MONROE (WTVG) - It's a common problem for animal shelters and rescue groups all over the country. Many struggle with not enough space to take in all the animals in need. The Humane Society of Monroe County is facing that issue. The hope is to eventually build a new facility.
Plans for a new shelter have been in the works for several years, and it will likely be several more years before it actually happens. A lot of people are working hard to make sure there's a new facility.
The current building along Telegraph Road has served as the Humane Society of Monroe County for decades. Jason Blanks is the Executive Director, "Our shelter was built in 1954, and we have certainly outgrown our space."
Just like a lot of shelters, Blanks says space is at a premium, "We are at our maximum capacity with our dogs and our cats. We need to expand the size of our shelter so we can help additional animals in need."
The goal is to one day do that on a piece of land in Frenchtown Charter Township. The shelter already owns the land. Before shelter leaders can break ground on a new building, the organization needs township and state approval. About five million dollars also has to be raised to build the new shelter.
Shelter manager Candace Buttrick says the animals keep everyone focused on that goal,"You have cases come in and they are in rough shape. You watch a shy and timid cat or dog blossom into a wonderful animal. At the end of the day that's what it's all about. We are all here to help as many animals as possible."
Buttrick says a new shelter will help make sure abused, neglected and homeless pets have a place to go for generations to come, "One day we will be able to take in more cats and dogs. All the work to make that happen will be worth it in the end. We are all just plugging along and trying to stay focused on the goal and the mission, and that is to help as many animals as we can."
Blanks is quick to answer when asked what the impact of a new shelter will mean to him, "It would mean the world to me."
The new facility has multiple phases. The first phase is a dog park. If township and state approvals are given this summer, the dog park is expected to open this fall. The new building is phase two of the project.
There are a lot of different ways you can help. The shelter is always in need of food, supplies, toys and of course money. There's also a big need for fosters to help care for some of the animals.
The shelter runs a thrift store and a pet food bank. All the proceeds from the thrift store go to the shelter. We've posted links with all the information you'll need to get involved with helping the animals or helping with the cost of building a new facility