Animal Control & Wildlife
The Westmont Police Department is responsible for animal control within the Village including investigating local animal welfare issues, enforcing codes, capturing stray domestic animals, and supporting wildlife management efforts. Read on for details on these services and helpful tips and links.
The Westmont Police Department responds to various pet and animal related concerns. The following is a partial list of services:
- Barking dog complaints
- Investigation of animal bites
- Investigations of animal cruelty and neglect reports (Westmont Police Department enforces local and state animal control and welfare laws)
- Pick up sick or injured wildlife if on village property
- Loose animals, stray animals
- Neighborhood issues concerning pets
- Pet left inside a vehicle in extreme weather (hot/cold)
The Village of Westmont currently does not have a local pet licensing or permit requirement, but pet owners are still required to follow County ordinance regarding annual rabies vaccination which is required by law even if the pet is kept indoors.
If you have lost your pet, please contact the Westmont Police Department immediately to provide information regarding your lost pet (date lost, location, breed, color, pet name, etc.). Please call us on our non-emergency dispatch number at 630-981-6300.
The Westmont Police Department transports all loose or stray domestic animals to DuPage County Animal Services/Animal Control in Wheaton. If the Westmont Police Department has found and collected your lost pet, you must do the following to redeem your animal:
- Pay a pet release fee of $30 to the Westmont Police Department, 500 N. Cass Avenue, which shall be in addition to any fine or other penalty provided under Village ordinance and in addition to any costs of DuPage County Animal Services/Animal Control.
- Present proof of ownership and valid rabies vaccination. If the pet is not current with rabies vaccination, which is required by DuPage County ordinance, DuPage County Animal Services/Animal Control will arrange to have this done at the owner’s expense.
In addition, you may do the following:
- Contact Dupage County Animal Services at 630-407-2800 or submit a missing animal report online at the County of DuPage’s Lost, Found and Stray Information page.
- Submit a lost pet report to missing pet websites (Lost Dogs illinois website, Helping Lost Pets website, FidoFinder) and post information on your local Nextdoor. Include a photo. These websites also give useful information on what steps to take if your pet does get loose or is missing. Use social media outlets to post pet information so that others can keep their eyes open in surrounding towns to help locate your pet.
- Contact your neighbors. Provide them with details about your pet including a photo. Many lost pets are found or seen within a 10-block radius of where they were lost.
Remember, a pet—even an indoor pet—has a better chance of being returned if he/she always wears a collar and an ID tag with your name, address and telephone number. Ask your local animal shelter or veterinarian about permanent methods of identification (such as microchips).
For more resources on finding your lost pet, visit DuPage County Animal Services website.
Deceased Wildlife/Nuisance Problem on Private Property
Deceased wildlife on private property is the homeowner’s responsibility for removal. The animal can be double-bagged and placed in the trash for pick-up.
Nuisance wildlife on private property is not handled by the Westmont Police Department. Examples of nuisance wildlife are:
- Squirrels nesting in an overhang of a home
- Skunks building a den next to a foundation of a home
- Raccoons building a nest in an attic of a home
- Seeing a wild animal on one’s property
A nuisance wildlife issue can be handled by a private trapping company. It is illegal to trap and/or remove otherwise healthy wildlife without proper permits. Removal of any wildlife can only be done by a trapper licensed by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The Westmont Police Department is not authorized to remove coyotes from any property, unless the animal is deceased or injured. However, if questions arise feel free to contact the Westmont Police Department for guidance at 630-981-6300.
Living with Wildlife/Coyotes
Coyotes in Westmont? Yes......Over the past several years, coyote sightings have become more prevalent within the village and surrounding communities. Although you may be shocked to see a coyote running through the village, it is not unusual. Due to the rapid loss of habitat by development, many coyotes have found themselves forced to cohabit with humans.
Strategies for dealing with coyotes
- Store garbage securely
- Keep bird feeding areas clean of debris. Even well maintained feeders can attract rodents which in turn may attract coyotes.
- Use squirrel-proof bird feeders. Squirrels visiting bird feeders attract coyotes.
- Feed pets indoors.
- Never feed coyotes. It is illegal and will attract coyotes into the community.
- Do not let your small pet outside unattended, especially from sunset to sunrise. A coyote can learn your "go outside" routine, and will be waiting for your pet. Also, a fence will not necessarily keep a coyote out of your back yard.
- Before you accompany your pet outside after dark, make sure you turn on exterior lights to check your back yard for unexpected wildlife.
- Keep dogs on short leashes while walking outside; preferably no longer than six feet.
