Pet Resource Center Named Best in State
Hillsborough County, Fla. (Feb. 19, 2018) - 2017 was quite a year for Hillsborough County's Pet Resource Center. The center hosted a statewide pet emergency exercise, operated nearly a dozen pet-friendly shelters during Hurricane Irma, and created an innovative vaccination program for canine influenza, all while continuing to find homes for thousands of dogs and cats.
On Saturday, those efforts were recognized by the Florida Animal Control Association, which named the Pet Resource Center the Outstanding Agency of the Year.
The Florida Animal Control Association evaluates Florida agencies on their comprehensive programming, including spay/neuter programs, animal abuse investigations, public education, and efforts to increase adoptions and reduce euthanasia:
- Training: Animal Control has a formal field training program based on law enforcement principles, and all animal control officers are certified in multiple training courses.
- Public education: In addition to working with schoolchildren, PRC educates adults through various community groups and offer public awareness campaigns for topics like rabies control, holiday pet safety, and how to prevent animal bites.
- Spay/neuter programs: The Pet Resource Center has an active spay/neuter rebate program for low-income residents. In 2017, the program resulted in 6,031 low-cost procedures.
- Effective programs for investigating animal cruelty: Animal Services handled more than 2,000 animal cruelty cases last year; the public now has access to an electronic complaint process and downloadable forms.
- Effective relationships with other organizations: The Pet Resource Center collaborates with local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies, has partnerships with Hillsborough Community College, the University of Florida, Auburn, and other colleges, works closely with area veterinarians, and partners with numerous animal rescue groups.
- Plans to reduce euthanasia and increase quality adoptions: PRC's Foster Rescue program has more than 200 participants who combined to provided foster care to 3,124 pets in 2017; the more than 100 rescue partners who work with PRC helped find homes for 4,763 pets.
The Pet Resource Center is the only open-admission facility in Hillsborough County, meaning it accepts dogs and cats regardless of breed, size, age, medical condition, or number of pets in the shelter. Throughout the year, the center maintained a live outcome rate of 92 percent for dogs and 82 percent for cats, even with an 18 percent increase in intake.