Protecting our animals of agriculture

by | Apr 13, 2022

We Are Agriculture is a year-long series that will highlight the hard-work done by employees across the Department of Agriculture. Pat Scholar, Animal Health Technician with our Veterinary Division, is one of those employees. Stay tuned each Wednesday here on the blog or any of our social media accounts and join us in honoring those who continue to drive our state’s agriculture industry forward each day!

A love for animals provides a strong connection to the agriculture industry. Pat Sholar, an Animal Health Technician with our Veterinary Division, has always had a strong love for both animals and agriculture that led to her career today. “I was raised on a farm and always had a great love for animals, agriculture and the outdoors,” she said. “I am the true definition of a ‘country girl.’”

In 1995, Pat started her career with the NCDA&CS and hasn’t looked back since. As an Animal Health Technician, she does a lot of work with our animal shelters, law enforcement and county managers to ensure all regulations are being followed and animals are getting the best care possible. “My primary job responsibility is to inspect public and private animal shelters, dog and cat boarding kennels and pet stores that sell or adopt dogs or cats and need to be licensed,” Pat said. “My territory is 11 counties in the southeastern part of the state.” Pat visits these facilities at least once a year, sometimes more, to ensure that they are not only treating animals in a fair and humane manner, but also that all rules and regulations are being properly followed.

Throughout her 27 years at the department, many of the animal shelters and other facilities that Pat inspects have made improvements to both their policies and the buildings that have created a high-quality atmosphere for the animals. “Watching these facilities take the advice that I give them on a yearly basis and expand upon that to create the best possible facilities for these animals gives me a huge sense of pride,” she said. “Currently there are two facilities under my jurisdiction that are planning to break ground on new buildings here soon and I am so excited to see those plans come to fruition.”

Although certain days on the job can be tough to handle, Pat truly enjoys helping facility owners and operators stay in compliance with Animal Welfare regulations. “The satisfaction of knowing that the dogs and cats in our inspected and licensed facilities are taken care of in a humane manner makes all the challenging moments worth it,” she said. “I enjoy enforcing the rules and regulations because I know the reward that comes for these animals at the end of the day when they are followed.”

Pat is often regarded as a team player who works for the good of all. She is quick to jump in and help where needed and puts the thoughts and needs of others before her own. We are honored to have Pat as a part of our team that affects the hearts and lives of our agriculture industry every day. Join us in thanking her for all her hard work!