Pups celebrate 1st birthday at Macomb County Animal Control – Macomb Daily

Pups celebrate 1st birthday at Macomb County Animal Control – Macomb Daily

Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel gets a big kiss from 1-year-old Australian Cattle Dog mix, Danica, while Macomb County Animal Control Chief Jeff Randazzo supervises.


Six one-year-old Australian Cattle Dog mix pups enjoyed a special birthday celebration Wednesday complete with individual cakes and a visit from Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel.

The dogs have been housed at Macomb County Animal Control for 10 months pending the outcome of a court case in New Baltimore. For now, they cannot be adopted and must remain in the care of MCAC while litigation continues.

“We decided to have this birthday PAW-ty because these six dogs have been at this facility for almost a year,” said Hackel. “There are so many issues we deal with as far as animals all around the county that these folks are responsible for and they do incredible work.”

Daytona is very excited about her personal birthday cake she and her five siblings received for their first birthday at Macomb County Animal Control.(PHOTO BY SUSAN SMILEY)

The six dogs were served their celebratory treats by MCAC staff. Danica ate the frosting first, Daytona took a big bite out of the cake, and Dale was wary of the entire thing, possibly suspicious a pill might be hidden inside, and started slowly by licking the cardboard dish.

Unfortunately, Hackel said, it is not uncommon for animals to be housed at animal control long term for any number of reasons. The county is currently in the midst of a space needs study for the facility to determine what the footprint for a new Macomb County Animal Control headquarters might look like.

The goal is to create a better environment for the animals, no matter how long their stay.

“This is not an environment that dogs should grow up in,” Hackel said. “They should be in a house running around in a backyard, and these dogs didn’t have an opportunity to do that.

“We are trying to figure out how we can create a better situation.”

The six Australian Cattle Dog mix dogs that celebrated their first birthday Wednesday have been at Macomb County Animal Control for 10 months.(PHOTO BY SUSAN SMILEY)

The six birthday pups came to MCAC in March 2023 after a woman who was fostering the animals for a shelter realized they were sick. All of them had parvovirus and after the non-Macomb County based shelter told foster mom Alicia Coleman they could not provide veterinary care, she contacted Macomb County Animal Control Chief Jeff Randazzo.

Randazzo said it took three weeks to get the puppies through their illness, and now they are all thriving.

“For us, animals are not property, they are living beings,” said Randazzo. “These dogs were 10-week-old puppies when they came to us so they missed a lot of their important socialization and developmental periods.

“Although we do a lot of enrichment both in and outside of the kennel, it is not the same as being in a real home.”

One-year-old Australian Cattle Dog mix Danica enjoyed her birthday cake during a party for her and her siblings on Wednesday.(PHOTO BY SUSAN SMILEY)

Hackel said the county has been discussing the need for a new animal control facility for quite some time, but he hopes with the space study underway, a plan could be in place within two years.

“We have been talking about it for several years, but now we are finally in a place where we can do something about it,” he said.

Although the birthday dogs are not available for adoption, the MCAC is hosting an adoption event Saturday, Jan. 20 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. to help other animals find their forever homes.

Pups celebrate 1st birthday at Macomb County Animal Control – Macomb Daily

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