If you’re looking to adopt a dog in Williamson County for the next six months, you’ll have to head to the new “Canine Corral” in San Gabriel Park’s show barn in Georgetown, county officials said.
The temporary dog shelter at 425 E. Morrow St. is expected to save the county $500,000 as officials work to complete a $9.5 million expansion of the Williamson County Regional Animal Shelter by next spring.
The Canine Corral will hold 79 kennels for large dogs and 15 kennels for smaller dogs as renovations begin on the main shelter’s dog kennels, county officials said.
Without the temporary shelter, construction on the expansion could have lasted through December 2019, said Misty Valenta, community programs coordinator at the Williamson County Regional Animal Shelter.
The shelter expansion’s budget includes money for the temporary shelter, which allows the county to work on renovations while continuing to house and take care of 94 dogs, Valenta said. Had the county not been able to create a temporary shelter, it would have had to spend $500,000 to keep the construction company around for another six months, she said.
“We can work on the adoption center, do construction and the renovation at the same time instead of finishing one and then working on the other,” Valenta said.
Williamson County spokeswoman Connie Odom said the temporary shelter is already owned by the county, and the kennels inside are recycled from the permanent shelter. One or two employees were brought on to staff the temporary shelter, she said.
Cats will remain housed at the Williamson County Regional Animal Shelter.
The temporary dog shelter will be open Monday through Friday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. and on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. About 50 dogs were in the Canine Corral on Wednesday, and employees were working to install a misting system to keep the animals cool as temperatures outside climbed into the lower 90s.
Construction on a 16,970-square-foot, two-story addition on the regional animal shelter began in January. When completed next spring, county officials said, the addition will hold 64 dog kennels, 93 cat kennels, an exercise yard for dogs, a new parking area, lobby and administrative offices.
In total, the renovated shelter will have 149 dog kennels and 186 kennels for cats, a new surgery area, surgical prep rooms, as well as air conditioning and plumbing repairs to 35 existing dog kennels, a cat isolation area and space to do laundry.
“This expansion will allow the shelter staff and volunteers to continue to maintain its no-kill status and find forever homes for the animals of Williamson County,” Precinct 3 Commissioner Valerie Covey said in January.
In April, the shelter was desperate to get dogs adopted after the facility became 20 animals over its capacity.
Dogs weighing 30 pounds or more will be free to adopt from the temporary shelter through June 9, smaller dogs older than 7 months will be $15, and puppies younger than 7 months will be $75 to adopt, county officials said. Regular adoption fees are $75, according to the shelter’s website.