Dear Mayor Jones,
Thank you for listening to PASH and the public support of Councilmember Rawlings proposal to build separate housing for homeless cats in Paradise. We understand that the town is still recuperating from hard financial times, and that other public needs may be seen as higher priority at this time. We will continue to follow Measure C and Town Council activities related to the shelter, and will be sending you periodic updates about this issue.
We were pleased to read the recent report from the 2015-2016 Butte County Grand Jury regarding animal shelters in Butte County. As you probably know, the Grand Jury noted that all of the Butte County shelters have capable, dedicated staff, and most shelters were adequate in relation to need. However, they did find several things lacking in the Paradise Shelter. Specifically, they found that: 1) the Paradise facility is small and in need of renovation and expansion, 2) there needs to be greater separation between cats and dogs, 3) sick animals need to be quarantined more effectively, and 4) the hours the shelter is open to the public are inadequate compared to other facilities.
The Grand Jury went on to recommend that the Town of Paradise provide adequate funding for the updating, enlarging, and renovating of the animal shelter, and address the other concerns as well, by providing greater physical separation between cats and dogs, greater physical separation between sick animals and healthy animals, and increasing the hours the shelter is open to the public. The Grand Jury cited the “Guidelines for Standards of Care in Animal Shelters (2010)” published by the Association of Shelter Veterinarians, which are guidelines adopted by the state of California. The guidelines recommend adequate separation of species, i.e., cats from dogs, ”where cats are effectively removed from sight and sound exposure to dogs”. They also recommend that sick animals be adequately quarantined from healthy animals, within species.
These are long-standing issues at the Paradise Animal Shelter that are not going to go away. Councilmember Rawlings and PASH brought these issues to your attention, and the Grand Jury report underlines the need. We recognize that there are many competing priorities for funding, but Measure C provides an opportunity to address some of the more critical needs of the animal shelter. PASH will continue to work with you to find ways to make that happen.Sincerely,
PASH Board Member