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Posted on: August 22, 2020

Roosevelt Animal Shelter temporarily closed to the public; animal care will continue

Two hands reach inside a shelter cage toward two puppies.

The Roosevelt Animal Shelter has been temporarily closed to public access. Members of staff will continue to provide care for all animals in shelter custody during the closure; however, public services such as animal adoption will not be available during this time.

Roosevelt City administrators began a thorough investigation into the Roosevelt Animal Shelter last week at the request of animal shelter staff members and the public. The goal of the investigation was to evaluate current policies and procedures to ensure the needs of shelter staff and animals in custody were being met. 

Because concerns were brought to light of possible misuse of public money or public property, the Roosevelt City Attorney has determined that the City is obligated to fully investigate any possible violations, and all members of staff who may have a potential conflict have been placed on administrative leave, resulting in the temporary public closure of the shelter.

Investigation into any possible code violations will be conducted by an outside agency. Roosevelt City officials will not be involved to avoid any possible conflict of interest.

During the closure, animal shelter staff members will continue to provide care to any animals in custody. Additionally, the City has made emergency arrangements to respond to any animal issues that may arise while the shelter is closed. Those in need of animal services should continue to call Central Dispatch as normal at 435-722-4558.

While the independent investigation is ongoing, Roosevelt City will continue to make improvements at the animal shelter. City officials have already approved an increase in budgeted staff hours for shelter employees and worked with shelter management to improve lines of communication for addressing any future concerns that may arise.

It was also discovered that allegations of high rates of euthanasia at the Roosevelt Animal Shelter are false. In all of 2020, only three cats have been euthanized. All three were considered injured beyond the possibility of recovery by veterinary professionals. In the history of Roosevelt City’s management of the shelter, no animal has ever been euthanized for reasons unrelated to illness or injury. The Roosevelt Animal Shelter is not presently and has never been a high-kill shelter. The City will continue to uphold this standard moving forward.

It is the goal of Roosevelt City officials to ensure that the Roosevelt Animal Shelter is operating efficiently, meeting the needs of its staff, and providing the best possible care to all animals within its custody. The current investigation will help the City meet those goals and result in overall improvement at the Roosevelt Animal Shelter.