Departments and Divisions

Animal Control


The Rio Arriba County Animal Control Department is a support services division within the Public Works Department.

Animal Control consists of one Animal Control Officer, Cipie Maez. This individual can be reached Monday through Friday 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., at (505) 753-2992. Should they be unavailable, a message can be left for them at the Public Works Department.

 The animal control unit provides the following service:

  1. Ordinance enforcement- animal control officer are responsible for the enforcement of the county’s animal control ordinance.

  2. Live trap loans – live traps are available for dogs and cats only. You may borrow a trap for up to 5 days in order to facilitate the removal of strays. Due to the limited number of available traps we cannot loan out traps to capture an animal for personal reasons, example raccoons, skunks, squirrels,  etc. All trapped animal must be turned in to the Espanola Animal Humane Society. There is no fee to borrow the trap however you will be asked to sign an agreement to be responsible for its return to us. The replacement fee, should the trap be lost or stolen, is $250.00 for a dog trap and $65.00 for a cat trap.  

  3. Stray, trapped, or dangerous animal removal – If you have a stray dog on your property we will attempt to remove it by all means available to us. If the problem involves a dog or pack of dogs running at large daily or late at night then you will probably need to borrow a trap. The officer responding to your call will assess the situation on arrival and if possible remove as many of the strays they can- or locate and cite the owner.

 Other useful information

 The animal control department does not respond to complaints about bee’s or rodents. You must contact a pest professional to deal with them.

 Dog bites need to be reported to the Animal Control Department as soon as possible and individuals should receive medical treatment. To report a dog bite please call our Public Works Department office during regular work hours (505)753-2992, after hours call Central Dispatch (505) 753-5555.

 To report a lost animal you can contact the Espanola Valley Humane Society Shelter at (505) 753-8662.

For problems with fur bearing animal or protected species you must contact the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish at (505) 222-4700

For complaints regarding skunks, squirrels, or coyotes you must call the USDA- Wildlife Service Department at (505) 346-2640

 For problems with livestock you must contact the New Mexico Livestock Board at (505) 841-6161

If your own animal is sick or has been injured you must take it to a veterinarian. If you cannot afford one you may take your animal to the Espanola Valley Humane Society for euthanasia. If you are handicapped or elderly an animal control officer can pick the animal up and deliver it to the shelter for you. There is a cost of $25.00 at the shelter for euthanasia and owner will sign a release form. For people that are not handicapped or elder there will be an additional $10.00 pick up fee plus the $25.00 euthanasia fee.

If you simply no longer want your pet you must take it the Espanola Valley Humane Society. No animal is ever turned away and there is no fee. Again, if you are handicapped or elderly an animal control officer will pick the animal up and deliver it to the shelter for you. For people that are not handicapped or elder will have to pay a pick up fee plus sign a release form.