An animal control officer is a person who is in charge of enforcing laws regarding the treatment and care of animals. This is generally a person who works through city or county governmental agencies.
This person will usually keep typical weekday daytime hours, though it may be necessary to be on call during extended or weekend hours. An animal control officer may work inside an office, though they will have to respond to calls regarding animals in their area. This person will likely work with a team of other animal control officers or workers. In general, formal education is not required for this job. However, training is necessary. Most agencies will provide training on the job, and some may require certification from a recognized animal control organization. Training is available in first aid, public relations, cruelty investigations, animal hoarding, puppy mills, animal cruelty laws, and capture techniques.
An animal control officer will have a variety of responsibilities associated with their job, primarily revolving around ensuring animal safety and public safety regarding animals. This person will be responsible for responding to calls regarding stray animals, responding to incidents regarding animal cruelty, investigating dangerous animals, administering warnings and citations regarding animals, educating the public about animal control safety, and patrolling public areas looking for distressed animals. This position requires a person who will stay informed regarding all animal-related laws and who will enforce these laws. An animal control officer should have innate leadership and communication skills.
Animal Control Officer Tasks
Educate the public about laws regarding pet ownership and the proper treatment of animals.
Capture stray animals and remove abused or dangerous animals from their owners.
Investigate reports of violations of laws or ordinances pertaining to the keeping and treatment of pets and issue citations.
Perform inspections of commercial breeding operations to ensure they are licensed and the animals are in good condition.