YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Youngstown city leaders and the Mahoning County Dog Warden’s office announced a partnership Wednesday that puts a deputy dog warden on the streets from 12:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week.
Deputy dog wardens re-worked their schedules to make sure a warden can patrol the streets on the new shifts.
“Right now we are doing it with current staffing that we have,” said Mahoning County Commissioner David Ditzler. “We are just placing someone into the city of Youngstown. We are trying to remain within our budget constraints that we have in the county.”
Funding for the program is split down the middle between the city and the dog warden’s office.
“From our standpoint, $35,000 is far less than what we pay for an employee and their benefits, so this is a good deal and it gets us additional services at night,” said 7th Ward Councilman John Swierz.
Mahoning County Dog Warden Dianne Fry said her office already has been operating on the new schedule for a month and it has been successful.
“Our population has gone up exponentially because we are able to be there quicker. Our response time is quicker, and we are out there for longer periods of time doing just that, doing what the dog wardens have been trained and paid to do; go pick up stray dogs or unlicensed dogs,” said Fry.
The new agreement is for one year. If it is successful, the city could decide to extend the program.
Calls can be made to the Mahoning County Dog Warden’s Office Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 330-740-2205. After 4:30 p.m., calls should be made to Mahoning County dispatch at 330-740-2370 or Youngstown non-emergency dispatch at 330-742-8929.