Based on the outcome of an extensive feasibility study completed in 2012, our current facility does not: meet necessary building codes; accommodate the most critical needs for appropriate sanitation; allow segregation of healthy vs. unhealthy animals; segregate aggressive incoming animals from outgoing adoptable animals; maintain appropriate air flow systems to prevent cross contamination between contagious, airborne diseases of healthy and unhealthy animals. Limited space does not facilitate educational opportunities, socialization of animals and ensure adequate and rodent free storage of food and supplies.
The design created for the shelter cannot be retrofitted into an existing facility. This design addresses every aspect of the critical weaknesses of the current structure, incorporates best practices of other facilities and creates a layout that maximizes quality care of animals, customer and staff safety, access to opportunities for educational purposes and community use. The shelter must also be cognizant of zoning issues, utility concerns and receptivity to the location by surrounding neighbors. The current location with the new building design meets all of these concerns and issues.
As an open admission shelter serving as animal control for this county and receiving all kinds of animals with varying behavioral and physical issues, yes. The majority of animals that are euthanized are either severely ill or are too aggressive to be considered for adoption. We cannot pick and choose animals like closed admission groups and are subject to the devastating numbers of admissions resulting from hoarding and cruelty cases.
The current shelter has an individual capacity of 200 adoptable and stray animals housed in less than adequate size cages and kennels. The new facility will increase capacity by over 50% providing healthy space cages and kennels including segregated spaces for small adoptable animals and other creatures; segregated rehabilitation and isolation areas for cats and dogs; maternity areas for dogs and cats.
The estimated cost originally was at the $4,000,000 mark. However, it has been three years since the 2012 feasibility review and initial design work. With the building design finalized, new building code regulations being passed and increases in construction costs, a new estimate was prepared with the help of the contracted architectural group and outside input from local contractors bringing the total to the $5,200,000 goal.
With a veterinarian and surgical center, ALL dogs and cats can be spayed or neutered before being adopted helping to reduce over population of pets and admission of unwanted animals. The capacity to provide educational opportunities for the community and for students in animal welfare studies will be improved and expanded due to the facility structure and the surgical center. Because of greater efficiencies of the new facility, it is estimated that operational budget will only increase around 20%.