Keeping Pets and People Together

Animal Welfare Working to Keep Pets and People Together
Posted on 05/23/2024
Elderly woman hugging her dogMANATEE COUNTY, FL (May 23, 2024) – As animal shelters across the country struggle with pet overpopulation, Manatee County Animal Welfare (MCAW) is working to implement innovative and inspirational initiatives designed to help keep people and pets together.

A new Animal Community Resource Center to be located along 17th Avenue West in Bradenton is in the design phases—and moving forward quickly. Plans call for a one-stop shop for all pet resource needs, providing comprehensive support to both pets and their owners.

This unique endeavor for a municipality not only features a facility for adoptions, medical care and training but also takes aim at addressing one of the biggest challenges facing the County shelter—decreasing intake. According to MCAW leaders, this renewed push to encourage and empower folks to keep their pets could be a game changer.

“We’re never going to adopt our way out of our pet overpopulation,” said Deputy Director of Community and Veterans Services Sarah Brown. “So, we have to come up with different idea on how we can help the community.”

In the meantime, the kennel design process is continuing at Bishop Animal Shelter, with the plan to transition animals currently housed at the Palmetto Animal Shelter to the Bishop facility. MCAW staff and members of the Manatee County Property Management team have worked to ensure the project has been updated and tailored to provide maximum benefit to animals and workers.

Further development and preconstruction work will be ongoing through the summer, with the project construction beginning in the fall. The Manatee County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) has encouraged the proactive efforts.

“I’m excited to see all of this move forward,” said Manatee County District 2 Commissioner Amanda Ballard. “I love the idea of the center on 17th providing people those resources so that they can keep their animals, and we have less animals in our shelters.”