Faulkner County residents express the need for an animal shelter

(KATV Photo)

Faulkner County residents are voicing their concerns for stray animals after Reese's the Chihuahua was shot by a deputy over the past weekend.

However, the issue isn't new. Donna Clawson has been fighting this battle for over 13 years. Spending her entire life in Faulkner County, she has never seen a solution to the animals that roam.

"It's all over our county. There are packs of dogs. There are hundreds of cats," said Clawson. And there's nowhere for them to go.

A group was formed to hopefully fix that problem and build a shelter for the county to use. To get the money for it, a voluntary tax fund was created in 2006, and it has since accumulated to $1.4 million dollars. Clawson added, "we have the money to get the shelter. Now we need to take it a step further and we need to be able to fund the shelter."

She says to be able to maintain the shelter, they'll need $500,000 a year. It's not easy coming up with that steady revenue flow, but they're hoping donors will step up to help.

Clawson said, "My committee, and there are so many other people, who have spent so much time trying to do the right thing. And I feel like 2019 is going to be positive. We're going to see some relief for the animals, and it's going to be a lot safer for them and for the citizens out in the county." And they won't stop until it happens.

For the time being, Clawson and her committee hope to use $50,000 out of that voluntary tax fund to start up a spay and neuter clinic. Their goal is to attempt to curb the stray animal population while they wait for the shelter.

Friends of the Faulkner County Animal Shelter is hosting an open meeting on January 21. Anyone who wants to lend a hand or even a helpful suggestion is encouraged to attend the meeting. You can find the Facebook event here.

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