Amarillo-Panhandle Humane Society responds to Target Zero report

Amarillo-Panhandle Humane Society responds to Target Zero report

The Amarillo-Panhandle Humane Society responds to a recent recommendation from Target Zero that Amarillo Animal Management and Welfare should renegotiate or cut ties with their organization.

The Target Zero reports says Amarillo's shelter has "essentially outgrown the relationship" with the humane society and recommends sweeping changes.

"The humane society has been the public's conscience in animal related matters since 1954," said Larry Milam, the Executive Director for the Amarillo-Panhandle Humane Society. "I thought for a relationship that's been in existence for almost 65 years, the humane society deserved a little bit more consideration than that."

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The humane society's main source of revenue comes from adoptions that allow them to operate.

The report acknowledges this but criticizes them for sending potential adopters to Pet Smart instead of adopting at the shelter.

The humane society said this is actually to benefit the customer.

"A dog adoption at Pet Smart costs $100," said Milam. "A cat adoption costs $75 and with that the adopter gets a coupon book with savings in it for over $400. So we feel like that's a pretty good value."

Their current cost of adoption is $150 for dogs and $100 for cats.

Target Zero recommends dog adoptions cost no more than $35 and cat adoptions be free or cost no more than $10.

"The only way that we can implement that is if the city or somebody wants to subsidize the difference like Pet Smart Charities does," said Milam. "If they want to take the price down further and they were willing to subsidize it, then sure we would be glad to do that."
Target Zero also wants changes to the humane society's foster program.

The humane society said they're open to suggestions, including getting out of the foster program all together.

"I think it may be appropriate for the humane society to transfer the foster program to the city," said Milam. "The city has a full time volunteer coordinator. The foster program is a volunteer program and then the city could manage that to support the transports, the emergency issues that come up, all those things so yes, I think that's entirely appropriate."

The Amarillo-Panhandle Humane Society encourages everyone to read the report and refer to their own experiences with the humane society as they come to a conclusion.

They believe the animal issue in Amarillo can be resolved with the public's help through the 90-four-90 water bill program and other initiatives.

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