Ordinance Enforcement / Animal Control

Ordinance Enforcement Officers respond to calls for service regarding City of Cottonwood zoning and code violations as well as enforcement of City of Cottonwood animal control regulations and ordinances.

They respond to investigate and verify zoning and ordinance violations make contact with complainants and violators, order the discontinuance, removal, or alteration of conditions which violate City Codes and zoning ordinances. Officers work with Community Development Services to ensure compliance with various City Codes and zoning ordinances. They enforce City ordinances pertaining to parking, abandoned vehicles and other ordinances as required.

Animal control functions include City licensing, leash control, rabies vaccination compliance, animal bites, noisy animal complaints, cruelty cases and pickup and impound or quarantine stray canines, vicious animals and other animals as needed. Ordinance Enforcement officers pick up and remove dead animals from road ways. They also make public presentations on animal care and control.

Our Ordinance Enforcement Officers are dedicated and strive to protect animals by providing and teaching humane treatment of animals and are specially trained and nationally certified by the National Animal Control Association (NACA) in animal safety, handling, first aid, apprehension methods, and capture equipment.

Our Ordinance Enforcement Officers are also members of the Arizona Animal Control Association (AACA).  Ordinance Enforcement Officer Al Ponce has been with the Cottonwood Police Department since 1992. Al began working as a dispatcher until transferring to Animal Control in 2003.

Ordinance Enforcement Officer Autumn Durnez joined the department in September 2010. She has a background working with animals right here in the Verde Valley.

What do I do if my pet goes missing or I have found a stray animal:

Contact the local Humane Society in case your pet has been brought in or the owners have called looking for the animal. Contact the Police Department at 649-1397 to report the missing/found animal. Do not give up hope if your pet is not found the same day.

Where in Cottonwood can a city license be purchased for my dog?

A City of Cottonwood license for your dog can be purchased at the Police Department, the Verde Valley Humane Society, and most veterinarian offices. You must have proof of a current rabies vaccination and proof of the dog being spayed/neutered from a licensed veterinarian.

What do I do if I can no longer care for my pet and no one wants it?

DO NOT ABANDON YOUR PET! Not only are you putting your pet in danger as well as the community, but you are breaking the law! If you feel you have no other choice but to surrender your pet contact the Verde Valley Humane Society. The owner must be present at the time of surrender and there is a fee to help provide for your pet until it can find a new home.

What to do if you or someone you know is bitten by an animal:

Call 911 for serious injuries.
Seek medical attention.
Contact the Police Department to report the incident. It's the law!
Please be prepared to identify the animal with as much detail as possible such as:
*breed
*size
*color
*markings
*last seen at what location/owner information
If possible try to contain the animal safely. NEVER try to contain a vicious animal!
An Ordinance Enforcement Officer will be dispatched to take a report and locate and contain the animal. Under Arizona State Law, bite animals must be quarantined to ensure their health and to avoid the spread of disease.
Owners who cannot produce proof of a current rabies vaccination must quarantine their animal at their expense with the Ordinance Enforcement Officer, or a quarantine-approved veterinary hospital.
Owners may have the option to quarantine their animal at home with the consent of, and in a manner prescribed by, an Ordinance Enforcement Officer, provided they can show proof of a current rabies vaccine and be able to follow all quarantine guidelines.

Dog Licensing Fees- MUST be currently vaccinated for rabies
$10.00 for altered dogs
$34.00 for unaltered dogs
$3.00 discount for owners 60yoa+ on 1st 2 licenses
$5.00 penalty for delinquent after Feb 1st
* If a stray dog has been picked up by an Ordinance Enforcement Officer wearing its license, the officer will attempt contact with the owner prior to impounding the animal at the local shelter. Be sure to keep your contact information current.

*Because cats are free roaming animals and there is no law against cats being at large. Cats will only be taken in if they are injured, sick, or on a case by case situation. Cats that are trapped in the City of Cottonwood city limits will need to be taken by the citizen to the Verde Valley Humane Society in Cottonwood. Fees may apply.


  1. Al Ponce

    Code Enforcement/Animal Control
    Phone: 928-634-4246 ex. 2075

  2. Autumn Durnez

    Code Enforcement/Animal Control
    Phone: 928-634-4246 ex. 2064