Reporting An Animal Issue

NHS Animal Control has jurisdiction in Omaha and Sarpy County. Contact us if you have concerns that relate to animals.

Reporting an Animal Issue

Priority Calls

NHS is responsible for overseeing ordinances that pertain to animals. Stray animal pick-up, dog bites, cruelty reports, injured or sick animals are just a few of the calls Animal Control considers a priority. If you have an emergency or priority call that requires an immediate response, contact our dispatch center at 402-444-7800, ext 1. *All caller identities remain confidential. Situations involving bites or aggressive dogs should be reported immediately to 402-444-7800 extension 1. 

Non-Priority Calls

For non-emergency calls including anonymous barking dogs, loose dogs, dead animal pick up please also call our dispatch center at 402-444-7800 ext 1. You may be directed to email an investigator with specific details--but please start with the dispatch center.  NHS responds to complaints in Omaha (and the 3 mile zone surrounding the city) and Sarpy County. If you are outside our jurisdiction please contact your local law enforcement agency. 

Providing photo/video evidence of violations

If you provide good photographic evidence in situations when an officer does not observe a violation (dog running at large, etc.), an animal control officer may be able to issue a citation based on that evidence. If still pictures are taken, photos should have the date, time, location, address of the animal owner, name of the owner if known, and name of the person who took the photo attached to the photo. Videos need to have the date and time shown on the tape and attached paperwork explaining what is being shown, the location, address of the animal owner,  and name of the owner if known. In the case of a dog at large, photographic evidence should clearly show the animal off the owner's property. 

Out of Jurisdiction

Please remember that NHS has jurisdiction in Omaha and Sarpy County. If your issue is outside of our jurisdiction, please contact your local animal control or law enforcement agency.


NHS Animal Control conducts investigations into cruelty and neglect of animals in Omaha and Sarpy County. Homes overflowing with cats, starving horses and animals living without proper food, water, shelter or necessary medical care, all fall under our purview. *The following information is paraphrased from Omaha City Ordinance Chapter 6, which deals with all animal-related city laws. 

View all of the Omaha City Animal Ordinances »

Physical Abuse

(You can’t beat, torture, or burn animals) It is unlawful for anyone to willfully or maliciously kill, maim, disfigure, torture, beat with a stick, chain or club or other object, mutilate, burn or scald with any substance or cruelly set upon any animal. (*The exception is to drive off vicious or trespassing animals)

Physical Mistreatment

(You can’t leave an animal in a situation that causes suffering)  It is unlawful for any person to knowingly, intentionally, or negligently cause or allow any animal to endure unreasonable or unjustifiable pain, suffering or injury.

Withholding or Neglecting Care and Maintenance

(You have to provide the basics of food, water, shelter from the elements and proper veterinary care) It is unlawful to refuse, neglect or fail to provide proper food, drink, shade, shelter, physical maintenance, and veterinary care.

  • Animals must be provided every 24 hours with nutritionally-sound food.
  • Animals must be provided at all times with clean, fresh water in a proper dish or tub that can’t be tipped or knocked over by the animal.
  • Animals have to have access to shelter year-round that is structurally sound and in good repair so it protects them from temperature extremes, both hot and cold. The shelter must provide adequate ventilation and drainage so bedding inside remains reasonably clean, dry and comfortable, and keeps the animal from contracting diseases, parasites or injuring himself. Additionally, the shelter has to be of a size to allow the animal to enter, stand, turn around and lie down in a natural manner.
  • Animals shall receive care and medical treatment for debilitating injuries, parasites and disease sufficient to maintain the animal in good health and to minimize suffering.
  • Animals that must be tied up must wear a collar or harness, not of the choker type, to attach to the tether. No animal will have a chain, rope or cord directly around its neck. The tether cord must be at least 10 feet in length. Any enclosure in which an animal is kept has to be constructed of materials and in a manner to minimize the risk of injury. The animal also needs room to move around.

Abandonment of Animals

(You can’t leave animals to fend for themselves) It’s unlawful to leave an animal for more than 24 hours without making provisions for food water and care. If an animal is restrained outside without food water or proper care, Animal Control Officers may enter the property and supply it with food, water and care as long as it remains there.
For immediate attention, please call 402-444-7800, ext 1.

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