Essex County Virginia

Animal Control

Tappahannock Essex County Regional Animal Shelter

“Being born of the Human Race and not the Animal Kingdom does not give us more rights, it gives us more responsibilities”.

Author Unknown 

Our Location

Physical Address: 540 Airport Rd, Tappahannock, VA 22560
Mailing Address: 202 South Church Lane/PO Box 1079, Tappahannock, VA 22560 
Phone:  (804) 443-0726

Hours Open to the Public:
Closed to the public on Monday and Tuesday
Monday and Tuesday by appointment only

Work Force:

Animal Shelter Manager:
Ellen Shifflett

Animal Control Officer:

Animal Control Officer:
Carrie McCray

Who We Are

In July, 2008, the Essex County Animal Shelter was opened.   There were 187 animals taken into custody at the shelter.  142 of those were stray (76%) and a large number had to be euthanized.  This year so far we have taken into custody 266 animals, 199 of those were stray and less than 1% has had to be euthanized.   This reduction in euthanized animals has been accomplished through a devoted staff and volunteers that work diligently to facilitate animals being adopted and to contact and locate rescue organizations.

Animal Shelter Agreement - Agreement between the Town of Tappahannock and Essex County concerning the leasing of the Animal Shelter property.

Animal Related County Codes - Essex County has made all of its codes and ordinances available online through Municode. Click on the link below to access the section related to the ANIMALS chapter of the Code (Chapter 6).
View the animal section of Essex County's Code.

Our Mission

  • To enforce the state laws and county ordinances pertaining to animal  control and management
  • To protect human and animal health and safety
  • Educate the citizens of Essex County about responsible pet ownership
  • Reduce the numbers of unwanted pets
  • Provide for the housing and care of homeless animals
  • Coordinate their adoptions with rescue organizations and individuals.

We are proud professionals serving the people and animals of Essex County.  Animal Care and Control assumes a unique position in the community. We must combine the activities of law enforcement which protects people and their interests, public health responsibilities that protect people from the dangers and diseases of animals, and humane and animal welfare which protects the animals.

Stop By And Visit Our Animals

The shelter is located on Airport Road, Tappahannock, Virginia.  It is right across the street from the Tappahannock Veterinary Hospital!  So if you adopt an animal, you can have it vetted right across the street!  
View animals available for adoption.
If you see an animal you are interested in, please stop by the shelter to complete the necessary paperwork .  There is a $30.00 adoption fee plus $10.00 rabies shot which covers the expenses for the initial distemper shot, and the spaying/neutering of the animal.

Adoption Application - Online Fillable Form
Adoption Contract - Online Fillable Form

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