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FAQs

Can I bring my animals in for a checkup?
Our Veterinary Hospital is actually not open to members of the public.  They only provide medical services to animals in our care.

How much does it cost to adopt a pet?
Because our rates and fees change annually, please visit www.vcas.us/adopt to view a full list of adoption fees.

What if I find a stray dog at 2:00am?
If you can keep the dog safe in your home until we open, please do so and thank you!  If you cannot provide temporarily care for the dog, please call (805) 388-4341 and use OPTION 4 to be put through to our after-hours service.

What if I find injured wildlife?
Visit www.vcas.us/wildlife.

Why is a pet license so much cheaper if my dog is spayed/neutered?
The discount is an incentive to have pets spayed or neutered.  There is an overpopulation of animals in our community and spay/neuter is the only proven method of curtailing uncontrolled breeding.  View pet licensing fees at www.vcas.us/licensing.

Can my child volunteer?
Yes.  We have a Junior Volunteer program.  Visit www.vcas.us/volunteer to learn more!

Do you have Service Animals, Emotional Support Animals, or Therapy Animals for adoption?
(SOURCE:  AVMA – American Veterinary Medical Association)

Animals can play a very important role assisting people with disabilities and as part of therapeutic activities. Most people are aware of the role of Service Animals, such as guide dogs, but other types of assistance animals may be less familiar.
 
A more recently developed legal category of assistance animals is the Emotional Support Animal (ESA).  These are animals that provide companionship and emotional support for people diagnosed with a psychological disorder. They are documented by a letter from a human health professional (i.e. your doctor), which legally guarantees that they may live with their handler and accompany them on aircraft, exempt from the fees that would be charged for a companion animal.
Some people misrepresent their animals as Assistance Animals in order to bring them to places where pets are not allowed, to avoid fees, or out of a misunderstanding of the animal’s role. It is important for veterinarians to assist their clients in correctly identifying their animals, and to provide care and advice consistent with the animal’s role.

The AVMA recognizes and supports the federal definition of service animals under the Americans with Disabilities Act; the federal regulations for emotional support animals under  the Fair Housing Act and Rehabilitation Act of 1973; and provides guidelines related to animal-assisted interventions. At its July 2017 meeting, the AVMA House of Delegates approved a policy on the veterinarian’s role in supporting appropriate selection and use of service, assistance and therapy animals​​ proposed by the Steering Committee on Human-Animal Interactions.

Learn more about assistance animals with the AVMA report: Assistance animals: rights of access and the problem of fraud. Fraud can be a vexing issue, and it’s important for veterinarians to actively support the appropriate use of assistance animals and anti-fraud initiatives so that undue burden is not placed on people using these animals in their intended roles.

Legal context for assistance animal use – definitions
Classification​​Definition​As defined by
​Assistance animal​“Any animal that works, provides assistance, or performs tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability, or provides emotional support that alleviates one or more identified symptoms or effects of a person’s disability,” as defined by the ADA.4 “Individuals with a disability may be entitled to keep an assistance animal as a reasonable accommodation in housing facilities that otherwise impose restrictions or prohibitions on animals. In order to qualify for such an accommodation, the assistance animal must be necessary to afford the individual an equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling or to participate in the housing service or program. Further, there must be a relationship, or nexus, between the individual’s disability and the assistance the animal provides. If these requirements are met, a housing facility, program or service must permit the assistance animal as an accommodation, unless it can demonstrate that allowing the assistance animal would impose an undue financial or administrative burden or would fundamentally alter the nature of the housing program or services.”​U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (FHEO-2013-01)
​Service animal​“Any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability. Other species of animals, whether wild or domestic, trained or untrained, are not service animals for the purposes of this definition. The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the individual’s disability. Examples of work or tasks include, but are not limited to, assisting individuals who are blind or have low vision with navigation and other tasks, alerting individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing to the presence of people or sounds, providing non-violent protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, assisting an individual during a seizure, alerting individuals to the presence of allergens, retrieving items such as medicine or the telephone, providing physical support and assistance with balance and stability to individuals with mobility disabilities, and helping persons with psychiatric and neurological disabilities by preventing or interrupting impulsive or destructive behaviors. The crime deterrent effects of an animal’s presence and the provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship do not constitute work or tasks for the purposes of this definition.” Miniature horses have been added as a specific provision to the ADA. The miniature horse must be housebroken, under the handler’s control, can be accommodated for by the facility, and will not compromise safety regulations.​Americans with Disabilities Act 1990 (Section 35.136)
​Any animal that is individually trained or able to provide assistance to a qualified person with a disability; or any animal shown by documentation to be necessary for the emotional well-being of a passenger… Psychiatric service animals are recognized as service animals, but are considered to be emotional support animals and, therefore, subject to the applicable regulatory requirements, i.e. documentation.​Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) and CFR Part 382
​Emotional support animal​An emotional support animal (ESA) may be an animal of any species, the use of which is supported by a qualified physician, psychiatrist or other mental health professional based upon a disability-related need. An ESA does not have to be trained to perform any particular task. ESAs do not qualify as service animals under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), but they may be permitted as reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities under the Fair Housing Act. The Air Carrier Access Act provides specific allowances for ESAs traveling on airlines, though documentation may need to be provided.​Fair Housing Act (42 U.S.C. Part 3604) and Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) and C.F.R. Part 382.117
​Therapy animal​A therapy animal is a type of animal-assisted intervention in which there is a “goal directed intervention in which an animal meeting specific criteria is an integral part of the treatment process. Animal-assisted therapy is provided in a variety of settings, and may be group or individual in nature.”​Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) and CFR Part 382; AVMA Animal-Assisted Interventions: Definitions

