Town of

Dog Control Officer

James Griffiths

James Griffiths can be reached at all hours either by email or phone.  Please leave a message and he will try to answer and resolve any and all situations as quickly as possible. You can call him with questions or concern and complaints.  
He handles domestic dogs and cats.  
He also has contacts and other resources in regards to other incidents such as wildlife situations.  Although he can not handle wildlife but will direct you to the correct contact.    
Remember to License your dogs and make sure your cats and dogs are up to date on all their shots.  Make sure you protect your pets from tics and check them routinely especially if you have them out for long periods of time. If your dog is a barker, be courteous to your neighbors and don't leave them out for long periods of time if they continuously bark.  

Sometimes calls are the responsibility of the DEC (dogs running deer, suspected rabid raccoons or ground hogs)or the County Health Department (dead birds, cat bites and dog bites)
For Your Information:
Rabies law was passed effective November 20, 2002 which states: All dogs, cats (including barn cats)and ferrets must have rabies shots by 4 months of age. If you feed a stray/feral animal on your property you own it in the eyes of the State Health Department. That means you are responsible for it's immunization and can be liable for all fines/damages if it bites someone or is confined for rabies. Please do not feed feral animals or, if you do- immunize them. Spring Farm Cares will aid you should you choose to care for these animals.
Do not feed deer. Deer are being infested by a wasting disease transmitted in deer feed.
License your dogs. If your dog strays or gets out of the house and is lost it will be taken to the Stevens Swan Humane Society where you must redeem it for a price only after you have gone to the Town Clerk's Office and licensed it. Inside dogs get loose and account for more calls/captures than strays. Save yourself the aggravation and tag your dogs: rabies, license and phone number. You will not regret it.
All of the above laws are associated with fines if you are not in compliance- some of them are sizeable. Marcy's Leash Law states that your dog(s) must be tied, leashed, on a run, fenced or in your direct control on your property. "In your direct control" means that they respond immediately to your voice command and you are outdoors with them.
  • Respond to stray dog calls, lost dogs, dangerous dogs, dog bite situations reported from the Department of Health.
  • To answer any questions regarding disposition of sick/strange behavior in animals including cats and feral animals and wildlife.
  • To remove dogs to the Humane Society when necessary.
  • Answer nuisance calls about barking dogs and animal abuse complaints.
Many people do not like to put tags on their dogs yet 80% of dogs that become lost are never found and returned to their owners.  Dogs who are characterized as "inside dogs" can and do get outdoors, particularly around holidays.  Without tags it is impossible to know from whence they come.  

The rabies tag identifies your dog as being protected and identifies the veterinarian so that the dog can be traced to its' owner.  Do not bemoan the loss in hindsight when it is easy to prevent it.  

As stated clearly in Marcy Matters newsletters, etc... All dogs are now licensed by the town of residency.  Dogs are no longer licensed by the State of New York Department of Agriculture.    If your dog is deceased please notify Town Clerk to remove dog from renewal notices.   Those of you who have unlicensed dogs must get them licensed.  

We will be re-canvasing the entire town to ascertain the extent of the dog population.  Owners of dogs who do not have a current license will be in violation of the law and will be issued a town court appearance ticket.  The financial penalty will be determined by the court and can range from $25.00 to $100.00.  This amount of money is more than the cost of a dog license.  Forewarned is forearmed.  Take care of this matter if you have a dog.  

Our town has a leash law that clearly states that all dogs must be leashed or fenced whether on or off their properties at all times.  There are no exceptions here.  Dog control will be more rigorous in pursuing offenders this season.  If you have chronic difficulties with neighbors or loose dogs please notify Dog Control Officer so that the situation may be ameliorated.  With a rising residential density there is less open space for dogs.  This has led to a higher incidence of dog/human confrontation.  I am certain everyone wishes to live in harmony with one's neighbor.  What do you say?  Take the responsibility to do your part.

Our geographic area now has deer ticks which carry Lyme disease.  This disease is very debilitating for dogs and cats as well as humans.  It results in severe arthritic joint damage as well as damage to internal organs, in particular, the kidneys.  Frontline is an excellent systemic repellant for dogs and cats.  A new product called VECTAR is currently on the market and may be obtained from many veterinarian offices.  This product is just as effective as Frontline but is less toxic for your animal.  Cats should be treated with Frontline (VECTAR cannot be used on cats) as cats carry the ticks indoors and can contaminate dogs or humans.  Be proactive and commence these applications as the temperatures rise above freezing levels overnight.

Hours of Operation:

As needed.
James Griffiths ()
Phone: 315-939-0415
Phone: 315-793-2554
Fax: 315-793-2748

Conservation Dept

207 Genesee St # 1404
Utica, NY 13501

(315) 793-2554
(315) 793-2748 (fax)

Stevens - Swan Humane Society
5664 Horatio Street
Utica, NY 13502
Phone: 315-738-4357


Shelter Location: 5664 Horatio Street (Off Rt. 12N) , Utica, NY 13502 (Just past the Riverside Center)

Hours: 11a-5pm on Tuesday - Friday ------- 11a-4p on Saturday ------ & Sundays 11a- 2p

Closed Mondays

Phone : (315) 738-4357

Spring Farm Cares
Spring Farm Cares
3364 State Route 12
Clinton, NY 13328
Phone: 315-737-9339

Spring Farm 737-0829

Spring Farm Center Alternative Research Education Sanctuary

Animal Communication, Animal Sanctuary, & Adoption Center
3364 State Rt. 12
Clinton, NY 13323
(315) 737-9339

Utica Animal Control Officer
Christopher Collver
Phone: 315-792-0108

Please do not call unless it is an emergency and you cannot reach Marcy DCO Gail Charboneau