City talks plans for animal shelter

By Matt Lasley -

Leitchfield Chief of Police Kevin Henderson this week discussed the city’s plans for the Leitchfield Animal Shelter, which, following the departure of the Grayson County Humane Society volunteers, is now being operated by the city.

Henderson said that, due to the issues that arose between the volunteers of the Grayson County Humane Society and Twin Lakes Humane Society, the city decided it would be better to take over operations of the animal shelter itself.

Previously, the Leitchfield Animal Shelter was overseen by Leitchfield Public Works, but due to many other cities’ operating animal control under law enforcement, as well as many of the Leitchfield Police Department’s (LPD) calls involving animals, it was determined that placing the animal shelter under the LPD’s oversight would streamline the process, according to Henderson.

The city will hire a Leitchfield Animal Shelter Director and a Leitchfield Animal Control Officer, and these individuals will operate out of the current Leitchfield Animal Shelter, located at 213 East Lake Dr. off of William Thomason Byway.

While the city is currently in a transition period in regards to the Leitchfield Animal Shelter, Henderson assured that the shelter is still open and accepting animals.

Henderson said the city will select the Leitchfield Animal Shelter Director and Animal Control Officer within the next two weeks, but the city will continue to utilize volunteers as it has previously.

Currently, individuals from the Twin Lakes Humane Society are volunteering at the Leitchfield Animal Shelter, and the Grayson County Humane Society is continuing volunteer work and “were doing a great job,” according to Henderson.

“But the Leitchfield Animal Shelter is owned and operated by the City of Leitchfield,” Henderson said.

The Leitchfield Animal Shelter will take only animals from within the city limits of Leitchfield; however, Henderson said, he would like to present a proposal to the Grayson County Fiscal Court and Grayson County Judge Executive Gary Logsdon for them to house county animals locally, after the county’s contract with Daviess County expires, to save both the county and the Grayson County taxpayers money.

The city’s goal is to avoid euthanizing animals and to make the process of adopting animals housed at the Leitchfield Animal Shelter somewhat easy, while still ensuring the animals go to good homes, according to Henderson.

However, if a veterinarian recommends that an animal taken in by the shelter be euthanized—for example, due to health issues—the Leitchfield Animal Shelter will act on the veterinarian’s recommendation, Henderson said.

Additionally, all animals brought in to the Leitchfield Animal Shelter will be spayed or neutered.

However, if animals housed at the shelter are too young to be spayed or neutered and are adopted before the procedure is performed, the Leitchfield Animal Shelter will make a contract with the person adopting the animal to ensure the procedure is done when the animal is old enough for it, Henderson said.

The city is also exploring possibly holding weekly spay and neuter clinics, not to compete with the local veterinary clinics, but rather to make the service more readily available to the citizens of Leitchfield, according to Henderson.

The Leitchfield Animal Shelter will be open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and public drop-offs and adoptions of animals may be done between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.

The shelter will also be open on Saturdays from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (noon).

The Leitchfield Animal Shelter will have its own listed phone number, and any inquiries should be made through that number.

The city is also looking into starting a website for the shelter.

Henderson recognized the volunteers who are helping to operate and clean and remodel the shelter, as well as Grayson County Jailer Jason Woosley for providing state inmate work crews to assist with the work, during the transition period.

Anyone who wishes to make a donation to the Leitchfield Animal Shelter may take them to the Leitchfield Police Department. Those who wish to make monetary donations are encouraged to write checks to the Leitchfield Animal Shelter.

For more information about the Leitchfield Animal Shelter, contact Henderson at the Leitchfield Police Department at 270-259-3850.

By Matt Lasley

Reach Matt Lasley at 270-259-9622, ext. 2015.

Reach Matt Lasley at 270-259-9622, ext. 2015.

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