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Tue, Nov. 12

Miner Editorial | New animal shelter should keep standard of not killing healthy animals

The Mohave County animal shelter at 950 Buchanan St. (Daily Miner file photo)

The Mohave County animal shelter at 950 Buchanan St. (Daily Miner file photo)

The world became a bit brighter this week for animals needing rescued in Kingman.

Mohave County Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 for a new $2 million animal shelter to be built at a location to be determined.

We thank supervisors Gary Watson, Jean Bishop, and Hildy Angius for their votes in favor and understanding the nearly desperate need for a new shelter.

The shelter that sits at 950 Buchanan St. has been Kingman’s shelter for a long time. More than 40 years and it’s in sorry shape. A new shelter in Kingman is sorely needed and there’s a sense of relief that a new one is coming.

Another part of the equation is who will be running it. Western Arizona Humane Society has been operating the shelter under contract with Mohave County. WAHS sent a letter to the county weeks ago stating it would not be operating the county’s animal shelter in Kingman because of the time, effort and finances required to keep the Buchanan Street shelter functioning.

As word came down that there was an excellent chance the supervisors would approve the building of a new shelter, WAHS has had a change of heart and wishes to continue running the county’s animal shelter.

Whether it is WAHS, a new organization, or the county itself that operates the current and future shelter, we want to applaud WAHS for setting the standard.

It is difficult for any public animal shelter to label itself a 100% no-kill shelter. Haven’t we all, at some time in an act of mercy, taken our aging and sick beloved companion, whether dog, cat, or other, and had them put down? That happens at animal shelters, among other places.

Quarterly report after quarterly report shows that WAHS has a zero rate of euthanization when it comes to healthy, treatable and rehabilitable, and treatable and manageable animals.

The animals that have been euthanized at WAHS have been feral, unhealthy and untreatable, and owner/guardian requested.

The last reported quarter, Quarter 3 2018-2019 that ended March 31, 2019, shows WAHS took in 771 animals from the public over the three month period.

A total of 89 animals not owner requested were euthanized.

These numbers give WAHS an 89% Live Release Rate, which is about as good as it can get because only unhealthy animals are being put down.

The animals are getting $2 million for a facility so we can treat them humanely. We believe they have been treated that way at our current public animal shelter, and we look forward to whoever operates it in the future to be keeping that standard of care.

There is only one way to ensure healthy animals don’t overwhelm the shelter, old and new, and never get euthanized. Please spay or neuter your pets.

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