Washburn County Area Humane Society rebuilding update

SPOONER – Since the fire in March, those involved with the Washburn County Area Humane Society state that many eye-opening lessons have been learned, the most important being about kindness, generosity and concerned interest. This and more has been shown by the community. The downside has been noted as the frustration of insurance settlement procedures and the difficulty of making an all-option decision for rebuilding the animal shelter.

Thanks to dedication of loyal and capable shelter employees, a limited shelter situation has been set up and is being maintained. The employees cleaned up and are using the outside kennels at the burned building site. Since the fire, they have been caring for incoming strays, including fostering incoming animals themselves at times, while attempting to find them homes and maintain a reliable shelter phone service to the public. In some cases, after all proper procedures have been followed, animals have been transported to the Northwoods Humane Society in Hayward.

Board members have been working on all options possible for this project so a community friendly, animal appropriate and efficient, financially useful shelter can be rebuilt. A variety of land purchase options have been considered, as well as the possibilities of remaining in the same location or renovating an existing building. Building demolition bids have been taken, and shelter and building designers and a contractor have been contacted. There have been meetings with the city of Spooner and attendance at City Council meetings, as well as meetings with other area animal shelter personnel who have experience with building projects. Financial institutions have been contacted in case additional funding is necessary. There have also been donations to and involvement with fundraisers. Board members are attempting to locate and set up a better temporary shelter.

Because of the limited operation of the temporary facility, there are no specific shelter hours, so please call the shelter phone number, 715-635-4720, with any questions or concerns. The Spooner Police Department may also be contacted.

Gratitude is extended to all who have donated or are planning to donate to the WCAHS Fire Fund. Cash and check donations are still being collected at the Spooner Veterinary Office. A check may be sent through the mail addressed to Washburn County Area Humane Society, PO Box 328, Spooner, WI 54801.  Donations can also be made through the WCAHS GoFundMe account, access is available through Facebook or the website. – submitted