VAN WERT — The Van Wert County Humane Society board is seeking the public’s help to raise funds for a new facility.
Last year, they purchased a 1.76-acre lot on Fox Road with plans to construct a new shelter and adoption center. Board president Deb Sealscott said the goal is to raise $600,000, about half of which has already been raised between its members and a set of donors.
“We’ve talked about it for many years, renovating the current property, and it just came down to the need of building a new facility,” Sealscott said. “Our facility was originally built as a dog pound so it’s not really meant for lengthier stays.”
The shelter’s capacity is about 18 cats and 24 dogs. The plan is not to add to its capacity ability, but rather to make the existing more comfortable. All cats and dogs are also kept in cages in the same area with no room for potential adopters to meet with animals.
In the new space, the staff wants to create indoor/outdoor kennel runs for dogs and free-roam cat rooms.
“We fall woefully short of standards for animal shelters,” Sealscott said. “We need sufficient air control and different airflow in our quarantine areas versus where the healthy animals are, and there’s no way to control that now. In addition, our cement floors are unsealed and the odors and bacteria get soaked in, making it very difficult to control odor. We just want a healthier and safer environment for everybody involved.”
Another motivating factor was a change in location to become more visible in the community. The current shelter sits at 309 Bonnewitz Ave.
“Our current location is a little difficult for people to find, being a little off the road, so we are tickled to death about the Fox Road location on the edge of town,” Sealscott said. “It’s very prominent in the community right across from the fairgrounds, and that says to the community that neglected, abused and stray animals matter to us.”
Current donors include Edward D Jones, First Federal Savings Bank, VanCrest, Van Wert Savings Bank, Leland Smith Insurance, Merkle Insurance and John and Jan White. To donate, visit the humane society’s website at vwchs.org or contact campaign chair Michelle White at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reach Tara Jones at 567-242-0511.