Nonprofit exploring plans for new Miami County animal shelter

Supporters of a proposed new animal shelter for Miami County told county commissioners Thursday they would like to partner with them by working to raise the funding needed.

A preliminary estimate for a new facility was between $4.5 million and $5 million, a figure that does not include any land acquisition.

The location of a shelter and specific plans for a structure have not been decided but a new nonprofit, Miami County Partners for Animal Welfare, or MCPAW, already is exploring founding sources.

JJ Frigge and Heidi Scribner of MCPAW spoke to the commission about the nonprofit and what they described as its core objective of leading a capital campaign to construct a new shelter for the county. MCPAW is working with the Troy Foundation for handling donations and related business.

“Our mission is we are dedicated to improving the welfare of animals in our community by working in cooperation with Miami County Animal Shelter and Miami County government,” Frigge said.

The commissioners included $25,000 for planning a new shelter in its capital improvement budget for this year. Frigge suggested use of Shelter Planners of America, an organization he said has planned numerous shelters across the county.

The commissioners indicated interest in a shelter project, adding they might be able to provide land. The current shelter is located on county land next to the county Fairgrounds on County Road 25A just north of Troy.

“I am glad now it is time to move forward and look at a capital campaign,” said Commissioner Ted Mercer. “I know you have the support of all three commissioners to do that. We do have some land here and there that we might be able to look at.”

Commissioner Wade Westfall said county residents and organizations have a history of supporting fundraising efforts. “We have a very generous philanthropic community , especially when it comes to our animal lovers. I look forward to your success,” he said.

Commissioners said they were looking at making an official announcement of the project at next week’s (Friday, Feb. 24) State of the County luncheon in Troy.

Earlier Thursday, the commissioners heard information on the proposed project from commissioners’ administrator Charlotte Colley. She is county representative to the MCPAW effort.

The current shelter is 4,710 square feet, with a shelter of more than 11,000 square feet likely needed, according to a preliminary shelter analysis done by a company hired last year by the county to review all of its its facilities and needs. That study still is underway but expedited information was requested on the shelter, Colley said.

“We are woefully undersized, especially given the fact that 2019 the shelter has been a no-kill shelter. The spacing isn’t adequate for holding of those animals that we are not euthanizing right away,” Colley said.

Contact this contributing writer at

About the Author