FAQ’s Press Conference 8-28-12 (Please click here for the answers to many of the community’s current questions)
We are here today to make an announcement and to set the record straight regarding our role with animal control services with the City and County of Fresno.
In March of this year, our volunteer Board of Directors made a very tough decision that had been years in the making. They voted unanimously to terminate the animal control service contracts with both the City and County of Fresno effective October 1, 2012.
At the end of June, we were approached by representatives from the City & County to consider an extension of the contract through December 31, 2012. At that time, we did not commit to an extension, but instead agreed only to explore the possibility of a new agreement that would cover a 3 month time period from October through December.
Today we are announcing that we are holding fast to our October 1 deadline and are not proceeding with a new agreement. These were hard and painful decisions for us to make, as we are concerned for the welfare of the animals in our community. And we believe animals are worthy of our time, money and attention.
Having provided animal control services for decades, we know what it takes to manage such a high volume of homeless animals and we understand the difficult policy choices our government must make. But recently we had discovered, through meetings with the City and County and media outlets, that the City and County are choosing to take on a new direction with animal control as it pertains to strays. A direction we do not support.
The City and County are considering changing their local ordinances to no longer pick up all strays from our community’s streets nor take in strays from concerned citizens.
Last year over 32,000 stray animals came through our doors.
We believe the results of this new path that the City and County are walking are dangerous to both our community and our animals. Those dangers include loose dogs running into traffic causing accidents, increase of lawsuits, increases in the number of dog bites, and the rapid spreading of diseases such as parvo & distemper.
Those dangers include loose dogs running into traffic causing accidents, increase of lawsuits, increases in the number of dog bites, and the rapid spreading of diseases such as parvo & distemper.
We believe that the answers to the overabundance of our unwanted and homeless pets must be handled adequately and concurrently at both ends of the equation – animal control on the backend dealing with strays and spaying/neutering on the front end. The fact remains that Animal Control is a governmental service.
Unfortunately, we have not been sufficiently funded by the City & County to do both and have had to supplement animal control services with our privately raised funds. Our members and donors expect us to use their generously donated funds in an effective manner and we need to make sure this happens.
These are but a few of the many reasons why we are choosing to make this critical change in our organization and it must start now. We have consulted with long-term professionals in the business of animal welfare to help us shape our future.
The CCSPCA is the singular entity with the knowledge, organizational skills, and professional talent to help this community deal more effectively with the root causes of homeless and abused animals.
There will be many changes within our organization, including a much greater emphasis on our low cost Spay/Neuter Program. We are excited to share the many other possibilities with our community and remain committed to the animals we care for.
We believe in an open admission philosophy, which means we will accept every owner surrendered domesticated pet regardless of health, age, breed or temperament.
Open admission is essential to providing shelter and care to the thousands of animals that would otherwise have no safe refuge. We strive to be a resource for people when they need to surrender an animal—and to place no judgment on their need to surrender.
We will continue to be open 7 days a week … the exact times are yet to be determined.
Other programs that we will continue to provide and grow will be our Humane Education, Adoptions, and Foster Care programs. The highly-skilled George Whittell Animal Hospital will also continue to provide a full range of services for dogs, cats, and other pets already living in homes as well as for the animals at our animal care center. And our dedicated Humane Officers will continue to investigate situations of animal abuse and neglect as well as enforce anti-neglect and anti-cruelty laws.
Please submit any questions to us so we may address them at a later time.
Linda Van Kirk
Central California SPCA
103 S. Hughes Ave
Fresno CA 93706-1299