A pound of prevention

Expanded Humane Society facility hopes to meet challenge of growing pet populations

By Justin Chapman, Pasadena Weekly, 1/30/2014

Earlier this month, the Pasadena Humane Society opened a new facility next to its existing campus, aimed at keeping pets in homes and out of shelters.   
The Humane Society opened the $20 million, 35,000 square foot Animal Care Center on Jan. 9. It is currently closed on Mondays, but will be open to the public seven days a week starting Saturday.
The new facility at 361 S. Raymond Ave. includes a wellness clinic with an expanded, high-volume spay and neuter clinic that will be open Tuesdays through Saturdays, allowing veterinarians to perform 20 spay and neuter procedures on dogs, cats and rabbits per day. No city money was used for the construction of the Animal Care Center, which was funded by community supporters.
On Monday, the Pasadena City Council decided that on July 14 it will consider an ordinance that would either require all dogs and cats to be spayed and neutered or just all pit bulls and pit bull cross breeds older than 4 months.
Ricky Whitman, vice president of community relations for the Pasadena Humane Society, said that breed-specific legislation will not solve the problem of pet overpopulation. The agency’s position is that all dogs and cats should be spayed and neutered.
“There are more animals than there are homes for them. All adopted pets get spayed and neutered before going to their new homes, so it’s publicly owned animals we want to appeal to to come in and offer low-cost spay/neuter,” said Whitman. 
The Animal Care Center also features an affordable vaccination and microchip clinic that is open on Wednesdays and Saturdays; a dog daycare that will open in February; an education and training center that will host seminars and training classes; a dog boarding facility; underground parking; and the shelter shop, an expanded pet store with food, accessories and clothing. All proceeds from retail sales will go to Humane Society programs.
“It’s a very exciting time,” said Steven R. McNall, president and CEO of the Pasadena Humane Society & SPCA. “We’re focusing on expanded programs to help stop the tragedy of pet overpopulation. The Animal Care Center is a proactive approach to keep animals in their homes and out of the shelter.”