Clarifying News Reports on KHS and the County Shelter

You may have seen news reports about Kalamazoo County’s plan to replace its old and outdated animal shelter. Some of the coverage wasn’t clear, so we’re taking this opportunity to clarify.

First, and most important, we applaud Kalamazoo County’s plan to replace the shelter. Our long partnership with the County to promote spaying and neutering has greatly reduced the unwanted pet population. That’s good news! At the same time, it’s not a perfect solution. There’s still a need for a shelter. And the current one falls far short of the commitment to humane treatment of animals that both the County and the Humane Society share.

Second, as most of you know, we’re in the early stages of creating a capital campaign to build a new home for the Kalamazoo Humane Society. We hope to officially launch that campaign later this year. The new KHS facility will not be a shelter. Our primary mission will be to expand spay/neuter and educational services so we can reduce the unwanted pet population even more. That will give the County’s new shelter more opportunity to find homes for the pets that go there. So it’s a win-win for both of us, and especially for the animals. That’s the heart of our partnership.

We’re grateful for the hard work of the Animal Services Advisory Board, Kalamazoo County Animal Services & Enforcement and County leaders. We’re eager to strengthen our partnership with them to benefit the animals of our community.

Original News Story on mLive –> http://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/index.ssf/2017/02/kalamazoo_county_seeks_alterna.html

 

Comments

  1. Since your Kalamazoo Humane Society facility isn’t a shelter, why do you need a new facility? How does a newer facility actually affect the services to the animals except taking away funding that can be directly put towards spay and neuter efforts, etc?

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    • The new humane society is necessary for us to continue and expand our spay and neuter services, as well as to improve existing services and implement new services. We are operating at our full capacity and despite the high demand for affordable spay/neuter and vet care, we can’t do anymore than we already are because we have no space to put any more animals or staff in the building on Westnedge. Our building was a bridal shop, and currently our vet staff is working out of converted dressing rooms. The layout of the building is inefficient as a surgical wing.

      Aside from needing to streamline our surgeries and the need to expand in order to keep up with the demand, we want to be able to offer veterinary care to the public that would allow underserved pet owners access to quality vet care. This would include routine vet care, testing, emergency care and humane euthanasia.

      There are also a number of educational and community enhancement programs we want to participate in but we quite simply do not have the room.

      Our current office doesn’t have heat or air conditioning in the upstairs area where our offices are, and in that upstairs area it’s gotten hotter than 90 in the summertime making working conditions tough. We had to convert our insulated attic space into storage which adds to the lack of heating and cooling. We have to rent multiple storage units to keep important supplies as our current building has no storage. We rent parking space from buildings around us as our current location doesn’t have enough parking for our clients.

      I could go on and on, but the bottom line that we’ve outgrown our space, and in order to continue and expand to do even more good for animals, we must get more space. I want to invite you to call our office or email me to set up a tour of our building so I can show you the problems we’re facing. It’s hard to describe just how cramped we are but seeing is believing. 269-345-1181 or jbarber@kazoohumane.org.

      Everything we do is to continue to reduce pet overpopulation through spay/neuter and education, and as it is now, we can’t meet the demand for services until we have the room to do it in.

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