donated some wonderful gift baskets for your 4 legged friends. We will be announcing the 1st and 2nd prize winners November 2nd. All proceeds will go to our Enrichment program to help the animal in our care.

Get your pup signed up today!

October 15th Pit Bull Basics and Beyond Workshop:
Whether you are new to 'bully breeds' or have been their guardians for years, we all know they NEED mental stimulation. This virtual presentation is geared towards terrier guardians who would like to know more about how to work with their instincts, provide mental stimulation, potential health issues and the importance of training. The best part of all is that this is completely FREE for you to join us in celebrating our Pit Bulls for National Pit bull awareness month.

Taught by Certified Behavior Consultant Laurie Schlossnagle, CPDT-KA, CBCC-KA, KPA CTP of Side By Side Dog Training.

In order to reserve a spot:
1. Register here:
2. Then we will email a confirmation to you with a Zoom invite.

Free Pittie Fix: October 19th-23rd 2020
Appointments are limited and you must live and license in our jurisdiction to qualify.

Your dogs must be a “Bully Breed” to qualify for the Free Pittie Fix.

Free Pitbull Fix sign up.

Pet Owners in our jurisdictions, use the code PITTY. 

When you schedule your appointment, you will be prompted to fill out a surgery authorization waiver and schedule their pick up appointment. Our scheduler will follow-up with you to confirm your details.

If you are interested in adopting please visit our Adoptable Pets for more information.

History of National Pitbull Awareness Month 
National Pit Bull Awareness Month started as National Pit Bull Awareness Day in 2007 By Bless The Bully’s and was established as a day to educate and foster positive communications and experiences in the communities in which we and our dogs live. It is a special day to focus on these incredible dogs and their devoted, responsible owners; a day to change perceptions and stereotypes.

The goal of National Pit Bull Awareness Day/Month is to promote the truth about pit bulls. Knowledge is power! We believe that with education and advocacy, the truth will save lives in terms of negating the fear and bias generated about Pit Bull type dogs, and help to circumvent knee-jerk reactions such as breed bans, and the truth will result in fewer pit bulls ending up in animal shelters. 

As breed advocates we routinely find ourselves educating and advocating just by including our dogs in our daily routines.  You can show others that every dog is a product of the environment and upbringing they are in and that a “pit bull” is just a dog.




Late License Fee Amnesty

September 01, 2020

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Make a fresh start for you and your pet! Salt Lake County Animal Services is providing an Amnesty Late License Fee Forgiveness Program for all pet licenses from Sept 2-Oct 31. All residents in our jurisdiction are invited to take advantage of this program to get pet licenses up to date without having to pay a late penalty fee.

Visit the Licensing section of our website and download the licensing application. You can complete the process online (no contact!) Or if you have questions or need assistance please email or call 385-468-7387. Licenses can be paid online or via check.

Microchipping/Licensing Drive-Up Event:
September 18, 2 PM - 5 PM
Salt Lake County Animal Services
511 W 3900 S, SLC 84123

Masks are required and social distancing is observed. Do not attend if you are feeling ill. Please bring all current rabies documentation and proof of spay/neuter, no appointment is necessary. All pets in Salt Lake County qualify for a free microchip with a free lifetime registration. If you license in advance, just bring proof you paid in advance and bring your pet: cats must be in carriers, dogs must be on-leash.

Why Pets Must Be Licensed:

  1. It’s a mandatory Utah state law.
  2. A license is the best way to reunite you with your dog if he/she becomes lost
  3. A pet wearing a license tag can quickly be identified and returned to you

Jurisdictions We License:
*Cities: Bluffdale, Holladay, Midvale, Millcreek, Murray, Salt Lake City
*Townships: Brighton, Copperton, County Islands, Emigration Canyon, Kearns, Magna, White City

License Fees:
$15.00 – Sterilized pet license
$5.00 – Senior citizen license (only offered for sterilized pets to residents 60 years and older)
$40.00 – Unsterilized pet license

Salt Lake County Animal Services is located at 511 W 3900 S, SLC. Hours of operation are Mon-Sat, 10 AM – 6 PM. Due to Covid-19, all services are done by appointment. For additional information call 385-468-7387, email, visit

Volunteer Highlight: Catherine

August 24, 2020

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september volunteer 2020

Thank you to Salt Lake County Animal Services Volunteer of the Month, Catherine McIntosh. She is one of many, who helps provide enrichment, attention, and love for the pets at our shelter. Find out more about her experience volunteering below. You can also find out more about becoming a volunteer at our facility on our Volunteer Page

More from Catherine:

What brought you to Salt Lake County Animal Services?
I was looking for another way to give back during Covid. Most of my volunteer work has to do with helping people and so I wanted to branch out and reach a different part of our community. Salt Lake City Animal Services seemed like the perfect fit for me!

