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Board approves merger between Pottawattamie County Animal Shelter and Midlands Humane Society

Posted at 7:17 PM, Jan 17, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-18 08:54:35-05

A stray dog doesn't really care where he stays just as long as he's warm and fed.

But someone has to pay for that.

 

The Pottawattamie County Board members want to cut costs for taxpayers by putting the dogs that come to the county shelter and into the Midlands Humane Society's facility.

"They have an agreement with the Midlands Humane Society and all it has to do is be ratified by the  board that it is okay to merge,” said Lori Starr, a volunteer for the Pottawattamie County Animal Shelter.

Nikki Cruickshank with the Midlands Humane Society explains.

"For the county, it's definitely a cost saving for them just because all the sheltering aspect falls on us,” she said. “It will increase our expenses."

So why did protesters show up at the meeting?

Volunteers at the county shelter insist its needed and feel "blindsided" by it - claiming the board told them this merger wouldn't happen.

"We're concerned with euthanizing dogs because the Midlands Humane Society does euthanize dogs,” Starr said.

But the board voted 4-1 in favor for the merger.

“I believe it's about the county losing its lease on its current property. It's not about the county caring for the animals -- they do a great job down there." Cruickshank said.

The county animal shelter can house up to 12 dog, while Cruickshank  says the humane society can take around 50 dogs and 100 cats.

The merger would mean the humane society would take over the sheltering component for the county.

 But with this proposed deal so fresh, a lot of details remain unknown.

For now, the county will continue to handle animal control duties.