Animal Control Ride Along
Reported by: WROC-TV Staff
Sunday, Aug 10, 2008 @05:48pm EST
The city of Rochester is home to lots of animals. Whether they're strays, pets or wild, Rochester Animal Services is responsible for protecting them.
But many times animal control officers protect the entire community.
Paul Huertas patrols the streets of Rochester every day. An animal control officer, it's his job to keep animals in the city safe and he has his work cut out for him. But Officer Huertas must respond to all calls. On Sunday, a Rochester woman's cat for example was bothering her neighbors and now it's run off. Huertas says,"When you're dealing with the public not everybody wants to be told what to do. People are very defensive about their animals."
A big part of animal services day to day operations is picking up stray cats and dogs. In the pound right now the majority of dogs are pitbulls. Staff here say that's not a coincidence. "These animals are very strong. Very powerful and they seem to be popping up everywhere. It's a good dog. The pitbull is a good dog and trained properly it's like any dog, " says Huertas.
But often pit bulls found in the city were trained to be vicious.
"There's a fear factor when you go out there. And there's a pit bull running loose you don't know what you're going to encounter," says Huertas.
After our cameras were rolling Sunday afternoon - a pit bull got loose on Norton Street. It was chasing a child. A Rochester police officer was forced to shoot it.
In the end the dog was put down. But while this was a bad outcome, often there's a happy ending. Huertas says, "Everytime we bring an animal here we're not trying to destroy it. If anything we're enhancing its life by finding it a new home."
Although his job has its challenges, Officer Huertas says it feels good to help those who can't speak for themselves.
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Bless the Bullys