What is an Animal Control Officer?

Photo of author
Written By ManuelPeterson

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur pulvinar ligula augue quis venenatis. 

What is an Animal Control Officer?

Animal Control Officers are employed by municipalities and responsible for responding to requests for their assistance. Duties include capturing stray animals, looking into reports of cruelty towards them, investigating allegations of fighting between dogs, running the shelter or compound for animals and arranging adoption or disposal for confiscated ones. Furthermore, these officers work alongside local police departments, health departments and other law enforcement agencies on animal-related matters. Other tasks could include:

  • Respond to citizen complaints
  • Locate animals in all kinds of environments under any condition, day or night
  • Inform violators of the bylaws
  • Seek to reach an understanding and obtain compliance with any violations.
  • Enforce the law by issuing orders to correct any problems
  • Arrange for action to be taken if orders aren’t obeyed (removing pets from residences)
  • Enforcement of bylaws can be enforced through tickets, summonses and subpoenas

Create legal documents related to this process.

In court, Animal control officers will hear complaints from members of the community and record meetings for future reference. If there’s a violation of law, animal control officers will take necessary actions to remedy it. They may patrol public areas looking for violations; this job allows for working outdoors while traveling throughout the community.

What kind of schooling is necessary?

The background requirements to work in Animal Control vary by city and region. While a high school degree with on-the-job training could suffice, an accredited bachelor’s or associate’s level degree in disciplines like police science or veterinary technology is necessary to secure employment. Relevant coursework or background will include knowledge of anti-cruelty laws as well as animal control laws; standards of treatment for animals; common illnesses and treatments; as well as fundamental principles of criminal procedure.

What is the anticipated salary?

  • Starting Salary: $12,750 per year with an average wage of $38,430

How can I prepare myself for a career as an animal control officer at NC State University?

Anyone seeking to become an animal control officer can begin by taking courses related to animal research or law enforcement, such as United Kingdom’s Introduction to Animal Behavior and Veterinary Physiotherapy (ANS 395), Animal Nutrition (ANS 233) and courses in animal management. Alternatively, considering an undergraduate degree in Law and Justice will provide students with more expertise by taking classes related to law enforcement.

What kind of experience do you require?

Experience with laws and regulations as well as previous knowledge of animal behavior is ideal. Some animal control organizations may require additional training programs for animal control or on-the-job instruction. Furthermore, knowledge in assessing animal behavior and handling animals will prove beneficial.