Planning for a bigger shelter

Souris Valley Animal Shelter starts capital campaign for major expansion

Submitted Art This architect’s rendering shows the Souris Valley Animal Shelter to expand the shelter with 7,000 square feet added to the back of the existing building.

The Souris Valley Animal Shelter in Minot has launched a capital campaign to raise money for a major expansion project.

“The capital campaign will consist of two separate phases,” said Randy McDonald, shelter director.

He said phase one will be the addition of 7,000-square-feet to the back of the existing facility. The existing facility covers 5,600 square feet. With the new addition, the total facility will be about 13,000 square feet.

McDonald said phase one will cost $1.4 million of which $400,000 already has been raised.

He said phase two of the project will be rebuilding the current building. “During this phase, all pets will be moved to the new structure and operation will continue as normal. This plan will cost $800,000,” McDonald said.

With site development and other additional contingency costs the overall cost will be $3.2 million, McDonald said.

The capital campaign was launched during the shelter’s Evening to Paws fundraising event held in the Grand Hotel in Minot. The expansion plans also were presented to the public that evening.

“We are going to build a doggy daycare/groomer as a way to start raising money for ourselves,” McDonald said during an earlier interview. The nonprofit organization will continue to seek donations. “But this is a way to maintain ourselves so it will lessen the impact on the community,” he said.

People who, for example, work long hours can take their dog to the doggy daycare. “We take care of your pets throughout the day. If you buy a monthlong package, then you get grooming as well and so forth,” he said.

The addition of a large open bay multipurpose room is part of the expansion project. Besides a room primarily for shelter dogs when it’s too cold to take them outdoors, it will be available for other uses such as kids’ birthday parties and pet loss support group gatherings.

“In the very near future, one of the things we’re going to add into this building is a spay-neuter clinic. We believe we’ll be the only shelter in North Dakota with a spay-neuter clinic so every pet that’s here will get spayed or neutered and when they are available for adoption, you will have a sterilized pet, a vaccinated pet, a microchipped pet,” McDonald said.

“We’re going to be able to microchip your pet, we’re going to be able to vaccinate your pet,” he added.

The animal shelter also has a dog therapy program. Through the program and the animal shelter’s partnership with other programs in the city, dogs are taken to the various venues for their customers. The shelter will also provide emergency shelter for pets in certain situations.

“We want to be viewed as more than a place to just come get a cat or dog. We want to be viewed as a community resource,” McDonald said.