Animal Control Officer Requirements and Training in Michigan
Animal Control Officers are required to have a minimum of 100 hours of training before they can be hired by any city, village or township in the State of Michigan pursuant to MCL 287.289c. The training must be approved by the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development. There are two exceptions to this requirement:
- a police officer or
- a person who has been employed as an animal control officer for at least three years prior to 1973.
To become a qualified Animal Control Officer, a person must first complete the required 100 hours of training. See the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development suggested training outline and memorandum on training. If the applicant has specific ideas for training other than those described on this Web Site, contact the Michigan Department of Agriculture Rural Development, Animal Industry Division, at 1-800-292-3939. Also review the laws, regulations, additional material and training programs pertaining to Animal Control.
Once training has been completed, the applicant or other appropriate person must submit a summary of the training to:
Animal Industry Division
Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development
P.O. Box 30017
Lansing, Michigan 48909
The summary must include the date training occurred, number of hours spent in training on that date, who did the training, and what was covered in the training. For example:
DATE / Description of training and who conducted the training / Hours Trained
4/10/02 / Spent half day with current animal control officer, John Doe, reviewing how to identify animals and keep records pursuant to Regulation 151. / 4 hours
4/11/02 / Spent day with Dr. Bill Jones learning to restrain dogs and cats and administer IV injections. / 6 hours
4/12/02 / Rode with Michigan Department of Agriculture Field Inspector, Jane Doe, to visit other facilities. Discussed kennel construction, how to do inspections, Act 287, and Regulation 151. / 8 hours
Once the summary is received by the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development
The summary will be reviewed by the Animal Industry Division of the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development.
After the review process, a letter will be sent to the applicant with an approval letter. This letter should be kept on file.
If the applicants summary of training is disapproved, a letter will be sent to the applicant with an explanation of the reason for disapproval. Typical reasons for disapproval are failure to adequately document training and inappropriate or the lack of training. Inappropriate training may include self study or a request that 20 hours of cleaning kennels count toward the 100 hours of required training.
The laws relative to Animal Control Officers are:
- Act 368 of 1978, Section 333.18801 - 333.188385 Public Health (Excerpt)
Laws pertaining to veterinary medicine
- Pet Shops, Dog Pounds and Animal Shelters: Public Act 287 of 1969, as amended
The primary law pertaining to pet shops. Among other things, this law specifies who does and does not need a pet shop license and it includes requirements for importing and selling puppies and kittens.
- Regulation 151 (Pet Shops, Dog Pounds and Animal Shelters)
Regulations and requirements for operating a licensed pet shop, dog pound or animal shelter. This is a very important regulation to read and understand, as it covers areas that MDARD Inspectors review when visiting these facilities.
- The Animal Industry Act: Public Act 466 of 1988, as amended
Establishes requirements associated with the prevention, control, and eradication of certain animal diseases, including requirements for importation, exhibition, and quarantine, and establishes authorities, including that of the state veterinarian.
- Regulations for The Animal Industry Act
This describes the specific regulations operating under the Animal Industry Act.
- Large Carnivore Act: Public Act 274 of 2000
An Act to regulate the ownership, possession, and care of certain large carnivores.
- Wolf-Dog Cross Act: Public Act 246 of 2000
An Act to regulate the ownership, possession, and care of certain wolf-dog crosses.
- Bodies of Dead Animals: Public Act 239 of 1982
Establishes requirements for the disposal of dead animals.
- Regulations for Public Act 239 of 1982
Bodies of Dead Animals
- Use of Dogs and Cats for Research: Public Act 224 of 1969
An Act to license and regulate dealers in and research facilities using dogs and cats for research purposes; and to repeal certain acts and parts of acts.
- Dog Law: Public Act 339 of 1919
An Act relating to dogs and the protection of live stock and poultry from damage by dogs; providing for the licensing of dogs; regulating the keeping of dogs, and authorizing their destruction in certain cases, etc.
- Liability of Owner for Dog Bite: Public Act 73 of 1939
An Act providing for the recovery of damages by persons bitten by dogs; and creating a liability of the owners of such dogs.
- Registration and Identification of Dogs
An Act to provide for the regulation, registration, identification and licensing of dogs.
- Animals Running at Large: Public Act 328 of 1976
An Act to regulate animals running at large; to provide for compensation for damage done by animals running at large; to prescribe penalties; and to repeal certain acts and parts of acts.
- Dangerous Animals: Public Act 426 of 1988
An Act to regulate dangerous animals; to provide for the confinement, tattooing, or destruction of dangerous animals; and to provide penalties for the owners or keepers of dangerous animals that attack human beings.
- The Turtle Act: Public Act 424 of 1988
State requirements for the sale of small turtles. (Federal law covers to whom turtles may be sold, state law covers specifics about the sale.)
- The Ferret Act: Public Act 358 of 1994
Legalized and controls the sale and breeding of ferrets.
