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The Navajo Nation currently lacks an effective Animal Control Program and adequate Animal Shelters. Because of this, we are unable to provide services in a variety of areas such as: aggressive enforcement of laws, vaccinations, livestock damage investigations, animal-bite investigations, quarantines, adoptions, pick-up of stray/unwanted animals, dead animal disposal, and assisting with spay/neuter clinics. As a result, over 3,000 individuals are treated each year at hospitals and clinics for animal attacks and bites. The majority of victims are children and elderly. Some of these victims are transported to other hospitals for special treatment.

Currently there are only five Animal Control Officers employed to address animal control issues for the entire Navajo Nation. These Officers can only provide services that have been determined as priority, such as bite cases and livestock damage. Officers are stationed in each of the five agencies (Ft. Defiance, Chinle, Shiprock, Tuba City and Crownpoint). Without an adequate Animal Control Program, we place the public’s health and safety at risk.

The Animal Control Program must have additional funding to accomplish the following:


  • Build and establish adequate comprehensive animal control centers in each agency that will serve as an animal shelter and adoption/vaccination centers;
  • Reduce the number of bite cases that occur to children and elderly;
  • Provide adequate services to BIA schools/housing, HIS Hospitals/housing, other schools/housing, and chapter communities;
  • Reduce the number of livestock loss/damage cases by dog attacks;
  • Develop an education program to address responsible pet care and an awareness of proper animal ownership;
  • Address complaints received from guests/visitors regarding stray dogs and ‘road-kills’ they see when visiting the Navajo Nation;
  • Address the over-population of dogs and cats within the Navajo Nation;
  • Promote spay/neuter clinics;
  • Enforcement of Navajo Nation animal laws.