- If you have a close encounter with a coyote: yell, clap hands, blow a whistle and try to make yourself look larger. Never crouch or squat low to the ground.
- Do not run away from coyotes.
If you see a coyote that appears sick or injured or actively acting aggressively towards a human (charging or trying to bite), call the Westmont Police Department at 630-981-6300 or if an emergency, dial 911.
Wildlife at your home: Wild animals are attracted to your home by food and shelter. Remove these temptations and you can cut your risks of structural damage, home invasion and other problems.
- Place lighting (such as bright flashlights, flood lamp, blinking strands of holiday lights, etc.) in their den, if safely possible. The lights must be on during the day to disturb the animal’s sleep if the animal is nocturnal or the reverse for daytime animals.
- Play a radio (portable alarm clock, noisy children’s toy, anything that plays music or makes noise repeatedly) either in or near their den. It is best to leave the radio on 24 hours a day. The radio must be on during the day to disturb the animal’s sleep or the reverse for daytime animals.
- Wrap a 4 feet to 6 feet wide piece of aluminum flashing around tree trunks so that the animal cannot get a foothold on the bark. Make sure the aluminum flashing is a minimum height of 4 feet from the ground. This will deny the animal access to the tree and your roof. This technique provides an immediate solution, however it is recommended to leave the flashing up for 5 to 7 days.
- Grease downspouts with a mixture of petroleum jelly and crushed red pepper. The animals will be unable to climb the downspout due to the slippery surface. This technique provides an immediate solution, however it is recommended to leave the downspouts greased for 5 to 7 days.
- Hot Pepper Repellent Recipe
- One chopped yellow onion
- One chopped Jalapeno pepper
- One tablespoon of Cayenne pepper
Boil ingredients for 20 minutes in two quarts of water. Let it cool and then strain it through cheesecloth. You can apply this with a pesticide sprayer or a spray bottle.
This will deter just about any animal from an area where it is applied. The only drawback is that it will last just 3 to 5 days.
- The "Magic" Formula
- 8 ounces of any liquid dish soap
- 8 ounces of Castor Oil
- 1 gallon of water
Mix the Castor Oil and soap. Be sure that it is mixed thoroughly then add it to one gallon of water and spray the entire area. This is a simple and safe recipe and should work well for many mammals.
There are many good reasons not to feed wildlife including:
When young wild animals are taught to depend on a human-provided food source, they may not fully develop essential foraging skills. Animals who are raised relying on humans for food may struggle to survive in the absence of that artificial food source when they disperse from their parents’ territory.
Wild animals who are used to being fed by humans commonly lose their fear of people. An instinctive wariness of people is important to a wild animal’s survival.
The food humans usually feed to wild animals is not nutritionally complete, and it can cause serious health problems for the animals, especially when they are young and still developing. Most wild animals are opportunistic and will concentrate on the easiest food source available. When a constant human-provided food source is available, animals who would normally have a varied diet may switch to eating mainly this constantly available food. Just like humans, most wild animals need a variety of foods in their diet, and if they fill up on "junk" food, they will not get the nutrients they need to stay healthy.
Additional Wildlife Issues
Animal Bites: If you or someone you know has been bitten by a non-domestic animal, call the Westmont Police Department at 630-981-6300. In an emergency, dial 911.
Young Wildlife: In most cases, young wildlife found without a parent nearby should be left alone. Different species bring up their young differently. However, if you encounter a wildlife baby that appears to have been abandoned or is injured, call the Westmont Police Department at 630-981-6300
Trapped or stuck animals: If an animal is in a window well, place a thick branch or roughed board at a 45° in the well. This will allow the animal to crawl out. Please remember that skunks/raccoons/etc are nocturnal and may not leave the window well until night.
Injured wildlife: The Willowbrook Wildlife Center treats injured, ill and orphaned wildlife native to DuPage County. The Center is located in Glen Ellyn, and is owned and operated by the Forest Preserve District of Dupage County. The wildlife animal admittance area is open 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. All areas are closed on select holidays. They may be reached at 630-942-6200 during business hours.
Pet Adoption and Pet Care Resources
Adopting a new pet into the family can be a rewarding experience and knowing how to care for your pet does not have to be overwhelming. Here are a few resources: the DuPage County Animal Services or the Spay Illinois website.
For any additional information regarding pet and wildlife concerns that do not need immediate attention, please contact Rosanne Terry, weekdays 8:30 am to 7:00 pm., email Rosanne Terry or call at 630-981-6378. Westmont Police Department promotes responsible pet ownership and animal care through education and enforcement.