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Time to Celebrate: Ready for Everything, with Kindness & Professionalism

April 12, 2023, Anna Payton

In honor of National Animal Care & Control Appreciation Week, I would like to share a list of shout-outs and well-deserved thank yous. Unfortunately, animal care and control workers are often undervalued—even vilified—in their local communities. Sadly, this applies even within the animal welfare community. The truth is, so many of the great things that animal care and control staff do go often go unnoticed or unrecognized–because for many of us, it is just business as usual, all in a day’s work. Join me in thanking these heroes who should be recognized and honored—this week and every week.

Thank you to the foster coordinator, whether that is your official title or not, who works to find placement for those bottle baby kittens who always seem to show up a half hour before close.

Thank you to the animal control officers who need to be ready for anything and respond to calls of all varieties. That includes everything from Yorkies stuck in heating ducts to raccoons in hot tubs and fish trapped in puddles from receding flood waters. 

Thank you to the animal care staff who purrito the spicy kittens until they like it. And we know many of you are doing this while you are still working to complete other tasks!

Thank you to the dispatchers who remain calm, and help the callers remain calm, during hectic situations. Thank you for getting the appropriate information so officers can respond as efficiently as possible.

Thank you to the adoption staff who advocate for the overlooked animals. Thank you for helping them connect with a family that may have initially passed them by.

Thank you to the front-line staff who bring in McDonald’s cheeseburgers for the dogs who initially are terrified or “behaviorally special.” Thank for not seeing them simply as a number, but as an individuals who need a little extra care and reassurance they had never before experienced.

Thank you to all staff who continue to dispel the myth of “dog catchers” and “the pound” and go above and beyond for the people and animals you serve with professionalism, kindness, and compassion.  Keep up the good work!

Learn More

National Animal Care & Control Association website
National Animal Care & Control Association on LinkedIn
Time to Celebrate: ACO Appreciation Week 2023

About Anna Payton
Anna Payton is Deputy Administrator at Will County Animal Control in Joliet, IL. She is President of the Illinois Animal Welfare Foundation, and serves on the board of The Association for Animal Welfare Advancement.