Animal Control and Rescue

Each NJ municipality makes its own arrangements to provide animal control and rescue to the community. To serve as an animal control officer (ACO) in NJ a person must be state certified. Certification is obtained by successfully completing an approved course of study which has a field training component. Most municipalities use one of three methods to provide local service:

  • They operate a municipal shelter/impoundment facility and employ their own NJ certified animal control officers (sometimes under a “shared services” agreement with other municipalities in their areas)

  • They employ their own NJ certified animal control officers and contract with an outside provider for impoundment/sheltering services

  • They contract with an outside agency to provide both NJ certified animal control officers and impoundment/sheltering services

St. Hubert’s offers the third option,  a contracted animal control and rescue services package, to area municipalities for a flat annual fee. Our ACOs are on duty all day, every day  and officers are “on call” for emergencies throughout the night 365 days a year. They answer calls in our own animal rescue vehicles and animals are sheltered in one of our facilities. 

Stray animals must be housed in the facility designated by the municipality in which they are found and this makes it more likely that they will be reunited with their families since people will begin their search for their missing pet in the area in which he/she was last seen. By state law stray/lost pets must be sheltered for a period of 7 days before they can be offered for adoption to optimize the chances for reunification. Despite what the circumstances in which the animal was found   may indicate we cannot always be sure, unless there are witnesses, that an animal has indeed been abandoned so efforts to find his/her pet parents are a priority. If an animal is not claimed within the 7 day period he/she is behavior assessed and prepared for adoption. Immediate medical needs are always attended to upon an animal’s arrival into our care; adoption prep—such as spay/neuter, micro-chipping, etc.—takes places following the hold period if the pet has not been claimed. 

St. Hubert’s keeps lost/found reports on animals and offers advice and assistance to people looking for their missing animal family members. Visit our Pet Retention Page for useful information in locating lost dogs and cats.  You can also call our Pet Helpline to speak with a retention specialist directly at 973-377-2253 about your missing pet and what steps to take in your search.  

St. Hubert’s is the agency contracted to provide local animal control and rescue services to those residing, or experiencing a lost/found pet, in the following municipalities:

Madison Shelter 973-377-2295 serves the following: Borough of Madison, Hanover Township (Cedar Knolls, Whippany),  Maplewood, Township of South Orange Village, and Watchung.

North Branch Shelter 908-526-3330 serves the following:  Bound Brook, South Bound Brook, Hillsborough, Branchburg Township, Somerville, Alexandria Township, East Amwell Township, Frenchtown Borough, City of Lambertville  Hampton Borough, Holland Township, High Bridge Borough, West Amwell Township and Milford Borough. 

For a complete listing of NJ municipalities and contact info for their animal control and rescue services click here.  Your local police department should be able to provide this information to you as well.  If a pet is lost it is recommended that you report it to all municipalities that border your own in case the pet has wandered into a neighboring community.  

Wildlife Response

In addition to pet animal calls St. Hubert’s ACOs also respond to emergencies involving small wildlife when intervention is truly necessary.  Such animals are transferred to the custody of those equipped and licensed to provide the care they require.  For information on living in harmony with local wildlife please click here. 



Make a gift today.

Click Here to Donate.