After 15 years, the “temporary” shelter for our area’s homeless pets has FINALLY been replaced with a state of the art $6.8 million one. The new shelter is the product of a partnership between the humane society and the Town of Truckee. The organizations split the cost of construction, and they both share space in the building.
Everything in the new shelter is state of the art. There is a gorgeous conference room with a flat screen for volunteer trainings. The shelter now has an on-site spay/neuter facility that eliminates the need to outsource these operations to local vet’s offices and reduce the stress that transportation has on the animals. The office space is warm and inviting, with carpeting and cubicles. It’s a far cry from the single-wide trailer that used to hold the office space. The air filtration system provides constant recycling of air throughout the building and an air quality rating equivalent to a hospital. This protects the animals from contagious diseases and sicknesses such as kennel cough that can spread throughout a population. It also makes for a healthier atmosphere for employees and volunteers, as well.
The 10,000-square-foot shelter is able to house approximately four times as many dogs and cats, saving the lives of many more animals on kill lists in overcrowded regional shelters. The new facility will also keep the nonprofit from having to send so many pets out to foster families and gives pets a more spacious and comfortable living environment.
Dog kennels have windows to an interior hall where the dogs can monitor the comings and goings of staff and visitors, raised beds off the cold floor, and doors to outside play areas that allow them outdoor access at will. The cat cages have windows to the outside world that keep the animals engaged and interested in order to prevent kennel stress, which in cats is manifested by just “giving up” and not eating. Their cat play room is a place of ramps, high places for great views, nooks in which to tuck away for a nap and to explore. It even has a television playing a loop tape of fish, bugs and mice to provide distraction.
But perhaps most importantly, the shelter is now a fun, engaging, happy place to visit and is open for adoptions 40 hours a week to the public. Previously, because of the old shelter’s cramped quarters, adoptions were held just once a week for a 4 hour period.
The Humane Society of Truckee Tahoe still faces payment of construction costs needed to build the new shelter and to continue to run its community programs, such as Humane Education in the local schools. To donate or find out more about this wonderful organization, please visit www.hstt.org.
Facts and Statistics
1. 6-8 million cats and dogs enter shelters each year. (© HSUS 2009)
2. Approximately 3-4 million cats and dogs are euthanized in shelters each year. That’s 1 animal every 11 seconds. (© HSUS 2009)
3. 21% of owned dogs and 21% of owned cats in the United States were adopted from a shelter. (© HSUS 2011)
4. 25% of the dogs who enter animal shelters are purebred. (© HSUS 2009)
5. In seven years one female cat and her offspring can theoretically produce 420,000 cats.
6. In six years, one female dog and her offspring can theoretically produce 67,000 dogs.
7. 78% of owned dogs are spayed or neutered and 88% of owned cats are spayed or neutered (© HSUS 2011).
8. There are roughly 5,000 animal rescues in the USA (© ASPCA)