Begaye, Nez ask pet owners to take responsibility for dogs

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. — Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye and Vice President Jonathan Nez signed a proclamation March 1 to challenge and encourage Navajo Nation citizens to be responsible pet owners.

“We want our people to be active and play outdoors, but many are discouraged with many free-roaming dogs on the Nation,” Begaye said. “We encourage you to collar, license, vaccinate and confine your pet.”

Recently, there have been reports of multiple dog maulings that resulted in human, livestock and another animal’s death, they said. Staff have received a number of calls on an annual basis that involve a vicious dog bite, which can often lead to certain diseases such as rabies. In response, the Navajo Fish & Wildlife Department decided to run a vigorous campaign aimed at reducing the number of preventable animal attacks and diseases. 

All animal owners are urged to actively participate in decreasing the unwanted dog and cat population within the Navajo Nation by spaying and neutering their animals. 

Highlighting the need for collaring aggressive dogs, Nez referenced the recent spate of fatalities resulting from dog attacks on the Navajo Nation.

“We need control over dogs that are vicious. This is for the public good, especially for young children and elders,” Nez said.

He commended the tribal animal control program for promoting responsible pet ownership.

Community members are encouraged to report all dog bite incidents to the Navajo Nation Fish & Wildlife, Animal Control Program at (928) 871-6451.

Community members are asked to report all livestock damage incidents to the Navajo Nation Fish & Wildlife, Animal Control Program at (928) 871-6451 or to the Navajo Nation Department of Resource Enforcement at (928) 871-5200. 

Begaye and Nez urged people to visit animal shelters on the Navajo Nation the first and third Tuesday of the month to license and vaccinate their pets for the health, safety and welfare of the Navajo Nation.

More information about Navajo Nation Animal Shelters is available at


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