For animal services officers, being in the field means collaborating to build safer, healthier, more compassionate communities for animals and people one conversation at a time. It’s countering conflict and cultivating connections among neighbors, bridging gaps in care to keep animals in their homes, and going the extra mile to reunite lost pets with their people. Join us in celebrating animal services officers across the state who are helping ensure people and pets, no matter what neighborhood they call home, have access to the resources they need to thrive together.

When the Heat Rises, Blythe ACO John Bush Has Your Back

Approximately 225 miles east of Los Angeles and 150 miles west of Phoenix, located inside of Riverside County and flanked by the Colorado River, you’ll find Blythe, California, a rural desert town named after the San Francisco financier who established water rights to the region. You’ll also find John Bush, sole animal control officer for Blythe’s animal shelter, collaborating with residents and visitors to craft solutions for challenges both anticipated and unexpected.

Christina holds a small dog during a spay/neuter event while a woman signs a clipboard and a young boy looks on. Photo credit: City of Perris

Senior ACO Christina Avila Is Here to Help

In 2014, Christina Avila was burned out. She took a hiatus from animal welfare and reluctantly returned a year later, when she joined the City of Perris Animal Control as Senior Animal Control Officer. “I didn’t want to do it anymore,” Christina recalls. “Then I was at home with three