Pet Policies

In 1999, due to an outbreak of canine distemper, the population of Catalina Island fox plummeted from an estimated 1,300 animals to approximately 100 animals.

The following regulations will enhance the chance for the Catalina Island fox to recover and other native species to continue to thrive and to find a safe and nurturing environment in the protected areas of the Island.

Thank you for doing your part to keep Catalina wild!

Compliance with the following requirements is necessary to obtain the Catalina Island Conservancy’s permission to bring or keep non-native animals onto its property.


1. Definitions - All Non-Native Animals include the following:

  1. Dogs
  2. Cats
  3. Domestic Fowl (e.g., chickens, ducks, pigeons)
  4. Birds (e.g., parakeets, macaws, parrots, cockatiels)
  5. Rodents (e.g., hamsters, mice, rats)
  6. Other carnivores (e.g., ferrets, weasels)
  7. Reptiles (e.g., snakes, iguanas, lizards, turtles)
  8. Fish & Amphibians (e.g., aquarium fish or koi, salamanders, frogs, toads, geckos)
  9. Insects and other invertebrates (e.g., tarantulas, crickets, mealworms)

2. Licensing, Resident Non-Native Animals

All non-native animals that enter or live on Catalina Island Conservancy property must be approved by the Conservancy’s Lease Manager. Dogs, cats, fowl and other traditional pets must be “licensed” by their owners through the Conservancy or its designated license program director. Presently Dr. Richard Denney, who has a veterinary practice in Avalon, is running the license program. Dr. Denney’s offices are located at 214 Metropole Ave.  His office number is (310) 510-1210.

The Conservancy reserves the rights to designate others to run the license program and to make changes in the license requirements from time to time. Consistent with standard practice on the mainland, candidate animals eligible for licensing must:

  1. Have a full series of vaccinations specific to that species (cats, dogs and domestic fowl specified in Number 3);
  2. Carry a certification of health tag issued by the license program director;
  3. Be spayed or neutered with exceptions granted by the Conservancy on a case-by-case basis.
    Licenses will be subject to renewal annually based on the requirements of this policy as amended by the Conservancy from time to time.

3. Vaccinations

Required vaccinations for cats and dogs are as follows, with requirements for other species to be determined by the license program director on a case-by-case basis. Each vaccination will be renewed annually, except for rabies which will be renewed every three years:

  1. Distemper Combination (DHLPPC – includes Corona and Leptovirus)
  2. Bordetella (kennel cough)
  3. Rabies
  1. Distemper Combination (FVRCPC)
  2. Feline Leukemia (FeLV)
  3. Rabies

4. Special Restrictions

  1. No male domestic fowl over the age of 5 months may be kept on Conservancy property.
  2. All domestic fowl must be contained within enclosures, such as chicken coops, runs, and hutches.
  3. Accommodations for all other non-traditional non-native animals (reptiles, amphibians, mammals and other species listed on Number 1) must be approved on a case-by-case basis.

5. Diseased Animals

If any non-native animal shows signs of any disease, it must be immediately removed from Conservancy property and the license program director and Conservancy notified. Under no circumstances should sick animals be allowed on trails or roads or Conservancy property until fully recovered from their illness as certified by the license program director or other veterinarian.

6. Containment, Leashing

Dogs and cats may be loose only within the confines of homes and private, fenced yards, and are never permitted to roam on their own unsupervised. Should injury or death to wildlife occur, the license can be revoked summarily by the Conservancy.

7. Proper Disposal of Animal Feces

Animal feces carries a multitude of parasites harmful to wildlife, and the Island fox is particularly sensitive to these parasites. All feces must be collected and disposed of appropriately (in the garbage). Cat boxes should be provided for cats within fenced areas and emptied regularly, and fenced areas should be cleaned routinely. All dogs on roads, trails, and around areas known to be frequented by foxes and other wildlife must be controlled at all times, and their feces collected and disposed of appropriately. Commercial lessees of the Conservancy must provide a “pet waste station” on the leased premises with waste bags and disposal containers that can be securely closed and arrange for regular collection.

8. Outdoor Feeding of Pets

Feeding of pets outdoors should be done only under supervision. At no times should food be left outside where wildlife or feral animals can access it. Feeding of wildlife or feral cats is prohibited.

9. Speed Limit

Native and endangered species are frequently struck by vehicles and injured or killed. All island drivers are asked to be especially aware of the dangers to animals that vehicles pose, and at all times must observe the maximum 25 MPH speed limit across the island.

10. Regulations, Non-Resident Non-Native Animals

To be allowed to enter or to remain on Catalina Island Conservancy property, owners will be required to produce and demonstrate:

  1. a current license issued under this policy;
  2. written or verbal authorization from the Conservancy’s Lease Manager to bring to Conservancy property;
  3. compliance with the containment and leash requirements; and
  4. compliance with the feces disposal requirements.

11. Enforcement

Failure to comply with this policy can result in revocation of the pet license, loss of interior access and/or other restrictions deemed appropriate for the violation. Violation of this policy by any lessee of Conservancy property may also constitute a lease default under the terms of the lease.