ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. - Pet owners living on post need to be aware and comply with the regulations outlined in the Picerne Military Housing Resident Responsibility Guide.

APG veterinarian Dr. Carol Bassone said owners with cats or dogs that are older than 90 days must provide immunization records to the installation's veterinary treatment facility within 10 days of arrival or acquisition.

All pets living on the installation are also required to be microchipped. In addition, residents may own no more than two dogs or cats, in any combination, per household.

Bassone said because the VTF only treats pets of Soldiers, retirees and their Families, civilian residents must get their pets immunized and microchipped at a facility off post.

Pet owners have a responsibility to get their pets checked up once a year and to stay current with all shots. Some vaccinations need to be given annually, some every three years.

"This is a big area for pets as well as people to contract Lyme disease," she said. "And if the pet spends a significant amount of time outdoors, in the woods, they need to get a Lyme disease shot more frequently."

Bassone said cats and dogs must be kept under control at all times and kept on a leash when outside. Pets are not permitted in any post recreation areas, including playgrounds, at any time. Pet owners are required to pick up after their animals in their yards and in the grounds of their neighborhood.

"Even if the owner has a fenced in yard, they are required to be outside with them," she said.

Bassone cautions against letting cats loose within a fenced in yard, as they are able to climb fences and run away easily.

"APG has a large wild animal population that can harm or even kill dogs and cats," she said. "These regulations were created to keep pets safe."

She also strongly recommends having pets spayed or neutered, as male animals will run after females in heat.

"In Harford County pet owners are required to keep female animals inside when they are in heat," she said.

Bassone said animals found unattended should be reported to the APG Directorate of Emergency Services at 410-306-2222. Unattended pets will be sent to the Harford County Animal Control Office, where they will read the pet's microchip information and contact owners immediately.

Bassone noted that certain breeds like pit bulls, Rottweilers, and Doberman Pinschers are not allowed on the installation. (See the Picerne Military Housing Resident Responsibility Guide for the full list.)

"These guidelines are something pet owners should consider before they decide to live on post," she said.

DES Chief of Operations Michael Dawson said that the bottom line is these regulations were put in place to protect both animals and residents on the installation.

All animal bites or scratch incidents to humans should be reported to the nearest medical facility, the police and the VTF. The offending animal is subject to a physical examination, quarantine and possible expulsion from post.

"Even though there have been a few incidences of aggressive animal behavior, for the most part people on the installation do a good job controlling pets," said Dawson.

Picerne Military Housing communication specialist Corrine Williams said in addition to providing records to the VTF, residents must pay a refundable deposit in the amount of $150 per pet. Owners are legally and financially responsible for any injuries or damages caused by their pets.

For questions about on-post pet regulations, residents should contact Picerne Housing at 410-305-1075 or obtain a copy of the Picerne Resident Responsibility Guide for the full list of regulations. Photo by Rachel Ponder.

Page last updated Mon February 25th, 2013 at 11:19