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Tahoe Animal Shelter Q&A

November 14, 2014

Placer County Animal Services

Frequently Asked Questions

Placer County is in discussions over relocating animal services and animal shelter operations from the Tahoe Vista Shelter to the new Truckee Tahoe Humane Society Animal Shelter

Q - We would like to get more information about this relocation and how it will affect our region. We would like to be given the opportunity to voice our concerns in a public forum.

A – Currently, there are two planned public meetings: the Squaw Valley MAC meeting which will be at 6:00 pm on December 4th at the Squaw Valley Public Service District Community Meeting Room (305 Squaw Valley Road, Olympic Valley), and the North Tahoe Regional Advisory Council which will be at 6:00 pm on December 11th at the Tahoe city Public Utilities District Board Room (221 Fairway Drive, Tahoe City).

Q - Where do you plan on moving the animals that currently are in the Tahoe Vista Shelter?

A - The animals at the Tahoe Vista Shelter will either be adopted by the Wylie Animal Rescue Foundation (WARF), or transferred to the new Town of Truckee (TOT) shelter, or Auburn Animal Shelter.

Q- We know that WARF works closely with the Tahoe Vista Shelter; can you ensure that the animals in the Tahoe Vista Shelter will be transferred to another facility?

A- We can absolutely guarantee that all adoptable animals currently residing at the Tahoe Vista Shelter will be transferred to another shelter or a foster home for future adoption. WARF is an amazing and important organization and can find homes for any of the animals currently at the shelter.

Q - Where are the Placer animals to be sheltered when they are unable to find placement in a rescue or foster home?

A - All of the adoptable Placer County animals will be kept at the TOT shelter until the TOT and the Humane Society find a suitable home for the animal.

Q -After the shelter is closed, where can Placer County residents bring strays and abandoned animals that they find within the community?

A - Placer County residents or visitors can bring abandoned animals or strays to the TOT shelter, or notify a Placer County Animal Control Officer directly, or the Sheriff’s Department Dispatch, who will transport any stray or abandoned animal to the TOT shelter.

Q - Where do I go to look for a lost pet?

A -You would continue to look at all of your local shelters, including the TOT shelter, as well as local veterinary offices.

Q - Where can Placer County residents go to locally adopt rescue animals?

A - Placer County residents can visit the modern, state-of-the-art TOT shelter that is complete with separate rooms for bonding with an animal, heated outside dog runs, and a supply store that is equipped with everything a person adopting an animal would need. The shelter is only 2.7 miles from the Placer County line on Hwy 267. It is 14 miles from the Tahoe Vista Shelter and it is only 7 miles farther from all Placer County residents South of Tahoe City. The new regional shelter will serve all of Eastern Placer County, including the Tahoe Truckee regional area.

Q - How do I get a dog license if I live in Placer County?

A - You can obtain a dog license in one of three ways: 1) You can go online to the Placer County Animal Services website, 2) you can phone the Placer County Animal Services Shelter, or 3) you can go to the TOT shelter and they will assist you in obtaining a Placer County Animal license.

Q - What protocols will be put in place to ensure Eastern Placer County will still be patrolled, and that calls will be attended to in a timely manner?

A - The current Placer County Officers that serve the Eastern Placer County area will continue to do so operating out of the new TOT shelter office space. An additional Supervising Officer will be added in the near future to increase the level of service to our residents.

Q - Who should I call if I have been bitten or scratched by an animal?

A - Call the Placer County Animal Services number, just as you would have done in the past. An Animal Control Officer will contact you. After-hours, please contact the Placer County Sheriff’s Office, who will continue to perform after-hours dispatch.

Q - If someone in our community calls Placer County Animal Services to report a roaming dog on the highway, where would the responder be dispatched from, and how long would it take them to arrive to the scene?

A - An Animal Control Officer patrolling the area would be dispatched to handle any calls in the Placer County region. The Officers will be in the field most of the time so the response time would vary depending on their location when the call was received. Response times for afterhours calls would vary as the Officers would be responding from their residence. Some of the officers live in the Tahoe Truckee regional area. In rare events an after-hours call could take longer as the response would be dispatched from an officer in the Auburn area.

Q -What is planned for the existing building?

A- There are no plans formalized for the existing building at this time. The Facilities Department is exploring options.

Q - What will happen to the current employees of the shelter?

A - The current Animal Control Officers will operate out of the TOT shelter office and continue to patrol the same areas that they are assigned to currently. The Kennel Attendant position in the Tahoe Vista Shelter will be transferred to the Auburn Animal Shelter. There will be no lay-offs.

Q -What factors were considered in the decision to close the shelter, and were any other options considered?

A - Many factors were considered in proposing a partnership with the TOT to operate out of their new facility. The most important factors included an improvement in the health and an increased animal adoption rate. The new facility is state-of-the-art and provides a vastly improved setting for sheltering and caring for animals. One of the primary attractions is to more rapidly find good homes for our animals and the TOT shelter will help us achieve that goal. The operational costs are also greatly reduced for Placer County by the efficiencies of sharing resources. The TOT shelter will have the advantage of improved operating capital with Placer County as a partner sharing some of the costs. The new TOT shelter is in such close proximity that it would not be prudent for Placer County to expend significant funds for a another new shelter only a few miles from an existing, state-of-the-art facility without considering an option of regionalization.

Q- Is there any way the county could allocate funds from another area to keep the shelter open?

A- Yes, existing funding is sufficient to keep the current shelter open. Placer County and our animals would miss an opportunity to improve our operations, overall animal health, and adoption rates. We would also miss an opportunity to save significant amounts of revenue. The TOT would miss an opportunity to strengthen their resources and operating capabilities in their new shelter facility.

Q - Why have the taxpayers been left out of this decision, and why has there been no attempt to get the publics’ opinion on this matter?

A - Discussions with the TOT have been preliminary up to this point. The Placer County staff and our amazing community partners were recently advised of the possibility of a partnership before further talks continued when it became clear that this is in the best interest of our communities and our animals. There will be public forums available in the near future if the TOT Council and the Placer County BOS agree to proceed.

Q - Why have we not been given the option to vote on how this should be handled?

A - This type of action is not required to have a “vote” to proceed or not to proceed. Your comments and opinions should be given to your District Supervisor or Town Council member who will consider your position accordingly before a formal action is taken.

Q - How soon are these changes supposed to go into effect, and what can the community expect to see/experience as a result of this relocation?

A - There is currently no formal time line for this partnership to begin. It is estimated that Placer County may begin to operate from the new TOT shelter in the spring. There should be minimal changes to the community other than the Animal Control Officers will transport animals to the new TOT shelter and transport redeemed animals directly to their owners in Eastern Placer County.

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