Animal Control

Whether you’ve found a stray pet or lost a pet, the below resources should help you get started.

Quick links:

vets scan a cat for a microchip

What to do if you lost a pet

It is your responsibility to search for your missing pet

Uncontrolled and stray animals may:

  • attack people and other animals,
  • spread or acquire diseases such as rabies and distemper,
  • become injured,
  • damage or destroy property, and
  • Contribute to motor vehicle collisions

Lost and found reports may be placed anytime by anyone on our website. All lost & found animals are viewable on our Lost & Found page.

Click here to file a lost or found animal report!

Once you have searched the Lost & Found animals on the website and added your Lost Pet Report you can also:

  • Add your lost dog to Lost Dogs of Wisconsin 
or add your lost cat to Lost Cats of Wisconsin.
  • Create Lost Posters and post them with permission in area stores, vet clinics and schools
  • Check the local newspapers, on social media and online classifieds for lost or found animal ads
  • Post a lost animal ad in the local newspapers, on social media and online classifieds

The Humane Society of Portage County will:

  • Log all stray dogs or cats brought to the shelter, or picked up by our Humane Officers regardless of their condition and post reports on this site as soon as possible
  • Scan & check all stray animals (alive or deceased) for a microchip, tattoo and/or identification tag. Should identification be found on the animal, Animal Control Officers will follow-up and contact the registered owner
  • Make every effort to contact you if your pet is found and has a microchip, a metal license, or an id tag
  • Help you file a Lost Report on our website or file a report for you if you are unable to do so

When in doubt contact the Humane Officer team at 715-344-6012 ext 305 and leave a message if the Humane Officer is out of the office.

How to claim your lost pet from HSPC

If your pet is at HSPC

  • We will need to verify that you are the owner by one or more of the following:
    • Medical Veterinary Records with your name & pet’s name
    • Pet License
    • Rabies Vaccination
  • You will need to complete the “Reclaim Information” Form
  • We will need a copy of the driver license for the owners/and or person picking up the pet
  • We will need to verify a dog or cat is current on rabies. If not current a seven-day notice will be issued.  If your veterinary clinic is open at the time of reclaim, we can verify your pet’s rabies vaccination status over the phone.
  • Upon reclaiming an unlicensed dog, you can purchase a Portage Couunty license or you will be issued a seven-day warning
  • Fees must be paid in full (see below).  We accept cash, Mastercard or Visa.

Current Fees

  • First time the animal is reclaimed $40 plus $20 for each day of boarding plus tax
  • Second time the animal is reclaimed $60 plus $20 for each day of boarding plus tax
  • Third time the animal is reclaimed $100 plus $20 for each day of boarding plus tax

Reclaims are typically handled between noon and 8:00 PM.  To make an appointment call: contact the Humane Officer Team at 715-344-6012 ext 305  and leave a message if the Humane Officer is out the office.

What to do if you found a stray pet

If at any time you feel this dog or cat is a threat to you or a matter of public safety, please call the Portage County Sheriff’s non-emergency number at 715-346-1400.

The animal control hours of operation are 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

The following municipalities provide their own services for stray or nuisance dogs or cats. Their contact numbers are:

The Village of Amherst Junction Michael Ballinger 715-824-6453
The Village of Junction City Peter Mallek 715-457-2353
The Village of Nelsonville Josh Stolzenburg 715-252-1919(cell)
715-344-7307(land line)

If you have found a stray pet and want it to go to the shelter you can:

  • Arrange to drop the pet off at the HSPC animal shelter
  • Request the animal be picked up by a Humane Office

    Intakes are typically handled between noon and 8:00 PM.
    To schedule one of these options

    • contact the Portage County Sheriff’s Office Communications Center:
      Address: 1500 Strongs Ave, Stevens Point, WI 54481
      Hours: Open 24 hours
      Phone: (715) 346-1400 (non emergency number)
      or
      contact the Humane Officer Team at 715-344-6012 ext 305 and leave a message if the Humane Officer is out of the office.

    All stray pets brought to the shelter, regardless of their condition, are entered into our database and posted on our website.

