Frequently Asked Questions
Animal cruelty can encompass many things, such as physical neglect (not providing fresh food and water or a solid shelter during bad weather), direct violence and physical abuse, depravation of socialization, torture, maiming, and killing of animals. Animal cruelty is not an easy subject to discuss and at the Lincoln County Humane Society, it is never an easy thing to see. But addressing animal cruelty is an important factor in preventing cruelty from continuing and we owe it to the animals of our community to stop the cycle of abuse and save the innocent victims of violence.
To help prevent animal abuse, one of the main things you can do is pay attention to what is happening close to your own home. Phone calls, even anonymous ones, from concerned citizens who notice a dog without food and water or a cat that endures physical abuse, make all the difference in the world for that animal. Walk around your neighborhood and pay attention to the circumstances in which the local animals live. Is there enough food and water? Is there adequate shelter? If there’s not, it’s a simple call to the Sheriff’s Department that may save the life of that animal.
Another factor in preventing animal cruelty is learning to recognize the signs:
- Injuries on the body, missing patches of hair, body weight far below normal, signs of starvation or limping
- Direct abuse, such as hitting or kicking
- Animals who are injured and have not received any medical treatment
- Dogs who are kept outside in extreme weather conditions without appropriate shelter
- Animals who cower in fear or act aggressive when approached by the owners
When you are reporting animal cruelty, it’s important to contact the correct person and organization. The Lincoln County Humane Society does not have a humane officer to investigate crimes against animals but any cases reported to us will be turned over to the appropriate department. If you call the Police Department to report animal abuse, make sure to ask for the Animal Control Officer or Humane Officer on duty. Lincoln County is very lucky to have dedicated officers on the force that take animal abuse seriously and appreciate the calls reporting the abuse. Calling the Sheriff’s Department at (715) 536-6272 or the Tomahawk Police Department (715) 453-2121 or the Lincoln County Humane Society at (715) 536-3459 to report any animal abuse you are aware of.
When you report animal abuse, it is helpful to the investigators if you report the type of cruelty you witness, who was involved, the date of the incident, and where it took place. If you feel your report is not taken seriously, do not hesitate to contact the ASPCA or a similar organization for results. Calling or writing your local law enforcement agencies as well as your legislators is a great way to voice your feelings and show your support for stronger punishments for animal abusers and thorough investigations of animal abuse.
By setting a good example for others, you reduce the cycle of abuse. Make sure your pets receive quality care and love in addition to food, water, and shelter. If you suspect your animal is sick, visit your local vet. Be responsible and spay or neuter your pets. Make sure your children are aware of how to treat animals with kindness and respect. Education is the most important factor for preventing animal cruelty and it is important for children to be rewarded for kindness and prevented from any negative behaviors. Abuse is a cycle and animals are rarely the only creatures in the home being treated badly.
Supporting the victims of abuse is very important. Donating food, money, and supplies for the animals at the Lincoln County Humane Society will help animals that have experienced abuse. You can also volunteer your time and work with animals that are in need of a caring, loving person to guide them.
Ignoring abuse or deciding that you don’t want to “get involved” can have dire consequences. Animals that experience abuse are often desperate to avoid any further harm and may bite or attack anyone that is perceived as a further threat to their safety. Animal abusers rarely stop with animals and other family members, especially children, are likely to experience abuse or trauma from witnessing animal abuse. Abuse is a vicious cycle and everyone involved is going to deal with the negative repercussions of such behavior.
To report an animal related emergency please call either the Merrill Police Department if you are in the city at 715-536-6272.
Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department for the County at 715-536-8311.
Tomahawk Police department at 715-453-2121.
One of the main goals of the Lincoln County Humane Society is to reduce the pet overpopulation crisis. The Fix Is In is a vet clinic with fully licensed veterinary staff. Their organization has sterilized over 30,000 animals since July of 2012.
