With more than 20 years’ experience working with animals, Trumbull Animal Control Officer Lynn Dellabianca is determined to make people better pet owners.
“A pet is not disposable,” she remarks. “If you’re thinking about getting a pet, remember it’s a living thing and you’re responsible for it.”
Dellabainca's career in Animal Control began in 1988, when this
Connecticut native lived in Florida. She first worked in Animal Control for Palm Beach County for nearly 10 years before returning to Connecticut. She became a manager of an animal shelter in Stamford before taking her current position as Animal Control Officer for the town of Trumbull in 2004.
When describing her job, Dellabianca says, “every day is different.” Part of her day is dedicated to the more routine aspects of running an animal shelter – cleaning cages, writing reports and taking care of administrative tasks. It’s the rest of the day that she can never predict.
Many calls she goes out on are reports of stray dogs, some of which escape their owner’s home, some have wandered from other places. Sometimes she’s called to investigate a vicious dog.
“It’s not always the dog,” Dellabianca adds. “Many times it’s a once-in-a-lifetime situation. The owners try to be responsible but if the dog isn’t properly trained, accidents happen.”
She is passionate about proper training for dogs, especially stronger breeds like Pit Bulls. She cites a “pit bull overpopulation” in shelters throughout the country, mainly because the breed is misunderstood.
“Everything is done wrong with them mainly because of the public’s perception of them," she laments. "Many times they’re taken away from their mothers too young and are raised by owners that don’t train them properly
and aren’t responsible. “
“You find them abandoned on the street,” she continues, “and they languish in shelters for the rest of their lives. This problem has gone on much longer than it should have.”
As an animal lover, Dellabianca advocates for spaying and neutering. “Pet overpopulation in general is a crisis. Shelters are overcrowded. We should do better than this,” she said.
She also encourages all Trumbull residents to license their dogs. “I hate having to write tickets for people that don’t take the time to get an $8 license. Plus it’s good identification if your pet ever gets lost.”
While she is often frustrated by a lack of responsibility on the part of many pet owners, there are aspects of her job that give Dellabianca great satisfaction.
“I like to help people out of a bad situation,” she comments.
Recently, Dellabianca was able to place an older dog, that had been at the shelter a long time, in a loving home. “I got a call from the owner who told me that her father, who lives with them, and the dog had formed a really special bond. That made me really happy.”