Cindy was probably three or four years old when she took “full responsibility” for an imaginary litter of kittens that she “found.” They grew up to be wonderful cats. This had to be the beginning of why she is doing what she is doing today. During her high school years, she would often spend afternoons at the local veterinarian’s office, where he permitted her to assist with almost all aspects of his practice, including several medical processes under his supervision. She was an animal husbandry major in college and had aspirations of becoming a large animal veterinarian. Life took a couple of different turns and she ended up doing 20 years of retail management, but the animal world continued to call her. In 1998, she successfully applied for the position of Animal Control Officer with Sacramento County in California. During her time there, she held many positions such as kennel staff, kennel lead, field officer, and volunteer coordinator. It was during this time that she became involved with doing humane education presentations at schools and for other groups—a teaching passion that she have never lost. She was also involved with a humane education program for Easter Seals and started an after-school group called “The 4 and 2 Club.” In 2009, she left Sacramento County and started the Animal Services department for the City of Folsom, CA. She was able to be involved in every aspect of creating this program, from assisting with writing the City ordinances, establishing the Animal Services Department, to coordinating the establishment of the City’s first animal shelter. She retired in December 2016, from the City of Folsom. She truly believes that both the animals and owners benefit by educating people about responsible pet ownership and building real community ties.
In retirement, she frequently deploys with the ASPCA, Field Investigations, and Response Team. Caring for animals from cruelty, neglect and animal fighting cases. She is on disaster response teams for ASPCA, HSUS, NACA, Code 3, and Red Rover. She serves on the board at FieldHaven and find that it is a purrfect place to keep her cat connections. She also serves on the board for the National Animal Care and Control Association (NACA), and a member of The Association of Professional Humane Educators (APHE). She is a certified cruelty investigator and certified equine investigator. She lives in Loomis, California with my knight in shining armor, John, two dogs (Jack and Pepe), five cats ( Trick, Buddy, Luna and Mo, and Black Cat), three pot belly pigs (Harley, Wilbur and Black Bart III), and “the girls” (8 hens), and most often a foster or two of some sort from somewhere, all of whom are shelter rescues.
- Cindy Walden