Skip to Content
 > County Home Page > Animal Services > In The News

In The News

Welcome to what is "In The News" at San Luis Obispo Animal Services!  Here you will find the most recent information we have to share with our community, archived news events, and additional information shared by our director.


Media Release Archive

From the Director


Press Releases

October 4, 2010

Beginning October 6, Animal Services will begin issuing $15,000 worth of vouchers to dog and cat owners in order to defray a portion of the cost of spaying or neutering their pet. The issuance of these vouchers is intended to help promote responsible pet ownership and to help reduce the number of unwanted animals litters born in our community.

In order to effectively target those animals which contribute most significantly to San Luis Obispo County’s pet over-population problem, the issuance of vouchers will be restricted to cats from the North County and to Pit Bull dogs from throughout the county. The vouchers will have a dollar value of $60 for male cats, $80 for female cats, and $100 for Pit Bull or predominantly Pit Bull breed dogs. Pet owners may obtain vouchers at the Animal Services office, located at 885 Oklahoma Ave, near the intersection of Highway 1 and Kansas Avenue. Cat owners will be asked to present a current drivers license or other form of documentation indicating residence in one of the following zip codes:

                    93210    93422    93426    93432    93446       93451    93453       93461    93465

Vouchers may be redeemed at any veterinary hospital around the county. A limit of 3 will be issued to any one household and all dogs are required to be licensed beforehand; licenses may be purchased from Animal Services at the same time the voucher is issued. Veterinarians will be asked to verify dogs are of an eligible breed at the time surgery is performed.

For more information, contact Animal Services at (805)781-4400.


July 15, 2010

 With very high temperatures forecast throughout San Luis Obispo County over the upcoming days, Animal Services is encouraging all pet owners to take precautions to ensure their animals are protected from temperature extremes.

  • Leave pets at home when you go out. Even with windows partially opened, the interior temperature of your car can quickly rise above 105F. Such temperatures can lead to heat prostration (overheating) and can be fatal. Parking in the shade offers little protection, as the sun shifts positions and an animal’s panting can help raise the internal temperature and humidity of your car.
  • Try to keep pets in cool, well ventilated areas of your house. If animals must be outside, ensure that they are provided with plenty of shade.
  • Ensure pets have free access to fresh, clean water at all times.
  • Exercise pets in the early morning or evening; let them rest during the warmer mid-day hours. Don’t exercise pets immediately following meals.
  • Don’t walk or leave pets standing on asphalt. The hot surface can cause burns to their sensitive paw pads and can contribute to overheating.
  • Keep pets well groomed. Shaving heavy coated dogs to a hair length of about one inch will help prevent overheating. Don’t shave down to the skin, however, as this can lead to sunburns. Clipping hair from the face and feet can also help reduce the risk of problems related to foxtails and burrs. Brushing cats will help keep them cooler by removing old, loose hair.
  • Be particularly attentive to the needs of those pets which are most susceptible to heat related problems. Such animals include old and overweight pets; brachycephalic or ‘snub-nose’ dogs like Boston terriers, Lhasa apsos, shih tzus, pugs, and bulldogs; pets with health problems, particularly heart and lung disorders. Additionally, rabbits are particularly sensitive to heat stress.
  • Learn to recognize the signs of overheating: heavy panting, glazed eyes, rapid pulse, unsteadiness or staggering, vomiting, and deep red or purple mucus membranes or tongue. If heat stress is observed, help lower body temperature by applying cool (but not cold) water over the body and by giving them small amounts of water or ice cubes. Saturating the feet pads, groin, and axilla (‘armpit’) with rubbing alcohol is very effective at helping to reduce body temperature. Most importantly, a veterinarian should be contacted immediately if overheating is observed.

July 1, 2010

With the Fourth of July approaching, the Division of Animal Services is calling upon the public to help keep animals safe over the holiday weekend. This summer, that help is especially critical as the San Luis Obispo County shelter has been seeing a significant increase in the number of homeless dogs and cats. That increase, together with a concurrent decrease in the number of animals being adopted, has left the shelter operating at full capacity for several months. With limited space for the continuing daily influx of unwanted animals, the shelter’s ability to house those with medical or behavioral problems which may otherwise be treatable is severely challenged. As a result, the Division has also seen a rise in the numbers of animals being euthanized when compared to previous years.

As the shelter traditionally experiences a surge in intakes around Independence Day, Animal Services is reminding pet owners that a few basic precautions will help keep their dog or cat safe at home and minimize the risk that it may wind up being brought into the shelter.

Although fireworks displays are an integral part of the holiday celebration for many people, they can be very distressing for our pets. Loud cracks and booms from fireworks may cause animals to attempt to escape or flee from the noise. Many of these animals wind up lost and disoriented, brought into shelters, or even hit by cars when they run into traffic. A few simple precautions can help protect your pets and minimize the stress or anxiety which is often caused by fireworks:

  1. Don’t take your pets to fireworks displays. Even with their owner nearby, many animals will become agitated and stressed. They may injure themselves or others in attempts to escape.
  2. Keep your pets in a safe, quiet indoors location. If they will be unattended, remember that they may become destructive when frightened and remove any items which they might damage or which could be dangerous if chewed on. Leave them with some familiar, favorite items such as a chew toy or blanket. Leaving the radio or television on at a normal volume may also be calming and provide them with a sense of companionship.
  3. If you know your pet is significantly upset by loud noises, consult with your veterinarian to discuss ways to minimize their fear and anxiety. Some animals may benefit from the short term use of mild sedatives.
  4. Never leave your pets outside alone. Even in a fenced yard, dogs which wouldn’t normally try to escape can panic and flee. Tethered animals can easily become entangled and injure themselves.
  5. Make sure that your pets are wearing a collar with up-to-date identification tags in case they do get lost. Microchips are helpful for identifying animals brought into a shelter, but won’t help neighbors or the general public contact you directly if they find your pet.
  6. If your pet is lost: Contact Animal Services to file a lost animal report (781-4400); make regular visits to the shelter to look for him; check the Animal Services website daily (; call the Division’s lost pet hotline for a daily recording of animals brought to the shelter in the last 24 hours (781-4407).

May 31, 2010

Help San Luis Obispo County Animal Services’ staff and volunteers find homes for over thirty adorable homeless bunny rabbits. Rabbits make great pets for anyone – seniors and families included.

The ExtravaBUNza is an adopt-a-pet that will be held on the lawn of the San Luis Obispo County Animal Shelter at 885 Oklahoma Avenue, San Luis Obispo, June 5, 2010 from 11:00 am to 4:00p.m.

Breeds of rabbits that are currently at the shelter include:
 Angora
 Dutch
 Silver Marten
 Florida White
 Harlequin
 Havana
 English spotted
 Californian
 Satin

Rabbit availability will change if adoptions occur before June 5th.
Rabbit care experts will be available at the ExtravaBUNza to answer any rabbit questions. The adoption fee is only $5.00 and cardboard carriers will be available for purchase for an additional $3.00. Written care and feeding instructions will be included with each adoption.

Come to the SLO County Animal Services’ shelter and meet all the available rabbits, cats, kittens and dogs. It’s likely you’ll meet a four-legged friend to take home to become a new family member.