Just "Another Day at the Office" for Jonesboro Animal Control

June 15, 2004 -- Posted at 4:24 p.m. CDT

JONESBORO -- On Saturday, Jonesboro Animal Control Officers removed a six-foot long Burmese Python from a woman's garden. It's all in a day's work...but do you ever wonder what exactly does Animal Control do?

They start their day picking up dead animals off the street...it's not a glamorous job, but somebody's gotta' do it.
"This time of year with snakes and stuff, there's never a dull moment, never a dull moment," laughed Animal Control Officer Terry Veal. Veal started working with Animal Control as a teenager in 1977 and has been there ever since, he says the only thing he's scared of are snakes.
Director Jim Bowman said, "It's kind of nerve racking sometime, but it's different everyday."
You wouldn't believe the stories these guys have to tell...about two years ago, Bowman responded to a call about a bobcat in a woman's yard.
"The cougar knew he was tame, but I didn't. Anyway the animal caused me quite a fright. It never harmed me, but it did knock me down and once I was down, it liked to lick me to death after that," said Bowman.
And then there's the time the JAC had to lasso a couple of zebras running wild on Nettleton.
"Zebras wasn't made to be pinned up, and evidently, they knew how to knock down a bobwire fence and did it quite often. So we had to catch them about three or four times," said Bowman.
Most of the time the six person crew responds to about 30 to 40 calls a day.

"It's stressful. But it just varies. One day it could be the animals that you have to worry about and the next day, it's the people," said Veal.

Jonesboro doesn't have a leash law for cats, so it's mostly dogs that find their way to the pound. Federal law requires all dogs that are picked up to be placed at the pound for five days before they are available for adoption. Only one out of four dogs are adopted from the shelter, but the JAC would like to see more find good homes.

"It's a heartbreaking job sometimes. But then on other times, it's a joyous job sometimes. If you can relocate an animal with it's owner, especially small children, it's a good feeling," said Bowman.

If you're interested in adopting a dog, you can contact Jonesboro Animal Control at (870) 935-3920.