Weatherford Democrat

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December 19, 2012

Animal shelter director says improvements progressing

By BRIAN SMITH

bsmith@weatherforddemocrat.com

While there is still admittedly work to be done, Weatherford Parker County Animal Shelter officials are making headway in improvements in many aspects of the facility.

A report that came out in September made wide-reaching recommendations on how to improve the shelter from the organization of employees to the intake procedures to the way forms are being filled out. Interim shelter director Dustin Deel said since the report came out in September, about 44 percent of the recommendations have been carried out.

“We’re hoping to have about 70 percent of the recommendations carried out by the end of the current fiscal year in September,” Deel said. “Within the next year or two we hope to have about 90 percent of the recommendations implemented.”

Shelter Evaluator Susan Feingold with Lifeline Animal Services spent six days at the facility back in August. Her 135-page report was presented recently to the animal shelter board along with Deel discussing many of the improvements that have already been put in place. Deel said volunteers, the board and the public have been positive about what is going on.

Much of the improvements have come in the way of hiring which has improved efficiency in other areas. Two new kennel technicians have been hired four days a week as well as a new outreach coordinator. Animal control officers have also been reassigned to work in the intake system.

Animal health

A part-time veterinarian has also been hired to work five days a week for such things as routine animal heath issues.  In the past, veterinarians would rotate in once a week for such things as neutering and vaccinations. Those primary health issues are now taken care of as soon as the animal arrives, part of an entire overhaul of the animal intake system.

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