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Report the Right Information

If you are wishing to make a cruelty complaint, be prepared to provide law enforcement with the following:

  • A concise, factual statement of what you observed, giving dates and approximate times, etc.  

  • If it can be done without entering another person's property without their permission, you may wish to photograph the location, the animals and the surrounding area.

  • The names and contact information for other people who have first hand information about the abusive situation or neglect.

Keep Track of the Right Information

  • Be sure to keep a careful record of exactly what authority and with whom they spoke, the date of the contacts and the content and outcome of any discussions.
  • Keep a copy of your records if asked to provide to the authority.  

Know How to Be Credible 

  • Make it clear to the officer that you are making a formal complaint and interested in pursuing the case, and that you are willing to lend whatever assistance you can.

  • Having a credible witnesses willing to stand behind the report and, if necessary, testify in court about what they may have witnessed will only help any potential case involving animals in need.

Know When to Follow Up

  • At times, it may be necessary to make a polite follow up call to inquire about the progress of the investigation. Do this only after a reasonable period of time.  

  • Community members should keep in mind that most law enforcement agencies operate with limited personnel and resources and most of these agencies are doing their best to conduct timely and efficient investigations.

Know who to report to in Belmont County

  • ANIMAL ABUSE, CRUELTY & NEGLECT INVESTIGATIONS - Please contact the Belmont County Animal Rescue League Humane Agent at (740)-296-8644 and report the issue to a humane agent for investigation. 

  • DOGS RUNNING LOOSE / SICK OR INJURED STRAY DOGS / DOG BITES AND INJURIES - Contact Belmont County Dog Warden at (740)-695-4708 to file a report.  Stray dogs found by the public can also be dropped off at the shelter.

  • NON-SERIOUS DOG BITES THAT OCCURRED MORE THAN 24 HOURS AGO AND BITES AND INJURIES BY OTHER ANIMALS (i.e. cats, racoons, bats) - Call the Belmont County Health Department at (740)-695-1202

  • WILDLIFE PROBLEMS:  Ohio Division of Wildlife: 

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