New animal adoption center to open in Fort Lauderdale

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - A new adoption center will soon open its doors to South Florida families looking to adopt a cat or a dog.

Potential foster families will be greeted by pictures of bright-eyed furry pets. Officials and pets alike are hoping that those families walk out of the 40,000 square foot adoption center with a loving rescue.

“We’re really moving closer, closer every single year to getting to be the no-kill county that our residents and our animals deserve,” said Broward County Mayor Marty Kiar.

On Thursday, Broward County leaders cut the blue ribbon, making the center officially open. Cats and dogs in Fort Lauderdale will now have a bigger and better home than before.

The center is located along Southwest 42nd Street near Ravenswood Road in Fort Lauderdale. The county spent more than $16 million to make all of this possible for little cats and dogs who are hoping to eventually have a permanent home.

“This is only the second shelter we’ve ever been in,” said Thomas Adair, of Broward County Animal Care and Adoption. “Our first shelter we’ve been in since 1955.”

Officials said the old facility was out-of-date and out of touch when it came to welcoming a new member of the family.

There was also no air conditioning in the old building. “It was brutal on pets. It was brutal on staff. We had to bring in fans to cool everybody down,” said Lisa Mendheim, Broward County Animal Care and Adoption. “Don’t need that here.”

In the old facility, dogs and cats all lived within close quarters. “It was just not a good marriage,” Mendheim said.

Now they both have their own spaces with free-roaming areas.

Another feature is the interaction rooms where new foster families can be around the animal before taking them home.

If there is anything the animals need while at the facility, state-of-the-art surgical rooms have been built and will be implemented so veterinarians can do their job even better.

The doors will open on Nov. 15.

Copyright 2018 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.