The Fix Is In does offer spay and neuter services for the public. LCHS does not assist with appointments or services through The Fix Is In. You must contact The Fix Is In directly to make arrangements for your pet.
You can contact The Fix Is In at 715-256-8555 with questions. To schedule an appointment for your pet, please use this link to go to The Fix Is In webpage: https://thefixisin.org/make-
FixAPet in Neillsville, WI also offers low cost spay and neuters for cats, dogs and rabbits. Call Heidi at 715-937-7770 for more info.
LCHS frequently receives calls regarding injured birds or wildlife. Although we are eager to help where we can, our facility does not have the permits or the skills to care for these creatures. If you find an orphaned, injured, or abandoned animal that appears to be in need, please stop and contact a wildlife rehabilition facility before intervening. Trained staff at these organizations can advise whether an animal is truly in need and what the next step will be.
For wild birds, please call the Raptor Education Group, Inc. based in Antigo, WI. Again, please contact the facility before handling or moving wild birds. The Raptor Education Group, Inc can be reached at 715-623-4015.
For wildlife, please call Wild Instincts based in Rhinelander, WI. It is recommended to contact the facility before handling or removing wildlife. Wild Instincts can be reached at 715-362-9453. Wild Instincts is available by phone 24 hours a day.For wildlife, you can also call Northwoods Wildlife Center in Minocqua, WI. It is recommended to contact the facility before handling or removing wildlife. Northwoods Wildlife Center can be reached at 715-356-7400. You can also you use this link for advice on common wildlife situations: https://northwoodswildlifecenter.org/what-we-do/rehabilitation/animal-emergency.html
Many organizations try to assist with transporting animals to the appropriate wildlife facility. First, contact the wildlife rehabilitation centers. If you are unable to transport the animal, you can try contacting LCHS to see if there is a volunteer available to assist (we cannot guarantee we will have someone able to help). You can also contact the local Sheriff’s Department at 715-536-6272 for assistance.
We recommend saving these contacts into your phone so you have easy access to the phone numbers in case of an emergency.
After March 31, dog license fees increase – a spayed/neutered dog will be $25 and an unaltered dog will be $65. If you are mailing the license to LCHS, it must be received by March 31. Any forms received after March 31 will be returned to the owner for the late fees to be added.
You can purchase a 2022 dog license using the following three options:
- Mail a copy of the rabies certificate, payment, and information for the dog license to:
310 N. Memorial Drive
Merrill WI 54452
- Visit LCHS during our open hours (12pm-4pm Monday-Saturday, 12pm-2pm Sunday). You must bring a copy of the rabies certificate signed by the veterinarian. The certificate should have the tag number, vaccine manufacturer, and vaccine serial number. LCHS cannot sell a dog license without a current rabies certificate.
- You can purchase a dog license through your municipality (see the contact list below). Licenses can be purchased through municipalities by appointment or with your property taxes. Make sure to contact your Town Treasurer in advance to ask the exact procedure.
Municipality Contact Info:
Town of Birch: Marlene Fox 715-218-039
Town of Bradley: Phyllis Evans 715-453-3326
Town of Corning: Katie Giese 715-351-0918
Town of Harding: Carrie Hintz 715-536-8901
Town of Harrison: Matt Boyle 715-551-6016
Town of King: Julie Allen 715-453-8578
Town of Merrill: Kay Tautges 715-536-4383
Town of Pine River: Donna Opper 715-432-7421
Town of Rock Falls: Cindy Frisch 715-536-3947
Town of Russell: Susan Fisher 715-351-0028
Town of Schley: Susan Podeweltz 715-536-3756
Town of Scott: Ann Krueger 715-539-8355
Town of Skanawan: Jean Zoellner 715-966-6419
Town of Somo: Jody Isaacson 715-564-3239
Town of Tomahawk: Loretta Wanta 715-453-8836
Town of Wilson: Laurie Peterson 715-453-8465
City of Tomahawk: City Treasurer: 715-453-4040
City of Merrill: City Treasurer: 715-536-5594