COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Findings from a new report on the Franklin County Dog Shelter suggests the shelter should care for fewer dogs at a time.
Commissioners hired the University of Wisconsin Shelter Medicine Program for the consultation partnership.
The report recommends three main objectives including reducing the number of dogs admitted to their shelter and their length of stay, while increasing their quality of housing and care. It said implementing these recommendations together will enable staff to pay closer attention to animal well-being, limit stressors and reduce exposure to infectious disease.
Shelter director Don Winstel said at any given time, the shelter has between 190-210 dogs or more. The ideal number is 150.
“We do a pretty good job, but we’re never going to be able to replace putting a dog in a home,” he said.
Winstel said they’ve already implemented some changes to meet these goals.
“Requiring appointments for people to drop off dogs, providing information that would help divert dogs from coming in,” he said. “In other words, assisting owners in either keeping their dogs or re-homing their dogs themselves.”
He said the shelter has also closed its overnight drop box and are breaking down barriers to adoption.
In addition to spaying or neutering each adopted dog, they’ve also started providing the service free of charge to low-income families.
“That certainly helps us going forward, reduce the number of dogs that come into the shelter,” said Winstel.
He said deputy wardens check dogs for microchips in the field, diverting them from coming to the shelter if they find their owner.
By making these changes and more, the shelter aims to reduce the number of dogs in their care at any given time while allowing the same number or even more to be helped.
“I hope that every dog that comes into the shelter their quality of life is as good as it can possibly be and that they don’t stay here for very long, they actually go to a home which is a dog should be,” said Winstel.
The Franklin County Dog Shelter currently has a summer adoption special. Any dog 30 lbs or more (excluding puppies) are $18 or the cost of a dog license.