Porky and Buddy Pet Health – What Do Dog Control Officers Do?

Porky and Buddy

Dear Porky and Buddy,
What exactly do dog control officers do anyway?

I am so frustrated with the one for our town. Last year I called him about a stray cat and he said, “I don’t handle cats. Call the Humane Society.”

OK, so he doesn’t handle cats and the Humane Society was able to help me out with the cat.

But then I called him a few days ago about a dog that I think may be abused.

I’m not sure what is going on and I asked him to check into it.

He said, “I don’t do animal cruelty. Call the police.”

What?? Don’t we pay him with our tax dollars? What exactly are we getting for our money?

Dear Nick,
What you get for the pitiful amount that most dog control officers are paid by the towns is 24/7 access for assistance with stray dogs that you find and the enforcement of the dog licensing laws and other local dog laws that make your town a better place to live.

So quit complaining and be thankful.

Seriously, the local DCOs have no law enforcement authority, so his suggestion that you call the police is absolutely correct.

Some animal control officers in cities do have law enforcement authority.

We are only talking about the towns here.

If a DCO sees something in the course of doing his or her job that might amount to animal cruelty, he or she also can and will call the police to make a complaint and many DCOs do that all the time.

But their role is as a witness, not an investigator.

Please remember the important role that DCOs play with protecting stray dogs – caring for them, trying to  find their owners and then finding adoptive homes for them if there is no owner.

Many DCOs go way beyond their limited role under the New York State Agriculture and Market Law in caring for the dogs they encounter.

Why not offer to help him out with supplies, adoption posters, whatever you can think of to make his sometimes thankless job easier?

We don’t mean to scold you too much. Thanks for paying attention to the animals in your area and looking for help for them.

We hope this column makes it more clear as to who provides what kind of help.

It takes a community!

On a happier note,  we have a few tickets left for the Fur Ball.

On Saturday, April 29, from 5:30 to 11 p.m.at The American Foundry, 246 W. Seneca St., Oswego, there will be dinner and dancing, contests, a fabulous silent auction and more.

Invitations have been sent or go to our website to reserve a ticket online. $60 per person or $100 per couple.

Or call our office at 315-207-1070.

You know you’re a party animal!

The Oswego County Humane Society provides spay/neuter services and assistance, fostering and adoption of animals in urgent need, humane education programs, and information and referrals to animal lovers throughout Oswego County.

Located at 29 W. Seneca St., Oswego, NY.

Phone: 315-207-1070.

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.oswegohumane.org

Because People and Pets Are Good for Each Other.