Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

A New Home Westmoreland County Animal Shelter Raises Nearly $1M for Renovations

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

A New Home Westmoreland County Animal Shelter Raises Nearly $1M for Renovations

Article excerpt

Animal Protectors of Allegheny Valley is celebrating the start of the next phase of renovations at a former school building in New Kensington that will be ready to take in homeless dogs and cats as early as September.

Architects and contractors will be at the site at 730 Church St. at 10 a.m. Tuesday for a public preview with shelter staff and volunteers - and a shelter dog wearing construction clothes and a hard hat.

The event also will highlight that $950,000 has been donated, which is short of the $1.3 million goal of the APAV's Building Our Future Capital Campaign.

For 53 years, the Westmoreland County shelter has been saving injured, abandoned and abused cats and dogs, including strays picked up by the city of New Kensington. But it benefits the whole Pittsburgh region by helping to ease crowding at other shelters.

Each year, 400 to 600 cats and dogs receive care at the shelter. Adopters come from many counties, including Allegheny.The current census at the old shelter at 533 Linden Ave., New Kensington, is 22 cats and 17 dogs. Other animals live with volunteers who provide temporary foster homes.

In 2017, the APAV board paid $840,000 in cash for the school building and the 4 acres of land that surround it. That money was raised prior to the current campaign.

"We searched six years for a site, and we'd been saving money for years to buy it," said Phyllis Framel, a retired corporate librarian who chaired the capital campaign with her husband, John.

The current shelter is a small concrete-block building owned by the city. Animals have been housed there since 1986, and it has become cramped and overcrowded.

The old shelter has 3,000 square feet, while the new shelter will have 10,000 square feet.

Each dog will have a larger kennel. There will be a free-roam room for cats that get along with each other and separate rooms for cats that don't, Mrs. …

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