We Care about Your Pets Too!

by Lisa Garhan, Communications Division Manager, lgarhan@stcharlesil.gov

Are you devoted to your dog? Crazy about your kitty? Impassioned about your iguana? Then April 11 is your day to celebrate; it’s National Pet Day! Pets can be such a wonderful addition to your life and often become a part of the family. According to Animal Planet network, there are real health benefits for people who have pets. Their website lists the Top 5 Benefits of Owning a Pet, from enhancing social skills to decreasing the risk of a heart attack.

Here at the City, we understand how much your pet means to you. Many of us have pets of our own. Here’s a look at some of our precious companions. On this National Pet Day, we would like to share some of the ways we show appreciation for our animal friends—furry and otherwise.

The Fire Department is Prepared to Save Your Pets Too!

Every Fire Department truck and ambulance is fitted with an oxygen mask designed specifically for pets. The mask has various sizes designed to fit most animals—small to large. Four of these masks were generously donated last year by the Doberman Pinscher Club of America.

And, this winter, the firefighters rescued a dog that had fallen through thin ice over a stream in the Woods of Fox Glen subdivision. “Gus” is an older Labrador retriever and couldn’t climb out of the water and up the steep stream banks. The firefighters suited up in cold rescue gear and were able to pull the beloved family pet from the icy water. Gus is back safe with his family.

Police and Dogs, a Good Match

Our Police Chief Jim Keegan always tells residents, “When you see something, say something.” So when members of the community contacted us with concerns about the treatment of a dog they had observed, our Police Department listened. Our officers worked with the dog’s owner, concerned residents, a veterinarian, and local animal advocates and agencies to ensure the dog’s safety, while respecting the owner’s rights.

And of course, there’s Aries, our Police K-9 Aries. As a respected member of the Police Department, we were happy to show Aries some appreciation at a City Council meeting last September for his 8 years of successful service. We gladly presented him with an edible key to the City!

Our Employees Embrace Pet-Related Causes

The City’s Wellness Team regularly organizes events to collect supplies or donations for local pet rescue groups, such as H.E.L.P. and Rover Rescue. Several of our employees are also involved with organizations that save cats and dogs from high-kill animal shelters. Human Resources Administrative Assistant Teri Grandt is one of them.

For 31 years, Teri has been involved with animal rescue organizations. She is the Foster Home Coordinator for Rover Rescue, which works to save dogs and cats from high-kill shelters in southern Indiana. Teri finds the animals a foster home until they are adopted by a family. Rover Rescue currently has 53 foster homes that take in up to five dogs or cats at a time, saving 650-700 pets per year.

Here’s to beloved pets everywhere!