What is your favorite thing about volunteering?
I absolutely love how free-range the shifts are. You get to interact with so many animals while also helping some pets get accustomed with being around people. So many of the cats I work with are just the sweetest, loving, and most playful creatures so I never get bored!

What do you like to do in your spare time?
Coming to Utah made me a lot more open to outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, and kayaking. There are so many beautiful spots to explore! When I'm not really feeling the weather, I usually will curl up with a good book. I recently finished "The Giver of Stars" by Jojo Moyes which has got to be one of my favorites.

Tell us about your family and fur kiddos: 
I am the middle child in a family of five. My mother is from Switzerland and my dad is from the states. I have two amazing siblings who I consider my best friends. My younger brother just graduated high school and my older sister is in her senior year of college. My "non-human" siblings consist of our 11 year old lab Hilo and my 7 year old cat Tommy. All of them are a joy to be around!

What advice do you have for new SLCoAS volunteers?
Honestly, just be your happy, kind self! Treat all the animals with love and respect and you'll get along great!

Do you have a favorite adoption story?
I haven't actually had the opportunity to see an adoption occur in person yet unless you count the one where I adopted my cat a few years back.

Tell us something unique about you:
Due to my mom being Swiss, I am fluent in both German and Swiss German. I can also pogo stick while jump-roping.

What is your favorite place to travel?
Europe is probably my favorite get-away spot. Specifically Switzerland as this is where most of my family lives. 

Virtual Petapalooza

August 18, 2020

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virtual petapalooza

Join us for our Virtual Petapalooza, where we will highlight adoptable pets throughout the day Aug 24-29.

Interested in meeting an adoptable pet? All Adoption are done by appointment. Email 

Remember we're offering Pick Your Price Cat Adoptions through Aug 31, 2020. Minimum adoption fee is $1. All cats/kittens are spayed/neutered upon adoption.

Check out our adoptable pets here


The Good Dog Campaign

July 23, 2020

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good dog campaign

Salt Lake County Animal Services is recruiting “GOOD DOGS” and GOOD PET OWNERS, to help us educate others who are unaware of pet ordinances and laws.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, there has been a rise in the amount of people walking their dogs off-leash and not cleaning up pet waste. Many pet owners and city officials have seen an alarming trend in neighborhoods and on the trails; more dogs are being walked off-leash and more dog poop is being left on the trails.

Animal Control Officers will be placing signs at some of the major parks in the valley to help raise awareness and reward responsible pet ownership.

How the Campaign Works:

Be part of our GOOD DOG Campaign! Salt Lake County Animal Services is launching this new public awareness program to help build a better community of dog owners who keep their dogs on leash and pick up their poop. We will be putting up signs at various parks across the valley and letting the public know where they are on our Facebook and Instagram pages.

What You Can Do to Help:

  • Find the sign at the park.
  • Take a photo of your pup by the sign and tag us on Facebook or Instagram: @Salt Lake County Animal Services.
  • Be sure to use the Hash Tag: #SLCOGoodDog
  • Can’t find the sign, but your pup is such a good dog and on-leash? Still tag us like mentioned above! (We can’t say no to GOOD DOGs on-leash!)

Once you post this, we will enter your name to win a HUGE basket full of treats for your GOOD DOG! We will pull the name of the winner after Labor Day and announce it on social media.

Thank you for helping us make our community a better place!

Find out more about leash and waste ordinances in your area. Go to and visit our “LAWS” section. Need to contact an officer to report an off-leash dog? Call Dispatch at 801-743-7000 or email 


Besides being the law, what is the concern with off-leash dogs?

  • Dog Attacks against people or other dogs
  • Dog Bites
  • Dogs Hit by Car
  • Nuisance Pollution (dog poop does not disintegrate)


Foster Highlight: Olivia

July 06, 2020

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foster highlight olivia

It takes an army of volunteers every year to foster all the neonatal kittens that come into animal shelters like Salt Lake County Animal Services. Olivia Coleman is one of these people who help kittens grow big and strong so they can be adopted by loving families. Find out more about fostering and about Olivia's experience. 

