Serve and Protect

Animal control officers help keep our pets safe

There truly is a “month” for everything, and April is Animal Control Officer Appreciation Month. Animal control officers pick up stray cats and dogs, investigating animal bites and neglect, and helping residents deal with wild animals. Officer John Peters has worked as an animal control officer in Eden Prairie for the past 29 years. “I enjoy helping the public reunite with their animals,” Peters says, describing his favorite part of the job.

Last year, the city of Eden Prairie impounded 28 dogs and 27 cats. They received 360 calls about missing dogs and 56 calls about missing cats. The easiest way to keep your pet safe, says Peters, who has two cats of his own, is making sure you know where your animal is at all times, and keeping your pet properly licensed and microchipped. Pets who are easy to identify are also easier to return to their owners.

Eden Prairie residents can call the police department at 952.949.6200 to report lost pets or for other animal control issues. While other southwest metro communities don’t have designated animal control officers, residents of Chanhassen, Chaska, Victoria and Waconia can contact their local community service officers. —Harmony Gallegos, owner of Harmony and Pets in Eden Prairie