Southern Pines Animal Shelter Questions Petal's Decision - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

Southern Pines Animal Shelter Questions Petal's Decision

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For several years the City of Petal had a contract with Southern Pines Animal Shelter. Last month, however, they switched to the Hub City Humane Society.

This left management at SPAS with questions.

"It was a bit of a surprise to learn that they had elected to go with another shelter, especially since the mayor and the alderman haven't visited our shelter, didn't visit the other shelter and made a decision based on one person who has ties to the other organization," SPAS Manager Theresa Venette said.

Petal Mayor Hal Marx admited they did not visit the shelters.

"The Animal Warden is going there every day," Marx said. "She knows the people who work there. She knows the conditions. She's a professional, so we acted on her advice."

He noted the complaints she had about SPAS included unsanitary conditions that SPAS claimed were irregular circumstances.  The warden also said she didn't agree with the drop-off procedures because the dogs are left out in the elements overnight.

Venette said the dogs left outside have shelter and a dog-house with blankets.

"We stand by our reputation here," Venette said.  "The shelter is cleaner and nicer than it's ever been."

Marx said another selling point for the city was that HCHS doesn't require a drop-off fee.

"We'll be paying the same amount per year to Hub City as we were Southern Pines, so we feel like the fact that we pay the same amount of money but our citizens are actually going to be able to drop off animals for free is actually a good business decision for our citizens as well," Marx said.

Venette said they've been doing $60,000 worth of work for half the price.

"Financially, we'll be better off in the long run without the petal contract," Venette said. "We are disappointed to see those animals go to a facility that may not have the capacity to house those animals."

HCHS Board President Brenda Sumrall said the facility has eight portable buildings with about 800 sq. ft.  They can hold about 50 animals at a time.

SPAS can house almost 200, and they have separate facilities for cats and dogs where HCHS houses them together.  SPAS is set up so that dogs and cats can go in or out as they choose.  HCHS also takes their dogs outside into the sunshine to stretch out daily.

"Two shelters are really good for the animals in this area," Sumrall said. "That gives them more access to more people and more resources. It gives us more room to house more pets instead of going to one place where they have the ability to be kept longer."

"I don't want people to think we went out seeking to publicly have any type of feud or say anything negative about southern pines," Marx said.  "This is just a decision the board made based on the information that's presented."

 

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