Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week, celebrated from April 11 to 17 this year, is an annual week-long event in the second week of April that celebrates and promotes animal control officers and animal service staff who risk their lives and dedicate countless hours for the safety of the public and animals. Just like any law enforcement agent, animal care and control officers are compassionate and committed people who serve on a daily basis to ensure the safety of pets, people, and wild animals.
This day is sponsored by the National Animal Care and Control Association and aims to provide necessary support and encouragement to recognize and appreciate the tireless contributions of control officers and staff. No matter how late in the night it is or how precarious the situation is, these animal service volunteers work 24 hours a day without complaint.
History of Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week
Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week is endorsed by the non-profit National Animal Care and Control Association, which was formed at a meeting in Englewood, in 1978. The organization was founded to improve animal welfare and join hands with all the agencies involved with animals throughout the world to come together and establish communication.
Mike Burgwin, the director of an animal control agency in Oregon, is the man behind the idea to form a care and control association as he was frustrated by the lack of resources available. He was appalled by the dearth of information on animal control and, after gathering a team, he formed an animal control association in the state of Oregon. The organization was a runaway success, which led to the thought that if it could work so well in one state, why wouldn’t it work equally well in others?
And so, Burgwin, driven by a love for animal welfare, a need for the enforcement of laws for animals, and the importance of layman safety, wrote to Warren Cox, the director of the Animal Protection Division of the American Humane Association. Together with Cox, Burgwin wrote a letter to call for all animal care personnel to come together for a meeting that envisions a world where animal care professionals are respected as public servants and constantly supported.
At Englewood, Colorado, 49 people belonging to 24 states met in a conference on September 27 and voted to form the National Animal Care and Control Association. The non-profit organization is committed to improving professionalism in animal welfare and public safety through training, networking, and advocacy. The appreciation week is part of a movement to recognize animal care and control officers as professionals who have continued to provide the highest quality of life to animals and citizens.
Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week timeline
The first society for the prevention of animal cruelty, the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA), is founded.
The Seeing Eye is the first dog guide school that uses dogs to benefit the lives of the blind.
Setting the standard for animal care and treatment, the first Animal Welfare Act is enforced.
Avon, the famous make-up company, announces to ban animal testing for the first time in history.
Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week FAQs
How do animal shelters benefit the community?
Animal shelters are ambassadors for healthy animals, and that helps stabilize the pet population as well as increasing the well-being of citizens.
Are animal control officers police?
While there is often confusion as to the powers local animal control officers possess, it is important to recognize that they are real law enforcement officers who enforce a variety of criminal offenses, many of which are jailable.
What does Animal Control do with animals?
Animal control workers handle animals of all types, from pets to wildlife. They investigate mistreated animals and control those that are deemed dangerous, abandoned, or lost.
How To Observe Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week
Say thank you to animal control officers
Extend your gratitude to local animal control officers and staff in your area. Write them a letter or talk to them face-to-face. Show your appreciation and respect for them by ensuring your pets are licensed and tagged. Your local animal control officer would be happy to find that the public is following regular vaccination protocols. If you’ve missed out on your visit, now is the time!
Donate to Animal Care and Control Organizations
Use this week as an opportunity to donate to all organizations involving animal care and control.
Spread the word
Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week is not commonly known. Use social media to spread the word by uploading statistics, information, news, and images with the #ThankYouAnimalControlOfficers or #AnimalCareAndControlAppreciationWeek hashtags.
5 Facts About Animal Control Officers That Will Blow Your Mind
They don’t require a qualification
Beyond a high school diploma, animal controllers do not require post-secondary qualifications — passion for animals is always a plus.
They have an array of work responsibilities
From enforcing animal control laws, patrolling streets for unattended animals, and responding to complaints to relocating animals to wildlife, they do it all.
Their demand is increasing
In a span of 10 years, the increase in vacancies for animal control officers is expected to grow at a rate of 12%.
They supervise bite complaints
Before anyone else, an animal control officer will reach the scene to bring an aggressive animal under control.
Animals are victims of domestic violence
According to a survey, 71% of animals are subjected to domestic violence, which is why animal care and control officers are so important.
Why Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week Is Important
Animal control officers investigate pet abuse
Animal control officers instantly go out to investigate reports of pet abuse or neglect. This ranges from low- to high-risk situations as anyone harming an animal can potentially harm a human being as well.
They rescue stray animals
They make sure no unattended animal is roaming on the streets that could carry pests or diseases harmful to the human community. Animal control officers help find lost animals and rescue pets on the loose and bring them to a safer place.
They relocate animals back to wildlife
As towns and cities have spread out, many wild animals have entered into civilization. The control officers risk their lives by capturing these wild creatures and relocating them back to their natural habitat before they can pose a serious threat to the general public.
Animal Care and Control Appreciation Week dates