Cedar City’s new $1.4M animal adoption center planning grand opening soon

CEDAR CITY — Workers are putting the finishing touches on Cedar City’s new animal adoption shelter, which is expected to have its grand opening in August.

Cedar City Animal Adoption Shelter manager Tina Garrison told Cedar City News the grand opening celebration and ribbon-cutting has tentatively been scheduled for Aug. 24 at 11 a.m.

“We’re just excited to move into our new space,” she said.

The $1.4 million facility is located at 1305 W. Kitty Hawk Drive, a short distance down the street to the east from the old shelter.

Garrison said the new building has 5,200 square feet of usable interior space, making it more than triple the size of the old building.

In her office at the current shelter, Cedar City Animal Adoption Shelter manager Tina Garrison talks about the new shelter scheduled to open in August 2019. Cedar City, Utah, July 26, 2019 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

The new building features kennel space for some 40 cats and 30 dogs, including special quarantine areas for animals that are sick, pregnant or have bitten someone. 

Among the new building’s amenities are ventilation systems for the kennels, a pressure washing system, a food preparation area, a room where animals can be given vaccines and microchips, an animal bathing area and separate rooms where adoptive families can spend time alone and play with the animals they are considering adopting.

“Tina has worked really hard to be a no-kill shelter, and that’s what we want. We want to keep that distinction. We are a no-kill shelter, and it’s important for people to know that,” said Cedar City Council member Scott Phillips, who has been helping spearhead fundraising efforts on behalf of the new shelter.

Despite the facility’s no-kill status, there are still occasions where animals need to be euthanized, such as if they are severely ill and beyond hope of recovery or if they are deemed a danger to the public.

Phillips said although private fundraising efforts to date have fallen short of projected goals, he is hopeful more donations will be forthcoming.

“I did a mailing to about 250 people here in the community that I know, and they’ve been very generous and responded,” he said, adding that about $68,000 has been donated or pledged to date. 

“I wanted to raise $200,000-$300,000,” he said. “I don’t think we’ll make that mark, but it is within the realm of possibility that we could hit the $100,000 mark by the time we do the grand opening or shortly thereafter.”

A dog in a kennel at Cedar City’s current animal shelter, which is being replaced soon by a new facility located down the street, at 1305 W. Kitty Hawk Drive, Cedar City, Utah, July 26, 2019 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

“I’m not going to stop working on it,” Phillips added. “Everybody that I’ve written to, no one has said, ‘No, I don’t want to help.’ They just said, ‘No one’s asked me.’ So part of it is just getting the word out that there’s still a need.”

Donors who have contributed $1,000 or more belong to the elite “Thousand Dollar Charter” club, which will receive a sneak-peek VIP tour of the facility in advance of the grand opening, along with a few other perks. Phillips said the club currently has about 28 members, comprising both individuals and businesses.

Each of the 22 newly planted trees on the property came about as a result of a $500 donation, and some of the adopted trees will bear plaques with the name of the donor or their favorite pet.

On a similar note, an array of small plaques will adorn a wall inside the center’s main entry room. For a donation of $30, pet owners can have their favorite animals’ names go on the wall.

Phillips said there will also be a listing of every donor, no matter how much they give.

“I think the highest gift we’ve had was nearly $10,000 and (the lowest) was down to $2, but that’s okay,” he said. “Every single gift matters.”

For more information about the shelter or to make a tax-deductible donation, click here.

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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