The old animal shelter was twenty years old and designed to hold 100 dogs and cats.
The shelter is obligated to accept all strays and owner-surrendered animals.
The county shelter takes in over 5000 animals a year.
Yes, I typed the number correctly.
The old shelter building was not equipped to handle that many animals.
92% were euthanized each year.
Friends Of The Animal Shelter (FOTAS) is a private group formed to raise community awareness of the problem with our enormous overpopulation.
They are committed volunteers who fought hard for donations to build this beautiful new facility.
The euthanasia rate has dropped to under 75%. Adoptions and fostering are up.
The grand opening was held recently. Chucks and I attended and were amazed at the wonderful facility.
Dogs no longer crammed together in small cages.
Clean spacious dog runs with access to the inside and the outside.
Adoptable dogs are kept separate from the incoming dogs to prevent the spread of disease.
There are wide open spaces for outside exercise.
Volunteers come to walk the dogs.
The areas are kept clean and neat.
The kennels have self-filling water bowls.
The kennels are bright.
One or two dogs per kennel.
They can choose to stay inside or lounge in the outside area.
During the grand opening, over 300 people showed up.
I was struck by these two buddies.
No loud barking.
No nervous pacing.
As if they were saying welcome to the new place.
There is a small building for the cat colony.
A group of cats who have inside and outside access.
They were all in lazy mode when I visited.
I have almost volunteered several times.
I applaud those who can come out to socialize the cats and walk the dogs.
I do not know how they can stand the day they go to walk "their" dog, and he is gone.
You hope he was adopted, but this is not a no-kill shelter.
So why did I tell you this long and rambling story?
Because each time a friend or family member loses a pet, we send a donation to FOTAS.
Some of you readers have received a tribute from them in honor of your pet.
I wanted to let you know the memory of your beloved cat or dog lives on in this new facility.
Please be kind and spay or neuter your pets.
PS This is where I abandoned my art piece. Where abandoned animals get a second chance.
If you would like to donate to FOTAS, go to their Facebook page here.
PS PS - Not all the animals are dogs and cats. They have to take whatever is abandoned or surrendered or mistreated - horses, goats, and pigs among the many that come through here.
Thank you, FOTAS!
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