SARASOTA (WWSB) - Manatee County Commissioners voted recently to build a new animal shelter but until that happens, the current shelter in Palmetto is facing a long list of challenges.
Parts of the structure were built as early as the 1940s and shelter officials are describing the conditions for the animals there as “horrific."
With an average of 15 animals added per day, the Manatee County Animal Shelter has surpassed its capacity. “This is a shelter that has seen its time and we have outgrown it," said Manatee County Animal Shelter official Hans Wohlgefahrt.
He says it’s not just overcrowding that’s an issue. “The kennels are hard to open and close, we have drainage issues and we are always having plumbers out here. We’re also trying to fix the ventilation system right now."
Manatee County Commissioner Carol Whitmore recently visited the shelter located in Palmetto and she called the shelter an embarrassment. With only eight full-time employees and a number of volunteers, the laundry room is filled with soiled blankets and linen.
“We have a whole stack that always to the ceiling that needs to be washed and literally those eight people or the director will throw things in the washer to keep it going all the time.”