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King County Executive News

King County Executive News
Aug. 12, 2011

Regional Animal Services of King County marks first year in operation

New way of doing business helps bring down euthanasia rate, new name for Kent facility focuses attention on mission

King County Executive Dow Constantine today congratulated Regional Animal Services of King County (RASKC) for a successful first year in operation. The highlights include a record low euthanasia rate, a growing volunteer and foster program, and increased regional collaboration. The executive also announced a new name for the RASKC facility in Kent: the King County Pet Adoption Center.

“Thanks to the efforts of our staff, our partners, and our volunteers, we are transforming Regional Animal Services into a model for progressive animal programs all over the country,” Executive Constantine said. “The new name for our facility, King County Pet Adoption Center, more accurately reflects who we are and what we do here. As has always been the case, our number one goal is to get pets adopted into permanent, loving homes.”

Executive Constantine pointed to the success of the adoption and foster programs in lowering the center’s euthanasia rate.

“Sadly, just a few years ago, more than 40 percent of the animals that came here were euthanized,” the executive said. “Today, by expanding our pet adoption and foster efforts, we have brought that down to less than 14 percent, and we are always working to make that number even smaller. What makes this even more remarkable is that the King County Pet Adoption Center is an open admission facility, meaning it takes in animals that are not just unwanted, but sometimes injured, suffering from malnutrition or abused. Unlike most shelters, our center does not euthanize adoptable animals.”

Executive Constantine also remarked on the physical changes happening at the King County Pet Adoption Center. Two new modular buildings are now being installed. When finished, the additional space will be used to house animals that are sick or injured while they recover.

King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert noted the value of partnerships in keeping costs down. “We couldn’t do what we do without our city partners,” Lambert said. “They see the value in the regional approach to animal care and control. By joining forces, we are able to achieve cost savings by eliminating unnecessary duplication of services. Those savings go directly into providing better service across the county.”

“I congratulate Regional Animal Services for reaching this milestone, and for the great job they’re doing to help both people and animals,” said King County Councilmember Joe McDermott. “My district spans everything from some of the most urban neighborhoods in King County to more rural areas on Vashon Island, and we all benefit from the wider regional approach to providing services.”

The King County Pet Adoption Center is open Mondays from 3 to 6 p.m., Tuesdays through Fridays from noon to 6 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m.

Photos from today’s celebration are available on the King County Flickr stream.