The Fort Leonard Wood Animal Shelter, or sometimes known as the stray facility, is scheduled to reopen on Dec. 11 after being closed for several months due to renovations.
The shelter is operated by staff from the Waynesville Animal Shelter through a cooperative agreement between the installation and Waynesville.
According to Susan Rather, Waynesville Animal Shelter supervisor, the renovations include all new features as well as enhancements to the existing structure.
“An addition will be built to the existing kennel building,” she said. “That will include an office, a cat room and a dog-wash area.”
Rather said parts of the facility were not up to par, so she is excited to see the finished product.
“The cat (room) and office building was in bad condition so changes needed to be made,” she said. “We did not have a dog-wash room before, so having one will help greatly.”
Since the stray pet facility’s closure last fall, the workload for the Veterinary Treatment Facility and Waynesville Animal Shelter was increased.
“Year-round there is a pretty consistent number of strays that are picked up,” said Capt. Nicholas Anderson, Fort Leonard Wood Veterinary Services acting branch chief.The strays then await transfer to Waynesville Animal Shelter at Anderson’s office, he said.
“When a dog or cat is picked up on (Fort Leonard Wood), they are taken to the Veterinary Treatment Facility for holding until an animal control officer is available to pick them up for transport,” Rather said.
The workload on WAS has increased in the wake of its partnering shelter’s absence.
“We are always full and at near-capacity,” she added. “I used to believe that springtime was the busiest time, but this past year, we have taken in animals at all times.”
For anyone interested in adopting a pet before the Fort Leonard Wood Animal Shelter reopens, the Waynesville Animal Shelter Facebook page posts all of its dogs and cats that are available for adoption.
“All adult dogs and cats are up to date on vaccines and spayed or neutered. Puppies are up to date on vaccines only,” Rather said.
While adult dogs are eligible to go out on trial with a potential pet owner, puppies and cats are not.
For more information, visit the Waynesville Animal Shelter Facebook page or call 573.774.6509.
(Editor’s note: A previous version of this article stated the Fort Leonard Wood Animal Shelter was scheduled to reopen June 26. It is now scheduled to reopen Dec. 11, 2019).