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Shiawassee Humane Society faces funding shortfall

Courtesy Photo
Shiawassee Humane Society

The Shiawassee Humane Society is contracted by the county’s animal control unit to house and care for stray dogs sent by the unit.

But now, after a decade of partnership, the shelter has decided against renewing its contract with animal control.

The current contract, which started three years ago, pays the humane society $20,000 a year to care for the dogs transferred there.

Liz Kowal, the executive director of the Shiawassee Humane Society, said that money doesn’t cover half of the cost of proper care.

“Over the last couple of years, we have spent a total of $180,000,” Kowal said. “They are only covering $55,000 because of the contract…the first year the contract was partially into the year.”

Kowal said the humane society is interested in renegotiating, but “we’ve been dipping into our funds to cover the rest of the cost for the county.”

If a new deal isn’t reached by the end of the month, the humane society will stop taking dogs from animal control.

As for the dogs already there, Kowal said she doesn’t know what their future looks like. “They are considered property of the county, so ultimately, they would decide what they are going to do.”

“On our end, we wouldn’t euthanize them or displace them,” Kowal said. “We want what's best for the animals.”

The current deal expires Dec. 31.

The Shiawassee County Animal Control Department did not respond to a request for comment by the time of publication.

Lieza Klemm is a senior at Michigan State University, majoring in journalism with a concentration in broadcasting
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