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Area animal control officers are honored

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Cate Ogden (center) of Middlesex Pet Friends for Life presents a certificate of recognition to Middlesex Chief Animal Control Officer Ricky Warren and Middlesex Assistant County Administrator Marcia Jones. (Photograph by Don Layer)

Animal control officers of the Middle Peninsula (Gloucester, Mathews and Middlesex counties) were recognized with a luncheon in their honor celebrating National Animal Control Officer Appreciation Week. The luncheon, held on May 3 at Whitcomb Lodge in Beaverdam Park in Gloucester, was hosted by the Animal Care Society (ACS), Animal Resource Foundation (ARF), Gloucester-Mathews Humane Society (GMHS) and Middlesex Pet Friends for Life (MPFL). This was the 12th annual luncheon for the officers.

In addition to enforcing the animal laws pertaining to licensing and running at large in leash-law areas, the officers enforce the animal neglect and cruelty laws. Lost, abandoned and owner-surrendered dogs are housed in the local shelters. In 2016 over 1,200 homeless dogs were sheltered at the three Middle Peninsula shelters—Gloucester County Shelter, Gloucester-Mathews Humane Society (which also serves as the Mathews County shelter) and Middlesex County Shelter—and only 2% of those dogs were euthanized, and always only due to untreatable terminal illness or severe aggression.

Over 1,000 homeless cats were sheltered with a higher euthanasia rate due to the high number of feral cats in this region. With increased targeted spaying and neutering of feral cats in 2017, it is anticipated that euthanasia rate of these cats will decrease.

The animal control officers were thanked at the luncheon for being an important part of the animal control/animal welfare team in saving lives, and were presented with certificates of appreciation recognizing their commitment to the welfare and protection of the animals and citizens of their communities.

Middlesex Chief Animal Control Officer Ricky Warren declined his certificate of appreciation, saying there was someone else at the luncheon without whose support Middlesex Animal Control could not provide the services to the community and save as many animals as they do. Officer Warren asked Marcia Jones, assistant county administrator for Middlesex, to come forward and accept the certificate, which was presented by Cate Ogden of MPFFL.

posted 05.17.2017

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