Q&A with...Emily Quintiliano, a kennel keeper at the Fairfield Animal Shelter

FAIRFIELD — Emily Quintiliano, 33, went from tending to human needs at a local hotel to taking care of animals at the Fairfield Animal Shelter on Richard White Way.

It was about 10 years ago when Quintiliano saw an advertisement for a kennel keeper at the town’s shelter and the Bridgeport resident didn’t hesitate. She’s been there ever since and has even adopted a 4-year-old Havanese named Chop from the shelter.

With dogs barking in the background, Quintiliano recently talked about her job.

Q: Why become a kennel keeper?

A: I was always raised around animals. My mother bred dogs.

When I saw they needed help, I had to apply. I love (getting) to work with animals and help them find new homes, so it’s very rewarding in that way.

Q: What does a kennel keeper do?

More Information

Fairfield Animal Shelter

211 Richard White Way

(203) 254-4857

fairfieldct.org/animalcontrol

Hours

Monday-Thursday: 8 a.m. - 9 p.m.

Friday: 8 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Saturday and Sunday: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Adoption fees

$50 for unaltered animals, which includes a voucher for spay/neuter and two vaccinations

$5 for altered animals

Items needed

wet and dry dog and cat food

animal snacks

animal toys

scoopable cat litter

crates

cages

towels

A: I clean the kennels; I feed the animals; I medicate them if needed. I also spend time with them to help them get adopted out.

Q: What kind of donations can the animal shelter use?

A: We always encourage people to save and drop off any old blankets and towels. Dog and cat food is good, treats of any kind, and toys — those always come in handy here.

Q: What are some of the more unusual animals that have shown up at the shelter?

A: We’ve had a litter of baby raccoons. They really are adorable before their sharp teeth come in.

We’ve had a baby deer.

We have had a few different types of birds, some were larger, water birds that may need rehab that we bring to Dr. Tim Plunkett — he’s our go-to bird vet.

We’ve had snakes.

I love animals. I don’t even kill spiders — I’d feel too guilty.

Q: How do you keep yourself from adopting all the animals at the shelter?

A: Your initial feeling is, “I wonder if I could adopt another dog,” but you give it a few days and you realize you probably can’t do it. But knowing you helped find them a home is a good feeling. Sometimes, they bring the dogs back to visit, and you feel good to have been a part of that.

GReilly@ctpost.com