Animal Control

New Jersey law requires that municipalities appoint a certified Animal Control Officer (ACO) to be responsible for animal control within the jurisdiction of the municipality. Animal Control Officers become certified by completing a 3-credit course approved by the NJ Department of Health and Senior Services. A Certified Animal Cruelty Investigator, is responsible to investigate instances of animal abuse or cruelty.

Bernards Township Animal Control Officer/Cruelty Investigator: Michelle Santoro, ACO, ACI
Contact Animal Control Officer: 908-204-3066 ◊ For an Animal Control Emergency after 4 pm and on weekends: 908-766-1122

Animal Control

AC Essentials in NJ
AC Ordinances
Disasters and Your Pet
Why to License Your Pet
Pet License Application
Protect Your Pet in a Disaster
Rabies Clinics
Animal Cruelty

The Bernards Township Animal Control Officer is responsible for the following in Bernards Township & Peapack and Gladstone Borough:

  • Dog and cat licensing and record keeping (Bernards only)
  • Maintains a dog/cat census (Bernards only)
  • Facilitates animal adoption as needed
  • Investigation of animal bites including rabid domestic or wild animals
  • Confinement or impoundment of biting animals
  • Investigation of lost, stray, injured or nuisance domestic animals
  • Evaluation and veterinary care for injured animals
  • Education of the public on care of domestic animals and lifestyle of wild animals

In addition, in all seven contractual towns, the BT ACO is responsible for:

  • Rabies Control including Rabies clinics

Please note: If your dog or cat is injured and without identification, the Animal Control Officer is required by law to seek medical treatment. The cost incurred for treatment will be the owner's responsibility.

Animal Bites:

Those who have been bitten by a domestic or wild animal should seek medical attention IMMEDIATELY!

The treating healthcare provider will report the bite to the Animal Control Officer with details of the animal and the bite. The Animal Control Officer will follow-up with victim and the pet owner to ensure rabies prevention.

To report animal neglect or abuse call 908-204-3066

The Bernards Township Health Department is a Contractual Health Agency serving: Bernards Township, Bernardsville Borough, Chester Borough,
Long Hill Township, Mendham Borough, Peapack and Gladstone Borough.