    If you have found a pet and are prepared to care for it, you should know:

    • If you find an animal and in good faith keep the animal until the owner comes forward, you must contact HSPC to report finding the animal, and/or place a lost and found report on our website.
    • However, if the owner ever comes forward and proves they are the rightful owner, they could compel you to relinquish the pet.
    • Remember, as the owners or possessors of any animal you are responsible for it. This means you can be held liable if it damages persons or property, and found negligent if you fail to provide proper care, including veterinary attention when required.

    Lost and found reports may be placed anytime by anyone on our website. All lost & found animals  are viewable on our Lost & Found page.

    Click here to file a lost or found animal report!

    Related Portage County Animal Ordinances

    HSPC Humane Officers are authorized by the Portage County Sheriff to enforce state statutes and Portage County Ordinances. Individual municipalities in Portage County may have their own ordinances related to animals. Municipal ordinances are enforced by each municipality.

    Portage County ordinances include these definitions for animal at-large and animal nuisances:

    4.9.3 DEFINITIONS

    (1) As used in this Ordinance, the following terms mean:

    1. Animal” includes every:
      1. Warm blooded creature, except a human being
      2. Reptile
      3. Amphibian
      4. Fish
    2. Animal At-Large: An animal shall be deemed to be at large when off the property of the owner and not
      under restraint or control.

    4.9.12 ANIMAL NUISANCES

    (1) No person owning any animal shall allow the same to run at large within the County. The owner or keeper shall be liable for all damages done by such animal while so at large, although he escapes without the fault of such owner or keeper; and the construction of any fence shall not relieve such owner to keeper from liability.

    HSPC Trap Loan Program

    Trap Loan Program FAQ

    Traps are typically loaned or returned between noon and 8:00 pm.  To schedule an appointment to pickup or return a trap call 715-344-6012 ext 305 and leave a message if the officer is out of the office.

    Who does HSPC loan traps to?
    We loan traps to any resident of Portage County, Wisconsin that provides a government-issued ID card and provides a $40 refundable deposit for each trap that is loaned.
    What methods can be used to fund the deposit?
    We prefer deposits to be made by a check that has a Portage County address printed on the check. We also accept credit or debit cards. We will photo copy these cards. Our last method is cash.
    What do you do with the deposit?
    The deposit along with a copy of the trap loan agreement are held in a safe. They are NOT deposited or processed until you have not returned the trap and we have exhausted our efforts to contact you and get the trap returned.
    How soon will I get my deposit refunded?
    When you return the trap to the Humane Society Shelter in good condition, your deposit will be immediately returned. Checks will not have been deposited or when using a card, it will not have been processed.
    Why do you need a photo id?
    We use the photo id to ensure we know how to contact you and to ensure traps are being loaned to Portage County, Wisconsin residents.

    Trap Loan Rules

    1. Setting and closing traps is the responsibility of the patron.
    2. All traps must be closed by 6 p.m. This is to prevent trapping wild animals such as raccoons, opossums, and skunks.
    3. Traps may be set as early as 6 a.m.
    4. HSPC is able to provide food for the traps.
    5. The trap must be covered with a towel or blanket at all times. This provides a safe place for the animal to hide as well as increasing your chances in catching the animal.
    6. It is the patron’s responsibility to check the traps frequently throughout the day. An animal should never be in a trap overnight. If the patron will be gone during the day, the trap should be checked before the patron leaves and again when the patron comes home.
    7. When an animal is caught, DO NOT attempt to remove the animal from the trap.
    8. The live trap may either be returned by the patron or picked up by a Humane Officer. To reclaim your deposit, the patron must come to the Humane Society of Portage County.
    9. Any damage to the trap is the responsibility of the patron.
    10. There is a 7 day limit on the use of all HSPC traps. If you need to keep the trap for more than 7 days, please call the shelter and ask for a Humane Officer so we can extend the loan period.
    11. If you need any assistance, please contact a HSPC Humane Officer at 715-344-6012 ext 305 and leave a message if the Humane Officer is out of the office.
    12.  If the trap is not returned to the Humane Society within 7 days of the date of rental, the $40.00 deposit will be forfeited.
    13. If the trap is returned with damage that exceeds what is considered normal wear and tear, the deposit will be forfeited.