The purpose of the after-hours service is for us to accept severely abused or injured domesticated animals, NOT strays. Strays should be directed to the Trumbull County Dog Warden at (330) 675-2787. As a humane agency, we handle abuse and neglect cases and the dog warden handles strays. If you find an injured animal after we close at 6pm, please contact your local police department. They will determine whether and to what extent immediate action may be required. An example would be a life-threatening emergency. We request a police officer to transport the animal to us due to safety reasons because our after-hours staff does not include law enforcement officers.
Their position and responsibilities vary dramatically from state to state.
For example, in some states they are employed by the state as specialized law enforcement officers, similar to highway patrol officers. In Ohio, although they must be sworn in by the county probate judge and have the authority to enforce the criminal laws of Ohio against animal abuse and neglect, they are employed by a humane agency, which is a charitable organization that receives no tax dollars and instead relies entirely on donations to pay their humane agents, and pay for their equipment, training, vehicles and for the care, feeding and medical treatment of any animals that they rescue.
The enforcement of animal abuse and neglect laws is primarily the responsibility of government law enforcement agencies, such as police departments and sheriff deputies. At best, humane agents can only ever supplement their efforts. Even sheriffs, police and the highway patrol (or state police, as in Pennsylvania) do not have the resources to enforce each and every infraction of every law, and must be selective in the exercise of their authority. Nor do prosecutors and courts have unlimited resources, hence the practice of prosecutorial discretion to ignore minor infractions.
So, whether speaking of minor children or animals, it is not possible to place every child or animal in a perfect home environment, so some shortcomings in the care of either must be tolerated. For this reason, often encouragement to provide better care is a good substitute for arrest and prosecution, and the latter often is not justified at all. Humane agents and police officers both need to have social worker and educational skills to nudge owners and parents in the right direction. Criminal laws against animal abuse and neglect are not to be viewed in isolation. There are well documented direct links between animal abuse and child abuse, and between animal abuse and spouse abuse. Also, virtually every serial killer abused animals as a child. Adding that to the health hazards posed by animals that have become diseased and sickened by neglect, or made dangerous with conditions such as rabies, it is clear that an animal shelter, dog pound and humane agency are vital to the overall health of any community.
To make a complaint, please contact us at (330) 539-5300 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each call is kept confidential and your name and phone number will be needed to contact you. We need as much information as possible to properly investigate a complaint. Our resources are very limited, so we might not be able to promptly respond to your complaint. Each case is addressed in order of severity, not in the order it was received, and in some cases, we will not be able to respond at all if our agents are not available. Therefore, your only option may be to call the police or sheriff’s department.