DOBSON — After receiving calls of concern in recent weeks, the Surry County Health & Nutrition Center is asking residents to request positive identification from those claiming to be Animal Control officers.
The Surry County Board of Commissioners gave the go-ahead at its meeting last Monday for the Surry County Health Department to release information to the public regarding the incidents. The commissioners were informed of this issue by a letter drafted by Thomas Williams, media relations specialist for the health department.
The Surry County Animal Control and public officials have recently received a few reports that people are pretending to be “animal welfare” officers. These imposters are coming to pet owners’ homes and telling them to take better care of their pets. The health department said these people are not employees of Surry County Animal Control and that they do not know why this problem has occurred in recent weeks.
“We all have our passions and our vices, but I don’t know the (reason) behind someone coming to a person’s door,” said Williams.
The department is now asking that people request identification from anyone claiming to be an Animal Control employee. All citizens have this right. They may also call the Surry County Sheriff’s Office if people are entering their private property without consent.
“We just wanted to make sure citizens were aware of their rights,” Williams explained.
Local Animal Control officers can be easily identified. They wear official uniforms with an Animal Control badge, name plate and county shoulder patch. These officers also drive county vehicles, and any official documents they give will bear the Surry County logo. If identification is not provided, then citizens can call the sheriff’s office.
Surry County Animal Control offers several services to residents. The agency focuses on rabies control and prevention, animal health and welfare, and placement of displaced animals.
Surry County residents with animal-related questions can contact Animal Control at 401-8481. The agency is open from 8:15 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Contact Meghann Evans at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 719-1952.