FAIRMONT, W.Va. (WBOY) — The Marion County Humane Society has been working on building up its new facility to house cats and dogs until they find their “furever homes.” 12 News received an update from the shelter on February 27 regarding how its progress is going.

The last facility held a total of 20 dog runs, in which the new facility is so much bigger that it will now hold 32 dog runs. There is a cat wing and a dog wing where they even have their own adoption rooms. Along with these rooms are:

  • Feeding rooms
  • Bathing and laundry room
  • Quarantine rooms
  • Isolation rooms – has negative air pressure just like a hospital
  • Three large roaming cat rooms – has cat doors that lead to outside
  • Large room for dogs – a bone can be pulled to open a door within’ individual kennels to lead out to the dog runs
  • Room for small dogs

Joanna Spatafore, Director of the shelter, told 12 News why this expansion was so important for its animals. She said, “our facility that we had, we had a waiting list at all times, a waiting list for dogs and a waiting list for cats. And at our temporary facility, we have a waiting list for dogs and a waiting list for cats. I’m not going to say that we’ll never have a waiting list here but we can take so many more than what we’ve ever been able to. And also, this allows us to pull more from animal control, so that they can, unfortunately take in more.”

On Monday, Solar Holler was at the shelter installing 158 solar panels onto the roof, which will generate about 57.5 kilowatts. Travis Harrison, crew lead – journeyman electrician, who has been in this line of work for a total of six years spoke on what Solar Holler’s plan is. During the day on Monday, Harrison wanted to lay out the array and put the mounts and rail on the roof. Solar Holler is trying out a new system for the panels in which they will use “APsystems” instead of “Enphase.”

Travis Harrison measuring the roof for the solar panels (WBOY Image)

Harrison mentioned that not only is using solar panels good for the earth, but it will also help the shelter save money on its electric bills. If everything goes accordingly, the solar panels should be installed by March 6, and then the electrical crew will go in and finish the solar project. After the solar project is finished, the shelter will need to add a pump to its water tank to help with the water pressure in the sprinkler system and add some finishing touches.

Spatafore hopes to have the new shelter open by mid-March or early April. They will hold a grand opening before the animals move into the shelter.

To help the Marion County Humane Society stay funded, you can donate on its website. All proceeds will go towards helping them pay off the loan for all the construction and work the new facility needs, pay its employees and bills and anything its animals need at any given time. For future updates and fundraisers, you can find more on their Facebook page.