New animal shelter has comfort features for all

Natalie Netzel Staff Writer

October 2, 2013

NEWBERRY — The new animal shelter off S.C. 34 comes equipped with amenities that will give animals up for adoption more room to run and play as well as housing that will keep them out of the cold and inclement weather.

County Administrator Wayne Adams said the new structure, which cost $2,237,561 total, adds to the value of the property. The shelter and public works are located behind the dumpster/landfill area.

“It was located here to maximize the salable intent of property,” Adams said. “It has value for commercial estate. We took the least valuable property for the two buildings (animal shelter and public works) and made it more valuable.”

The shelter sits about 1,700 feet off the highway behind the old shelter, which will eventually be demolished.

The fire alarm system still needs to be completed and another coat of sealer needs to be applied to the kennel floors.

Shelter manager Leslie Jenkins said the sealer makes it easier to clean but also “it doesn’t trap disease like tile does.”

Adams said they also want to install generators for public works and the shelter to use as emergency back-up in the event of inclement weather or power loss.

In the new animal shelter, an air unit called an Emergency Recovery Vessel will allow for energy efficiency, said Mike Pisano with public works. For example, if it’s 25 F outside, it would be about 40 F in the kennel.

“It will circulate air to keep the air flowing and there are six interchanges (air exchanges) per hour for odor and (better) health,” said Pisano.

The kennels cover about 4,500 square feet while the office and animal handling spaces cover about 2,000 square feet.

When visitors pull into the shelter’s parking lot, they will stop along the side of the building where there is a greeting or welcome area. The new shelter also has a separate office for adoptions and Jenkins has an office as well.

A larger cat room is divided into a play area or show area and a room where cats are housed. The cat rooms have an epoxy coat, which Jenkins said will help reduce disease.

Lockers, showers and restrooms are available for the employees as well and there is a wash room/medical room and an isolation room.

The wash room/medical room is for grooming, exams, microchipping and other medical procedures with the exception of surgeries. The isolation room is for animals that need a cleaner environment before they can be put in with other animals.

The 48 kennels — an increase from the 26 kennels at the old facility — have trenches between them to collect waste that will flow through a central drain out of the building through an underground system. It will eventually go to the Newberry County waste area.

Four covered kennels will be used for dogs that like to climb, are escape risks or need to be contained.

The shelter currently has about 65 dogs and about 30 cats and kittens available for adoption. Officials hope to reduce those numbers through foster care, adoption and during their appearance at Oktoberfest on Saturday.

Call the shelter at 803-321-2185 or contact Jenkins at for more information about adopting an animal or about spaying/neutering for pets. The shelter’s hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.