What will happen to hundreds of animals at the Kern Co pound?

Kern County, CA has leased property from the city of Bakersfield for its pound since the 1970s but the relationship has been a contentious one, at least lately.  Both the city and the county have complaints but as far as the animals are concerned, the Kern Co pound is killing more animals now than it has in many years.  Unable to negotiate an agreement, the city is evicting the county from the property on September 30, with an offer of a December 1 extension if the county needs more time to relocate.

The city manager said it’s vital for the city to take control, citing animal rights groups’ complaints against the level of care the shelter has been providing.

At issue now is the fate of nearly 900 animals at the Kern Co pound:

According to county officials, there are three options.

“One of which is to move the animals. One of which is to release them, and in releasing them we can use some of the rescue agencies, that sort of thing. Or third, those animals would have to be destroyed,” [County administrative officer John] Nilon continued.

The Kern Co pound director seems to have a plan in mind but given the county’s stated intention to decline the extension on the eviction, I’m not sure how realistic that plan may be:

“When we get to the day that we have to move, we literally have to take every animal in the facility, which includes dogs, cats, horses, pigs, everything we have so we leave an empty facility behind,” said Kern County Animal Control Director Jen Woodard.

If the Kern Co pound staff can move nearly 900 animals by September 30, that’s great.  But if their plan is to simply continue killing at the current horrifying rate or possibly even worse in order to reduce the population needing to be relocated, I hope they’ll reconsider.  If there is to be a positive outcome from this awful situation, I suspect it will fall to the so-called irresponsible public to do the heavy lifting, as usual.

(Thanks Clarice for the links.)

8 thoughts on “What will happen to hundreds of animals at the Kern Co pound?

  1. Where can I go to find background info on this pound? IF it is killing as many animals as it seems what in the heck is it doing with 900 animals????? THis sounds more like a hoarding situation than anything else. So what is going to happen to stray unwanted animals in this area if the pound is closed? And yes it will fall on the evil public and overstretched rescues working out of their own pocket to fix this mess.

  2. I hope the irresponsible public will take it over! They do a much better job than those stupid politicians who don’t take the right action! They’re to busy sucking up!

  3. This is going to be an absolute mess. It’s going to be a mess for the Kern County folks as they walk away, and probably a bigger mess when Bakersfield realizes that they don’t know how to run a shelter and that the shelter director isn’t the problem there. I hope for the good of the animals there they figure out some way to come to an agreement or it’s going end up ugly on both ends.

  4. I’m forwarding this to my local shelter. We’ve taken in animals from other parts of the country (such as some that were displaced by Hurricane Katrina) and it would be nice if we could help with some of these animals.

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