Tightening the Leash: Dallas Animal Shelters Face Budget Cuts

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DALLAS — The city of Dallas is facing a $30 million budget shortfall and that means: Everything Gets Cut!

Every department in the city is being asked to cut three percent from its budget. But the cut that has people howling are those proposed for Dallas Animal Services.

“It will hurt the animals,” says Johnnie England, former vice-chair of the Dallas Animal Shelter Commission. “But also it will hurt the people and not just those who have pets and care about them, but having a lot of loose animals on the streets affects our quality of life.”

It’s still early in the process, but if the cuts go through, Dallas Animal Services say they would have to cut their temporary staff in half from 32 to 17 employees. That means half as many folks to take care of hundreds of dogs in the shelter every day.

Adoption rates have gone way up in the past few years; now over 50 percent of these fur balls get adopted. Just a few years ago, 80 percent had to be euthanized.

“I don’t understand why they would want to cut such a nice facility like this,” says Shawn Todd, who was looking at dogs to possibly adopt. “I’m from out of state and I’ve been to other animal shelters and they don’t look like this. They are usually outside and in cages and smelling bad.

There is never enough money to go around but wouldn’t it be a shame to hurt these dogs and cat’s chances of finding a  “furr-ever” home.

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