Thank you Olivia! Here's a Q&A we had with her:

  • I’ve been fostering for about a year and a half!
  • It’s actually a funny story! I was wanting to volunteer more with animals and I was really interested in fostering kittens. One day, I came in for a volunteer shift, and about a minute after I walked in, two ladies walked in with four 3- week-old kittens. I took them home within the hour! 
  • I’ve only fostered kittens at this point, along with the stray injured bird. 
  • I think that the most rewarding aspect is knowing that your kittens are going to a safe, happy home. It’s rewarding to know that you’ve gotten them past the most vulnerable stage in their life, and now, someone new can get them through the rest of their lives!
  • My experience only extends to bottle baby kittens, but here is my advice: I know that bottle babies are delicate, but make sure not to make things into a catastrophe! Just keep an eye on things if you suspect something is wrong, but try not to freak out. You can do this!
  • One of my first foster kittens was quite the messy eater. On his first day on wet food, he got it all over his paws, his face, and incredibly, his tail! I don’t know how he managed that! 

Pets & Firework Safety

June 29, 2020

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pets and fireworks

Keep your pet safe during fireworks season. Throughout July, Salt Lake County Animal Services sees an increase in lost pet’s due to the number of pets who escape from their homes or yards because of the noisy fireworks. Here are a few tips to make sure your pet stays safe:

  1. Be sure your pet is wearing their ID tag and that their information is up-to date.
  2. Keep windows and doors closed, we often hear of pets breaking out screens when they get scared.
  3. Leave your pet at home when you head out to set off or see fireworks. Don’t leave them in the car, it’s too hot and too noisy. They would prefer to be at home with a tasty treat or food puzzle.
  4. Provide a safe place for them to retreat (hide) when the fireworks start going off. Close bedroom doors to prevent them from getting stuck under beds. Take them to the basement, turn on some mellow music, and snuggle with them.
  5. Take your dog for a walk earlier in the day before the fireworks start going off.

If you find a lost pet, contact Animal Control Dispatch at 801-743-7000 to have an officer come get the animal. Salt Lake County Animal Services is located at 511 W 3900 S, SLC, 84123.  Questions? Email or call 385-468-7387. Look for lost pets.

Murray City to be Served by Salt Lake County Animal Services

June 29, 2020

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Murray City

**UPDATE: October 16, 2020**
The Salt Lake County Animal Services Murray Administrative Office DOES NOT take in animals.
This location does accept donations and can license & microchip pets.




July 1, 2020: An exciting change for Murray City! As of July 1, 2020, Salt Lake County Animal Services is honored to serve the 2-legged and 4-legged residents of Murray. Salt Lake County Animal Services is the largest no kill municipal shelter in Utah and provides shelter for all types of lost and abandoned domestic pets.

“The staff at Animal Services is ready to serve the residents of Murray and the pets in the area,” says Talia Butler, Director of Salt Lake County Animal Services. “Pets know no borders, and this will help us provide consistent, exceptional service in the area.”

On average Salt Lake County Animal Control Officers have 15 years of experience in animal welfare and are specifically trained in all areas of domestic animal care and livestock handling.

Services Available to Murray Residents:

  • 24/7, 365 days-per-year field operation – Call Dispatch at 801-743-7000
  • Free Microchips & Vaccinations
  • Humane education and community outreach programming
  • Find out more about additional services and programs at

Salt Lake County Animal Services is located at 511 W 3900 S, SLC. Hours of operation are Mon-Sat, 10 AM – 6 PM. Due to Covid-19, adoptions, return to owners, and other services are all done by appointment at this time. For additional information call 385-468-7387, email, visit

Directions from the Murray Animal Shelter to Salt Lake County Animal Services

Foster Family Spotlight: Sarah Jeffs

June 12, 2020

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sarah jeffs

Fostering is a rewarding way to help pets awaiting adoption. By living in a foster home, a pet can show off their personality and show a potential adopter that they can live in a home. Become a foster.

Meet our June Spotlight: Sarah Jeffs & her family

How long have you been fostering? 
We have been fostering for 1 year almost exactly.

What had you interested in joining our foster program? 
We adopted our cats many years ago from Salt Lake County Animal Services and had a very positive experience. I had a friend on Facebook advertise that it was kitten season and fosters were needed. We thought fostering would be a good way for our family to provide service so I looked into your program since we had such a good experience adopting our cats through you. The rest is history!  

