AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Changes are coming for Amarillo Animal Management and Welfare (AAM&W) over the next few months.
The city is moving forward with a few projects at the shelter using funds from Proposition 2, which voters approved during the November 2016 election.
Starting next month, AAM&W will begin the construction on a new quarantine and observation building.
The city council awarded a nearly $1.5 million construction contract to Tri-State General Contractors Group, Inc. on Tuesday.
“It will basically house sick animals. It will give us the ability to quarantine incoming animals or remove animals from the population that need extra care,” said Kathryn Wrubel, AAM&W director. “There also is going to be some bite observation spaces there for animals under rabies quarantine.”
Wrubel said it is much needed as their facilities are outdated for some best practices.
“Ideally, you want to have a separate space where you can put sick animals or observe animals, and also it’ll allow us to upgrade some of the veterinary services that we can do for the animals in our care,” Wrubel added.
Jerry Danforth, the director of facilities and capital projects for the city said the new building will be behind the existing shelter.
“We have land back there, so there’s no additional acquisition of land,” Danforth said. “It was land we already owned. We’ll develop it back there so that we can maintain it as a secure site. We don’t want the potential for humans to even carry infections out of there or to be exposed to dangerous animals as well.”
Wrubel said medical treatment for the animals will only improve.
“There’s also some space that we can do some additional veterinary care for the animals there too, as we will be getting a second full-time vet,” Wrubel added.
Danforth said they will start construction the first week in February and finish the last week of August. He said the city took all four of the approved items from proposition two and combined it into one structure to expedite the process and cut costs for the project.
Wrubel said AAM&W is not looking to up its animal capacity. Instead, they are still focused on transporting animals to no-kill shelters where they are more likely to be adopted.
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