New animal control officers at the Alice Animal Shelter are ready to help the animals who arrive at the shelter and to educate the community.

Jose "Chema " Martinez and Nelson Bonilla accepted the vacant positions when they learned that the City of Alice was in need of employees.

But the two are just looking for a paycheck, they are animal lovers and want to make sure that residents of Alice understand the responsibilities that come with owning a dog.

"We are going to work with the animal organizations in the community to get the dogs that have been here too long and any that find themselves here into homes," Martinez said.

Martinez, who recently received his GED, has been a certified animal control officer for the last five years. He worked with the City of Premont in the water, parks and sewer department.

"Education, of any kind, is very important. It took me awhile to get my GED, but no one's ever too old," Martinez said. "I want to make sure that people are educated. Animals need proper care and education is the key especially when someone wants to adopt an animal."

Bonilla has been an employee with the City of Alice for approximately seven years in the sanitation department.

"I figured I'd try out a different career," he said. "It's important to have people working in every department of the city especially with the animals who aren't able to fend for themselves."

Martinez and Bonilla hope to get the animals the best care possible until they get a new home.