Animal Protection Unit

Animal Protection UnitResponsibilities & Services

The Animal Protection Unit is comprised of seven Humane Officers and one supervisory Humane Officer. The unit reports to the Commanding Officer of the Second Patrol Division but serves the entirety of the City. 

The goal of the Animal Protection Unit is to ensure public safety through the enforcement of animal-related laws within the City of Norfolk. 

The responsibilities of the unit include:

  • Animal Cruelty
  • Dog Fighting Investigations
  • Injured Wildlife
  • License Enforcement
  • Pet Shop Inspections
  • Rabies Vaccination Enforcement
  • Stray Animal Apprehension

Protecting the Welfare of Animals

The Animal Protection Unit works closely with the Norfolk Animal Care Center and many private organizations that are concerned with the welfare of animals. These organizations include People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), the Norfolk Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NSPCA) and the Animal Welfare Coalition of Hampton Roads (AWCHR). These relationships provide for open lines of communication to address the many issues surrounding animal welfare.


Humane Officers also present information to community groups to provide an overview of the unit's responsibilities and educate residents of the requirements for animal care under the city and state codes they are charged with enforcing.