From April 9-15, we celebrate National Animal Control Officer Appreciation Week; an opportunity to give our thanks to those who risk life and limb to protect the welfare of helpless animals and pets in our community. It also gives us the opportunity to spread the word about the important work that our Animal Protection & Control (APC) officers do every day.

As an extension of local law enforcement officials, Larimer Humane Society provides animal control services to several municipalities throughout Larimer County. Our APC officers provide transportation and safe shelter; care to animals in immediate need; evidence collection and aid in prosecuting, when necessary; and case monitoring to ensure sustained animal care and well-being. APC activity also includes educational outreach, such as counseling owners to help them make difficult decisions that ensure the most compassionate outcome for their animals.  This work pays dividends in reducing animal suffering and often prevents dangerous situations from escalating.

The more you know, the easier it is to say “thank you.” Here is a “day in the life” sneak peek at some of the responsibilities that Larimer Humane Society APC officers perform every day to better serve people and pets:

Investigating Animal Cruelty, Abuse, and Neglect
When you report signs of animal cruelty, abuse, or neglect, it’s APC that arrives on the scene to investigate. Credible reports are always answered with swift action to make sure that pets are removed from harm’s way.

Bite Reports and Bite Prevention
If an animal bites you, a loved one, or a pet, an APC officer is responsible for responding to the incident and ensuring the safety and well-being of those involved. They also play an important role in helping community members of all ages learn how to safely interact with animals and avoid situations when bites are likely to occur.

Responding to Calls of Stray or Lost Animals
When a call is made to authorities about a stray animal, an APC officer immediately responds in hopes of locating the animal and bringing them to safety. Each stray animal brought to Larimer Humane Society is scanned for a microchip, giving lost pets the best chance of being reunited with their family.

Helping Animals Left in Hot Vehicles
During the hot Colorado summer, the temperature inside of a parked car can climb up to 150 degrees. This is fatal to pets, and our APC officers respond quickly to any call about an animal left in a hot car. Working with local authorities, our officers help bring the animal to safety. Please call 970-226-3647 ext. 7 if you discover a pet is left unattended in a hot car.

Relocating Wildlife Back to the Wild
When discussing wildlife safety, there are two distinct perspectives to consider: the safety of people and their pets, and the safety of native wildlife. Here at Larimer Humane Society, our Animal Protection and Control officers work to ensure that people and their pets remain safe from public health risks associated with wildlife encounters. As residences continue to be built in spaces that once were only inhabited by animals, the chances of wildlife being in your backyard increase. APC officers step in to secure these animals and assist them back to their natural habitat. This is also to help prevent the transmission of animal-borne diseases from wildlife to domestic animals.

This is just a sampling of the situations and crises that Animal Protection and Control officers handle on a daily basis. When you have the opportunity, make sure you let them know how much their work matters and makes a difference each day. If you know an APC officer who has helped you or your pet, this is the week to reach out and show your appreciation! Animal Protection and Control Officers are everyday heroes as they make every life – human and animal – matter, each day.