DOAG: Animal Population Control Program


Animal Population Control Program

MUNICIPAL POUND PET PROGRAM: The Animal Population Control Program (APCP) was created by statutory language in 1992 and implemented on May 22, 1995, to provide vaccination and sterilization benefits for any unsterilized dog or cat adopted from a municipal impound facility in Connecticut.  Program goals are to reduce pet overpopulation, reduce the spread of rabies and other diseases through immunizations and subsequently increase the effectiveness of local Animal Control Departments through education and law enforcement. The APCP has provided benefits to more than 100,000 animals since 1995. The program's 2013 Annual Report is now available in .pdf format (30 pages, 85KB).

Most Connecticut veterinary practices participate in the program. A list of practices can be found by downloading the following document: 2014 Participating Vet Practices. To join the APCP as a participating practice, please download the fillable application (1pg .pdf) and corresponding forms.    

To utilize this program, a Connecticut resident must pay a $45.00 fee at the time of adoption, which entitles the adopter to a vaccination/sterilization voucher good for sixty days. The voucher provides a one-time sterilization benefit of $50.00 for a male cat, $70.00 for a female cat, $100.00 for a male dog, and $120.00 for a female dog plus two pre-surgical vaccinations coincident with the sterilization. In addition, adopters are required to pay for other services as specified by the veterinarian.  Non-residents may adopt a pound pet and pay a $5.00 municipal fee, but are not eligible for program benefits. Pets too young or sick may be granted a medical extension by the veterinarian; however, all young animals must be sterilized by six (6) months of age.  Funding for the APCP comes from an annual surcharge on Connecticut dog licenses ($2.00 sterilized/$6.00 unsterilized), the $45.00 adoption fee, proceeds from the sale of the "Caring for Pets" commemorative license plates and donations.

FERAL CAT GRANT PROGRAM: The Department of Agriculture introduced in FY 2007, a new grant program to provide up to $40,000 in vaccination/sterilization benefits for feral cats. The inception of this program was due largely to the success of the agency’s Animal Population Control Program (APCP), which would be administering the program. This would be a first for Connecticut and believed to be the only state in the country offering benefits for feral cats. Legislation first passed in 2004, states that the Commissioner of Agriculture may set aside up to $40,000 dollars each fiscal year for the purpose of providing assistance to non-profit groups for the sterilization and vaccination of feral cats. However, in 2007 P.A. No. 07-105; titled An Act Concerning the Expansion of the Animal Population Control Program, was implemented in July 2008. Part of the new legislation dedicates up to 10% of APCP income to vaccinate and sterilize feral cats. Revenue for the feral cat program comes from the APCP dedicated account, with sixty-five percent (65%) of this money received from the dog license surcharge. No general fund money is used for this program.

In FY 2007, voucher benefits helped sterilized 500 cats. In 2008, benefits were again awarded to 500 cats. For 2009, 697 cats were altered. In 2010, due to the state budget crisis, benefits were not offered. In 2011, 886 cats received voucher benefits, 980 in 2012, 975 for 2013, and 993 in 2014.

To download an application, click on the following link: FY 2015 Feral Cat Grant Program.

LOW-INCOME PROGRAM: In FY 2007, Public Act 07-105 authorized the APCP to set aside up to 10% of APCP income to be used to vaccinate and sterilize pets owned by CT Low-Income residents.  To be eligible for benefits, recipients must be a Connecticut resident and on one of six public assistance programs outlined in C.G.S. Sec. 22-380e (12) (A – G) and approved by the Department of Social Services.  Once approved, vouchers are then issued by the APCP to low-income recipients for up to two pets.  All vouchers are good for sixty (60) days.  For FY 2014, P.A. 13-99 effective 7/1/13 increased the level of benefits from 10% to 20%.

In FY 2013, the APCP issued 1,423 vouchers with 849 used for a 61% overall sterilization compliance rate.  For FY 2014, 2,416 vouchers were issued and 1,467 used for another 61% compliance rate.  To download the FY 2014 report, click the link: FY 2014 Low Income ReportThe average benefit provided per cat is $80 and $130 for dogs.

NOTE:  Effective February 6, 2015, the Connecticut Animal Population Control Program (APCP) will no longer be accepting low-income pet sterilization applications for the remainder of the fiscal year (until 6/30/15).  Please contact this office after July 1ST 2015, for a new application. 


COMMEMORATIVE LICENSE PLATE: {Graphic of the Animal Population Control license plate.}   On November 25, 1998, the "Caring for Pets" commemorative license plate was released to the public. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of each plate is deposited into the program's dedicated account. The plate design was created and donated by Connecticut artists Mark Maglio of Plainville and Kathy Goff of Avon. Plate fees are $50 for an off the shelf plate, $70 to transfer your present plate and $139 for a new vanity plate. There is also a $15 biennial renewal fee, with $10 from each application going to support program goals.  For more information about acquiring a pet plate, go to the DMV web site at

Reissued plates - More than 1,000 previously issued PAW, PET, DOG, CAT, TLC, WAG, WOF, and WUF series plates are now available for the vanity fee of $139. Please contact the vanity plate unit of the Department of Motor Vehicles at (860) 263-5154 for availability.

DOG LICENSE APPLICATION:  The Department of Agriculture has created a generic dog license application, which can be downloaded by clicking on the link that follows. The APCP receives 65% of its income from dog license surcharge revenue.  Please pay special attention to the correct license fee for your dog's gender and if a late fee is applicable.

NOTE: This application must be mailed to your Town Clerk. Application for Dog License  (81 KB, .pdf)

For more information about the municipal pound pet, feral cat and low-income programs, acquiring a "Caring for Pets" plate application or other related spay/neuter information, please contact the Department of Agriculture, Animal Population Control Program, 165 Capitol Avenue, Hartford, CT 06106 or call 1-860-713-2507 between the hours of 8:00a.m. - 4:30p.m., Monday through Friday.  You can also send your questions to