A $351,000 high-volume spay-and-neuter clinic for the Spokane Humane Society is under construction next to the organization's existing animal shelter, at 6607 N. Havana in northeast Spokane.
McDaniel Contracting, of Mead, started early this month to build the 3,000-square-foot facility. It will feature the same design as a high-volume clinic built in Austin, Texas, for nonprofit Emancipet, which provides low-cost and free pet sterilization services in that city, says Dave Richardson, Spokane Humane Society executive director.
"We took their entire flow and operational layout because of its efficiency," Richardson says. "It has minimal travel space so everything is compact within a few steps of each other. The flow of the operation is very functionally located so the veterinarians don't have to go far to monitor and prepare the patients."
The Spokane Humane Society takes in about 5,000 animals a year, mostly dogs and cats, for pet adoption.
Richardson adds that the project here, which is being funded by donations, should be complete by this spring and will be located just north of and about 100 feet away from the shelter. The Spokane Humane Society owns 40 acres at the shelter site, and it has planned the new clinic since the mid-2000s.
The primary purpose of the clinic is to ensure that all animals coming into the shelter are spayed or neutered, Richardson says, and to provide spay or neuter services for the animals of low-income families.
Additionally, the clinic will free up about 1,800 square feet inside the shelter that's now used for spay-and-neuter procedures, and that shelter space will then be used for more adoption rooms, Richardson says.
"This clinic will nearly triple our capacity to do spaying and neutering," he says.
With the clinic, Richardson says the shelter will be able to go from doing about 2,500 procedures a year to eventually up to 8,000 a year.
"We figure that's about the maximum we'd ever hit, so we shouldn't ever outgrow this facility," he adds. "Emancipet is doing about 16,000 procedures."
Once the project is complete, Richardson says he expects that the nonprofit will add two full-time employees, and it will need about 10 to 15 additional volunteers.
He says the clinic is being built with energy-efficient heating and lighting systems, as well as recycled paint. Although it isn't officially designated yet, Richardson says the clinic is expected to be named after the facility's major benefactor, Dorothy M. Clark, who made a sizable bequest for the project.
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