‘Very Busy’ Few Months For New Fort Smith Animal Shelter

FORT SMITH, Ark. (KFSM) — Since Kitties and Kanines officially opened in September there's been a revolving door of cats and dogs in and out of the shelter.

It's located on South 46th Street in a former office building and can only squeeze in about 150 animals at a time.

"Any time animal control picks up an animal they bring it to us. We predominately take animals from animal control but we have taken several from citizens that need our help," said Gaevon Hoover, Kitties and Kanines Executive Director.

Since Kitties and Kanines became the official shelter of Fort Smith it has taken in about 420 animals. A total of 167 have been adopted, 125 remain on-site, 49 have been transported out of state and 46 were returned to their owner.

Because of the limited space, sometimes when people call animal control they hear there's no room at the shelter.

"Our animal service wardens are not to be taking animals anywhere other than the contracted shelter that we have in Fort Smith," Captain Wes Milam, with the Fort Smith Police Department said.

That's what happened when Shelby Drake called about a dog she named Zeus who she found malnourished on the street.

"It's more sad because there are so many animals that are on the street that have nowhere to go," Drake said.

Kitties and Kanines have big plans in the works. The plan is to build a brand new shelter from the ground up with more capacity.

"We will never have a large shelter that takes in 500-700 animals because it's just not healthy. We want to be able to maintain animals that are vaccinated, spay, neutered and healthy," Hoover said.

Zeus is about to undergo heartworm treatment and vets are optimistic about the outcome.

Drake plans to take care of him until he can find a family to love him.

"I want Zeus to be spoiled. I want him to be taken care of so well because he deserves the world," Drake said.

Kitties and Kanines is hoping to start a building fund after the first of the year and if all goes as planned the new shelter will be built within the year.

The shelter can always use donations. To learn more click here.

If you want to help with Zeus' recovery you can donate to Best Friends Clinic.

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