The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

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June 4, 2007

2 new humane agents are coming on board

MERCER COUNTY — Starting Monday, Mercer County will have two new humane agents to respond to calls about animal abuse, neglect and cruelty.

Renee Dorogy of Hermitage and Tammy Riley of Sharon will be sworn in at 9 a.m. in the Mercer County Courthouse by Judge Francis J. Fornelli, said Sandi Drabick, executive director of the Humane Society of Mercer County.

The Humane Society had been looking for two new agents after the last two, Ray Augustine and Cyndi Sankey, recently resigned.

In the meantime, the society has been relying on volunteers and representatives trained to respond to calls, and things have been going well, especially with help from local and state police, Mrs. Drabick said.

“We were able to keep going,” she said.

Ms. Riley and Ms. Dorogy were required to complete two, five-day courses in Harrisburg and State College that covered all parts of the state’s animal cruelty law and a hands-on class where they learned about livestock and breeding barns.

“We know these girls have worked hard. They’re going to be assets to the county,” Mrs. Drabick said.

Both women will work as part-time humane agents and could become full-time in the future if the society’s finances allow it, she said. The Humane Society’s representatives and volunteers will be available to help the new agents if needed.

Other than local police, humane agents are the only people authorized under the state animal cruelty law to investigate suspected animal abuse, neglect, abandonment or cruelty, and to issue citations.

Ms. Riley has served as a board member for the society and has been a volunteer for about 11 years. A groomer by trade, she owns the Puppy Tub Parlor in Sharon and has had a lot of experience dealing with animals.

“You name it, I’ve touched on it here and there,” Ms. Riley said.

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