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New BARC Animal Adoption Facility Nears Completion

Houston improves its animal euthanasia rates and will soon open a new facility

Workers took a break off the steel frame of the new Bureau of Animal Regulation and Care adoption center, also known as BARC. Mayor Annise Parker took advantage to celebrate the progress of the 2.2 acre, $12-million dollar facility.  She told a crowd under the blazing sun that the center symbolizes great strides made in the city’s care of animals:

“Frankly for decades, BARC was a mess, said Parker. BARC was where we turned our back on unnecessary but unpleasant functioin, that any city has to provide, and that is control of stray animals. Now, it is staffed by business minded people who still have a heart for animals.”

As the business side of the operation runs effectively, the animal side of the operation is much more humane and effective in the mission of animal control. Parker says council approved a budget increase of almost 3-million dollars for BARC:

“This will enable BARC to hire additional animal control officers and shelter employees said Parker, which will help both in our mission of making sure that the city is safe, but also in our mission to make sure that those animals that we take in, if it is at all possible, find a permanent adoptive home.”

Operations manager Greg Damianoff says the current building will still be a big part of BARC:

“The old facility will still be the regulatory part of things, said Damianoff. So, if you’re turning dogs in or you’re looking for your lost animal, that’s where you’re gonna go. Here is where you’re gonna go to find a new member for your family.”

Animal lover Bill Proler says he’s been a long time supporter of the organization:

“An incredible, incredible new facility they’re building here, says Proler. It’s gonna mean so much to the strays and lost dogs of Houston, not to mention the community as a whole also, but we’re honored and privileged to be able to support this fine organization.”          

BARC is required by law to take in every animal that comes through its doors, for an average of 25-thousand a year. The plan will allow new animal control officers to be hired, and should increase the number of service calls for strays and dangerous animals from 25 to 40 percent. Damianoff says the mayor’s love of animals helps:

“There’s been a lot of people that have been working hard to get this done said Damianoff, it doesn’t happen without a lot of cooperation. I’m so grateful, I am. She’s a great advocate, in all senses. She’s a real animal lover as well, it’s great!”

The new center is being built in four phases, and will separate animal intake, evaluation and medical areas from the adoption center. The grand opening for Phase-1 is scheduled for next spring.

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