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

Police Open Animal Cruelty Case After Starving Dog Is Found Roaming at Waveny

Police have opened an animal cruelty case after finding a severely emaciated dog in Waveny last week, officials said. Collarless and un-chipped, the female bulldog-and-boxer mix first was spotted in Waveny at about 11 a.m. last Tuesday by a park visitor who contacted the Animal Control section of the New Canaan Police Department, according to Officer Allyson Halm. The animal, perhaps five or six years old, almost certainly was “dumped” there, said Halm, head of Animal Control. “This is an open animal cruelty case,” she said. “There is no way you could call and claim this dog and not have to explain.”

Halm said the dog “couldn’t be sweeter” and immediately responded when police approached. Continue Reading →

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‘Oh My God We Are So in Love with Her’: Senior Dachshund ‘Dumped’ in New Canaan Adopted Out To Loving Norwalk Home

The senior daschshund found on a Tuesday night last month in northwestern New Canaan after apparently being “dumped” in town appears to be thriving with the Norwalk family that adopted her. McKinley Dorrico, 24, said she named her newest family member ‘Chloe’ after a mischievous dog in the 1966 film ‘The Ugly Dachshund,’ about a Great Dane that thinks it’s a little daschhund. “She is the sweetest thing. Oh my god we are so in love with her,” Dorrico said. Chloe had been found around 8 p.m. on Jan. Continue Reading →

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New Canaan Animal Control Officer Creates ‘Coyote Safety Kits’ for Residents

Since starting as head of the New Canaan Police Department’s Animal Control section nearly two years ago, Officer Allyson Halm has fielded and mapped daily calls of coyote sightings. In one-on-one conversations with concerned New Canaanites and as a panelist in larger events, Halm has preached about learning to co-exist with coyotes. Now, in select cases, she can offer those who deal regularly with coyotes on their properties a set of tools to take with them outside—for example, when letting out a dog in the yard. Underwritten by New Canaan resident and animal welfare advocate Cathy Kangas and her company, PRAI Beauty, the “Coyote Safety Kits” Halm has put together include “hazing” safety guidelines, reusable safety air blaster or air horn, mini-air blasters (for use while running or for kids), bear bell, whistle, reflective tape and “throw can” (a noisemaker that can be used to scare off coyotes from a distance). “They are available now and we are going to utilize them on a case-by-case basis” depending on the frequency of sightings and brazenness of the coyotes involved, Halm told Continue Reading →

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Long-Running Dispute Flares Up When Neighbor Is Accused of Repeatedly Walking Dog onto Lawn Across the Street To Defecate

Police have fielded a Cheese Spring Road man’s complaint that his neighbor across the street deliberately and repeatedly walked a dog to defecate on his lawn during the holidays. In the latest installment of a dispute that appears to go back many years, the 63-year-old complainant told the head of the New Canaan Police Department’s Animal Control section that on Dec. 24 he had been backing down the driveway with a son-in-law in the car when he spotted his neighbor with a squatting Siberian husky, according to a case report obtained by following a Freedom of Information request. The son-in-law “directed me to the spot where the dog did its business,” according to a sworn statement. “I went to it and took a picture of the turd left by the dog. Continue Reading →

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New Canaan Veterinary Hospital Launches ‘After Hours Urgent Care’ for Clients

Saying they want to ease pet owners’ minds, officials at a local veterinary hospital are expanding hours and services to meet their clients’ emergency needs. The ‘After Hours Urgent Care’ service at New Canaan Veterinary Hospital will see veterinarians on call through 11 p.m., seven days per week, to advise and care for injured or ill pets after the Vitti Street facility is closed. Spearheaded by chief veterinarian Dr. Paul Potenza, a New Canaan resident, the new service is for established clients of the business only, and those clients will incur no additional costs for emergency treatments, he said. “Most emergencies that people are concerned about don’t require round-the-clock care, and they see a problem in the evening when they get home from work,” Potenza told “People want to fix it and not worry all night. Continue Reading →

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