KC Pet Project announced a new program that aims to reunite lost pets with their owners.
Until further notice, through the shelter’s new Reclaim Fee Forgiveness Program, all pet owners will have the opportunity to reclaim their pets from the shelter for no cost in the first two days after their arrival at the KC Campus for Animal Care.
All lost and found pets for Kansas City, either found by a member of the public or picked up by KC Pet Project’s Animal Services Division, are held at the KC Campus for Animal Care at 7077 Elmwood Avenue in Swope Park for five days to give an owner a chance to reclaim their pet.
According to current KCMO City Ordinances, all pets that are reclaimed are subject to fees paid for by the owner in order to take their pet home. The fees are determined by factors including if the pet is spayed or neutered and how long the pet has been at the shelter.
This new program gives owners a two-day amnesty period to reclaim the pet and those initial fees will be waived. The pet owner would still be responsible for purchasing the pet’s rabies vaccination for $15, unless there is proof of a current vaccination, as well as a license for $12. KC Pet Project will also offer a discounted microchip insertion for pet owners for $10; normal retail cost for this is $25.
There will not be any tickets or citations associated with picking up stray pets from the campus given to pet owners. This is part of our new approach to animal services in Kansas City, which looks at minor violations that can be remedied by quickly achieving compliance, instead of punitive measures. Punitive actions, such citations for pets who were roaming and have been reclaimed, can result in distrust, traps residents in a vicious cycle of fees and fines, or the owner leaves the pet at the shelter for fear of having to pay these fines.
Data shows that most pets that are returned to their homes are reclaimed within the first 72 hours after arriving at the shelter. With a record number of stray pets coming to KC Pet Project, shelter officials hope that this will be an extra incentive to get pets quickly reunited back with their families.
“Our hope with this program, is that it encourages and lifts up our community, providing extra incentive to get pets back home as quick as we can,” said Tori Fugate, Chief Communications Officer of KC Pet Project. “Pets make our lives whole, and it’s important to us to honor the human-animal bond in all aspects of what we do. We hope that this innovative program not only helps us get pets back home quickly, but also creates awareness that if your pet ever becomes lost or is found in Kansas City, it comes to our shelter.”
If a pet becomes missing, it is important to come to the KC Campus for Animal Care as quick as possible to see if your pet is here. If you have lost your pet and you do not have transportation to get to the campus, please call KC Pet Project at 816-683-1383.
The Reclaim Fee Forgiveness Program is part of KC Pet Project’s Keep ‘Em Together, KC initiative. Currently, the shelter is subsidizing approximately $10,000 per month in grants and assistance to pet owners to help them keep their pets. Donations to the Keep ‘Em Together, KC program go directly toward programs like this to support these families and their pets.