Plans are underway for the new Nash County Animal Shelter, which will more than double the capacity of the current shelter.
“The Nash County Board of Commissioners knows people are more passionate about pets than ever before,” said Nash County Board of Directors Chairman Robbie Davis. “We realize that our current shelter is inadequate, and the opportunity has arisen for us to receive a large grant to build a new pet facility. We are very happy to now start working on this capital improvement project which otherwise would probably have taken several more years.
Davis and several Nash County Commissioners and staff recently visited the new Wilson County Animal Shelter, which was built with plans that closely resemble the design that Nash County Commissioners are considering for the new shelter. for animals.
“We are working to finalize the floor plan with Dawson Construction Services, and Stocks Engineering is working to begin the survey and design of the site,” said Jonathan Edwards, communications director for Nash County.
Lt. Brian Whaley of the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office led the recent tour of the new 8,626 square foot Wilson County Animal Shelter. As Whaling led the tour, he pointed out the things he particularly enjoys and the ones that shelter officials said didn’t work out as well as expected.
Nash County Health Director Bill Hill, Nash County Utilities and Facilities Director Jonathan Boone and other Nash County officials have taken note of the comments for architects to adapt the Nash County design.
Whaley said a major change from the old facility is the way the adoption process is handled.
“At the old shelter we would take you back to see the dogs in the kennel and you could see each of our dogs,” he said. “But from a disease standpoint, it was a terrible idea because you could run your hands through the fence and stroke this little guy, then stroke the next little guy, and we don’t know what you’re passing on.” We also didn’t know what you were bringing on your feet.
The new shelter plan is designed to be safer and more adoption-friendly, Whaley said.
“Now we have a television where you can see all the animals available for adoption. When you see an animal that interests you, we can bring it to you to see if you get along, ”Whaley said.
The new Wilson County animal shelter features a cat adoption room and a separate dog adoption room. Nash County Commissioners also plan to incorporate those same ideas into the new Nash County Animal Shelter. The Wilson County facility also includes a kitchen area, examination area, quarantine room, easier to clean kennels, a large garage, and several offices for members of the Wilson County Sheriff‘s Office who oversee the animal shelter and animal control in this county. .
The new Nash County animal shelter is expected to be slightly larger at around 9,000 square feet.
“We plan to have room for at least 48 dogs and 50 cats. In our current shelter, we can only hold 40-45 animals in total, ”said Edwards.
In Nash County, the Department of Health and Human Services oversees animal control and the animal shelter.
Hill said in a previous interview that a larger facility would allow the shelter to house the animals for a longer period while awaiting adoption. In the current facility, the shelter is allowed to euthanize the animals after a three-day wait because space is limited, Hill said.
Nash County has already purchased 23 acres of land next to Nash Community College and is setting aside five acres of land just off Eastern Avenue near the roundabout for the construction of the new shelter. The location adjacent to the college campus will also allow students in the school’s veterinary technology program to work with animals.
“We’re also excited about the opportunity to work with Nash Community College as they develop their veterinary technology program, and locating this facility next to the college should help get things done,” Davis said.
While Hill had initially hoped construction on the new facility could begin this summer, those plans were delayed, as were many construction projects during current material and labor shortages.
As of now, Nash County plans to start the new shelter in the first quarter of 2022. Edwards said construction will hopefully be completed in early 2023.
The estimated cost of the new facility is $ 1.65 million. Nash County has already set aside funds for the project, but Edwards said a combination of funds – including grants – will go into this project. More details on the financing of the project are expected to be announced at a later date.