What types of animals have you fostered? 
We mostly have fostered kittens but once we also fostered a momma cat. We're about to pick up our 22nd cat today!

What is the most rewarding aspect of fostering? 
Being able to love and take care of little fluffy kittens until they are big enough to go to their forever home. It can be hard to let go of them once they are big enough to be adopted but knowing that they are going to loving homes helps enormously.

What advice would you give to a new foster in the program?
Most people we talk to about fostering are concerned about being able to give the animal back. We have to say that the first kitten we fostered was hard to give back and we cried. Since then, the goodbyes are still bittersweet but it does get easier. We've also learned that each kitten is different and when you first take them into your home, sometimes you need to give them time to get used to their new environment. We've learned a lot about life in general while taking care of these little guys. Also, a humidifier can be your best tool for a sick kitten (after antibiotics, of course). 

What is your favorite foster memory? 
We have many favorite memories from taking care of these babies. We have had a couple  of kittens that started purring as soon as you picked them up. We've had a few kitties that like to hang out on your shoulder and they are the best. Breakfast time is always fun because most of them are excited to get some wet food and make sure to let you know. The funniest memory I think we've had is when the momma cat we fostered stole a whole slice of pizza from a plate on the counter and we had to chase her down to take it away. She was so small, I think the slice of pizza was almost as big as she was!

BFAS Virtual Super Adoption

May 30, 2020

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Join Salt Lake County Animal Services and other participating organizations for the Best Friends Virtual Super Adoption happening NOW! With so many pets to choose from, you’re bound to find the perfect pet for you. This is the first virtual adoption of its kind so sit down, relax, and start scrolling! To view the adoptable pets please visit Let's get them adopted!
#VirtualAdoptionEvent #AdoptDontShop


Dogs in Hot Cars: What to Do

May 28, 2020

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dogs in hot cars

You pulled into a stall at the grocery store, you notice a dog in the car, alone. What do you do? Here's what Salt Lake County Animal Control Officers recommend.

First DO NOT break the window! Utah does not have a good Samaritan law at this time that protects you from breaking that window.

What to look for: Is the dog excessively drooling/panting, listless, unresponsive?

Call Dispatch ASAP! 801-743-7000. Outside our service area dial 911. 

Is the car parked in the shade with the windows down, and the dog appears to be in physical distress? 

Call Dispatch 801-743-7000.

Give the license plate number and make/model to the dispatcher. They will pass that information onto the Animal Control Officer. When the officer arrives, and if the car has left, they will be able to track down the driver and educate them on the dangers of leaving their pet in the car. Video and photos of the pet in duress can be helpful to the officers case. 

What not to do: Don't take your dog with you to run errands and leave them in a car for a "few minutes." A few minutes is all it takes to kill your dog or cause massive internal damage. We invite you to read more about what happens to your dogs body and why they overheat so fast. It's a terrible way to die, and we wouldn't wish it upon any dog. 

Here's info from IFLScience:

If a dog’s internal temperature goes above 41°C (105.8°F) it is at risk of heatstroke, which only 50% of dogs survive. Some breeds are more susceptible than others – large dogs, dogs with short faces such as bulldogs and boxers, and overweight or long-coated dogs are most at risk – but every dog has the potential to suffer from heatstroke. It doesn’t have to be boiling hot for this to happen either – when it’s 22°C, (71.6°F) outside, the inside of a car can easily reach 47°C within an hour(116.6°F).

The science behind heatstroke

When a dog starts to overheat, it will lose heat by increasing its heart rate and opening up the capillaries in the skin. It will also pant to lose heat through the mucus membranes in its mouth and nose, and may lick its body to cool it by evaporation.

Unlike humans, dogs cannot sweat. And as the heat increases, bodily functions start to break down. The dog enters a vicious spiral where the heart starts to fail and pushes out less blood – which means the heat cannot be carried away – its blood pressure drops, blood pools in the organs and the body goes into shock.

When a dog’s internal temperature reaches 44°C (111.2°F) its circulation will fail, which causes kidney failure, lack of oxygen in the brain, and internal bleeding. At this point, even if you can reverse the physical damage and save the dog’s life, it’s likely to have suffered brain damage, which can result in personality changes, loss of sensory perception and cognitive problems. So it’s not just a case of getting a bit too hot and not being able to cope. It’s total body breakdown.

And can lead to death.