Winona Animal Control officer Arlin Pearson, along with the City of Grenada Animal Control Officer Randy Brown, were honored by Doll Stanley of In Defense of Animals.
In a story written for the In Defense of Animals’ international site, Doll Stanley stated: “Every year the second full week of April is dedicated to honoring humane officers who have devoted their lives to helping animals in need. This year, it’s being celebrated April 12 through April 18, and we want to help give them the recognition and applause they deserve for their tireless efforts serving animals and their communities.”
This year, In Defense of Animals chose Animal Control officers Arlin Pearson of Winona and Randy Brown of Grenada. Pearson had no idea he was being honored and learned of it when he was asked for comments.
“It’s quite an honor coming from a national organization with such stature,” Pearson said.
Pearson said he’d been the animal control officer since 2018, and it’s his second time holding the position.
He said he’s always worked with animals in some form, working with many animal rights and rescue groups.
“I love animals of all kinds,” Pearson said. “I’ve always been involved with animals.”
A native of Winona, he said at one time he even trained dogs. He said his favorite part of the job is making a difference in the animals’ lives.
“Putting them in better homes and getting justice for people who abuse and neglect animals,” Pearson said.
Stanley wrote that people should encourage and salute their animal control officers who serve the most vulnerable members of society. She said there are different ways a person can honor their local animal control officers and encourages people to do so.
“You can help get humane officers the recognition for what they do by sending letters to the editor of your local newspaper praising their work, getting a place for them at board meetings when they seek resources and improvements, and by giving them cheerful greetings to help lift their spirits on the toughest days they face,” Stanley stated. “You can also help support them by spreading the word about what they do on social media, being a responsible guardian, and by adopting your next furry, feathered, scaled, or finned family member! In Defense of Animals and our Justice for Animals, Campaign stands with these valiant heroes, and support their efforts as we serve animals together in the heart of the Deep South.”
Pearson said he’s thankful for being chosen, and he encourages people to please spay and neuter their pets.
“A person’s character can be judged by the way they treat their animals,” Pearson reflected.