Animal Bite Investigations

Animal - To - Human Bites

People who have been bitten by animals should contact Saint Paul Police as soon as possible after the bite to file a report. Saint Paul Police Officer's begin the animal bite investigation by interviewing the victim, the animal owner (if known), and any witnesses. They may also take pictures of the injuries and scene and coordinate with Emergency Medical Services for transportation to a hospital. Saint Paul Police forward the report to Saint Paul Animal Control (SPAC) so the biting animal can be quarantined and the investigation completed.

Quarantine is a rabies control tool used to ensure that biting animals are not infected with the rabies virus. Animals that bite people are either euthanized and submitted to the State Laboratory for rabies testing or placed under a ten (10) day quarantine. This happens regardless of the animal's vaccination status at the time of the incident.

During quarantine, the animal must be closely monitored for signs of sickness. The animal must be kept away from other animals and people other than the custodian. Animals may be quarantined at the owner's home or at the Saint Paul Animal Control Center. If an animal is quarantined as SPAC, the owner is required to pay for the cost of impoundment and care prior to reclaiming the animal.

After the animal has cleared quarantine, the victim is notified. The owner may be issued a citation and the biting animal may be determined to be a Dangerous or Potentially Dangerous Animal.

Animal - To - Animal Bites

Owners of domestic animals that have been bitten by another animal (domestic or wild) should contact Saint Paul Animal Control (SPAC) to file an Animal Incident Report. Quarantine is not required for domestic animal - to - domestic animal bites. Animal Control Officers will interview the owner of the victim animal, witnesses, and the owner of the biting animal. Picture of the victim and biting animal may be taken, and the ACO may request veterinary records, if there is an injury. After the investigation is completed, the owner of the biting animal may be issued a citation and the biting animal may be determined to be a Dangerous or Potentially Dangerous Animal.

Rabies

Rabies is a disease that affects the nervous system of mammals. To learn more about rabies, review Saint Paul's "What you Should Know About Rabies" Brochure or visit the Minnesota Department of Health's website.

Contact Information

  • Saint Paul Police Department: 911 (Emergencies) or (651) 291-9111 (Non-Emergencies)
  • Saint Paul Animal Control: (651) 266-1100

If you have questions, contact our Animal Control office at 651-266-1100, or email the DSI Message Center