Residents Enjoy Coffee with the Manager at Arlington Animal Services Center
By Carol Weemes
Posted on July 20, 2018, July 20, 2018

Residents Enjoy Coffee with the Manager at Arlington Animal Services Center

Residents learned about Arlington Animal Services' valuable programs, services and success stories while enjoying complimentary Starbucks from the 4645 Matlock Road store during a recent Coffee with the Manager event at the City's animal shelter.

Arlington Animal Services Manager Chris Huff and several members of her dedicated team shared information and answers to various questions by those in attendance. Huff's presentation included a wide range of animal shelter facts, statistics, and successes, as well as overview on the wealth of information available to the public through the Animal Services website.

"You go above and beyond," shared Judy Flynn, an Animal Services Advisory Board member who attended the Coffee with the Manager event. "When you walk in to the Animal Services Center, it is inviting."

"We couldn't do it without the help of the amazing staff and volunteers," said Huff, appreciatively. "Many volunteers provide services such as one-on-one socialization with the shelter animals, cleaning animal kennels, and pet photographers are often needed. The added human interaction provided by the volunteers helps the fearful animals relax more, which in turn, helps them find adoptive homes more quickly."

The Dangerous Dogs story map was also discussed, with Henry Pena, the field services administrative coordinator, speaking about rules, fines and possible consequences of owning a dangerous dog in the City of Arlington.

Arlington's Urban Wildlife website was another topic covered by Huff, which led to information presented on animals considered high-risk carriers of rabies such as skunks, bats, foxes, raccoons and coyotes. "Many people mistakenly think that opossums' are potential carriers of rabies," said Stephen Anthony, the center's veterinarian technician, "which is a common misconception."

Since moving to the new Animal Services Center, more than $445,000 in grant funding has been awarded from community partners across the nation. The Arlington Tomorrow Foundation granted $125,000 for the purchase of the mobile adoption vehicle to showcase adoptable pets at public events and at PetSmart at the Highlands on the second and fourth Saturday each month, weather permitting. (Scheduled events are subject to cancellation during extreme weather conditions for the safety and protection of adoptable pets, volunteers, and staff.)

Best Friends Animal Society has donated more than $80,000 and is currently sponsoring more than 1,000 spay/neuters for Arlington feral cats to assist with the Trap-Neuter-Return program.

"We are all about educating our volunteers and the community," said Huff, and "AISD provides a great example that dreams really do come true." Huff described the growing partnership with Arlington Independent School District (AISD) and their Career and Technical Education program that gives students the ability to work towards college credits and technical trade skills while still in high school.

More than 8,000 students have also been taught not to bully through the story of a four-legged volunteer, Turtle the Painting Pit Bull, of Respect A Bull, Inc. Some students admit they "didn't know they were a bully" until experiencing the unique anti-bullying program, Huff said.

"We could not do all that we do without the overall support and grant funding received," said Huff. "Our amazing volunteers and teamwork continue to make the dream work."

For more information, contact Arlington Animal Services at 817-459-5898, or call the City's Action Center at 817-459-6777.

Animal Services, News