Far West Texas is a great place to own a pet, or bring your pet to visit. Below is some critical information to ensure that you and your pet have fun, stay safe, and are in compliance with local rules.
All dogs & cats must be licensed, current on rabies vaccination & restrained (fenced or leashed) at all times. Registration is $10 (unaltered) or $7 (altered) from Alpine Animal Services. Enforcement of noise ordinances & investigation of animal cruelty, abuse, or neglect is handled by Alpine Animal Services or APD.
In Brewster County at-large (outside the city limits), there are no animal rules for licensure or registration, but Texas law requires rabies vaccinations. To report animal cruelty, abuse, or neglect outside the city limits call Brewster County Sheriffs Office (432) 837-3488 or 911 for emergencies.
A fenced dog park where you can let your dogs off-leash is located within Kokernot City Park. There are separate fenced areas for large & small dogs. Funding for the dog park was provided by Alpine Humane Society in 2014 & is maintained by the City of Alpine. Please pick up after your dogs and follow the posted rules. Help keep the dog park clean & enjoyable for everyone by cleaning up after less responsible users as necessary. The dog park is located at 500 E Hendryx Dr (behind the KVLF building). Map HERE.
Big Bend National Park does not allow dogs on any backcountry trails, but leashed dogs are allowed on dirt roads & at roadside camping sites. Dogs are prohibited on any stretch of the Rio Grande Wild & Scenic River. Big Bend Ranch State Park does not allow dogs on any trails north of Hwy 170, but leashed dogs are allowed on dirt roads & at roadside camping sites. However, dogs are allowed, leashed, on any trail south of Hwy 170, including the river between Colorado Canyon & Lajitas. Appropriately certified service/therapy dogs are permitted on all trails.
Lost your pet? Contact Alpine Police Department immediately (432) 837-3486. Animal control in the City of Alpine is undertaken by Alpine Animal Services (division of Alpine Police Dept). There is no formal Animal Control in Brewster County outside the city limits of Alpine.
There are a number of veterinarians in Brewster County & surrounding counties. Many hotels and motels throughout Brewster County offer pet-friendly accommodations.
One of the ways to increase the chances of finding your lost pet is having it microchipped. Insertion of the microchip by your vet or Alpine Animal Services is quick & usually painless. AAS can do it at the shelter for $15. There is no annual fee. An animal with a microchip cannot be "tracked." The chip must be scanned. Most vets and animal shelters have scanners. Be sure to keep your contact info up-to-date with the microchip company.
Alpine Humane Society donated more than $80,000 to the City of Alpine for the construction of a crematorium at the new Alpine Animal Services shelter in 2011. The crematorium is operated and maintained by Alpine Animal Services. Please call Alpine Animal Services for more information about cremation of your deceased pet.
Brewster County is a wild place; be advised that there are a number of animals that can pose a threat to your pet, including coyotes, mountain lions, bobcats, javelina, snakes, and stinging insects. Small pets are especially vulnerable, but all pets are at risk. All vets provide rattlesnake vaccine and you can train your dog to detect and avoid rattlesnakes through Alpine Humane Society's annual Rattlesnake Avoidance Class.
Brewster County also has extreme weather. Take special care to ensure that your pet is properly hydrated. If you are not familiar with dry climate, your pet may dehydrate faster than you expect. Be prepared and always have plenty of water. Never leave your dog in the bed of a pickup truck. Brewster County can also have extremely cold weather. Ensure that your pets have sufficient shelter & provisions for all conditions.
Alpine Humane Society works to create a compassionate community for all pets. If you live in Brewster County and have a pet who needs medical treatment, including spay/neuter, Alpine Humane Society may be able to lend financial assistance. More information please reach out to the Alpine Humane Society (AHS) below.