Animal People: Mayor Todd Gloria
Born into a family of animal lovers, Todd Gloria has always been a champion for animals! We had the opportunity to check in with the recently elected Mayor of San Diego, and learn more about his passion for animals and where it all began.
Have animals always been a part of your life?
My parents met while they both were working at a pet hotel on Morena Avenue. While I learned a lot from the animals in our lives, I learned the most from them. Interestingly, they might never had met if it wasn’t for pets!
That’s an early start! Were there any memorable pets from your childhood that shaped your life today?
Our family has always had many pets. My deepest connection was with a Dachshund named Reggie. He joined our family when I was about six years old and lived until after I graduated from college. Many of my fondest memories from growing up included Reggie.
Whether it was walking the dogs or feeding the cats, it is obvious that having pets growing up taught me important qualities like responsibility and compassion. Interestingly these are two of the characteristics that I think are among the most important to have in the work that I do today.
Your dog Diego is a huge part of your life! How is he handling his role as First Dog of San Diego?
Diego keeps me grounded. It doesn’t matter what’s going on at City Hall, he wants treats, belly rubs, and to play in our neighborhood park. I do some of my best thinking when we go on our daily walks together.
Why is rescuing animals important to you, and how have you brought that passion into your work?
As a legislator I authored the state law that prohibits the retail sale of pets in California. When we decided we were ready to welcome a pet into our family last spring, my partner and I happily adopted Diego from a local rescue. He is the best.
In the various elected roles I’ve been honored to hold, I’ve tried to be a champion for animal welfare. From taking the annual Veg Pledge to increasing protection for California’s wild horses, I’m proud of the progress we made. I intend to keep building on this success with a few to making our city a great place to live for all of us – including our pets.
Published: February 1, 2021