Animal 411

Details on activity within the New Canaan Police Department’s Animal Control unit, including rabies and wildlife calls, as well as local pet-adoptions and other animal-related news in New Canaan.

Recent Articles

New Canaan Man Seeks Town’s Permission To Keep Four Sheep on Property

A New Norwalk Road man is seeking permission from town health officials to keep four sheep on his property. As required under Chapter 108-5 of the Town Code, such animals may only be housed within 300 feet of an occupied dwelling with written approval from the director of health. Jack Hawkins purchased his home in New Canaan on .76 acres in December 2015, and lives there with his wife and their two young children, a 2-year-old daughter and 2-month-old son. An advertising executive in Manhattan who serves as an infantry officer in the National Guard, Hawkins said he grew up on a 1,000-acre farm straddling Arkansas and Missouri, and that acquiring the small-size Finn sheep is part an effort to pass along life lessons he learned growing up there to his own children. “I came from a very large farm, where I was fortunate enough to grow up with grandparents and uncles all together, it was really rewarding, the family bonds you create working with family, and it also teaches you a lot,” Hawkins told NewCanaanite.com. Continue Reading →

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‘Its Grip Kept Slipping’: Animal Control, ‘Embody’ Employees Rescue Distressed Raccoon from Storm Drain During Heavy Rainfall

The head of New Canaan Police Department’s Animal Control section and workers from a downtown shop on Friday afternoon saw through the dramatic rescue of a raccoon that had become trapped in a storm drain downtown during heavy rainfall. At about 3 p.m., Officer Allyson Halm of the New Canaan Police Department’s Animal Control section was called to the one-way stretch of Forest Street on a report of the distressed animal. There, she saw the raccoon “attempting to maintain its gripe on the grate with water rushing beneath it,” Halm said. “The panicked look on the raccoon’s face is still in my head,” she told NewCanaanite.com. Halm sprang into action, calling for town workers to assist in lifting the grate though “I knew the raccoon didn’t have much time,” she said. Continue Reading →

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‘We Felt That It Was Not Humane’: Housing Authority Rescinds ‘Declawing’ Requirement for Residents’ Cats

Responding to concerns from animal welfare advocates, officials from the New Canaan Housing Authority say they’re moving away from a requirement that residents of affordable rental units at Millport Avenue have their cats “declawed.”

Banned in many countries, declawing typically involves amputating the last bone of each toe on a cat—the equivalent of cutting off each finger at the last knuckle on a person, according to the Humane Society of the United States. (more…) Continue Reading →

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‘The Male Was Not Responding’: Bit by Dog at Spencer’s Run, Woman Gets Angry with Nonchalant Owner

Police this month fielded a complaint from a Norwalk woman who said she’d been bit at Spencer’s Run by a dog whose owner—a New Canaan man—failed to show sufficient concern. It happened on the evening of April 7 (a Friday) at the Waveny dog park, according to a police report obtained by NewCanaanite.com through a Freedom of Information request. According to a report from the head of the Animal Control section, Officer Allyson Halm, at about 5:30 p.m. the woman had been throwing a ball to her dog “when a white shepherd or husky-type dog came over to them and the two dogs began to fight.”

The woman started yelling and tried to break up the scrap, and told Halm that “the other dog’s owner was far away and didn’t seem to know what was going on,” the report said. Soon, the man—a Spring Water Lane resident—made his way over to secure his dog, and the woman instructed him to leave the park, as his dog had bitten her, the report said. Yet, according to the woman, “the male was not responding,” the report said. Continue Reading →

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Coyote Info Signs To Go Up in Waveny, Irwin and Bristow

Officials are putting up signs in three public parks to advise those who visit them that coyotes are active in the area. Planned for Waveny, Irwin and Bristow—a bird sanctuary attached to Mead Park—the signs include tips on what to do if approached by a coyote and how to protect pets. Officer Allyson Halm, head of the New Canaan Police Department’s Animal Control section, said the signs are designed to continue educating locals on how to coexist safely and responsibly with coyotes. “It’s just like the police doing a distracted driver campaign—it’s a forever thing and the conversation just has to keep going,” Halm said. Though coyotes have been denning in recent weeks as pups are born, locals have reported 15 sightings in New Canaan to Animal Control in the past month, Halm said. Continue Reading →

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