Amarillo, TX – An assessment of Amarillo’s animal shelter facility and operations was recently completed by Target Zero Institute (TZI), the third-party retained by the City of Amarillo earlier this summer. In addition to complimenting the City Council and administration for its attention to change and improvement, as well as its long-standing partnership with the Panhandle Humane Society, the assessment provides recommendations in more than 11 areas, ranging from facility improvements to public/private partnerships.
The assessment, led by a veterinarian specializing in shelter medicine, evaluated the shelter against best practices and standards of care in animal shelters established by the Association of Shelter Veterinarians. The assessment includes a series of priority recommendations that should receive the most urgent attention.
Areas of highest priority improvement include securing shelter management software, operation of the shelter as a single entity involving both partners, and improved feline housing.
“A review with outside expertise yielded valuable insights into our top priorities,” says Scott McDonald, interim director of Animal Management & Welfare. “While some of the recommendations may take quite some time to implement, others, such as changing out the food dispensers, are things we are already acting on.”
The assessment complements other ongoing efforts at enhancing the operations of Amarillo’s Department of Animal Management & Welfare, including continued administrative and operations improvements, policy enhancements, and the search for new, permanent leadership.
“The assessment provides us with a great tool as we continue to make improvements at the shelter and in our operations to ensure we continue to protect the public’s health and provide quality care for the animals in our possession,” says Assistant City Manager Bob Cowell.
The assessment was prepared in consultation with local partners, stakeholders and interested parties and will continue to be reviewed by staff to prioritize actions. The assessment and its recommendations will be presented to the Animal Management & Welfare Board at their September 15 meeting and to Amarillo City Council at their September 16 meeting. The full assessment and its recommendations may be viewed on the City’s website at http://amw.amarillo.gov/pdf/TZI_Assessment_2014_Final.pdf.
For questions or additional information about the assessment or Amarillo Animal Management & Welfare, please contact Scott McDonald at 378-9032 or Bob Cowell at 378-3012.