A dog pants happily as it leans on a fence during Animal Adoption Extravaganza at Distribution Now on Oct. 27, 2018. The event was hosted by Hosted by Bandaged Paws Animal Rescue and In the Woods Animal Rescue.
Peter Shokeir / Daily Herald-Tribune
Bandaged Paws Animal Rescue Association will soon establish a safe-haven facility for animals at the former site of the Grande Prairie SPCA.The volunteer-run rescue works to find foster homes for abandoned, abused or stray animals. President Natasha Arsenault stated that this new facility, which was announced Friday, would help house homeless animals waiting for a foster home.“There is an overwhelming demand for animal intake with our organization,” Arsenault said. “We’re always turning away animals, so having a facility to help us bring in animals and disperse them into foster care is going to be a way more convenient system for us.”“It’s been a dream forever but we’ve been working on it for a while,” she added.In 2016, the Grande Prairie and District SPCA halted operations after years of financial struggles and a debt of $250,000. Arsenault said Bandaged Paws would now lease the space from the Edmonton Humane Society, which is the current owner.Arsenault noted that the Grande Prairie Regional Animal Care Facility (GPRACF) will continue to run the regional pound and animal-care facility.“Eventually, we’re working towards system where we’ll be doing any sort of honour surrenders and they’ll be dealing with strays and we’ll be taking transfers for unclaimed animals from the pound,” Arsenault said.Bandaged Paws is expected to open its facility in about a month after renovations have been completed. A date will be announced in the coming weeks. Arsenault added that they would also write up a “wish list” of what is needed for the new facility.“We’re already starting to intake animals on a smaller level just because, like we mentioned, the need is really, really there, especially this time of year when kitten season is happening,” she said. “Our volunteer program, we’re going to be kind of rolling that out in the next few weeks and then doing some volunteer orientation. And we’re also going to be doing some foster orientation because fostering is still going to be a large portion of our organization.”