Sylvan Lake partners with Red Deer SPCA

Red Deer and District SPCA will take in lost and found pets from Sylvan Lake

Red Deer and District SPCA has a new partnership with Sylvan Lake to provide longer-term kennel stays.

Town of Sylvan Lake council voted last October to take over animal control services from a private contractor. The move is expected to improve response times and hours of operation.

After a kennel provider recently ended their contract with the town, a new temporary home for lost and found pets was needed.

“Partnering with the Red Deer and District SPCA, as the longer-term kennel provider ensures that animals temporarily in our care receive competent and compassionate treatment,” says Betty Osmond, Sylvan Lake chief administrative officer.

Lost and found pets are taken to Municipal Enforcement Animal Services, which holds the animal, usually for 24 hours, before sending them to the SPCA.

SPCA executive director Tara Hellewell called the contract an “exciting step forward for our charitable organization.

“From my perspective, we are very happy with the additional funding this generates for us,” said Hellewell on Thursday.

The $30,000 contract provides a source of stable funding for the SPCA, which runs its adoption centre near 77th Street in Riverside Industrial Park on a $1.2 million budget.

City of Red Deer provides $125,000 annually but the rest of the budget is met by fundraising, bequests and fees for service. The budget was trimmed by nearly 20 per cent for 2017.

Hellewell said they would consider similar contracts with other municipalities. However, the shelter has to be careful not to take on too much or get in the way of agreements communities may already have with animal control and kennel providers.

“We don’t want to take away from any of the other relationships that the other providers have out there,” she said. “Nor would we want to compromise our core values.

“We have to be very careful because we are a no-kill shelter that we can manage to maintain our numbers. We won’t euthanize for space and we can’t over-fill our shelter.

“We have to make sure we can accommodate the numbers comfortably without compromising those core beliefs.”

Hellewell said they are always looking for new sources of funding and see their educational outreach work to nearby communities as an opportunity to explore.

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