Washoe County Regional Animal Services Manager Mitch Schneider was awarded the national Henry Bergh Leadership Award from the No Kill Advocacy Center. The award, named after the founder of the first Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) in the United States, recognizes outstanding leadership in the quest to end the killing of healthy and treatable shelter animals.
Washoe County Regional Animal Services (WCRAS) has a unique public-private partnership with the Nevada Humane Society (NHS). Together, they work continuously to increase the redemption rate (return-to-owner) of lost pets. Currently, Washoe County’s redemption rate is 65% for dogs and 7% for cats, which surpasses the national averages of 25% and 2%, respectively. In addition, WCRAS and NHS actively support trap-neuter-return (TNR) for feral cats and work collaboratively with nonprofit animal rescue organizations.
Mitch Schneider began his career in the animal world as a professional dog trainer. In the early 1980’s, he became an animal control professional, joining Washoe County, at the time of regionalization, in 2005. His love of animals and experience in helping dog owners better understand their pets and be responsible pet owners, along with his business background has helped to make Washoe County Regional Animal Services a model for many other communities. Mitch is a strong advocate for micro-chipping of animals which increases the probability of pets being returned to their owner, rather than being impounded.