SASKATOON — A recommendation to increase funding to the Saskatoon SPCA for pound services in 2022 will be presented to the Standing Policy Committee on Planning, Development and Community Services at its meeting on Tuesday.
The City of Saskatoon and the SPCA have had a longstanding relationship to ensure pound services — the capture and housing of stray companion animals for up to 96 hours — are available to the residents of Saskatoon.
The SPCA provides pound services and also provides extra services such as pet adoption, animal shelter and education programs.
Through a lease and pound services agreement, the SPCA provides pound services for the city. In turn, the city permits the SPCA to provide other services out of the city-owned facility on Clarence Avenue South
Beyond the 96 hours required under the Pound Services Agreement, the animals transition to shelter services, which have always been fully funded by the SPCA.
A recent review of the current funding structure was undertaken collaboratively by the city and SPCA administration and determined that the total amount allocated in the 2022-23 operating budget is not meeting current costs to deliver the program.
The administration is recommending a 50 per cent increase in total funding to $698,000 to reflect the cost of the pound operations more accurately.
“We know that the SPCA has the experience and expertise to provide adequate animal care to animals dropped off at the pound, and an increase in funding will allow the city and the SPCA to continue this longstanding relationship to ensure pound services are available to the residents of Saskatoon,” said Community Services general manager Lynne Lacroix.
If approved, the administration will continue working with the SPCA to determine the actual funding required to deliver pound services for 2023 and will also review funding options and service level changes that may be implemented which could reduce the costs associated with pound services.
A report on a detailed plan and future level of funding would be presented in advance of budget approval.
In 2005, when the SPCA was experiencing financial difficulties and needed help to address the situation, they approached the Ccity about purchasing their land and building,
The city agreed to the purchase and in addition, invested $100,000 into capital improvements to the facility.
For more information on pound services provided in the City of Saskatoon, visit saskatoon.ca/services-residents/pet-licensing-animal-services/enforcement.