Code of Conduct

 An Animal Care & Control professional acts as an official representative of government with rights, powers, duties and authority conferred by statute and is obligated and trusted to abide by, work within, and enforce the laws of the state and their respective jurisdiction.  The fundamental duties of an Animal Care & Control professional include serving the community, providing protection for the public and animals, and enforcing laws in that regard.

An Animal Care & Control professional shall perform all duties incumbent upon the position without fear or favor and with impartial consideration and respect for every individual’s status, sex, race, religion, political belief or aspirations. Animal Care & Control professionals must conduct themselves in a manner above reproach that does not bring discredit to their agencies or themselves.  An Animal Care & Control professional’s character and conduct while off duty must always be exemplary, thus maintaining a position of respect in the community in which he or she lives and serves.

Animal Care & Control professionals will never allow personal feelings, animosities or friendships to influence official conduct.  Laws will be enforced appropriately and courteously and, in carrying out their responsibilities, Animal Care & Control professionals will strive to obtain maximum cooperation from the public.  Animal Care & Control professionals will conduct themselves in appearance and deportment in such a manner as to inspire confidence and respect for the position of public trust they hold.

An Animal Care & Control professional will use responsibly the discretion vested in his or her position and exercise it within the law.  The principle of reasonableness will guide the Animal Care & Control professional’s determinations.  The Animal Care & Control professional will consider all surrounding circumstances in determining whether any legal action shall be taken.

Animal Care & Control professionals must exercise a consistent and wise use of discretion, based on professional animal control competence, to preserve good relationships and retain the confidence of the public.  When difficulty in choosing between conflicting courses of action arises, it is important to remember that education or advice, rather than enforcement action or arrest, (which may be correct in appropriate circumstances), can be a more effective means of achieving a desired outcome.

An Animal Care & Control professional will never employ unnecessary force or violence, only using such force as is necessary and reasonable in the discharge of duty to protect the public, animals or the Animal Care & Control professional. While the use of force is occasionally unavoidable, every Animal Care & Control professional will refrain from unnecessary infliction of pain or suffering and will never engage in cruel, degrading or inhumane treatment of any person or animal.

Animal Care & Control professionals may see, hear, or learn confidential information in the performance of their duties.  Individuals have a reasonable right and expectation to privacy and confidentiality. Such information shall remain and be kept confidential excepting where legal, ethical or performance of duty obligations require otherwise.

An Animal Care & Control professional will not engage in acts of corruption or bribery, nor will an officer condone such acts by other Animal Care & Control professionals.  The public demands that the integrity of all public servants to be above reproach.  Animal Care & Control professionals must, therefore, avoid any conduct that might compromise integrity and that undercut the public confidence in an agency.  Respect from the public cannot be bought; it can only be earned and cultivated.

An Animal Care & Control professional or agency may be one among many organizations that may provide law enforcement services to a jurisdiction.  It is imperative that an Animal Care & Control professional assist colleagues fully and completely with respect and consideration at all times.

Animal Care & Control professionals will be responsible for their own standard of professional performance and will take every reasonable opportunity to enhance and improve their level of knowledge and competence.  Through study and experience, an Animal Care & Control professional can acquire the high level of knowledge and competence that is essential for the efficient and effective performance of duty.  The acquisition of knowledge is a never ending process of personal and professional development that should be pursued constantly.

Printable Version – NACA Code of Conduct