- Sale of Baby Chicks, Rabbits, Ducklings, or Other Fowl or Game: Public Act 163 of 1945
Prohibits the sale of dyed chicks, rabbits, ducklings, etc.
- Pseudorabies and Swine Brucellosis Control and Eradication Act: Public Act 239 of 1992
Swine laws, pertinent for stores selling pot-bellied or other pet pigs.
- Equine Activity Liability Act: Public Act 351 of 1994
An Act to regulate civil liability related to equine activities; and to prescribe certain duties for equine professionals.
- Horse Riding Stables and Sales Barns: Public Act 93 of 1974
An Act to license and regulate horse riding stables and sales barns; to prescribe the duties of the department of agriculture; and to provide a penalty.
- Public Health Code, Act 368 of 1978, as amended, Section 7333
This discusses the requirements to administer euthanasia or tranquilize.
- Michigan Penal Code (excerpt), Act 328 of 1931
Person with disabilities or trainer led by guide, leader, hearing, or service dog; refusing entry to or use of public or private accommodations as misdemeanor; conditions; identification card; list; definitions.
- Public Act 117 of 2009
This law makes it illegal if a farm animal can not lie down, stand up, fully extend limbs, and turn around freely in its enclosure.
- An Overview of Regulations Governing Pet Shops, Animal Shelters and Dog Pounds
This sheet summarizes requirements of Public Act 287 of 1969 and Regulation 151.
- Rabies and Animal (Mammal) Bite Protocol Sheet
Breaks down the proper procedures for potential and positive rabies situations.
- Protocol For Exotic Animal Bites
Flow chart that details the actions to be taken should a human be bitten or scratched by a wild or exotic animal.
- Exotic Zoo Bites Fact Sheet
A list of questions and answers pertaining to humans bitten or scratched by animals.
- Proper Disposal of Animal Carcasses Brochure
Summarizes state requirements for disposal of dead animals.
- Ferret Health Advisory Sheet Memorandum
Explains requirements for the Ferret Health Advisory Sheet as required by Public Act 358 of 1994.
- Ferret Health Advisory Sheet
Must accompany every ferret sold or transferred in the State of Michigan.
- Chlamydiosis (Psittacosis) Brochure
This brochure explains the disease chlamydiosis and how it effects birds and humans.
- Turtle Health Advisory Sheet
This sheet must be distributed with every turtle sold in Michigan.
- Salmonella in Reptiles
This fact sheet explains the disease salmonella and how it effects reptiles and humans.
- Pet Turtles: A Source of Germs
This website explains the potential germs associated with owning a pet turtle
- NASPHV Psittacosis Compendium
Requirements for chlamydiosis/psittacosis control.
- NASPHV Rabies Compendium
Requirements for rabies control.
- Generally Accepted Agricultural and Management Practices
Recommended agricultural and management practices for farm animals for the State of Michigan.
The Michigan Humane Society (MHS) Visit/Share/Learn Day. The training will comprise of 6 hours of on-site training in canine personality assessment, intake animal evaluations, and counseling training for staff assisting owners with animal relinquishment requests. MHS is limiting participation to 9 attendees per session so that it is a good learning and networking environment. Supportive handouts and lunch will be provided. MHS is currently planning to hold them quarterly at MHS' Rochester Hills location. Upcoming 2015 dates are: Wednesday, March 18; Wednesday, April 22; Wednesday, November 11; and Wednesday, December 16. There is no fee for the training, but it is limited to Michigan participants with preference given to current staff of registered animal shelters in the state. A shelter may send up to two representatives at a time. To learn more or sign up, email Linda Reider, Michigan Humane Society, Director of Statewide Initiatives, at: LReider@MichiganHumane.org.
National Animal Control Association (NACA) Training Academy. The program has training and is held periodically at different locations around the country. Individuals that successfully complete both levels are eligible for national certification. For more information log onto www.nacanet.org or call 913-768-1319.
- Michigan Association of Animal Control Officers (MAACO). The association has periodic conferences and trainings at various locations in Michigan. The conferences feature animal control-specific training and continuing education. Log onto www.maacoweb.com for more details.
- American Humane Association (AHA). The AHA provides training programs in animal welfare in various regional areas. For more information, call 1-800-227-4645 or log onto www.AmericanHumane.org.
- The University of Missouri, through their Law Enforcement Training Institute, offers a training program known as the National Cruelty Investigation School. The training consists of three levels of training, each consisting of 5 days of training. The courses are offered at various locations throughout the country. For more information, see leti.missouri.edu/animal-cruelty.aspx or call 1-800-825-6505.
- Some local community colleges and high school adult education programs offer courses that would be appropriate for animal control officer training.
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) puts together webinars with the aid of various leading industry and government experts on various animal and human health related topics, including topics on bats and rabies. These webinars can be found at: http://www.michigan.gov/emergingdiseases/0,4579,7-186--307782--,00.html.