Animal Control Division

Our Animal Control Officer is Darlene Stierlen. Animal Control strives not only to enforce City Ordinances pertaining to animals in the city, but also to help educate and assist residents of Russell in the understanding their obligations and rights subject to the Ordinances. In responding to complaints, Animal Control helps the complainant and animal owner to better understand how to address problems in a way that furthers the positive community experience the City of Russell aspires to provide.

Questions regarding common ordinance issues such as, (but not limited to); animals at large, nuisance animals, caring for animals, animal licensing and wildlife, can be directed to Animal Control by calling dispatch at 785-483-2121. Please leave a message if your question can be answered with a return call from the Animal Control Officer. If your issue needs urgent response such as an animal running around right now, a missing animal or an injured or suffering animal, please let the dispatcher know so the available officer can be informed right away.

At-Large Animals/Impound

Animals found running at large with no owner available will be impounded. A list of animals impounded is located on the wall in the lobby of the Police Department, 339 E. 8th Street. The Russell impound is located at Town and Country Animal Hospital at 655 S. VanHouten. Their business hours are 8-12 and 1-5:30 Monday through Friday. The phone number is 785-483-2435. The owner of an impounded animal will pay a fee of $25.00 for the impoundment plus $12.00 per day boarding for the animal. Any animal leaving the pound for return to owner or adoption will need to be currently vaccinated against rabies. Any animal residing in the city will also require a current city tag. 


Animal Control does have traps available to set for small animals such as cats, skunks, and opossums. These traps are made to fully enclose the animal to protect our officers and equipment from being sprayed while handling any skunk that may be caught in the trap. For this same reason we are unable to pick up any wildlife animal that is caught in a trap provided by the public. Please do not set traps as these will not be serviced by the city. The only exception to this is that any domestic animal contained by a property owner will be picked up by animal control so we can try to locate a possible owner. Please remember, if you set a trap for a cat and catch a skunk, we cannot take the skunk for you. Contact Animal Control and we will set our trap. When a trap is requested Animal Control will speak with you about trap placement and request a form (link to trap request form) be filled out to document the request for a trap and advise the property owner of the rules for trap placement. Animal Control will then place the trap when possible.

Animal Bites/Rabies/Licensing

Animal bites occurring in the City of Russell must be reported so a bite report can be completed. This report is used mostly to document that rabies protocol is followed, thus greatly reducing risk of rabies being spread in our city. Every animal owned in the city must be vaccinated for rabies. This vaccination is documented in the Animal License, also known as the City Tag. Proof of microchipping is also required for a City Tag. This microchip is a tremendous help in returning lost or at-large animals to their owners. A City Tag is required for every dog or cat residing in the city. The fee for the tag is $8.00 for any spayed or neutered animal and $20.00 for any unaltered animal. Tags need to be obtained within 10 days of establishing residence in the city or within 10 days of acquiring a new animal. Visiting animals must have proof of current rabies vaccination. City Tags may be purchased at any local veterinary clinic or, with proof of current rabies vaccination, microchip and spay or neuter, at the City Building, 133 W. 8th.