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The Build-Out

  • Animal care technician Annie Hoover feeds kittens in
    the Yavapai Humane Society’s new cat hospital, which includes a nursery. Yavapai Humane Society

by Jim Baker

Just for Cats

The Yavapai Humane Society (YHS) in Prescott, Ariz., opened a new $140,000 facility in May dedicated to caring for homeless, sick, and injured cats. The 1,700-square-foot hospital represents a big step forward for kitties in the shelter’s care; it features a central HVAC system, sealed concrete floors, isolation and observation areas, an X-ray machine for diagnostics, a nursery, an all-purpose room for staff and volunteer training, and climate-controlled warehouse space. “It takes the places of three old prefab buildings with wooden floors and a very low, drywall ceiling,” says executive director Ed Boks. The earlier buildings had relied upon portable heaters and “swamp coolers”—in which outside air is sucked in and blown across wet pads—to keep cats comfortable. YHS also has a separate stray intake facility on campus, and a cat adoption area with 24 condos and two colony rooms. As part of the project, the shelter installed new water, sewer, gas, and electric service to the entire facility, which required extensive trenching throughout the campus. Thanks to the new construction and retrofitting, some of the shelter’s campus had to be reconfigured, with the happy result that three new play yards for dogs were created. The cat hospital and related renovation were made possible by financial contributions from Yavapai County, the City of Prescott, the town of Prescott Valley, and several other large donors. “It’s going to help tremendously,” says Boks, “and we’re already moving onto our next [project]—we need a dog hospital.”

  • The new, $1.1 million Transylvania County Animal Shelter in Rosman, N.C., replaces a bare-bones facility constructed in the 1950s. William Briggs

Transylvania Transformation

Transylvania County, N.C., finally has a new municipal animal shelter, the fruition of a project long in the planning stages. “I’ve been trying to get this thing going for at least 20 years,” says Clyde Brooks, a local veterinarian and chairman of the nonprofit Friends of the Animal Shelter, which raised more than $360,000 for the $1.1 million project. “Everybody had been pushing for it, so it wasn’t too hard to get the community behind this.” The 5,278-square-foot shelter—located in Rosman, a few miles from the old facility—is a stark contrast to its cinder-block, 1950s-era predecessor. It has 24 indoor/outdoor dog runs, space for 24 cats, a puppy adoption area, a conference room, an enclosed port where ACOs can unload animals without them escaping, multiple ventilation systems to prevent the spread of disease, and acoustical materials to reduce noise. A vaulted ceiling in the reception area and skylights create an open-air feeling. County commissioners set aside $741,000 for the project, and the nearby city of Brevard contributed $100,000. Friends of the Animal Shelter held an auction that brought in $40,000; placed collection boxes at local merchants that added $7,000 to the effort; and received an anonymous $10,000 donation that boosted the total. The biggest challenges, according to county manager Artie Wilson, were finding a good location, and convincing county residents that the shelter would be attractive, and that noise from barking dogs wouldn’t be a concern. The shelter also has a more visible location, and plans to extend its hours to further its goal of increasing adoptions. County commissioners are also considering adding a position to the shelter’s three-person staff. Wilson says it’s happened before: “Our community sees a need, and there’s support behind it, then they help raise the funds to see that it’s completed the way that it needs to be completed.”

Read the rest of this issue from Animal Sheltering magazine

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