Wright said sterilization is the most important element in reducing the number of animals at the shelter. Pet-friendly housing is another item that can help reduce the number of animals in the shelter.
“The need for shelter expansion continues, particularly cat isolation to help reduce the spread of contagious diseases, thereby reducing the time a cat will stay in the shelter,” Wright told commissioners. “Overall, we need more space for dogs and cats.”
In his presentation, Wright asked the commissioners for permission to raise adoption fees for dogs and cats, which are now $65. This fee covers heartworm testing, distemper vaccination, parvo, rabies and Bordetella. “We also start each dog with flea prevention and heartworm prevention if the heartworm is negative. We send records of all of this with each adopter.
Wright requested that the adoption fee be increased to $100. The commissioners did not follow up on his request but agreed to reconsider it at a future meeting in order to obtain more information first.
Commissioners also heard a presentation from Susan Menard and Joy Harklerode of the Mercy Fund Animal Rescue on the TNR (Trap, Neuter, Return) program. This program involves trapping feral cats (which cannot be adopted) and neutering or neutering them, then bringing them back to their home territory. A total of 1,919 chats have been changed since the program began in April 2009.