Find additional information, including reference citations, in Assistance animals: rights of access and the problem of fraud (PDF).

Why is rabies such a big deal when there are so many other deadly diseases?
The Rabies virus is a deadly disease which can be passed from animal to human, a trait that not all deadly viruses have.  When symptoms become present, it is often too late and death is all but certain.  Humans can be vaccinated against the Rabies virus much like an animal can, however the process is more involved, often requiring a series of vaccinations.  The Rabies virus is present in Ventrua County, mainly within the bat population.

How can I work at VCAS?
All employment opportunities are offered through the County of Ventura website at www.ventura.org/jobs.

How long do you keep animals before they are euthanized?
In 2012, Ventura County Animal Services embarked on an unprecedented lifesaving mission that changed the very foundation of our department. We ended the humane euthanasia of healthy, adoptable or treatable animals.  This meant that animals entering our shelter system no longer had a time limit.  They were no longer “at-risk” due to lack of space or their length of stay.

Do you have an Amazon Wish List?
Yes.  We update our Amazon Wish List regularly with items we need the most.  Items can be shipped directly to the Camarillo Animal Shelter at 600 Aviation Drive, Camarillo, CA 93010.  Thank you for support!  If you wish to share our wish list, you may use the quick link www.vcas.us/AmazonWishList or you may use the full web address https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/V6KOK9PWRSF6.

I just adopted a pet and what is the first thing I should do?
The first thing we recommend is for you to use your voucher for a free medical exam and schedule an appointment with your veterinarian.  Shelter pets do get a physical exam at the time of surgery to make sure they are healthy enough for anesthesia, however if the animal is already altered when they arrive at VCAS, and if they do not appear sick or injured, they may not have had a physical exam.  Your veterinarian will be able to perform that service for you, examining all organ systems within the body to see if there is any cause for concern.

There are also a number of viruses and bacterial organisms in the shelter environment that may lead to an upper respiratory infection (URI).  Although we all strive to make our animals as comfortable as possible in a safe and healthy environment, the shelter can be stressful.  Stress is known to compromise the immune system which could lead an infection in a normally healthy animal.  Your newly adopted pet may not have shown symptoms of illness here at the shelter, but they may start to show signs of sneezing or nasal discharge while at home.  While sometimes this condition may be self-limiting, it is always the best practice to take your new pet to your own veterinarian for advice.

What if my male dog’s neuter incision seems to be open?
At VCAS we practice what is called a scrotal incision and castration technique on male dogs.  We make an incision directly in the scrotal tissue and remove the testicles through the incision.  We ligate the spermatic cords with appropriate surgical suture and then in some cases leave the incision open to drain.  This may seem like it will not heal, but it is an accepted practice to allow drainage in order to discourage infection. It will heal on its own as long as the dog doesn’t contaminate the incision by licking and he’s kept calm and quiet during the post-operative period.

For more information on the Socially Conscious Sheltering model, please visit www.scsheltering.org.

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TRANSLATE DISCLAIMER

The VCAS.US website has been translated by Google Translate. Reasonable efforts have been made to provide an accurate translation, however, no automated translation is perfect nor is it intended to replace human translators. Translations are provided as a service to users of the VCAS.US website, and are provided “as is.” No warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied, is made as to the accuracy, reliability, or correctness of any translations made from English into any other language. Some content (such as images, videos, Flash, etc.) may not be accurately translated due to the limitations of the translation software.

The official text is the English version of the website. Any discrepancies or differences created in the translation are not binding and have no legal effect for compliance or enforcement purposes. If any questions arise related to the accuracy of the information contained in the translated website, please refer to the English version of the website which is the official version. Ventura County Animal Services employs bilingual staff who are able to provide assistance.  Please call (805) 388-4341 or email info@vcas.us.

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