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Essay on Animal Control

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The Maricopa County animal control has evolved over the last century and the best way to understand animal control is to look at it through history. During the first quarter of the 20th Century, Maricopa County communities were rural and sparsely populated. Dogs and cats were valued for what they contributed to this rural lifestyle. Dogs were working dogs earning their keep on a local ranch or farm, or they were used for hunting to help put food on the table. Some dogs, as well as cats, were used as mousers to help keep small rodents out of the homes and barns. All dogs were permitted to run at large. During the third decade of the 20th Century, fee roaming dogs resulted in a dog overpopulation problem, and with it came an increase…show more content…
These contracts only dealt with the immediate tactical need and little thought was given to any long-range strategic solutions. There was no thought given as to what to do with the animals once they were removed from the streets. The current "catch and kill" shelters were built in the early 70's to warehouse dogs and cats until they could be "disposed of". The two shelters are a reflection of the "catch and kill" mentality that has guided the program for so many years. In recognizing the great value people place on their pets, Animal Care and Control Services (ACCS) developed the most successful municipal pet adoption program in the United States, adopting out more dogs and cats than any organization public or private in the State of Arizona. The aggressive spay/neuter program, began in 1992, and has resulted in a 50% decrease in the communities' euthanasia rate. The creation of a municipal "no-kill" Pet Adoption Center helped increase the adoption rate by 23%. The future of animal control is proactive, innovative programs as opposed to the reactive programs of the past that only exacerbate animal related problems. ACCS is in the midst of a significant transition. This transition is not just organizational; it is cultural. ACCS' new mission, vision, values, name change, new management team and recent reorganization reflect an on-going societal shift from the
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