Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

June 13, 2014

Authorities launch Operation R.O.V.E.R. in Tazewell County

TAZEWELL, Va. — Tazewell County Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office and Tazewell County Sheriff’s Office announced Operation R.O.V.E.R. Thursday.

R.O.V.E.R. which stands for responsible owners and volunteers engaging in rescue, is going to provide education for pet owners to help alleviate abused and neglected animal cases, according to Tazewell County Sheriff Brian Hieatt.

“We want to help owners understand the laws about animals and to educate people so they know what to do in different situations.

“The program is a multidisciplinary coalition who through community education and enforcement of criminal law regarding the care and welfare of domestic animals, aim to eliminate animal neglect and cruelty with compassion, integrity and dedication,” assistant to the Commonwealth Attorney Katie Mooney said.

“Our goal is to be the voice for the voiceless,” Mooney said.

The number of cases have been increasing and the program hopes that it will be able to decrease the number, Mooney said.

“We want people to be pro-active, instead of re-active,” Mooney said.” We plan on implementing education in the middle and high schools and also have booths at different events throughout the county for people to attend and learn about keeping their dogs safe and also the resources that are available for people to use to help dogs that are being abused or neglected.”

Deputy LeRoy Long said, there is a constant number of animals running at large.

“We have so many people not keeping their animals on a leash. We also encourage people to keep their animals vaccinations up to date because we have been experiencing a lot of animal bites,” Long said. “The vaccinations also ensure the health of the animal and of anyone who might get bitten.”

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