MERIDIAN — The nonprofit Meridian Valley Humane Society operates out of two buildings on the grounds of the city's wastewater treatment plant at 3401 N. Ten Mile Road.
But due to growth in Meridian, the wastewater treatment plan needs to expand into the area now occupied by the smaller of the shelter's two buildings. City officials say it's time to have a community discussion about the long-term fate of the shelter.
The city owns the shelter buildings - which together hold about 25 dogs - and pays for two animal control officers and a part-time adoption manager. But 75 to 80 volunteers care for the animals, manage the adoption website and raise money for veterinary care. They donate about 12,000 hours each year, said Connie Petersen, the volunteer who founded the shelter nine years ago.
"You name it, the volunteer group does it," Petersen said.
"We are so grateful for what they are doing," said Natalie Podgorski, a city spokeswoman.
More than 1,000 dogs came through the shelter in 2011; 940 in 2012. The shelter finds homes for all dogs except those that are extremely ill or have a history of biting or aggressive behavior.
Petersen, a member of the Idaho Humane Society board, said contracting with the Humane Society for animal control is one option for the city. That would disappointment some volunteers who enjoy the intimate nature of their shelter, she said.
Have a comment about the future of the shelter? E- mail email@example.com with "animal shelter" in the subject line.
Katy Moeller: 377-6413