The Department was first named the “Pound Department” in September of 1937 by the Board of Supervisors, during the height a statewide rabies epidemic in California. There were no housing facilities, animal control equipment, and very little staffing. The Department would contract with humane societies to house impounded animals, but by 1945 it was apparent that the humane societies could no longer meet the growing animal care needs of the County. The first County shelter opened in 1946 in Downey. Additional County shelters were opened in the 1950’s, 1960’s, and the last facility in 1976.
Today, DACC operates six Animal Care Centers (with a seventh center in the works) and services all unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County and 52 contract cities. DACC’s public and animal safety functions are in high demand throughout the County, 24/7. Animal control officers respond to several hundred requests for service each day, including animal rescues, cruelty and abuse complaints and various health and safety matters. DACC maintains a 24/7 communications center which serves as the hub for information and dispatching; a medical team responsible for the health of all the shelter pets; animal care personnel who provide the day to day care of the animals and support staff who serve as the customer care link to the public.
“The Department has evolved into a critical service provider since its inception in 1937. We’ve gone from rabies control to a modern day, full service animal care and control agency,” said department director, Marcia Mayeda. “To better address some contemporary animal issues, we’ve been able to implement much needed ordinances, such as the mandatory spay and neuter/microchip ordinance and the Commercial Breeding ordinance. Both ordinances are unprecedented and serve as model ordinances for other jurisdictions to adopt. DACC has come a long way since 1937, but the early Departmental mission has remained intact: To protect the safety of the public and the animals of Los Angeles County,” Mayeda said.
To celebrate the Department’s successes over the years, DACC will host a celebratory adoption event this Saturday, September 29, 2012. Adoptions will be discounted to $19.37 to honor the year the Department was established. There will be displays, history of the Department since 1937, free refreshments, and a visit from the Laker Girls (at the Downey and Carson animal care centers between 12:00 PM-1:30 PM).
Visit one of the following DACC locations this coming Saturday, September 29, 2012 to celebrate the Department’s 75th birthday:
Agoura: 29525 Agoura Road, Agoura 91301
Baldwin Park: 4275 N. Elton St., Baldwin Park 91706
Carson/Gardena: 216 W. Victoria St., Gardena 90248
Castaic: 31044 N. Charlie Canyon Road., Castaic 91384
Downey: 11258 S. Garfield Ave., Downey 90242
Lancaster: 5210 W. Ave. I, Lancaster 93536
For more information about the event, or to learn more about DACC, visit our website, www.animalcare.lacounty.gov, find us on Facebook www.facebook.com/CountyofLosAngelesAnimalCare, or follow us on Twitter @LACoAnimalCare.