Committeeman spearheads effort to create 2nd public shelter - KCTV5

Committeeman spearheads effort to create 2nd Kansas City public animal shelter

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KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

Little Poppy is one of about 8,000 dogs and cats that Kansas City's only public shelter saves every year. Supporters of the shelters said they could save even more dogs just like her if they had a shelter to meet their needs.

Kansas City's only public animal shelter is literally bursting at the seams with pets looking for a home.

Tori Fugate with KC Pet Project said things are running much more smoothly at the animal shelter ever since they took over the day-to-day operations of the shelter. They now have a 90 percent no-kill rate, a number Fugate said was much lower under previous management.

But she said one major problem is still holding them back.

"This building was built back in 1972. It was never meant to be an adoption facility, it was just designed to house animals," she said.

Fugate said the four-decade-old facility is simply too small. They've been forced to convert offices into additional holding areas and line hallways with overflow kennels. The biggest problem, though, is that they only have one large room to house all their dogs that are ready for adoption.

"It's incredibly overwhelming to see 250 dogs all barking at you and, as an adopter, that's very overwhelming," she said.

On top of a lack of space, Fugate said the building is showing its age with rusted out pipes, crumbling ceilings and walls that are falling apart.

But help could be on the way.

"There's a lot of animals running around. We've got to do what we can as a community to come together to help each other and our animals," said Leonard Snow, a committeeman for Ward 23 in Jackson County, MO.

Snow lives just down the street from the shelter. He sees the need firsthand, so he's spearheading a new effort to bring a second shelter to the city.

"Kansas City is a very large city and we only have one shelter, so I think it's important that we make it a big shelter, we make it a new facility. 1972 was a long time ago," he said.

Snow admits it won't be easy, but he's hoping to generate enough popular support to get the attention of the mayor and City Council so more dogs can find a loving home.

Volunteering and donating are great ways to help, but people can also adopt a dog and Thursday they can do so for just $25.

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