By ROB LARSON
Daily Press Staff Writer
With this morning’s ribbon-cutting ceremony, Artesia’s new animal shelter, located at 501 N. Paddy Wagon Way, is complete and ready to serve the community.
“This project goes back a ways, with involvement from the present council and from council members like Luis Florez and George Holmes,” Mayor Phillip Burch said. “It took a lot of work to keep pushing this project forward, but we finally got it done. It’s an excellent facility, it will serve the community well for years and years, and we hope everyone will come out and see it.” … For the rest of the story, subscribe in print and on the web.
The bid for the project was awarded to Wade Construction for $1,018,000 by the Artesia City Council on March 13, 2012. The official groundbreaking ceremony took place on April 2. At 4,500 square feet, the new animal shelter is exactly two-and-a-half times larger than the 80-year-old facility it is replacing.
The new animal shelter has a reception area, an isolated examination room for the inspection of new animals, offices and, of course, plenty of cages to house all the stray cats and dogs.
Mayor Pro Tem Terry Hill said last April the new shelter will have ample room to handle the 1,700 stray animals (850 dogs and 850 cats) the city currently manages. However, if need be, “the end of the building is designed to easily be removed and expanded onto without costing as much as it once used to.”
Kristin Young, shelter manager for Paws & Claws, said she and her staff haven’t moved into the new facility yet, but all of the Paws & Claws staff are thrilled to have the new facility at their disposal.
“With the bigger space, we’ll definitely be able to work with the animals better and also keep them cleaner,” Young said. “We’re really excited about working with the city in the new shelter, and we’re really hoping that the new facility will help us to improve upon our already great save rates!”