The usual sound of cats meowing and dogs barking has been replaced by the constant buzz of space heaters at the Ontario SPCA of Lennox and Addington.
The building is cold and wet.
“It was raining from this door frame from the burst pipe,” says animal centre manager Esther McCutcheon.
There’s also an undetermined problem with heat.
While experts tell McCutcheon that the furnace is working fine, the building’s HVAC system could be the stumbling block.
In the meantime, space heaters continue to keep the centre warm.
“Right now it’s simply too cold in here to have animals,” says McCutcheon. “And obviously the water is shut off and so we’d be unable to care for them even if it was warm enough in here.
“The plumbing has to be addressed and the heat issue needs to be addressed in a more permanent way.”
Fifteen animals have been relocated to foster homes and neighbouring shelters because of the need for repairs.
The centre’s plea for financial help hasn’t gone unnoticed — in less than 24 hours over $16,000 has been donated.
“If they’re not in a position to donate or in a position to give, the fact that everybody is thinking about us means a lot,” McCutcheon says. “We’ve been in this community for 32 years and it’s important that the community sees us and sees what we can do.”
McCutcheon says the Napanee, Ont., shelter adopts out an average of 500 dogs, cats, birds and small animals each year, and educates animal care givers.