Clark County dog shelter now occupies old Humane Society building

Clark County has moved its dog shelter into a building that once housed the area’s humane society.

The county’s shelter now sits in the Humane Society Serving Clark County’s old location in the 5200 block of Urbana Road. It moved in about a week ago, Dog Warden Sandi Click said.

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The shelter’s new hours are Monday through Thursday from noon to 4 p.m., Friday from 1 to 7 p.m. and Saturday from noon to 4 p.m. The shelter will be closed on Sundays and holidays.

It opened its own animal shelter on Sept. 1 after the local humane society said it wouldn’t be able to continue its contract to house stray and lost dogs for the Clark County dog wardens. The nonprofit organization sent a letter to county commissioners informing them they could no longer take dogs from the dog wardens.

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State law mandates the county pick up stray dogs. In previous years, Clark County paid the Humane Society Serving Clark County more than $200,000 annually to serve as both the dog wardens and to shelter and care for stray and lost animals. The county now employs the dog wardens directly and had paid the humane society about $80,000 a year to house the dogs they pick up.

The Humane Society owned the building at 5201 Urbana Road but it sits on Clark County’s land. The lease was about $1 per year while the facility was operational.

“They did reach an agreement with the humane society. The building was going to the revert to county ownership eventually but we did pay them a sum of money in order to help them close out their business, pay off their debts and to take possession of the building early,” Click said.

Clark County Administrator Jennifer Hutchinson said the county paid $24,200 to the Humane Society for the early transfer of the building. In addition, the county has spent about $35,000 on renovations, she said.

Renovations included the lighting, wiring, basic repairs and adding a new furnace.

The county moved its’ shelter because it was a better facility to house the animals, Click said. The former space it was using didn’t have much room for expansion and dogs had to stay in cages. The lack of space made it much more labor intensive for staff to care for them properly, she said.

The shelter will continue to accept only dogs.

“No cats, no other animals,” Click said. “We strictly handle dogs and at this time we are only handling stray dogs.”

It also won’t accept owner-released pets. It will pick up stray dogs and after the mandatory, three-day hold period, they will be offered for adoption.

“Then we can either send it to a rescue or we can adopt it out or dispose of it in any way we need to,” Click said. “There is the possibility it could be euthanized if it didn’t pass a temperament test. However, I can assure everybody, the vast majority of dogs do get adopted out.”

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