Millwood Square, Sterling

On Oct. 15, a resident said he was walking his dog when a raccoon bit the dog's leg and ran into the woods. An animal control officer could not find the raccoon. The incident was reported to the Health Department, and the dog was given a rabies booster shot.

Triple Crown Court, Ashburn

On Oct. 15, a resident reported that her dog had attacked a groundhog, which ran away. An officer examined the dog and found no injuries. He advised the owner to use gloves while feeding and watering the dog and not to allow it to lick anyone until notified by the Health Department. The next day, the owner reported that a veterinarian had examined the dog and found no injuries.

Cedar Lane, Sterling

On Sept. 23, an animal control officer investigated a report of a dog chained outdoors for two weeks without shelter. The officer met with the owner and found the dog to be friendly, obedient and in good health but lacking current vaccinations, license and adequate shelter. The owner said that the dog had been given to him and that he could not afford it. The officer issued a warning and referred the case to the department's Committed to Animal Resources and Efforts (CARE) program. A few days later, a resident told the officer that she was the dog's owner and would take it to the vet. On Oct. 17, the owner said she was moving out of town with the dog. The officer verified that the dog had a current rabies vaccination and closed the case.

Halloween Pet Safety Tips

To help people keep pets safe at Halloween, the animal shelter recommends that owners:

* Keep pets inside, away from trick-or-treaters or other Halloween activities. Cats, especially black ones, may be the target of pranksters. Frequently opened doors provide an opportunity for escape, which can go unnoticed during commotion. Be sure that pets are wearing collars with ID tags.

* Keep candy out of a pet's reach. Candy can be harmful to them, and chocolate is toxic to cats, dogs and ferrets.